Ray Pride

Ray Pride
Tomatometer-approved critic
Publications: Newcity, Movie City News

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
9/10 96% In the Heights (2021) Chu plays it cool... expressively explores the inexpressibility of home. (That home is America.) - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 17, 2021
9/10 95% The Sparks Brothers (2021) An understatedly jubilant love-fest... Wright, who appears onscreen as an interviewee identified as a "fanboy" has a lot of fun with captions and stock footage and all the conventions of rock documentary... - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 17, 2021
7/10 66% Crisis (2021) An out-of-another-era movie, a starry, location-heavy, issues-driven feature melodrama in the age of streaming miniseries... How do you alert moviegoers to a punchy powder keg pitting Big Pharma and its talons against fumbling by the feds? - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 17, 2021
7/10 74% Cruella (2021) Moving forward from early Dickensian dolor suiting an orphan to its "modern day," the quiet but swoony details of the film's look are comfortably in a school with work by the aces-of-aces designers like Anton Furst and Bo Welch. Eyeballs are duly popped. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 7, 2021
9/10 88% Undine (2020) Petzold sups at illogic and the simply unpredictable: love, myth, city, dream, water, longing... These are lovely dreamers, pinned to 90 minutes of striated story and hyperreal images but always anxious to rise, to float, to float away into ethereal beauty. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 7, 2021
10/10 99% MLK/FBI (2021) Pollard's infuriating wonderment patchworks a portrait... during the years he was under federal surveillance and harassment by law enforcement. Pollard does more than recreate an era, he creates a world, and it's the one we still live in. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 14, 2021
9/10 95% Soul (2020) Delighting in possibility. It's heavenly screwball. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 4, 2021
8/10 90% Promising Young Woman (2020) Style is ladled atop fury... as jaunty as the sounds of the songs we hear, sweetly discordant atop the mission at hand. The brew could be discomfiting to some, thrilling to others. It's ----ed up. And that's a good thing. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 4, 2021
9/10 100% Finding Yingying (2020) Shi's clear, strong voice, instinctive use of personal archival materials and crisp storytelling elevates Finding Yingying... mystery and an empathetic journey as Zhang's family comes to the United States to look for their missing child. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 11, 2020
8/10 82% Mank (2020) Alcoholic screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz (Gary Oldman, centered, saturnine) is not an unreliable narrator, captured in the bloom and bruise of soused yet righteous imagination, but an unreliable dreamer. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 6, 2020
36% Echo Boomers (2020) They've got issues, and they've got themes: "We did everything they told us to do," another self-described millennial says of the crippling-debt education and ----ed workplace trajectory that brought them to this place. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 10, 2020
9/10 99% Totally Under Control (2020) Dense yet cleanly arrayed, Totally Under Control illuminates the choices made that underpin the unnecessary losses by the United States in 2020, not limited to 240,000 deaths and counting. Solid; enraging. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 9, 2020
10/10 98% David Byrne's American Utopia (2020) Simple? Profound? In a few sweet words: It's a celebration. Let's have one. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 9, 2020
9/10 100% All In: The Fight for Democracy (2020) Stacey Abrams is the central figure in their engaging, flammable history of voter suppression in America - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 9, 2020
7/10 85% Borat: Subsequent Moviefilm (2020) It's not hard to imagine what a packed theatrical audience would have made of those moments, the way "Borat" sucked the oxygen out of theaters fourteen years ago, propriety be damned, couth ripped asunder. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 9, 2020
10/10 85% Beau Travail (2000) We are given motion, gestures, enactment of anachronistic ritual. Raptures and vicissitudes shadow and sinew. The men work, strain, sweat; we are immersed in the routines of these stripped-bare Sisyphuses as they are weighted with inexorable fate. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 16, 2020
9/10 90% Nomad: In the Footsteps of Bruce Chatwin (2020) Chatwin summoned Herzog, offering him the gift of the fine, brown leather rucksack that had accompanied him on all of his travels. (Another sturdy good that Chatwin's name is attached to is the Moleskine notebook, of which he filled scads.) - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 16, 2020
8/10 82% I'm Thinking of Ending Things (2020) Close-ups that suggest layers of being, and so, so much Buckley moving from woozy congeniality to tipsy top of the morning to multiple intellectual streams, ticking along with a rhythm both assured and lavishly lackadaisical... - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 16, 2020
9/10 84% I Used to Go Here (2020) Looking toward a future, moving past emotional shellshock, assembled with the understated, even serene confidence of an experienced filmmaker... Rey is a miniaturist who has found an apt canvas. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 28, 2020
10/10 97% Hamilton (2020) There are works of art that arrive at exactly the right moment; very few arrive twice. The phenomenon continues. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 2, 2020
9/10 83% Queen & Slim (2019) Seething, kaleidoscopic fury that surfaces as a dense, dreamlike variation on the classic outlaw-couple romance after a diner first date between a pair of middle-class African Americans.. There's bravura and bravado, style and anger to burn. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 29, 2020
0/10 40% Irresistible (2020) Diana is played by Mackenzie Davis in the short hair and striped shirts of a 1980s Mary Stuart Masterson character, reducing the lithe, pansexual fury she displayed in Terminator: Dark Fate to the quizzical expressions of a house cat. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 25, 2020
9/10 92% Da 5 Bloods (2020) Lee's epic, dense, deft, politically insolent and deeply moral twenty-fifth fiction feature is fire. His sprawling, brawling canvas is also tightly controlled, both agitprop and agitpop, bringing forth injustice past, present and ongoing. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 12, 2020
4/10 75% The King of Staten Island (2020) Davidson's squirmy performance style suggests the unlikely prospect of an unlikable Steve Buscemi playing the Joker. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 12, 2020
7/10 40% Capone (2020) Exquisite crassness... more expressive and memorably cracked than most films that were meant to be released in 2020? (Fatal, fetal and fecal, to boot.) It is an emetic and an education: Trank's every choice is bold, assured and oftentimes bravura. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted May 23, 2020
9/10 86% The Descent (2006) RECOMMENDED "Deliverance" with alpha-female spelunkers instead of macho men, set in caverns rather than on an endangered river, Neil Marshall's intense, bloody, emotionally viscid [movie] is a neatly elegant bite of malicious terror. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted May 23, 2020
10/10 92% Children of Men (2006) Children of Men is concentrated cinema, wrought, focused, emblematic.... Cuarón [is] equally concerned with the survival of richly detailed cinema as the fraught voyage of his encircled, besieged characters. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted May 17, 2020
92% Holy Motors (2012) Holy Motors will offer the most succor for perceptive and discriminating cinephiles, like poetry for poets and jazz for jazz musicians. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 28, 2020
100% The New Year Parade (2009) The seemingly improvised performances have a sweet, ragged edge, and the music swells. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 7, 2020
9/10 95% Little Women (2019) Gerwig's movie is as furious as Uncut Gems,/i>, narratives headlong, each with a central figure on an express train to a dream of their ultimate self-fulfillment. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 29, 2019
10/10 81% A Hidden Life (2019) Attention. Needless attention. Heedless attention. We hear Hitler's voice again, cadenced, raving, distant, resting upon the hillsides as dusk's last fingers of red and orange are lost to charcoal night. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 23, 2019
2/10 19% Cats (2019) The star-struck Cats is a rare attainment and could well be the last of the film industry's industrial-scale caprices, a follicular folly down to molecular level. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 23, 2019
3/10 51% Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) The stars above, and beneath, the fiery eyes of Daisy Ridley, the sole beacon, with promise of a story with emotional investment and volcanic result. J. J. Abrams betrays Daisy Ridley's eyes. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 23, 2019
8/10 94% Honey Boy (2019) That performance gains power from LaBeouf's willingness to play the worst weakness of his kin while also refracting, in his screenplay, the wide-eyed gaze of concern and rebellion brewing within him as a boy. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 30, 2019
94% Marriage Story (2019) The mystery that simmers above the tribulations of Charlie and Nicole is why they would separate or strike a spike into whatever they have... one of the film's great strengths... they are fated, and yet: their skin itches at merest proximity. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 30, 2019
9/10 97% Knives Out (2019) The characters are distinct for their casting but also the splenetic performance styles, a range of American popinjays heavy on the ham including the riotous multi-leveled self-caricature of Daniel Craig's Poirot-puncturing Benoit Blanc. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 30, 2019
10/10 100% Mr. Klein (1976) Franco Solinas' script, built on mistaken identity and doubling and scapegoating, is superb, complex scaffolding, but it's Losey's atmospheric insistence that haunts, stylized in every aspect. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 30, 2019
8/10 82% The Report (2019) Driver is fast turning into a twenty-first-century version of 1970s antiheroes, including Elliott Gould and Donald Sutherland: intelligent yet shambling, fiercely present yet also suggesting some sort of mysterious calm. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 30, 2019
9/10 92% Ford v Ferrari (2019) Quick wit, dry dialogue and grace notes punctuate bursts of velocity. Big themes sound. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 30, 2019
8/10 96% Pain and Glory (Dolor y gloria) (2019) Almodóvar pleads allegory and the question the film asks, and the filmmaker-within-the-film unwittingly asks, is: how does one maintain or rediscover not only desire, but also first desire? The spark. The fire. The riveting earliest impulses and insights. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 17, 2019
9/10 95% The Irishman (2019) Brief as a photograph: indelible as a memory. And indicative of the brutal suddenness of the hits to come: a friend walks up to you, a friend walks away from you, in the middle, that friend has put two bullets in the back of you. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 16, 2019
7/10 40% The Laundromat (2019) Soderbergh has done a brute and fanciful thing with... a political provocation not so much torn from the headlines of top-shelf newspapers but ripped from the pages of activist theater and in-your-face agit-prop. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 22, 2019
10/10 98% Parasite (Gisaengchung) (2019) Economic disparity may be the greatest subject of the twenty-first century for intimate horror. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 22, 2019
68% Joker (2019) But still: a provocation. Performance art. And an ongoing conversation. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 22, 2019
9/10 83% Ad Astra (2019) Fully a fable, a chamber piece within outer space, Ad Astra is flint and lyric... James Gray's marvel of a paranoid thriller, antagonistically serene, is an uncommon attainment of visual and sonic beauty, ready and ripe to be madly misunderstood. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 20, 2019
4/10 62% It Chapter Two (2019) Grown Goonies in the Boonies. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 6, 2019
10/10 92% The Marriage of Maria Braun (Die Ehe der Maria Braun) (1979) Bravura masterwork, tender and lovely, about destruction and loss... a melodrama every bit as good as anything Douglas Sirk ever committed to film, and watching it, the loss of Fassbinder is ever more painful to contemplate. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 26, 2019
9/10 85% Once Upon a Time In Hollywood (2019) A swarming cast crosses the fates of three characters over three days in another time... Quentin Tarantino's melancholy pop-rocket [is also] the most costly, most grandiloquent piece of installation art ever fashioned. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 26, 2019
8/10 90% Leaving Home, Coming Home: A Portrait of Robert Frank (2019) We are caught as are the characters in a world of fantastical landscapes and indelible settings and obdurate women: it is an icy age. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 19, 2019
95% Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché (2019) Alice Guy-Blaché produced, wrote or directed more than 1,000 films... But why was she forgotten? Pamela B. Green's doc piles on detail after detail after detail, equal parts detective story, biography and agreeable hagiography. - Newcity EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 16, 2019