Dude Rates Movies

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Bullet Train
D
David Leitch — 2022
Brad Pitt, Joey King, Aaron Taylor-Johnson
Sunday 7 August 2022

The convoluted story got me confused at some point. Even though I liked Brad Pitt's character, his laid back attitude and jokes don't always hit the spot.

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Hush
C
Mike Flanagan — 2016
John Gallagher Jr., Kate Siegel, Michael Trucco
Wednesday 3 August 2022

Nice slasher.

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Mientras duermes
C
Jaume Balagueró — 2011
Luis Tosar, Marta Etura, Alberto San Juan
Monday 1 August 2022

creepy ass shit, making us identify with the crazy weirdo as in The House that Jack Built.

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Sundown
B
Michel Franco — 2021
Tim Roth, Albertine Kotting McMillan, Samuel Bottomley
Sunday 31 July 2022

Character study of a man who entirely surrendered and stopped giving any sort of fuck. It's the genre of movies which usually bore me to hell, but for some reason this time I was fully in it. Maybe I slept well the night before. Maybe Tim Roth was sufficiently perfect for the role. I don't know, but I liked the experience so let's have a good rating. I will surely never watch it again.

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Thelma
B
Joachim Trier — 2017
Eili Harboe, Kaya Wilkins, Henrik Rafaelsen
Saturday 30 July 2022

Very Shyamalanesque. In the best way.

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Ringu
B
Hideo Nakata — 1998
Nanako Matsushima, Miki Nakatani, Yûko Takeuchi
Thursday 28 July 2022

Scary shit.

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The Night of the 12th
B
La nuit du 12
Dominik Moll — 2022
Bastien Bouillon, Bouli Lanners, Théo Cholbi
Sunday 24 July 2022

I don't what separates it from any random crime story, but it's good and somehow haunting.

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Lightyear
E
Angus MacLane — 2022
Chris Evans, Keke Palmer, Peter Sohn
Saturday 16 July 2022

I fell asleep.

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[Rec]
C
Jaume Balagueró, Paco Plaza — 2007
Manuela Velasco, Ferran Terraza, Jorge-Yamam Serrano
Saturday 9 July 2022

This shit had me scared shitless when I was a teenager. It's fine but not that good.

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1917
A+
Sam Mendes — 2019
Dean-Charles Chapman, George MacKay, Daniel Mays
Thursday 7 July 2022

Outstanding experience. Beyond the technical achievement, it's a powerhouse of sheer intensity and beauty.

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The Great Dictator
E
Charles Chaplin — 1940
Charles Chaplin, Paulette Goddard, Jack Oakie
Sunday 3 July 2022

That's a lot of goofiness to endure for a great monologue.

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Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back
B
Irvin Kershner — 1980
Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher
Saturday 25 June 2022

Entertaining stuff.

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Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope
B
Star Wars
George Lucas — 1977
Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher
Saturday 25 June 2022

It's actually a cool flick.

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Apollo 10½: A Space Age Childhood
C
Apollo 10 1/2: A Space Age Adventure
Richard Linklater — 2022
Milo Coy, Jack Black, Lee Eddy
Monday 20 June 2022

Low-key chill nostalgia movie with a nice playlist.

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Cha Cha Real Smooth
D
Cooper Raiff — 2022
Cooper Raiff, Dakota Johnson, Evan Assante
Sunday 19 June 2022

Second movie from the guy who made Shithouse. This one is rather weird.

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Jerry and Marge Go Large
C
Jerry & Marge Go Large
David Frankel — 2022
Bryan Cranston, Annette Bening, Rainn Wilson
Sunday 19 June 2022

Interesting story but gosh is it possible to make eveything more cliché than that. The music I swear.

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Jurassic World Dominion
D
Colin Trevorrow — 2022
Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Laura Dern
Saturday 11 June 2022

I liked all the scenes with dinosaurs. I disliked all the scenes without dinosaurs.

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Top Gun: Maverick
C
Joseph Kosinski — 2022
Tom Cruise, Jennifer Connelly, Miles Teller
Sunday 29 May 2022

The training part is a boring advertisement for the Navy. The mission part is spectacular.

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The Northman
C
Robert Eggers — 2022
Alexander Skarsgård, Nicole Kidman, Claes Bang
Saturday 21 May 2022

I don't know if it was due to my tiredness or just how the movie was made, but I didn't manage to be connected with the movie; I was a distant and uninvolved spectator. I liked the battle scene when they invade the village; extremely gritty and intense. I liked the music and its percussions, although it sometimes sounded muffled, lacking clarity. The story was okay, but the middle was a bit slow, and I think some of it could have been cut to enrich the exposition, and give Ethan Hawke more screentime.

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Bullit & Riper
E
Mais qui a tué Pamela Rose?
Éric Lartigau — 2003
Kad Merad, Olivier Baroux, Gérard Darmon
Monday 9 May 2022

Idiotic.

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Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
A
Martin McDonagh — 2017
Frances McDormand, Woody Harrelson, Sam Rockwell
Sunday 8 May 2022

No comment

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Being the Ricardos
D
Aaron Sorkin — 2021
Nicole Kidman, Javier Bardem, J.K. Simmons
Saturday 7 May 2022

Nicole Kidman looks like she's made of plastic.

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War of the Worlds
A
Steven Spielberg — 2005
Tom Cruise, Dakota Fanning, Tim Robbins
Saturday 30 April 2022

No comment

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The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent
E
Tom Gormican — 2022
Nicolas Cage, Pedro Pascal, Tiffany Haddish
Monday 25 April 2022

The editing is a bit frenetic, and I felt like I didn't see any proper exposition to the character of Nick Cage. It's like 30 seconds into the movie he's already discussing his role with some director/producer, and the next 10 seconds he's at his daughter's birthday. What the hell is going on here. Then the whole CIA act is so generically boring I literally fell asleep as if I was the one having taken a drop of acid.

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Face/Off
D
John Woo — 1997
John Travolta, Nicolas Cage, Joan Allen
Monday 25 April 2022

Interesting acting idea. Ridiculous story. John Woo's action be like pew pew boom I have on idea what's happening boom pew boom look slow motion pewpew bam.

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The Lion King
A+
Roger Allers, Rob Minkoff — 1994
Matthew Broderick, Jeremy Irons, James Earl Jones
Wednesday 20 April 2022

No comment

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Bringing Out the Dead
D
Martin Scorsese — 1999
Nicolas Cage, Patricia Arquette, John Goodman
Sunday 17 April 2022

Interesting yet depressing, ultimately tedious, Nicolas Cage's character study #2.

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Leaving Las Vegas
C
Mike Figgis — 1995
Nicolas Cage, Elisabeth Shue, Julian Sands
Saturday 16 April 2022

Interesting yet depressing, ultimately tedious, Nicolas Cage's character study #1.

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The Boat
C
Das Boot
Wolfgang Petersen — 1981
Jürgen Prochnow, Herbert Grönemeyer, Klaus Wennemann
Saturday 2 April 2022

Tooooo long. Also didn't really explain how destroyers manage to get to them when they're so deep.

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Notre Dame on Fire
B
Notre-Dame brûle
Jean-Jacques Annaud — 2022
Samuel Labarthe, Jean-Paul Bordes, Mickaël Chirinian
Friday 1 April 2022

Great concept (step by step, factual depiction of the event), moderately good execution (some cheesy parts).

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Petite Maman
D
Petite maman
Céline Sciamma — 2021
Joséphine Sanz, Gabrielle Sanz, Nina Meurisse
Monday 28 March 2022

I watched it because it's from the director of Portrait of a Lady on Fire, which I love. But this one didn't quite got my attention as much.

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Pleasure
B
Ninja Thyberg — 2021
Sofia Kappel, Zelda Morrison, Evelyn Claire
Sunday 27 March 2022

😯⚠️ Very explicit movie (basically porn). This is an almost-documentary (fictitious story with fictitious characters, but it looks very real) about a Swedish girl who goes to LA to become a pornstar. We get to see the inside of this industry (assuming the movie is accurate), including some very shocking aspects. The movie is explicit, but not unnecessarily so: it shows what it needs to show to hold to its goal of pure realism, and hides the rest. This is really an interesting take on the subject.

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Ambulance
F
Michael Bay — 2022
Jake Gyllenhaal, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Eiza González
Saturday 26 March 2022

This looks like it was synthesized by a cocaine-powered artificial intelligence who just took control of drones.

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The Batman
B
Matt Reeves — 2022
Robert Pattinson, Zoë Kravitz, Jeffrey Wright
Monday 14 March 2022

So this is actually a pretty good flick. I always had difficulty with Batman as a super-hero since this guy is a strong karate man in a strong suit, like how the hell you're going to save a city because you know kung-fu or whatever. But this opus strikes a good balance between a simple vigilante and a full-fledged super-hero, playing on the theme of fear (through the bat symbol), making him a skilled investigator, and of course showcasing the extent of his equipment and skills with impressive action scenes. I also enjoyed the fact that Bruce Wayne has close to no screen time, to the opposite of Batman, who is often expressive through gestures and glances rather than words. This is truly a movie about The Batman.

This is a well-directed movie, with many pretty nice shots and directing ideas (this scene in the hallway, wow). The music uses a simple haunting theme whose creshendo I can't get enough of, damn this is strong shit.

The movie has some weaknesses. The character of Selina Kyle (Catwoman) is not strong enough in my opinion; Batman always has the upper hand over her, physically and psychologically, she's like an intern to him instead of a sidekick. The cast is weak; Robert Pattinson is like an emo teen with mascara falling off his eyes when he get out of his mask (fortunately this rarely happens); Andy Serkis as Alfred suffers from the comparison with Michael Caine; Jeffrey Wright "this guy from Westworld" lacks charisma as Officier Gordon; Paul Dano is the only cast good call.

This is not a great movie, but this is a good movie. Well played, DC. The 3 hours (!) pass rapidly.

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Turning Red
E
Domee Shi — 2022
Rosalie Chiang, Sandra Oh, Ava Morse
Sunday 13 March 2022

So what the hell is Pixar doing. Are we at the point we must just assume that some of their movies are some corporate factory output, and we can ignore them?

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Encanto
C
Jared Bush, Byron Howard, Charise Castro Smith — 2021
Stephanie Beatriz, María Cecilia Botero, John Leguizamo
Sunday 6 March 2022

This must be the most GORGEOUS animation I've seen. Colors and details everywhere, wow. Catchy songs too. The story and overall construction is kind of awkward.

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Portrait of a Lady on Fire
A+
Portrait de la jeune fille en feu
Céline Sciamma — 2019
Noémie Merlant, Adèle Haenel, Luàna Bajrami
Saturday 5 March 2022

It's so quiet and intense at the same time. Fabulous.

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Psycho Goreman
E
Steven Kostanski — 2020
Nita-Josée Hanna, Owen Myre, Matthew Ninaber
Saturday 5 March 2022

So bad it's... bad.

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Brief Encounter
D
David Lean — 1945
Celia Johnson, Trevor Howard, Stanley Holloway
Saturday 5 March 2022

Rather poetic, but boring too.

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OSS 117: Cairo, Nest of Spies
C
OSS 117: Le Caire, nid d'espions
Michel Hazanavicius — 2006
Jean Dujardin, François Damiens, Khalid Maadour
Friday 18 February 2022

No comment

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Licorice Pizza
C
Paul Thomas Anderson — 2021
Alana Haim, Cooper Hoffman, Sean Penn
Tuesday 15 February 2022

Not sure what this movie was trying to tell. I liked the Bradley Cooper and truck arc; in fact it would have been a pretty good flick if all the scenes had this energy. I was as perplexed going out of Phantom Thread back in the days, and yet I now consider it as a masterpiece. I'll let it the time to steep in my mind, give it the opportunity to grow like fine wine, if it has this kind of potential.

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The Heiress
C
William Wyler — 1949
Olivia de Havilland, Montgomery Clift, Ralph Richardson
Sunday 13 February 2022

That's really much cinema about so little, but it's watchable.

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Eddie the Eagle
C
Dexter Fletcher — 2015
Taron Egerton, Hugh Jackman, Tom Costello
Sunday 6 February 2022

Okay feel-good flick.

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Torment
B
L'enfer
Claude Chabrol — 1994
Emmanuelle Béart, François Cluzet, Nathalie Cardone
Saturday 5 February 2022

Good psychological thriller. Good cinematography ideas.

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The Matrix Resurrections
E
Lana Wachowski — 2021
Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Anne Moss, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II
Sunday 30 January 2022
  • This is to The Matrix what this cover of Wake Up is to Wake Up.
  • Those flashbacks of installments 2 and 3 make them look like fine art, mostly because of the cinematography of this one being absolutely ugly.
  • Not sure what to make of of this meta Matrix gaming company, but I hope it's about this being voluntarily crap.
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The Matrix Revolutions
B
Lana Wachowski, Lilly Wachowski — 2003
Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss
Sunday 23 January 2022

the invasion of Zion tho

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The Matrix Reloaded
B
Lana Wachowski, Lilly Wachowski — 2003
Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss
Saturday 22 January 2022

this highway chase tho

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Monsters, Inc.
A
Pete Docter, David Silverman, Lee Unkrich — 2001
Billy Crystal, John Goodman, Mary Gibbs
Sunday 9 January 2022

Watching "old" Pixars reminds one of two facts:

  1. How much progress Pixar has made in terms of quality and details of animation.
  2. How little it matters because story-telling outshines form.

Boo is the cutest.

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The Card Counter
C
Paul Schrader — 2021
Oscar Isaac, Tiffany Haddish, Tye Sheridan
Sunday 9 January 2022

Oscar Isaac as charismatic as always. Paul Schrader as intellectual as always.

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Rifkin's Festival
E
Woody Allen — 2020
Wallace Shawn, Michael Garvey, Damian Chapa
Sunday 2 January 2022

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Don't Look Up
B
Adam McKay — 2021
Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep
Friday 31 December 2021

The mix of /r/iamverysmart vibes and cynicism feels unwise, but this fires in so many directions without even trying to be subtle, I lost track of wisdom and abandoned myself at having fun with this outrageous circus.

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Spencer
D
Pablo Larraín — 2021
Kristen Stewart, Timothy Spall, Jack Nielen
Tuesday 21 December 2021

Not sure how the royal family doesn't qualify as a sect. Weird movie anyway.

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The Power of the Dog
C
Jane Campion — 2021
Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst, Jesse Plemons
Saturday 18 December 2021

Benedict Cumberbatch showcases intensity I didn't know he had.

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West Side Story
A
Steven Spielberg — 2021
Ansel Elgort, Rachel Zegler, Ariana DeBose
Saturday 11 December 2021

Flamboyant!

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tick, tick...BOOM!
E
Lin-Manuel Miranda — 2021
Andrew Garfield, Alexandra Shipp, Robin de Jesus
Saturday 4 December 2021

Well that was boring.

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House of Gucci
C
Ridley Scott — 2021
Lady Gaga, Adam Driver, Al Pacino
Sunday 28 November 2021

Discount Scorsese saga.

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Happening
A
L'événement
Audrey Diwan — 2021
Anamaria Vartolomei, Kacey Mottet Klein, Luàna Bajrami
Saturday 27 November 2021

I didn't realize how it was back then. It's insane. Makes you wonder what sort of crap is going on today and I hope I'm on the good side.

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Up
A
Pete Docter, Bob Peterson — 2009
Edward Asner, Jordan Nagai, John Ratzenberger
Monday 22 November 2021

I completely underestimated this movie. I'm awaken now.

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Doctor Sleep
E
Mike Flanagan — 2019
Ewan McGregor, Rebecca Ferguson, Kyliegh Curran
Sunday 21 November 2021

Basically, Kubrick Shyamalaned the original Shining by making the supernatural blend into the natural, observing it through phenomenological manifestations rather than subjective ones, which maximize suspense and tension. Doctor Sleep does the opposite, with full-fledged telekinesis super-power stuff, which completely undermines the mystery. Also the movie is tasteless, starting with Rebecca Ferguson's ridiculous hat.

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The Shining
A
Stanley Kubrick — 1980
Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, Danny Lloyd
Saturday 20 November 2021

I underestimated this movie so much. I was too young.

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The Cranes Are Flying
A
Letyat zhuravli
Mikhail Kalatozov — 1957
Tatyana Samoylova, Aleksey Batalov, Vasiliy Merkurev
Monday 15 November 2021

As a modern spectator, you just need a bit a re-calibration to get past the absence of proper sound effects as well as the native doubling (or whatever sound capture system is making the dialogues sound so unnatural). Once that is unlocked, that is just an absolute unit of camera work, stunning cinematography, poetic storytelling, and subtle acting, which all work together to capture the breadth of human emotions in resplendent and contemplative poetry.

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The French Dispatch
D
Wes Anderson — 2021
Benicio Del Toro, Adrien Brody, Tilda Swinton
Sunday 14 November 2021

Wes Anderson doing Wes Anderson things.

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Cry Macho
F
Clint Eastwood — 2021
Clint Eastwood, Dwight Yoakam, Daniel V. Graulau
Friday 12 November 2021

Freedom is on the other side of that hill son.

Thank heavens! Let's get out of this theater.

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Eiffel
C
Martin Bourboulon — 2021
Romain Duris, Emma Mackey, Pierre Deladonchamps
Saturday 6 November 2021

Neat and clean historical stuff. Didn't make me feel much.

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Paris, 13th District
C
Les Olympiades, Paris 13e
Jacques Audiard — 2021
Lucie Zhang, Makita Samba, Noémie Merlant
Friday 5 November 2021

I liked the atmosphere. Characters were interesting. Story is a bit trivial.

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Pig
C
Michael Sarnoski — 2021
Nicolas Cage, Alex Wolff, Adam Arkin
Saturday 30 October 2021

The movie is underexposed and it must have triggered a melatonin release, because I fell asleep for some 5 minutes in the middle (not missing much as far as I could tell). Interesting for pretty forgettable stuff. Nicolas Cage as fascinating as ever.

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Last Night in Soho
D
Edgar Wright — 2021
Thomasin McKenzie, Anya Taylor-Joy, Matt Smith
Friday 29 October 2021

Very nice surround sound transition. I genuinely though something was wrong with my theater for the first 15 minutes. High-potential concept, which unfortunately didn't went a way I saw fit.

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Halloween Kills
E
David Gordon Green — 2021
Jamie Lee Curtis, Judy Greer, Andi Matichak
Sunday 24 October 2021

There is no directing idea. It's all rampage and blood.

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The Last Duel
B
Ridley Scott — 2021
Matt Damon, Adam Driver, Jodie Comer
Saturday 23 October 2021

It needs 45 minutes to get started before you understand what the hell it's all about, then it's damn interesting. The last duel is indeed delivered, and because of the overall brutality of the movie, it's hard to predict its outcome. Dialogues are off for some reason.

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No Time to Die
D
Cary Joji Fukunaga — 2021
Daniel Craig, Ana de Armas, Rami Malek
Tuesday 5 October 2021

I went without any expectation, then built expectations out of the first 30 minutes, then was disappointed by the rest of the movie.

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Brimstone
B
Martin Koolhoven — 2016
Guy Pearce, Dakota Fanning, Emilia Jones
Wednesday 22 September 2021

Fantastic cinematography. Good story.

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Dune
A
Denis Villeneuve — 2021
Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Zendaya
Thursday 16 September 2021

On one hand I was never bored and I wanted to see what would happen next at all times. On the other hand I never felt any particular emotion. This is a large scale story about planet-wide civilizations, and the movie carry us on a ride of this scale, with very impressive visuals and big fucking things (ships, battles, creatures, anything). All of this is pleasing to watch, and made with an elegance that gives it an impression of grandeur. This is where the movie gets my A-rating. You can corrupt me with any about a story big enough to make it look like it's playing on the "Significant" league, and well-crafted enough so that I don't spot the fraud.

There is a bit of awkwardness in the way the story blends human-scale events together with civilization-scale events; at some point I asked myself "Why am I watching this particular scene involving those persons, which seems like an anecdote in comparison to all those big-scale things happening in the story". I think this problem of integration between the important and the detail is at the heart of the movie's weakness, which is its inability to convey strong emotions.

A note on the music: the movie is fucking LOUD, and extensively uses modulation of the volume of Hans Zimmer's soundtrack in order to make everything ultra-giga-epic. This is a trick that has been used for the last two Nolan's movies (Dunkirk and Tenet). Nolan defends the "sonic" quality of his soundscapes and says it's entirely intentional for it to be so loud. I guess Denis Villeneuve thinks the same. I think it's easy.

Anyway, the 155 minutes passed by like a flash, and since the ending is actually an opening, I'm all set for Part II.

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The Specials
C
Hors normes
Olivier Nakache, Éric Toledano — 2019
Vincent Cassel, Reda Kateb, Hélène Vincent
Sunday 12 September 2021

Interesting spotlight into a not well known social issue.

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Respect
C
Liesl Tommy — 2021
Jennifer Hudson, Forest Whitaker, Marlon Wayans
Saturday 11 September 2021

Biopic #647364 from the biopic factory.

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Big Fish
E
Tim Burton — 2003
Ewan McGregor, Albert Finney, Billy Crudup
Saturday 4 September 2021

Well that was boring.

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Do the Right Thing
C
Spike Lee — 1989
Danny Aiello, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee
Friday 3 September 2021

So, nothing has been learnt.

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Roman Holiday
C
William Wyler — 1953
Gregory Peck, Audrey Hepburn, Eddie Albert
Wednesday 1 September 2021

A movie that lets its scenes breathe.

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Amistad
C
Steven Spielberg — 1997
Djimon Hounsou, Matthew McConaughey, Anthony Hopkins
Sunday 29 August 2021

Above the law is Jesus, above Jesus are the founding fathers of Freedom Land.

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Monsieur Hulot's Holiday
E
Les vacances de Monsieur Hulot
Jacques Tati — 1953
Jacques Tati, Nathalie Pascaud, Micheline Rolla
Saturday 28 August 2021

I reckon there has been many attempts at making me laugh.

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Riders of Justice
B
Retfærdighedens ryttere
Anders Thomas Jensen — 2020
Mads Mikkelsen, Nikolaj Lie Kaas, Andrea Heick Gadeberg
Friday 27 August 2021

Quite the balancing act between drama, comedy, and thriller. It's actually rather well done. Mads Mikkelsen as an intense badass will always be a pleasure to watch.

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Idiocracy
C
Mike Judge — 2006
Luke Wilson, Maya Rudolph, Dax Shepard
Sunday 22 August 2021

It's like a long episode of a sitcom that would be rather funny.

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The Hunchback of Notre Dame
C
Gary Trousdale, Kirk Wise — 1996
Demi Moore, Jason Alexander, Mary Kay Bergman
Saturday 21 August 2021

Late 90s Disney traditional animation was top-tier quality. The story is alright.

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The Fly
B
David Cronenberg — 1986
Jeff Goldblum, Geena Davis, John Getz
Friday 20 August 2021

Somehow this movie feels "simple". No non-sense, no side scheme, just one straight scene after another and a steady progression. I like it. Also it's disgusting.

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Hackers
F
Iain Softley — 1995
Jonny Lee Miller, Angelina Jolie, Jesse Bradford
Wednesday 18 August 2021

This is so incredibly bad.

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The Age of Innocence
D
Martin Scorsese — 1993
Daniel Day-Lewis, Michelle Pfeiffer, Winona Ryder
Sunday 15 August 2021

Meh.

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Contagion
B
Steven Soderbergh — 2011
Matt Damon, Kate Winslet, Jude Law
Saturday 14 August 2021

This could come out in a few years and be "inspired by real events". Except it came out 10 years ago. The movie is not particularly great in a void, but boy is it clear-sighted.

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King Kong
B
Merian C. Cooper, Ernest B. Schoedsack — 1933
Fay Wray, Robert Armstrong, Bruce Cabot
Friday 13 August 2021

Very interesting to watch as a fan of the Peter Jackson remake. Various thoughts:

  • Surprisingly, the original contains more action scenes than the remake (even though those in the remake last longer, so it may have more in duration). Encounters between the boat crew and the first dinosaur, and the water monster are scenes which are only present in the extended version of the 2005 remake. To be frank I prefer the theatrical version from 2005 rather than the extended one, because I think those 2 scenes bring nothing to the story; at least now I know where they come from. The original movie really rushes those action scenes, one after another, like a Disneyland ride, whereas the remake intertwine action with character development, which makes for a slower rhythm, and therefore a smaller need for raw action.
  • On one hand, I found the love story from the original between Ann and Jack to be more interesting, because she's isn't pre-disposed to woo him, and because of his tough-guy-not-falling-in-love style (which is consistent with the overall "Beauty and the Beast" theme). On the other hand, Ann is such a stronger and richer character in the remake, so I guess they had to find a more interesting plot than just her falling in love with the random sailor.
  • The remake explicitly makes Carl Denham a bastard whereas he's a nice guy in the original (although a bit crazy). We could say that the character from the original is a more nuanced one, but maybe Peter Jackson was trying to tell us something about the brutality of the Hollywood industry.
  • I burst out laughing in the scene where Kong look at the window of Ann's apartment, because this shit looks like straight out of a TikTok.
  • There is one little detail in the remake which bothers me, which is that when Kong takes Ann for the first during her sacrifice by the natives, he grabs her entirely and pulls her body, breaking the ropes which tie her arms. It really looks like this would only break her arms if it was real. In the original, Kong is way more diligent, and carefully use his finger on a little device to untie the ropes manually; this is ridiculous. In the end I'm happy of the trade-off they made for the remake.

Overall this only enhance my admiration for the 2005 remake, which is faithful to the original but develops what needs to be developed (Ann, Kong, and their relationship), and of course with modern, vivid action.

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Out of Africa
D
Sydney Pollack — 1985
Meryl Streep, Robert Redford, Klaus Maria Brandauer
Monday 9 August 2021

Robert Redford's avoidant attachment style was the only interesting thing in this stay-on-your-couch safari for middle-aged housewives in lack of love and soft sensations. I also liked the lions.

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So Long, My Son
B
Di jiu tianchang
Xiaoshuai Wang — 2019
Jingchun Wang, Mei Yong, Xi Qi
Sunday 1 August 2021

The transitions between eras in the non-linear narration were really subtle and I felt that I needed to put the pieces of the puzzle together to understand what the hell was going on. Overall I liked the tenderness and delicacy of the narration. The only issue is that it's quite long (3h) and slow, and I wasn't absorbed 100% in it, so my focus had ups and downs. Fortunately the final act (when the parents return visiting their old city) is really poignant, especially because of all the plot points achieving a resolution, which ends the watching with a warm sense of contentment.

One interesting aspect of this movie is that it was validated by China's propaganda department (and even won awards from China), even through it doesn't exactly shed a favorable light to China's policies, most notably the one-child policy. One explanation I can imagine is that the movie focuses on the human impact of such policies rather than on the ideological side of things; those circumstances are seen as rules that shape the lives of individuals, which can be lamented, but which aren't really meant to be questioned, as rebellion against them will only bring more drama.

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Sideways
B
Alexander Payne — 2004
Paul Giamatti, Thomas Haden Church, Virginia Madsen
Saturday 31 July 2021

Low-key chill movie.

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Inside Llewyn Davis
A
Ethan Coen, Joel Coen — 2013
Oscar Isaac, Carey Mulligan, John Goodman
Friday 30 July 2021

Wow Oscaar Issac can actually sing. The Coen brothers are one of the few writers/directors who know how to make a good movie with no plot. Mostly thanks to character development.

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The Elephant Man
C
David Lynch — 1980
Anthony Hopkins, John Hurt, Anne Bancroft
Sunday 25 July 2021

I liked the way to movie makes us empathize with M. Merrick. I liked the way the characters are communicating clearly and without mischief (especially between the doctor and the hospital governor). I didn't quite get the point the movie was trying to make, or if it was trying to make a point at all. I guess sometimes some stories are just meant to be told.

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Old
D
M. Night Shyamalan — 2021
Gael García Bernal, Vicky Krieps, Rufus Sewell
Saturday 24 July 2021

Shyamalan could hire a screenwriter. Some of the dialogues are off, the way the sequence of scenes is laid out feels awkward, and character development is... well... rushed. The result is that it's never far off looking like a dud. I also feel like there is too much fatality in the concept: we're invited to watch how the whole thing unrolls, without thinking there is anything characters can do about it. So, what's the point? I liked the creepy scenes, because that's what Shyamalan is very good at.

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A Quiet Place Part II
B
John Krasinski — 2020
Emily Blunt, Millicent Simmonds, Cillian Murphy
Friday 23 July 2021

A lot of questionable decisions and behaviors. Efficient scary shit nonetheless. Nice superposition of dramatic tension over multiple storylines. Great opening scene (although John Krasinski likes to watch himself a bit too much).

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Contact
B
Robert Zemeckis — 1997
Jodie Foster, Matthew McConaughey, Tom Skerritt
Sunday 18 July 2021

It would be an A without this ending.

<spoiler>The movie puts us in a position where we know that Ellie actually went through a wormhole and met aliens (assuming reliable narration). Then the public has no proof of this fact, but she's urging them to believe her nonetheless. So this is a situation where 1. There is some truth. 2. There is no proof of this truth. 3. The only way to access this truth is through faith. This is a very religious and non-scientific message! Don't urge anyone to believe in some stuff you say if you have no proof! What happened to "make me a liar" when she discovers the first signal? I ain't even mad at her for this moment of weakness, because she's visibly emotionally overwhelmed, and the morale might as well be that scientists are bad at keeping their emotions in touch, but clearly this is just a "lol sometimes you need faith to be true" kind of morale. Imagine for a second the same ending, except we don't see the wormhole scene from her point of view, we just see the ball falling through the machine from the external point of view.</spoiler>

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Titane
C
Julia Ducournau — 2021
Vincent Lindon, Agathe Rousselle, Garance Marillier
Saturday 17 July 2021

I went to a Saturday night screening, during the closing ceremony of the Cannes Festival, which I didn't even realize. When the movie was over and I was checking out my phone, I read that it had won the Palme d'Or. My reaction was one of surprise.

The first act has so much potential, and can go in so many directions. Out of all the possibilities, it chooses a very arbitrary and plain one. A firefighter station. Like, why. The movie becomes quite weak from then on, much because of the passivity of the main character who was first introduced to us as badass.

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E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
A
Steven Spielberg — 1982
Henry Thomas, Drew Barrymore, Peter Coyote
Sunday 11 July 2021

A masterpiece of storytelling. E.T. is such a peculiar and interesting creature.

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Benedetta
D
Paul Verhoeven — 2021
Charlotte Rampling, Virginie Efira, Daphne Patakia
Saturday 10 July 2021

Everybody talking about whether she's faking it or not, nobody talking about the fact she speaks with the fucking deamon voice.

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The Way of the Dragon
C
Meng long guo jiang
Bruce Lee — 1972
Bruce Lee, Chuck Norris, Nora Miao
Friday 9 July 2021

The body of this man is surreal.

Chuck Norris looks like a parody of himself before he could even be parodied.

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Inherent Vice
E
Paul Thomas Anderson — 2014
Joaquin Phoenix, Josh Brolin, Owen Wilson
Sunday 27 June 2021

This movie got me as stoned as the character in it. What the hell did I just watch.