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  • Ammonite

    Ammonite

    ★★★

    In the opening scene of Francis Lee’s Ammonite, a brief sort of prologue set decades before the main story, we see a complete, fossilized ichthyosaur skeleton being arranged for display in a museum. Empirical though it may be, to contemplate this great, fierce beast from our world’s ancient past is frightening, almost Lovecraftian. When we catch up, years later, with the person who excavated the fossils, she’s still at it. But when she makes an unexpected new acquaintance, the film’s central metaphor becomes clear. What will these two closed-off women dig up in each other?

    Read the full review at Battleship Pretension: battleshippretension.com/ammonite-can-you-dig-it-by-david-bax/

  • Freaky

    Freaky

    ★★★½

    If there was ever a time when merely being self-aware was enough to make a horror movie seem cool or smart (like, say, the 90s), that time has long passed. For an entire generation of horror fans raised on Scream and its many snarky descendants, irony is now nearly the default. For some of us, the result is an automatic skepticism about large swaths of the horror-comedy subgenre. Christopher Landon’s Freaky mercifully begins to overcome such doubts right away. The…

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  • You Were Never Really Here

    You Were Never Really Here

    ★★

    Made me wish I was never really there.

  • A Hidden Life

    A Hidden Life

    ★★★★½

    Terrence Malick’s transcendent A Hidden Life is informed and bolstered in every way by Christian philosophy and yet, despite including numerous men of cloth as characters, none of them has the fortitude to fulfill the purpose of their vocation. But one of them (played by Tobias Moretti) does at least offer us a means of interpreting Malick’s intentions when he mentions that each of us would like to imagine ourselves opposing Christ’s crucifixion were we alive and present at the…