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  • The Black Cat

    The Black Cat

    ★★★★★

    "Didn't someone already make this movie?"

    "As a matter of fact, yes. It was a big hit when it came out. Reviews. Box office. Everything!"

    "Dario Argento directed it... Suspiria... and I must admit, it was very, very good."

    And with that exchange, I realised I was watching something incredibly special. I am shocked that I was totally unaware of this movie until a few days ago. How did this slip me by? Why did I wait years only to…

  • The Boxer's Omen

    The Boxer's Omen

    ★★★★½

    The Boxer's Omen is pure madness on celluloid! I can't thank Chris Purdie enough for recommending this to me. This is everything I could ever want in a film. Here is a paragraph of some things you'll see in The Boxer's Omen because my brain can't construct proper sentences at the moment...

    Violent kickboxing. Bolo Yeung's disproportioned body. Buddhist monks fighting demons. Spiders (that make the spiders from The Beyond look awesome) drinking liquid poison from tiny straws. Conversations with…

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  • The Greatest Showman

    The Greatest Showman

    ★½

    Catchy-as-fuck songs, actors dripping with charisma and a lot of impressive dance moves cannot hide what an empty husk The Greatest Showman is. Putting aside that fact that it makes a hero out of an exploitative dickhead, as a narrative, everything is unearned here. Character decisions are driven by when it's time to wedge a song in rather than any kind of want or need. The songs, though well-written, are overblown with emotion, which would be fine if the film…

  • Diary of a Country Priest

    Diary of a Country Priest

    ★★★★½

    Unbelievably grim. The titular priest is one of cinema's bleakest, saddest characters, and Claude Laydu's performance—slowly degrading in front of ours eyes—is remarkable. Diary of a Country Priest is so sharp, so focused. It feels far more modern than its release date. As many have pointed out, it's very easy to see how this would inspire Paul Schrader in the figures he would craft for Taxi Driver and First Reformed.

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  • My Friend Dahmer

    My Friend Dahmer

    ★★★★

    It's hard to believe that this Ross Lynch is the same Ross Lynch who so brilliantly captures Dahmer's hunched, blank-faced, drunken aura. Lynch spends most of the film expressionless yet he conveys so much through so little. The smallest smile. An awkwardly delivered line. He's perfect. His Dahmer is as sympathetic as he is terrifying. The film outside of Lynch is also solid and subtle (it helps that the source material—Backderf's fantastic graphic novel—is excellent). This is not a gruesome…

  • Tokyo Idols

    Tokyo Idols

    ★★★★½

    Living in Osaka, the sight of a young girl singing on the street surrounded by old men—cameras out, filming silently as sweat drips from their wrinkled faces—is about as common an occurrence as walking past a Family Mart. It unsettled me when I first moved here, but, over the past year, it's blended into the background, becoming part of the overall composition of this city—a city I love to bits and a city that deeply upsets me. Tokyo Idols, like…