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All reviews - Movies (54)

GoodFellas review

Posted : 4 years, 4 months ago on 17 July 2013 04:56 (A review of GoodFellas)

If the Godfather films used organized crime as a personification of the corruption of the American society and dream, Martin Scorsese's GoodFellas never rises out of the surface level, not because it is shallow but because it gets itself in too deep. Who can stop to think of the poetry of illegality and how it represents the truth ethos of American law and organization when you're too busy looking over your shoulder for the guy who's gonna whack you? Michael Corleone would sympathize, but only in his twilight: "Just when I think I'm out, they pull me right back in," he once said. The gangsters of GoodFellas do not even have the luxury of dreaming of escape.


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The Departed review

Posted : 4 years, 4 months ago on 17 July 2013 04:55 (A review of The Departed)

Martin Scorsese's The Departed is a curious case: in the director's repertoire of masterpieces, classics and just plain good movies, it ranks, narratively and structurally, as one of his weakest. Yet it is also one of his most vibrant and engaging, to the point that I find myself itching to revisit it more than any of his top-tier films, and I adore all of them.


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Vertigo review

Posted : 4 years, 4 months ago on 17 July 2013 04:55 (A review of Vertigo)

Vertigo is greater than even the sum of Bernard Herrmann's versatile, indispensable score, its evocative use of San Francisco locations, and Stewart's earnest, anguished performance as the increasingly unhinged John "Scottie" Ferguson. Perverse, poetic, steeped in emotional desolation and destructive obsession, it delivers a fearlessly dolorous view of longing and betrayal in the guise of an acrophobia thriller, making through its classical ambitions and enduring fascinations a splendid case for Hitchcock as a grand experimental artist who labored in commercial genre cinema.


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Toy Story review

Posted : 4 years, 4 months ago on 17 July 2013 04:54 (A review of Toy Story)

To an entire generation of filmgoers, Toy Story just might represent the most significant leap in storytelling that they will ever see; for all of the Avatar's blowing us away, it's Toy Story's invention, the perfection of its craft, and its massive, open heart which has garnered it universal appeal and the beginnings of a franchise with an unthinkably consistent quality...What could have been a mere tool to sell more toys becomes more of a love letter to the childlike fascination with the joy of play, and of being young. This meaning only enhances in the more mature, emotional sequels, yet the first outing is surely the most accessible as it aims merely to entertain with exhilarating set pieces, dazzling visuals and sheer charm, and there's nothing wrong with that.


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12 Angry Men review

Posted : 4 years, 4 months ago on 17 July 2013 04:53 (A review of 12 Angry Men)

This is a film where tension comes from personality conflict, dialogue and body language, not action; where the defendant has been glimpsed only in a single brief shot; where logic, emotion and prejudice struggle to control the field. It is a masterpiece of stylized realism--the style coming in the way the photography and editing comment on the bare bones of the content. Released in 1957, when Technicolor and lush production values were common, "12 Angry Men" was lean and mean.


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Fargo review

Posted : 4 years, 4 months ago on 17 July 2013 04:52 (A review of Fargo)

The Coens are at their clever best with this snowbound film noir, a crazily mundane crime story set in their native Midwest. Purportedly based on real events, it brings them as close as they may ever come - not very - to everyday life and ordinary people. Perversely, the frozen north even brings out some uncharacteristic warmth in these coolly cerebral filmmakers, although anyone seeking the milk of human kindness would be well advised to look elsewhere. The Coens' outlook remains as jaundiced as it was in Blood Simple, the razor-sharp 1984 debut feature that the much more stylish and entertaining Fargo brings to mind.


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A Clockwork Orange review

Posted : 4 years, 4 months ago on 17 July 2013 04:51 (A review of A Clockwork Orange)

It seems to me that by describing horror with such elegance and beauty, Kubrick has created a very disorienting but human comedy, not warm and lovable, but a terrible sum- up of where the world is at... Because it refuses to use the emotions conventionally, demanding instead that we keep a constant, intellectual grip on things, it's a most unusual--and disorienting--movie experience.
It's Kubrick's most prescient work, more astute and unsparing than any of his other films in putting the bleakest parts of human behavior under the microscope and laughing in disgust. It was made right after his other high watermark, 2001: A Space Odyssey, and as he returns to Earth from his mind-blowing brush with the cosmic, it's a sort of sequel about our planet rotting away from the inside.


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L.A. Confidential review

Posted : 4 years, 4 months ago on 17 July 2013 04:50 (A review of L.A. Confidential)

What you get with L.A. Confidential is a classic noir with all the modern trappings (though one could argue that by this point, the film itself is a classic as well). Supported by one of the best and most reverential screenplays, the amazing cast delivers a noir film that is both classic and contemporary at the same time. This is a movie that both deconstructs what it means to be a noir film and is a film noir itself in the best ways possible.


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Drive review

Posted : 4 years, 4 months ago on 17 July 2013 04:50 (A review of Drive)

...Drive vibrates with a mood of foreboding and impending doom. The ticking bomb tension is brilliantly punctuated by bursts of gentle beauty and tenderness juxtaposed against interludes of horrifically graphic violence that materialize as suddenly as a heart attack. With its hyper-stylized blend of violence, music, and striking imagery, Drive represents a fully realized vision of arthouse action.


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WALL·E review

Posted : 4 years, 4 months ago on 17 July 2013 04:50 (A review of WALL·E)

Many will attempt to describe WALL-E with a one-liner. It's R2-D2 in love. 2001: A Space Odyssey starring The Little Tramp. An Inconvenient Truth meets Idiocracy on its way to Toy Story. But none of these do justice to a film that's both breathtakingly majestic and heartbreakingly intimate-and, for a good long while, absolutely bereft of dialogue save the squeals, beeps, and chirps of a sweet, lonely robot who, aside from his cockroach pet, is the closest thing to the last living being on earth.


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