REVIEW: John and the Hole [2021]

I was blue in the blue. Adolescent angst. That’s the impetus behind John (Charlie Shotwell) drugging his family (Michael C. Hall‘s Brad, Jennifer Ehle‘s Anna, and Taissa Farmiga‘s Laurie), dragging them through the backyard, and depositing their bodies in an unfinished bunker according to the synopsis of director Pascual Sisto and writer Nicolás Giacobone‘s film John and the Hole. Adolescent angst. I guess you can get away with it too when you declare the result a “fable” as opposed to a nightmare. We aren’t supposed to look so closely at…

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Picking Winners at the 87th Annual Academy Awards

Things look pretty cut and dry where the Academy is concerned in 2015. The Oscars are always a somewhat watered-down look at what really mattered in the past year of cinema and this installment is no exception. In fact, it may be all water at this point. That doesn’t mean there can’t be some intriguing surprises in the second-tier categories like Best Animated Feature (I really hope How to Train Your Dragon 2 loses to one of the other much more aesthetically and conceptually unique nominees) or Short Film Animated…

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REVIEW: Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) [2014]

“The truth is always interesting” It’s true what the film’s Times‘ theater critic (Lindsay Duncan) says: an artist should bleed for his craft. Physically, spiritually, metaphorically—blood must be spilt so the world knows he was here, selflessly (selfishly?) making us laugh, cry, and reflect on lives well lived and squandered. This is why those who touch upon life’s intrinsic emotions and universal feelings can demand salaries and compensation so large not even their over-stretched, ambitious, and insane imaginations can think of how to spend it all. They create what we…

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