• Love & Friendship

    Love & Friendship

    ★★★★

    Taking notes for an upcoming piece, I started writing down every memorable line and then quickly realized I'd just be transcribing the entire screenplay.

  • A Brixton Tale

    A Brixton Tale

    ★★½

    Slamdance 2021: Mediocre romantic drama that sort of becomes a mediocre thriller toward the end. Seems to have a lot to say about the way that everyone's lives are captured on camera, and about exploitation across racial and class lines, but never really manages to say it. The main characters are still figuring themselves out and making mistakes along the way, but the movie seems just as uncertain and half-formed.

  • Coming to America

    Coming to America

    ★★★½

    I loved this movie when I was a kid and was worried it would be full of dated, cringe-worthy elements, but it's not! Still funny and warm and surprisingly wholesome.

  • The Vigil

    The Vigil

    ★★★½

    I knew I made the right decision not getting bar mitzvahed.

  • Gigli

    Gigli

    ★½

    Extra half-star for the way that Christopher Walken talks about Marie Callender's pie.

  • Bad Attitude: The Art of Spain Rodriguez

    Bad Attitude: The Art of Spain Rodriguez

    ★★★

    Slamdance 2021: Basic but informative documentary about underground comics artist Spain Rodriguez. Necessarily suffers in comparison to Terry Zwigoff's classic Crumb (R. Crumb himself is one of the main interviewees here), but still adds some important context to the history of alt-comics, and highlights Rodriguez's central place in the movement. Although it's directed by Rodriguez's widow, it doesn't hold back on criticism of the artist's sexism and discussions of his violent past, all of which was incorporated into his work.

  • Hurrah, We Are Still Alive!

    Hurrah, We Are Still Alive!

    ★★

    Slamdance 2021: I admit that I had no idea what was happening for at least two-thirds of this movie, and only a vague idea for the other third. There's some sort of theater/filmmaking collective that is maybe a front for a political and/or terrorist group? It takes place during a time of civil unrest that is maybe around the fall of communism but also the present day? The festival description claims this is a film noir, but that is not…

  • Teenage Emotions

    Teenage Emotions

    ★★★½

    Slamdance 2021: Aesthetically rough but thematically rich ensemble drama about, uh, teenage emotions, featuring a cast of non-actors who actually look and behave like genuine high schoolers (because they are). The dramatic arcs could be a little tighter, and some of the random supporting characters could be cut, but overall this is an engaging and entertaining portrait of the overwhelming angst and insecurity of being a teenager.

  • Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar

    Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar

    ★★½

    This is the kind of movie that only ever gets one star or five stars, so of course I gave it two and a half stars.

  • Mary Shelley

    Mary Shelley

    ★★½

    Mary Shelleys, ranked:
    1. Elle Fanning (Mary Shelley)
    2. Elsa Lanchester (Bride of Frankenstein)
    3. Alice Krige (Haunted Summer)
    4. Natasha Richardson (Gothic)
    5. Lizzy McInnerny (Rowing With the Wind)
    6. Alix Wilton Regan (A Nightmare Wakes)

  • The Reckoning

    The Reckoning

    ★½

    I was really hoping for a ridiculous trainwreck, but this is mostly just tedious and dull.

  • Bliss

    Bliss

    ★★

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

    This is like The Matrix if it turned out that Neo was just a weird guy who worked in an office and pretended to know kung-fu.