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  • Ready or Not

    Ready or Not

    ★★★★

    78

    A great movie about how the bullshit of rich people should never be tolerated. Also features secret passages, a goat pit and creepy skeletons, and one hell of an 'old dark house'. Instant recommendation.

  • Parole Violators

    Parole Violators

    ★★★½

    64

    Nails on a chalkboard, yet always bizarre enough to keep me invested. Best scene is when someone makes pasta and mixes the noodles and the sauce together *in the colander*.

  • Ford v Ferrari

    Ford v Ferrari

    ★★½

    50

    A charming and frequently competent racing film about the inequalities within big business and small-town hucksterism. Exactly what you're expecting from the director of Walk the Line, with a similarly efficient biopic construction. Looks and sounds impeccable, and yet, it's one of the longest films ever made, all told under big American skies and explosive emotion. Broad strokes leading to a mostly underwhelming totality.

  • Dark Waters

    Dark Waters

    ★★★★½

    82

    A Todd Haynes/Ed Lachman collaboration about corporate conspiracy and the (still ongoing) DuPont public health crisis, starring Mark Ruffalo.

    You should already be interested if you haven't watched it already. If nothing else, this is an Important Movie that never loses its grip as a sickly, infuriating experience.

  • Richard Jewell

    Richard Jewell

    ★★½

    47

    Clint Eastwood's best since Sully, although it still falls far beneath the 2016 film in terms of craft. Eastwood has always found a tightrope between the mundanity and myths of reality, but his recent works have been creaky, set in their ways, and weirdly sloppy. Richard Jewell is no exception, but it benefits from the tense dichotomy of media and government institutions and the classism of being betrayed by law enforcement. Much of it is precedent in ways that…

  • Michael Clayton

    Michael Clayton

    ★★★★½

    88

    Bone-chilling. Front to back, a classic screenplay. As a man of virtue, Michael Clayton's only flaw is that he refuses to acknowledge not just who he represents, but 'what' - a transformation from individuals to entities, clients to corporations. This is about wiping the slate clean, and plummeting to your doom as a result. Delighted to see Katherine Waterston pop up in a one-scene role, her only moment being a gesture: understanding that keeping her mouth shut is a matter of life and death, a cog in the system self-aware.

  • Mortuary

    Mortuary

    ★★★

    55

    Lost amidst the spaces of the dead.

  • Hard Ticket to Hawaii

    Hard Ticket to Hawaii

    ★★★★½

    85

    "Man, he must be smokin' some heavy doobies."

    A total joy. Andy and Arlene Sidaris created a sun-baked day-glo adolescent fantasy with a contaminated snake and a lot of Uzis and rocket launchers. Teeters closely to knowing farce, but it's always terrible enough to stick the landing. The skateboard scene is the stuff of legends.

  • Ma

    Ma

    ★★★

    52

    You can see from the trailer that Ma is built as a standard blumhouse teen horror with an outrageous central performance by Octavia Spencer, and it's exactly that, but that ultimately anchors the whole thing. Tries for moral ambiguity and a few exploitative shocks, fails at both, but it does succeed at being really fucking funny. Imagine this story directed by a capable genre craftsman and not the director of The Help, a nastier script revision, and we'd be in business.

  • The Gate

    The Gate

    ★★½

    48

    Great creature effects complimenting a sturdy 80s kids horror narrative, but it's mostly a snooze and it falls short of the inventive visual ideas on the fringes.

  • Pieces

    Pieces

    ★★★

    58

    Still don't love this, wish I did. Weirdly low-energy, with all its inept quirks and big moments lost among a glacial giallo pacing but lacking much of the style. Hilarious moments, sure, and it adds up to a weird concoction, but it's no comparison to Slugs.

  • Goodbye Uncle Tom

    Goodbye Uncle Tom

    no rating

    Feverish, episodic depravity. Probably the most effective film about the industry of slavery, the machine that it was, and how its landscape of joyous brutality, union cognitive dissonance, and transactional efficiency all operated at the expense of brutalized black bodies and minds. The filmmakers, in hiring Haitian people and paying them pennies to reenact such atrocities, encapsulated the disgust of true exploitation, hiding behind (admittedly potent) ideas of political rage and historical depiction while reviling in extended sequences…