Movies
Under the Shadow: Djinn and Personal Demons

Under the Shadow: Djinn and Personal Demons

Under the Shadow, an Iranian horror film released quietly in the U.S. in 2016, is low-key, creepy, and tantalizingly  unresolved. Set in 1980’s Tehran during the Iran-Iraq war, writer-director Babak Anvari’s story of an evil djinn’s grip on a family works largely through the power of suggestion, with a few

Read more
Isle of Dogs: Offbeat, In More Ways Than One

Isle of Dogs: Offbeat, In More Ways Than One

Isle of Dogs is in so many ways a quintessential Wes Anderson movie. It is beautifully filmed, the characters–even though they are dogs–are believably quirky yet still slightly exaggerated, and playful, dreamlike storytelling mingles seamlessly with blunt and ugly truths. And yet despite all the charm and genuine sentiment Anderson

Read more
Rogue One Wins the Battle but Loses the War

Rogue One Wins the Battle but Loses the War

So, now that the opening weekend excitement is out of the way, the reviews are in, and the arguments have started in earnest, I’d like to offer my humble assessment of the best and the worst of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Spoilers ahead. Was it entertaining? Oh, yes.

Read more
The Changeling: A Haunting Tale

The Changeling: A Haunting Tale

The Changeling is a classic ghost story–heavy on atmosphere and suggestive chills, light on gore and graphic violence. That’s not really how I usually define a scary movie, but every so often I see The Changeling mentioned as one of those “must-see” films for horror buffs. Having finally watched it,

Read more
Watch This: Green Room

Watch This: Green Room

Green Room is a dark, brutal gem of a film. Written and directed by Jeremy Saulnier, Green Room debuted at Cannes in 2015 and received a limited release in the U.S. in April 2016. It is distinctly unsentimental, and its plot is stripped down to the bones. Still, it was

Read more
The Force Awakens: I Nodded Off

The Force Awakens: I Nodded Off

Now that the dust has settled it’s time to take a more balanced look at the latest Star Wars movie; the hyperventilating is over, let’s consider it’s true worth.

Read more
They Look Like People Deserves A Look

They Look Like People Deserves A Look

  They Look Like People, a dark little film, was introduced at the Slamdance film festival way back in January 2015 and picked up by streaming services earlier this year. It’s been billed as low-key psychological suspense, and it can be. It is just as much a slow moving relationship

Read more
Watch This: Strange Days

Watch This: Strange Days

Strange Days is an often-overlooked bit of 1995 cyberpunk written and produced by James Cameron (of Terminator, Aliens, and Avatar fame) and directed by Kathryn Bigelow (of Point Break and Zero Dark Thirty). As with many things Cameron it is overlong and somewhat bloated, but there is still a beautifully

Read more
Captain America: Civil War–A Little More Conversation?

Captain America: Civil War–A Little More Conversation?

Now that the initial frenzy to see Captain America: Civil War has cooled somewhat, I will venture my opinion. As I told my friends as we walked out of the theater in the wee hours of opening night/ morning, I liked it, it was really good, and I’m glad we

Read more
Midnight Special: Flawed But Worth It

Midnight Special: Flawed But Worth It

Midnight Special is one of those movies I wanted so much to love. I liked it—a great deal, actually—and I recommend it highly for its emotional depth, but I feel the holes and unevenness of the story-line derailed its shot at greatness. There is genuine warmth alongside its danger, and

Read more