REVIEW: Ad Astra [2019]

Most of us spend our entire life in hiding. In our quests for more, many of us forget that which we already have. This is true on a micro (sacrificing family for career) and macro (domination no matter the collateral damage) level. Space exploration can often become a rather direct example of this as a common reason for advancement in interstellar travel stems from our desire to find a new home to replace the one we’ve destroyed. We latch onto those things that we can only hope to achieve while…

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Online Film Critics Society Ballot 2017

Below is my December 24th ballot for the 21st annual Online Film Critics Society Awards honoring movies released domestically in the United States during the 2017 calendar year. Group winners are highlighted in red. (We were only allowed to vote for one nominee per category this year, but I ranked them all like previous years anyway.) Best Picture #1 Dunkirk #2 Call Me By Your Name #3 Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri #4 Get Out #5 The Shape of Water #6 The Florida Project #7 mother! #8 Lady Bird ABSTAIN…

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REVIEW: The Lost City of Z [2017]

“We are all made from the same clay” I should have known The Lost City of Z wasn’t to be your regular old adventure picture of men on an expedition since James Gray was at the helm. He’s always been one for character studies delving deeper than the situation at hand to hit upon the emotional and psychological duress exhibited within. So even though he left New York City’s small-scale locale behind (as if The Immigrant could ever be called small-scale with its gorgeous period detail), the jungles of Brazil…

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REVIEW: The Immigrant [2014]

“The things you do to survive” While we may not possess that ideal “good” so many want to believe is intrinsic to humanity, sometimes even the worst of us can at the very least find a shred of remorse. “Sorry” will never be enough, though. It never can. But that lapse of amorality unearthing contrition from the darkest of corners could unexpectedly ensure an end to the cycle of pain wrought by previous selfish desire. It won’t erase what came before, nor can it serve as penance for the horror…

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Posterized Propaganda May 2014: ‘Godzilla’, ‘Amazing Spider-Man 2′, ‘Maleficent’ & More

“Don’t Judge a Book by Its Cover” is a proverb whose simple existence proves the fact impressionable souls will do so without fail. This monthly column focuses on the film industry’s willingness to capitalize on this truth, releasing one-sheets to serve as not representations of what audiences are to expect, but as propaganda to fill seats. Oftentimes they fail miserably. Is it officially Summer yet? Blockbuster poster campaigns for Spidey, Magneto, Godzilla, and Seth MacFarlane would lean towards yes. Buy your popcorn and candy now because we’ve got computer generated…

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Top 25 Films of 2009

(short and sweet and to the point; culled from watching 153 releases. constantly updated as i catch up to those i missed. click poster for review if applicable) #25: An Education directed by Lone Scherfig #24: The Box directed by Richard Kelly #23: Sunshine Cleaning directed by Christine Jeffs #22: The Road directed by John Hillcoat #21: District 9 directed by Neill Blomkamp #20: Fantastic Mr. Fox directed by Wes Anderson #19: Lebanon directed by Samuel Maoz. #18: The Hurt Locker directed by Kathryn Bigelow. #17: Los abrazos rotos[Broken Embraces]…

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REVIEW: Two Lovers [2009]

“You deserve to be loved” Leave it to Joaquin Phoenix to quit the business after giving his finest performance to date. The role of Leonard Kraditor in James Gray’s Two Lovers is an amazing turn from someone that has been usually relegated to the cool, confident leading man. Yes, I know, his portrayal of Johnny Cash had its moments of vulnerability, but the closest character I can compare this to would be Lucius Hunt from The Village, a shy, kind-hearted soul in love, yet unable to quite find his voice.…

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REVIEW: The Yards [2000]

“Your mother needs you now” After watching the latest entry from director James Gray, We Own the Night, my interest in seeing his previous work waned immensely. Not that I hated the film, it just wasn’t quite to the quality that I had heard his earlier stuff was. Maybe some of that had to do with Mark Wahlberg as a clean cop, for some reason I can’t believe him in roles like that, and it is a shame. However, after viewing The Yards, my opinion has completely turned around. I…

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REVIEW: We Own the Night [2007]

“Light as a feather” Writer/Director James Gray has made three films with six or seven years in between each. His newest is the cop drama We Own the Night, a pretty basic tale of brothers on different sides of the law and a crime that brings them together. Truthfully, it is very straightforward, clichéd, and quite convenient at many turns. One must give credit to the cast for doing all they can to mask the banality of it all as they do make it interesting to follow through. One can’t…

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Top 25 Films of 2000

(short and sweet and to the point; culled from watching 67 releases. constantly updated as i catch up to those i missed. click poster for review if applicable) #25: The Emperor’sNew Groove directed by Mark Dindal #24: Pay It Forward directed by Mimi Leder. #23: Tully directed byHilary Birmingham #22: X-Men directed by Bryan Singer #21: Quills directed by Philip Kaufman #20: State and Main directed by David Mamet #19: Best in Show directed byChristopher Guest #18: Tigerland directed by Joel Schumacher. #17: Almost Famous directed by Cameron Crowe. #16:…

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