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  • Blazing Saddles

    Blazing Saddles

    ★★★★

    As I started this film, I was warned, “It’s pretty racist, but hilarious!” And that about sums it up perfectly. You can’t help but chuckle and raise your eyebrows at the ridiculous overt racism and anti-political correctness that comprises this film. However, in addition to these satirical elements, the film utilizes perfect timing in every scene, an excellent musical score, and an entertaining and unexpected break of the fourth wall to create a timeless masterpiece. Mel Brooks created a fantastic…

  • The Birth of a Nation

    The Birth of a Nation

    ★★★½

    In the initial scenes of Nate Parker’s “The Birth of a Nation,” I remember thinking, “Huh, well the plantations and slavery weren’t 'that' bad” as visions from “Shindler’s List,” “The Pianist,” and “The Boy in the Striped Pajama’s” flashed through my mind. However, Parker used a slow build to challenge that mindset and highlight the horrors of slavery in America, notably depicting a couple unthinkable, horrifying interactions between slave owners and their slaves.

    In addition to directing and co-writing this…

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  • Mad Max: Fury Road

    Mad Max: Fury Road

    ★★★★★

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    Film #13
    Task #18: Disaster film involving either a plane, train, ship, or any other mode of transportation!
    letterboxd.com/desmith1992/list/scavenger-hunt-2/
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    I went to George Miller's "Mad Max: Fury Road" expecting a crazy protagonist who could wither out of any impossible predicament, a barren wasteland with endless sights of sand and nothingness, and a crazy, brainwashing cult leader who frightened and intrigued me simultaneously. Miller created an amazing piece that not only lived up to my high expectations, but went…

  • Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

    Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

    ★★★★½

    Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu developed an intriguing film with many layers of subtlety often lacking in modern films.
    As washed-up superhero actor Riggan Thomson (Michael Keaton) struggles to perform the perfect Broadway show and win the affections of his family, friends, fans, and a brutal critic, his life quickly spirals out of control as delusions of his previous character, Birdman, become increasingly prevalent.
    Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu drew outstanding performances from Michael Keaton, Zack Galifianakis, Emma Stone, Naomi Watts, and Edward Norton…