REVIEW: Experimenter [2015]

“Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards” As Peter Sarsgaard‘s Stanley Milgram posthumously states at the conclusion of Michael Almereyda‘s Experimenter, his work compiled in Obedience to Authority: An Experimental View continues to come up in conversation whenever a new atrocity occurs in the news. Milgram’s impetus, as explained in one of many fourth wall-breaking instances throughout the film, stemmed from World War II and how seemingly ordinary people became complicit in the murder of millions. What made them ignore their humanity and morality to…

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REVIEW: The Iceman [2013]

“I don’t believe in bad luck” Arrested in 1986 after three decades of murdering an estimated one hundred men, it’s hard to believe another thirty years were necessary before the story of serial killer turned hitman Richie Kuklinski reached the big screen. Based on Anthony Bruno‘s book The Iceman: The True Story of a Cold-Blooded Killer, Ariel Vroman‘s film brings us up close and personal to the family man’s myriad demons. Possessed by a temper so volatile he would send men to hell for simply rubbing him the wrong way,…

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REVIEW: Alien: Resurrection [1997]

“You’re a beautiful, beautiful butterfly” An obvious predecessor to screenwriter Joss Whedon‘s revered “Firefly”, Alien: Resurrection breathes new life into a franchise that could have easily been left alone. Reviving the iconic Ellen Ripley through the hot button topic of cloning, his script found a way to coax Sigourney Weaver back with a uniquely dark spin on the character. Part alien, part human, and all Petri dish, ‘Number 8’ is cognizant of her former self’s rage against the xenomorphs two hundred years before while also acknowledging her role as mother…

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REVIEW: The Dilemma [2011]

“… took more virgins than Francis Albert Sinatra” Sometimes all you need is a little Vince Vaughn. Don’t even ask how much I dreaded checking out The Dilemma despite him, due to the directed by Ron Howard label. I like the guy, don’t get me wrong, but his by-the-books Dan Brown adaptations were sorely lacking in cinematic ingenuity, (I cringe at the fact he’s handling The Dark Tower Series as a result), and thus a seemingly straight forward comedy wasn’t looking too palatable. But sometimes a director can excel by…

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REVIEW: Black Swan [2010]

“Get ready to give me more of that bite” The line from Darren Aronofsky’s debut feature Pi, ‘When I was a little kid, my mother told me not to stare into the sun. So when I was six, I did.’ wouldn’t get out of my head throughout his newest, Black Swan. After tackling a pretty straightforward tale in The Wrestler, the auteur went back to his roots, embracing the psychological terrors of humanity. Similar to Pi’s Maximillian Cohen—a reclusive genius driven mad by his work—Nina Sayers is a closeted young…

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REVIEW: A Scanner Darkly [2006]

“I saw death rising from the ground” What if the government turned one of its own into that which it serves to rid society of? If it enlisted anonymous employees for a mission, while necessary, that called for them to turn their recruit into an addict? The only way to infiltrate an illegal operation is to send one of its own inside. One sacrifice needs to see darkly in order for humanity to one day be able to see clearly again. A Scanner Darkly is a dark and personal descent…

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