The old catch-up post. These are films I’ve seen dating back as far as two years ago (oops!), and including some more recent ones. Only one sentence for each of them:
Big Bad Wolves (Keshales, Papushado, 2013)
A violent Israeli film that doesn’t quite ratchet up the suspense the way it ought to, Big Bad Wolves has that glossy sheen to it that I don’t quite like.
Are You Here (Weiner, 2013)
I almost blogged about this because of how bad it is, but the shallow characters, choppy pacing, ending from another film, and an entirely undeserved character transformation don’t deserve more than a sentence.
Night Moves (Reichardt, 2013)
Not my favorite Kelly Reichardt film, but still a solid one that feels a bit more narratively traditional than her other work.
Don Jon (Gordon-Levitt, 2013)
A film that I wanted to like but ultimately didn’t – despite a great performance from Julianne Moore and a strong one from Scarlett Johansson – thanks to some easy caricatures (are these stereotypes of stereotypes?…it doesn’t land) and a third act that cops out.
X-Men: Days of Future Past (Singer, 2014)
I’m bored of superhero films and this one didn’t utilize the time travel in nearly as interesting a way as it could have.
Beautiful Darling (Rasin, 2010)
Really engaging portrait of Candy Darling that sparkles thanks to the uniqueness of the star.
The Petrified Forest (Shinoda, 1973)
A great one from Shinoda that deserves a full post but won’t get one, The Petrified Forest is a chilly, masterful examination of love and jealousy.
Nymphomaniac Parts I and II (von Trier, 2013)
Please make a strong comeback after these too tongue-in-cheek, too snappy, too ironic, too arrogant, too on-the-nose films Lars von Trier!
Money Movers (Beresford, 1978)
This independent film isn’t great, but it does have a really well put together shootout at the end, and some nice writing particularly for Darcy (Frank Wilson).
Ex Machina (Garland, 2015)
It sucks that I didn’t love Ex Machina, but I’ve read all of this before in Isaac Asimov and it was way more suspenseful, featured more thought-provoking issues, and had fewer poor character decisions.
Citizen X (Gerolmo, 1995)
Though it features an at-times interestingly sympathetic killer, Citizen X fails because of some schmaltz, particularly at the end; a 1.85 aspect ratio that feels really tight, likely due to a lack of wides and too many TV (it was, after all, made for TV) close-ups and 2-shots; and Russian characters speaking English.
Wild Style (Ahearn, 1983)
So fun, awesome, energetic, and colorful, and great to hear what films the likes of Nas and MF Doom are sampling on their albums.
50 Shades of Grey (Taylor-Johnson, 2015)
At least I watched this in the right venue (dive) with the right crowd (loud and drunk).
Everything You Always Wanted To Know About Sex But Were Afraid to Ask (Allen, 1972)
I think Woody Allen’s hilarious and it’s proven again here with several vignettes that include the personification of a male’s anatomy and a giant boob on the loose.
Jerry Maguire (Crowe, 1996)
People actually like this film?
The Wolf of Wall Street (Scorsese, 2013)
It’s too loud and bombastic for me, but it’s maybe the closest Scorsese to Casino since Casino.
Skeleton Twins (Johnson, 2014)
I read something by Anthony Lane recently that mentions how modern comedies shy away from the raunchy path that they set for themselves and sell out by the end.