Mike D'Angelo
2/09/21 12:48PM

I said among the most, not the most. And Auteuil’s performance isn’t at all like Sellers’, really. He’s much more “normal,” with plenty of emotional nuance. (Which is to be expected, since this is a drama and Being There is a comedy.)

2/02/21 8:44PM

Ah, this reveals that some folks don’t understand my position. The beef is with extravagantly choreographed shots that call attention to themselves. I’ve never had any issue with lengthy shots from a fixed camera à la Tsai Ming-liang, Roy Andersson, Elia Suleiman, any number of faves. 

4/21/20 7:06PM

It’s not really a twist. They’re wearing the creepy masks for the entire film, and the murdered family gets mentioned fairly early. My main point was that there are apparently no other children in the town, but I couldn’t figure out an accurate way to phrase that didn’t note that the four kids we do see (who, again, Read more

11/13/19 6:29PM

Indeed it would have, had Steven Zaillian actually written Dark Waters’ screenplay, as I originally claimed. But in fact I’d experienced a brain hiccup—it’s The Irishman that Zaillian wrote. This film was penned by Matthew Michael Carnahan (World War Z, Deepwater Horizon) and Mario Correa. Sorry for the temporary error Read more

8/24/19 1:30PM

“The only thing [my expressing disappointment that a romantic relationship wasn’t brought to life”] could possibly mean is you weren’t excited.” Oooookay. Moving on. You’ve drawn your own completely unsupported conclusions about me and there’s no changing your mind.

8/23/19 4:30PM

Not calling for mythologizing at all. Calling for no more biopics. A vanishingly small percentage of them are worthwhile, because people’s real lives can’t be reduced to two hours. (Odd, too, that in one breath you advocate for avoiding mythologizing and in the next applaud the film for doing just that with its Read more

8/15/19 3:15PM

“Twist” is probably the wrong word for what happens in Uncaged. (There’s a legitimate twist in the original film, though.) It’s more of an ironic development. If you want to know re: both, cut/paste the following into Read more

7/30/19 7:33PM

I didn’t mention Twin Peaks because it’s season 3 of a TV series (the words “The Return” appear only in marketing) and wasn’t theatrically released (though it got a one-off screening in NYC and maybe elsewhere). Read more

7/16/19 5:31PM

Neither one has achieved anywhere near the U.S. name recognition of, say, Truffaut or Depardieu. But we’ve reviewed a number of Philippe’s films over the years, and Louis has acted in some fairly high-profile imports (Bertolucci’s The Dreamers, Bonello’s Saint Laurent, the title role in Godard Mon Amour, etc.). 

6/18/19 6:07PM

The problem is that it makes the film look phony right from the outset. I sort of identified what the problem was in the review. As for your counterexamples: Death of Stalin is a comedy (albeit a pitch-black one) that doesn’t remotely strive for realism, and I can’t speak to Chernobyl as I haven’t seen it. Everyone Read more

6/11/19 6:14PM

I think you’re being needlessly pedantic about this. But replace “just” with “recently” in your head if that will make you feel better. Point is Dylan didn’t tour at all for a bunch of years and Rolling Thunder happened not long (in my opinion, anyway) after he finally did start touring again.

6/11/19 2:40PM

Didn’t say he toured with the Band in 1975. I said that in 1975, he’d just started touring again after a long hiatus. Which is true. I guess one can quibble about whether months earlier in a separate calendar year qualifies as “just,” but that would indeed be quibbling. Read more

4/02/19 9:24PM

Well, you’re a bit late—I’ve been doing this professionally for over 20 years. And my job is not to decide whether a given film is intended to be either “didactic” or “entertaining” (as if that were a clear binary division) and analyze it accordingly. Nor is it to tailor my review to a perceived minority of readers Read more

4/02/19 8:57PM

I mean, it’s famous in England. (I didn’t write the headline, for the record. Never do.)

2/13/19 2:41AM

I wrote the review at the same pace that I write every review (pretty slowly, really). The bit you quote was carefully worded: Dialogue in the film is ambiguous—to an outsider, anyway—regarding the precise relationship of the protagonist’s family to the person who supplies them the drugs. The latter, as far as I could Read more

11/06/18 1:47AM

It’s on par with the other Reitman films I mentioned in terms of surface entertainment value. Probably a film I’d have given a B had its message not struck me as so misguided. Or a film I’d have given a D were it not engaging moment to moment.

9/19/18 6:21PM

Well, except they also put them in the red-band trailer. (That’s how I was able to accurately list a bunch of them.) In any case, the analogy doesn’t have to be as precise as you insist. My point was simply that it’s a similar ploy of suggesting that the viewer may not able to handle what’s coming. I opened the review Read more

7/11/18 3:14AM

Mostly I want to dispel a common misconception, which is that criticizing films of this sort on dramaturgical grounds is somehow tantamount to dismissing real-life instances of human suffering. That’s just not the case. One can be properly horrified and still feel that the situation is too black-and-white to make for Read more

6/01/18 7:35PM

I wrote both reviews, so you can blame me. My relatively low opinion of Beast is indeed an outlier, but American Animals is by no means a critical triumph; Metacritic currently designates 13 reviews as positive, 10 (including mine) as mixed, and 2 as negative. So basically a 50-50 split between thumbs up and thumbs Read more