7/25/2017

Silence (2016) ****

Upon a second viewing, I enjoyed this film even more, bumping up my previous rating by a 1/2 star. Even though I'm not religious in the slightest, I can't help but be captivated by this powerful work.

My original review:

Scorsese channels Kurosawa, Kobayashi, and Malick and makes a divisive and challenging companion piece to his previous The Last Temptation Of Christ. Visually stunning and impeccably assembled, but also heavy handed and frustrating. I was engulfed by this film even when I wasn't 100% connecting. Regardless of star rating or nitpicks, it's still an incredible piece of art.

7/21/2017

Focus On Film: Episode 55 - October 2017 Criterion Titles

Focus On Film Episode 55 is up!


​This month we're introducing a slightly changed up format. Rygar and Danman talk (a lot about) ’cock, the loss of Romero, THINGs that were frustrating to pre-order + more!

In this episode:

"Focus On Film Theme" & commercial music: Daniel Sardella


7/20/2017

Tetro (2009) ****

I love this film. This was my third time watching TETRO and after finally getting around to watching its earlier spiritual brother film RUMBLE FISH, it held special meaning. I hope that FFC can make another great film after the mess that is TWIXT.

7/17/2017

The Stendhal Syndrome (1996) ****

Despite some flaws I find this to be one of Argento's best films that only seems to get better on subsequent viewings. As far as star ratings go, I'd even rate STENDHAL higher than FOUR FLIES, CAT O' NINE TAILSTENEBREPHENOMENA, and OPERA, though I've watched most of those films more than this one.

In some regards, STENDHAL feels more extreme than other Argento films. While just about all of his films feature graphic violence, unless my memory fails me, few of Argento's other films have this level of sexual violence (including multiple rape scenes). These scenes are made particularly disturbing due to Argento having cast his daughter Asia as the lead on the receiving end of said violence. Speaking of, her performance is quite diverse, but unfortunately undermined a bit (as is the film in general) by being overdubbed.

More highlights: the cinematography by Giuseppe Rotunno is stunning (this one doesn't really look or feel like any other Argento film), the theme by Morricone is haunting and infectious, and the sound design can be immersive at times. Overall a disturbing and unique film.

7/15/2017

The Beguiled (2017) ***

A good film overall but I honestly didn't feel it was much different than the 1971 original. None of the performances were particularly strong either and I found Farrell's turn in the third act a bit drastic (I need to rewatch the original to see if Eastwood's was of similar note).

War For The Planet Of The Apes (2017) ***1/2

A strong closer (and the best of the 3) for this modern trilogy of APES films. Serkis is to be commended for his work, Harrelson does a good modern Kurtz, and the visual f/x are quite astounding.