2016 log (4)

(1 Apr) The Young Victoria (2009, Jean-Marc Vallée) 62
[ Reviewed on Extra Beurre ]

(2 Apr) Liste noire (1995, Jean-Marc Vallée) 45
[ Reviewed on Extra Beurre ]

(4 Apr) Los Locos (1997, Jean-Marc Vallée) 85
[ Reviewed on Extra Beurre ]

(5 Apr) The Jungle Book (2016, Jon Favreau) 77
[ Reviewed on Extra Beurre ]

(5 Apr) Loser Love (1999, Jean-Marc Vallée) 12
[ Reviewed on Extra Beurre ]

(7 Apr) Midnight Special (2016, Jeff Nichols) 92
[ Reviewed on Extra Beurre ]

(8 Apr) Everybody Wants Some!! (2016, Richard Linklater) 93
[ Reviewed on Extra Beurre ]

(9 Apr) New Moon (2009, Chris Weitz) 41
[ These aren’t really good movies so far, not with the often hacky direction and all the ridiculous stuff (sparkling vampires, barechested werewolves, etc.). But again, the subtext — which is so obvious that it’s pretty much text — is sorta fascinating. Here, Stephenie Meyer/Melissa Rosenberg deal with the fear of aging and dying, thoughts of suicide, depression and whatnot. The unhealthy romance between Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson mostly works and, this time around, Taylor Lautner makes a strong impression. So yeah, still not a good movie, but I’m hooked. #TeamJacob ]

(12 Apr) The Invitation (2016, Karyn Kusama) 76
[ Reviewed on Extra Beurre ]

(15 Apr) Eclipse (2010, David Slade) 43
[ There’s a feeling during much of this third episode that Stephenie Meyer/Melissa Rosenberg are stretching the storylines and the themes thin, with endless talk about Bella’s will-she-or-won’t-she? eventual change into a vampire, Edward’s pending marriage proposal and the threat posed by Victoria (now played by Bryce Dallas Howard, taking over from Rachelle Lefevre for some reason), plus some new subplot about serial killings in Seattle and a bunch of backstory about this and that. But I still get a kick out of the teen soap opera, with Edward and Jacob being all macho and shit around Bella, trying to prove which one of them has the biggest swinging dick. Also, the climax is pretty awesome/ridiculous, with vampires and werewolves fighting each other all over the place. Looking forward to how they wrap up this whole nonsense in the final movie(s). ]

(16 Apr) Terminator Genisys (2015, Alan Taylor) 46
[ It’s a prequel! A sequel! A remake! A remix! A mash-up! Fan fiction! I can see why this got such bad reviews when it came out, even though I do like crazy sci-fi and time-travel mindfucks. But admittedly, in this fifth episode in the franchise, the rubber band might have been stretched too much and snapped. Maybe I could have accepted it anyway with better lead performances, but Jai Courtney and Emilia Clarke are really lame here. Only good old Arnold Schwarzenegger as Pops (don’t ask) is appealing, dumb one-liners and all. There’s also some kinda fun action, but the special FX aren’t always great. So yeah, a mixed bag at best and probably the worst “Terminator” flick so far. “Goddamn time traveling robots!” ]

(19 Apr) Captain America: The First Avenger (2011, Joe Johnston) 85
[ Reviewed on Extra Beurre ]

(21 Apr) Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015, Joss Whedon) [ review ] 92

(22 Apr) Breaking Dawn – Part 1 (2011, Bill Condon) 26
[ All the movies so far have been rather bad, but at least they were amusingly bad. This one is mostly just boring… But what’s most frustrating is that the potential was there for at least an entertainingly awful flick, but all the best/worst ideas are wasted. Like after the (boring) wedding scene, Bella and Edward go on their honeymoon and they have some violent human/vampire sex… But we don’t really see it, just the warm-up before and the aftermath. Then almost the whole movie is about Bella becoming pregnant with… something. Again, there’s potential here for some disturbing and/or ridiculous body horror, but we mostly get endless (boring) melodrama about what Bella, Edward, the rest of the Cullens, Jacob and his wolf pack worry will happen if the pregnancy comes to term. Did I mention that it’s boring? There’s one wonderfully WTF moment near the end when Jacob imprints on Bella’s baby (don’t ask), and the final shot makes you kinda eager to see what’s next, but it’s too little, too late. ]

(23 Apr) Lemonade (2016, Kahlil Joseph, Melina Matsoukas, Todd Tourso, Dikayl Rimmasch, Jonas Akerlund, Mark Romanek & Beyoncé)
[ “What’s worse, looking jealous or crazy?”
It’s been called a “visual album”, which means it’s a series of music videos, but really, this is a film, pretty much a feature at 60+ minute. Maybe you need to be a fan of Beyoncé’s music first and foremost, but I don’t know… I think it’s amazing cinema in any case. Sexy, strong, savage cinema. The songs are all instantly catchy and badass and moving, as are the spoken word segments, but visually, DAMN! It’s endlessly striking and inventive… It’s the best musical film I’ve seen since Arcade Fire’s oddly underrated “The Reflektor Tapes” (not-so-incidentally, Kahlil Joseph directed some of “Lemonade”). Watching it for the first time in the middle of the night, I kept thinking, “Who wrote this?”, “Who directed this?”, “Who shot this?”, “Who edited this?” And Beyoncé is such an amazing performer/actress/screen presence… She’s in every other shot and she’s never less than mesmerizing. Expect a year’s worth of memes and GIFs and hot takes and thinkpieces. But really, watch the whole thing for yourself. Totally worth it. ]

(25 Apr) Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014, Anthony & Joe Russo) 88
[ Reviewed on Extra Beurre ]

(26 Apr) Lemonade (2016, Kahlil Joseph, Melina Matsoukas, Todd Tourso, Dikayl Rimmasch, Jonas Akerlund, Mark Romanek & Beyoncé)
[ See (23 Apr) ]

(28 Apr) Captain America: Civil War (2014, Anthony & Joe Russo) 94
[ Reviewed on Extra Beurre ]

(28 Apr) Keanu (2016, Peter Atencio) 62
[ Reviewed on Extra Beurre ]