Matt Goldberg

Matt Goldberg

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  • King Kong vs. Godzilla

    King Kong vs. Godzilla

    ★★★

    Strong "When are they going to get to the fireworks factory?" energy. These movies kind of have to be graded on a curve because taken as they are, they pale in comparison to the original Godzilla (or also King Kong, in this case) and you need to embrace the cheesiness of the whole endeavor. Once you give yourself over to guys in rubber suits pummeling each other while smashing miniatures, you can have a good time with it.

  • Godzilla Raids Again

    Godzilla Raids Again

    ★★★

    On the one hand, it's very much a rushed sequel that's trying to capitalize on the success of the original. On the other hand, it still brings worthwhile stuff to the table like the great shot of Godzilla surrounded by the flares and introducing Godzilla fighting another monster, which would become the cornerstone of the entire franchise. That being said, even though it's 15 minutes shorter than the original Godzilla, it feels longer because it lacks the dramatic tension and seriousness to make you invest in what's happening.

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  • Midsommar

    Midsommar

    ★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Between this and Hereditary, I’m confident saying I’m not an Ari Aster fan. On a technical level, his skill is undeniable, but it lacks artistry. Everything he does is painfully self-aware and there’s no empathy for his characters. The deaths of family members are exploited and crassly used for shock value with minimal reckoning. He’s made two movies that are ostensibly about unimaginable grief, and yet they both get bogged down in mythological bullshit. By the end, you’re no longer focused on the protagonist because of some threatening cultish other. Spare me.

  • Rocketman

    Rocketman

    ★★★★½

    I went into Rocketman expecting to like it, but I absolutely loved it. The film, in addition to being marvelously directed with showstopping renditions of Elton John’s songs, takes its biggest liability—the well-worn tropes of the music biopic—and turns them into an asset, letting go of a specific history of John and instead trying to channel the spirit of his story. Rather than build up a myth, John, who served as an EP on the film, lets Rocketman tear him…