Reviews

Vice

Ruth Schmidt
Vice
The themes of loyalty and power run strong throughout the movie, creating a much needed illustration of how corruption develops over time—even in the lives of seemingly “good” people. If the audience can get past the sloppiness of the filmmakers’ bias, the overwhelming abuse of power should leave us shaken.

Mary Poppins Returns

Elijah Davidson
Mary Poppins Returns
Mary Poppins Returns is perhaps a bit over-concerned with calling back to the original film, but then again, there’s something appropriate about recurrences in a story that deals explicitly with the cyclical nature of life in which children become adults with children and have to recover the wide-eyed hope that buoyed them when they were young, a feat ever more impressive in the face of life’s toughest challenges, like the loss of a spouse or a job or a home.

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

Elijah Davidson
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is one of the best films of the year. You shouldn’t read another word about it. Just go see it, and be surprised by all its gifts. But if you want to read more…

The Mule

Elijah Davidson
The Mule
Eastwood’s quick style lends The Mule a lightness that makes it a pleasure to watch, especially in its middle act, though the movie is also lacking the poetry of Eastwood’s best films.

Roma

Elijah Davidson
Roma
Roma is cinematic spirit-wind sweeping into the locked room of my heart, casting out the late-year malaise, and baptizing my eyes with new sight.

Ralph Breaks the Internet

Elijah Davidson
Ralph Breaks the Internet
Ralph Breaks the Internet is frozen gelatin. It’s a one-hundred and twelve minute animated movie—long—but not enough time is given to letting themes develop narratively or visually. Instead, they are forced through in the dialogue during the last act.

A Star Is Born (2018)

Elijah Davidson
A Star Is Born (2018)
The chorus kicks in, and the camera stays on Lady Gaga, and she doesn’t so much sing the first line of the chorus as she does ignite into it. Ally, herself, is caught by surprise, You can see it in her face, and she lets the music and lyrics take her away. It’s the Big Bang. It’s conception. It’s Pentecost.

The Favourite

Elijah Davidson
The Favourite
Lanthimos’ comedies are decidedly black, but that doesn’t mean they are completely without compassion. The Favourite is careful to root the characters’ despicable choices in past abuse, lingering pain, and loss.

Jinn

Elijah Davidson
Jinn
It’s rare to see a film that deals with the ways a religious conversion affects a family. It’s almost unheard of to see a film like that set in this context. Jinn is at its best when it is being quietly observant of those particular things

The Ballad of Buster Scruggs

Elijah Davidson
The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
The West is a wild place, even when it’s bathed in pseudo-Technicolor glory.
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