REVIEW: Doctor Sleep [2019]

We don’t end. I’m not going to lie: seeing Stephen King endorse Mike Flanagan‘s cinematic adaptation of his novel Doctor Sleep worried me. After being so vehemently vocal against Stanley Kubrick‘s changes to The Shining, the film version of the sequel would seemingly need to be religiously faithful to the text for him to laud it. The only way that happens is for it to conversely diverge from Kubrick’s masterpiece instead, rendering a middle ground between them impossible. Either Flanagan wrote and directed a continuation of the movie (hedge maze,…

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REVIEW: Sorry to Bother You [2018]

More like apples and the Holocaust. If you’re still unsure about whether capitalism brought the United States to its current position with extreme political divisiveness and the fallacy of what’s left of the “American Dream,” rapper-turned-writer/director Boots Riley is here to break it down via a debut as satirically sound as it is insanely, absurdly surreal. The film is Sorry to Bother You and it was born from the artist’s own time as a telemarketer wherein success forced him to change who he was to earn higher sales. By putting…

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REVIEW: Mohawk [2018]

In my experience it’s the white man who does the scalping. War is an interesting concept wherein life is both priceless and worthless depending upon which side you call yours. When it’s a matter of taking something that you want but do not possess, those who currently hold it are expendable. And when they fight back to retain it we call them enemies, savages. Here they are defending themselves from an invading force and yet they are in the wrong. It’s a fine line between justice and greed, survival and…

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REVIEW: She’s Lost Control [2015]

“Yes, you pay me for my time. But you can’t control how I feel.” Ronah (Brooke Bloom) may be working as a sexual surrogate to help people and complete her masters in behavioral psychology, but it isn’t long into She’s Lost Control to realize the title’s sentiments. It’s as though she has decided to retreat into these strange men—vessels to supply her intimacy both physically and mentally—rather than move forward with her own life into a healthy relationship. We can infer this stems from her childhood, one where her estrangement…

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REVIEW: Thou Wast Mild & Lovely [2014]

“My lover knows how to love me” She is not kidding when she says: “To those who feel that their cruelty is too cruel, their sadness too sad, I dedicate this film: an embrace.” Writer/director Josephine Decker means every single word because she herself has laid bare her own cruelty and sadness with Thou Wast Mild & Lovely. Her characters are flawed, dangerous, and inviting—animals working the farm yet animals just the same. They each desire, take, and enjoy, suffering the psychological consequences after the fact, unregretful for what they’ve…

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REVIEW: This is Martin Bonner [2013]

“I’ll still probably, most likely, definitely not do it” We’re all human beings. I think this is the message writer/director Chad Hartigan shares in his sophomore effort This is Martin Bonner. We make mistakes, we pay for our crimes, and we live our lives with the hope we can redeem ourselves to make things right. Demons aren’t something evil people have a monopoly on—in fact it’s those with compassionate hearts and strong moral consciences who are probably haunted by them most. We’re dealt second chances often enough to render the…

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