Monday, September 4, 2017

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I Have Some Thoughts

Here's what I've been watching since last we talked about 2017...

Ingrid Goes West
dir: Matt Spicer
scr: David Branson Smith & Spicer
Vicious, uncomfortably funny takedown of social media stardom, fandom, and LA's bright young things. Works like a slow-drip poison. Chilling, chuckle-worthy - highly recommended.

Girls Trip
dir: Malcolm D. Lee
scr: Kenya Barris & Tracy Oliver, story by Eric Rivinoja and Barris & Oliver

Generous, hilarious ensemble of women, buoyed by smart, sincere writing! Hard to choose a best in show, but know I laughed non-stop - as did everyone else in my theater.

Okja (옥자)
dir: Bong Joon-ho
scr: Bong and Jon Ronson, story by Bong

Sincere An Seo Hyun shares unbelievable chemistry with CG beast. Haunting, inventive sound design. So-so script. Embarrassing Gyllenhaal.

Thoughts on Atomic BlondeDunkirk, and more, after the jump....
Atomic Blonde
dir: David Leith
scr: Kurt Johnstad, from the graphic novel series The Coldest City by Anthony Johnston and Sam Hart

Allegiance is a matter of convenience. Dangerous, stylish, Charlize at her most formidable. DP Jonathan Sela deserves everything good.

Midnight Runners (청년경찰)
dir/scr: Kim Joo-hwan

A perfect buddy-cop flick, surprising mix of high stakes crime and comedy, great chemistry between square-jawed Kang Ha-Neul and hummina-hummina Park Seo-Joon.

dir/scr: Christopher Nolan

Nolan's once again delivered a technical marvel: cinematography, sound, makeup, all tops. Dividing land, air, and sea into separate timelines is an intriguing approach. So...

Land (or, The Mole): No carnage, no stakes. War rendered ineffective, repetitive, and boring by bloodless "carnage", anonymous leads. Disappointing.

Sea: Mark Rylance's gravitas here grounds the whole film, but bloodshed rings false, especially considering the timidity of The Mole sequence.

Air: Thrilling. Moved in my own seat to adjust their sights. Ends with one of the most courageous, beautiful parts of the movie.

Overall: 50 percent effective, 50 percent dull, 100 percent shallow. Not my favorite Nolan.

Other films I've seen in the meantime: Anarchist from the ColonyThe Battleship IslandThe Big SickGet Me Roger Stone, Logan LuckySpider-Man: HomecomingValerian and the City of a Thousand Planets

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