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The Revenant: Locating Realism

The Revenant: Locating Realism

As much a study in the intensity of its filmmaker as a story. This movie bares all.
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Latest Features

The Matrix: Re-Examining a Milestone

The Matrix: Re-Examining a Milestone

The sequels changed this movie. Its ego now shows through its history, though its action still satisfies.
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The Final Word: It’s Time to Retire the Term “Mary Sue”

The Final Word: It’s Time to Retire the Term “Mary Sue”

The talk of what it means to be a Mary Sue has gotten so emotional that I think it's time for the term to disappear. But not before my final word.
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Avengers: Infinity War and the Power of Change

Avengers: Infinity War and the Power of Change

An ensemble cluster of action and color anchored by one of the best villains in the genre. The series' most essential film.
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Gender Horror in The Witch

Gender Horror in The Witch

A movie so scary it's worthy of study. Eggers is a name to watch.
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Dumbo (1941): The First Disney Film to Fall Short

Dumbo (1941): The First Disney Film to Fall Short

Beautiful animation complements a pretty bare story about proving yourself even when you have nothing to prove. Not the studio's best.
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Dark City: Solving the Us Illusion

Dark City: Solving the Us Illusion

An extravagant mystery, deeply brilliant. Where mainstream meets noir and makes them both seem like a good idea.
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Snow White and #MeToo: Reclaiming a Classic

Snow White and #MeToo: Reclaiming a Classic

An alternative to the modern rejection of fairytales. Why true love never goes out of style.
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Enemy Explained

Enemy Explained

An analysis of Villeneuve's dreamy horror film. Not for the faint, the arachnophobic, or the easily confused.
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In Defense of Star Wars—The Phantom Menace

In Defense of Star Wars—The Phantom Menace

The Phantom Menace is unformed as a child’s drawing, and sometimes feels as innocent, and many times threatens through sheer force of will to be charming.
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Annihilation Analysis: Smart Movies Have it Rough

Annihilation Analysis: Smart Movies Have it Rough

It's so admirable you'll forget the flaws in its execution. Mainstream horror with an intellectual twist.
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Recent Reviews

Bronson
A director matched to a star matched to a subject. None of them want you to accept them, and that's why you can't help it.
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IT Chapter Two
Undermined by a reliance on jump scares over drama. Not worth the wait.
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The Matrix: Re-Examining a Milestone
The sequels changed this movie. Its ego now shows through its history, though its action still satisfies.
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Between the Darkness
A concerted first indie horror effort whose spirit falls short of its intentions. The look outshines the script.
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Vertigo: Decoding Desire in Hitchcock
Hitchcock unravels his idea of women. Perhaps the most important romance ever made.
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Conan the Barbarian
A muscle-man playdate. Ultimate high fantasy cheese.
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Toy Story 4: Retconning Childhood
Revisiting childhood after it's over can make it more complicated than it should be. Pixar fumbled another one.
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Dark Phoenix: Ending on a Whimper
A series sendoff turns into an anthem to whining. This was not the way it should have ended.
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Predator: Epic Manhunt
An ode to dying well. The best workout in all the movies.
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X-Men: First Class: A Change of Color
A younger cast puts a spring in this series' step. One of X-Men's best.
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mother!
Gorgeous movies aren’t usually this divisive. Aronofsky seems to delight in making us squirm over his art, and over ourselves.
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It (2017)
An impressive feat of childhood engineering diluted with cheap horror movie thrills.
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Moonrise Kingdom
Wes Anderson turns our lives into a documentary. He's found more love in two children than most have found in the rest of us combined.
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Insomnia
A simple cop thriller elevated by a feeling. Pacino torments himself for us and it's mostly wonderful.
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Avengers: Infinity War and the Power of Change
An ensemble cluster of action and color anchored by one of the best villains in the genre. The series' most essential film.
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The Passion of the Christ
A gutsy portrayal of a well-known story. But the passion has to come from you: the movie has little of its own.
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Shaun of the Dead
With pure style, Wright re-arms the entire genre against us. Through comedy, we become the living dead.
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The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996)
A cartoon in the spirit of the old epics. The best musical Disney ever made.
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Recent Reviews