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  • Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

    Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

    ★★★

    In my view this is a somewhat more successful franchise pastiche than THE FORCE AWAKENS but it clearly lacks the formal cohesion and the spiritual and autocritical core that made THE LAST JEDI so indelible. Abrams was criticized once for basically rehashing STAR WARS, and this time he's done an equally competent job of it for RETURN OF THE JEDI: sometimes wildly bloated, other times strangely rushed, with poignant moments bumping right up against eyerolls, and too-pat resolutions sitting alongside…

  • 6 Underground

    6 Underground

    ★★★★½

    "You ever wonder what it would be like to do the thing you were put on this Earth to do?"

    Exploding plastic inevitable. The greatest, tackiest, most reprehensible lizard-brain dipshit maximalist action epic in I can't even tell you forever how long. I could barely tell you what happens in it. Bay has surpassed himself. Pretty much what movies are for.

  • The Score

    The Score

    ★★★

    If you thought Norton was chewing on the bit a little too hard in MOTHERLESS BROOKLYN, hey have I got a movie for you. Also features a veritable horn of plenty of sparkling ad-libbed bons mots from Brando like "I'll believe that when pigs eat my brother!"

  • QT8: The First Eight

    QT8: The First Eight

    ★★★

    Nothing much new here, and the Weinstein stuff feels a little desperate and half-assed, but a lot of nice interview footage, and what am I gonna tell you, I'm sort of in the tank for the guy anyway.

  • Dark Waters

    Dark Waters

    ★★★★

    Not without its issues (pacing, occasional histrionics, a little too much digital teal & orange), but I'm totally on board for all of it because this is some classic auteurist gun-for-hire smuggling. Exactly how you do this stuff.

  • Just Mercy

    Just Mercy

    ★★★

    You know how you go to like Denny's and the menu is full of pictures and the Moons Over My Hammy you ordered looks pretty much just like the photo and it's nothing special but tastes exactly like it should?

  • Street Asylum

    Street Asylum

    G. Gordon Liddy gets spanked by a dominatrix in this.

  • A Hidden Life

    A Hidden Life

    FEATURE OR BUG: THE MOTION PICTURE

  • The Cotton Club

    The Cotton Club

    ★★★★

    Just can't get my poor self together

    A relatively radical recut doesn't necessarily change the film but definitely clarifies its focus. More musical numbers and less gangster stuff, more blackness and less whiteness, more spontaneity less structure. Whether it's closer to what Coppola wanted to make in the first place is unknowable; there's too much coke and legacy and ambition in the way. But like the majority of his best work it seems strikingly modern, and in this case moreso than ever.

  • Bombshell

    Bombshell

    FOX News is bad!

  • Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice

    Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice

    ★★★

    Feeling more validated than ever in my opinion that her version of "Desperado" is the superior one.

  • The Last Black Man in San Francisco

    The Last Black Man in San Francisco

    ★★★

    I HEARD YOU PAINT OTHER PEOPLES' HOUSES