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  • Pain and Glory

    Pain and Glory

    ★★★½

    Antonio Banderas is truly stunning in this role, embodying this aged, exhausted man so perfectly I kept forgetting he was acting at all. He brings a mournful gravitas to the role that serves it beautifully. As with many Almodovar films, I find myself engaged with each individual scene but can't quite make it coalesce into the full story I want it to. These are great individual scenes, though, each one rich with layers of subtext. But as is so often…

  • Mank

    Mank

    ★★½

    This movie feels a little caught between the two stories it wants to tell -- Mank's full life and his work writing Citizen Kane -- and they never meld quite as neatly as I want them to. The latter is far more interesting to me, but the story ends just as it reaches one of the more dramatic moments in that narrative and abruptly jumps to the resolution. I think I'm supposed to fill in the narrative and thematic gaps…

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  • Inside Llewyn Davis

    Inside Llewyn Davis

    ★★★

    Like so many movies by the Coens, I'm not exactly sure what to make of this. I like individual moments, but I'm not certain I can say it hangs together as a whole. My least favorite thing about the Coens has always been their ending choices, which frequently feel like they just abruptly stopped making the movie, rather than actually *ending* their story. That is definitely the case here, and I am once again left unsatisfied and a little puzzled…

  • Guardians of the Galaxy

    Guardians of the Galaxy

    ★★★★½

    At this point, this is my favorite Marvel superhero movie (I had to think for a bit about whether I liked it better than Iron Man, but I'm going to go with yes). It's what I wanted The Avengers to be: a light-hearted adventure with delightful characters and some surprisingly moving emotional moments. And I knew pretty early on I was going to love it. Specifically, the moment where Chris Pratt dances through the alien cave. The humor running throughout…