I adore Clouds of Sils Maria. I feel like I could study its nuances and idiosyncrasies for the next decade and still not learn all I possibly could about director Olivier Assayas’ latest masterpiece, the movie an utterly beguiling marvel of imagination and dramatic fortitude that just gets better and better with each viewing.
Andrew Haigh’s Weekend is every bit as sensational the second (and third) time around as it was the first, the depth and breadth of the emotional undercurrents running through it simply stunning. Rampling and Courtney are extraordinary, delivering performances ranking as two of the best either of the pair has ever delivered. In short, Weekend is amazing.
Zootopia is really good. Imaginative, full of life and filled with a number of sublime themes viewers of every age could use to learn from, Disney’s latest animated effort is a true joy from start to finish.
Submerged had a ton of potential, and director Steven C. Miller is undeniably talented, but for whatever reason things just didn’t come together as far as this project is concerned, the movie nothing short of a nicely cast disappointment that’s frustratingly difficult to watch all the way through until the end.
Phoenix is a revelation, an old-school post-WWII thriller that recalls the glory days of Carol Reed and Fritz Lang yet also gloriously stands on its own as a dynamic, one-of-a-kind sensation. Featuring a performance for the ages by the gifted Nina Hoss, Christian Petzold’s latest is an outright stunner, and as such Criterion’s Blu-ray release should be added to any world cinema connoisseur’s hi-def library as soon as possible.
More gothic drama then it is full-on noir, The Red House is nonetheless a fascinating curio piece, and while its emotional components are a little overwrought at times, the power they have over the viewer still remains undeniable making the film an underappreciated gem worthy of rediscovery.
There’s lot to love about The Hateful Eight. The acting is stellar, it looks terrific, and Ennio Morricone’s Oscar-winning score certainly sets the proper tone throughout. But Quentin Tarantino’s latest is sprawling, overwrought and more than a little full of itself at times, it’s second half turn not going to sit well with a number of viewers.
Alicia Vikander deserved her Academy Award for this performance, and as such The Danish Girl is worth watching for her brilliance alone. Same time, even if director Tom Hooper’s film doesn’t blossom into the type of drama it arguably should have been, it’s depth, maturity, intelligence and sensitivity as it pertains to looking at the Transgender coming out experience deserves to be applauded.
Not to overuse or waste a cliché, but Creed is a knockout. More than just a next chapter in the ongoing Rocky saga, Ryan Coogler’s film stands proudly and dynamically on its own, this inspirational sports melodrama an outstanding piece of pulp entertainment almost certain to stand the test of time.