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      Rating Title | Year Author Quote
      Killers of the Flower Moon (2023) Michael Wood DiCaprio and De Niro carry the film through their impersonations of what they are not, their acting of an act, so to speak: the nice, if rough-edged guy, and the genial businessman, the toast of the town.
      Posted Nov 16, 2023
      Past Lives (2023) Michael Wood This all sounds rather cryptic, and the film is mysterious. It is also lucid and precise, intimately devoted to its strange lyrical sorrow. It’s as if we are watching feelings in slow motion.
      Posted Oct 19, 2023
      Afire (2023) Michael Wood There are drawbacks to such a view. There are moments when we can’t take any more hovering, and Petzold’s timing and tone can be awkward. But he is faithful to his scheme, and his new film, Afire, has a much lighter touch than any of his previous works.
      Posted Sep 15, 2023
      Barbie (2023) Michael Wood The film gets a little lost at times, as if it had too many storylines to play with and won’t let any of them go... But there are many great jokes in the film.
      Posted Sep 07, 2023
      Asteroid City (2023) Michael Wood The effect of all this, although I’m still trying to figure out how Anderson could get such a result from these elements, is not trickery or philosophy but a sort of innocence. We are awake and also dreaming.
      Posted Jul 27, 2023
      One Fine Morning (2022) Michael Wood I won’t describe the late scenes, partly because it would be a spoiler, and partly because, as Hansen-Løve’s style and interests suggest, any narrative solution is one option among several.
      Posted Jun 07, 2023
      Broker (2022) Michael Wood While not wanting to tell us anything explicitly and diligently pretending to look the other way, it wants us to think a lot harder than we usually do about what it means to bear or bring up a child.
      Posted Mar 23, 2023
      Fanny and Alexander (1982) Michael Wood There is a real delicacy in [Bergman's] filming of festivities, first Christmas and later a double christening. The fun is effective, even contagious, but there is always worry in the air.
      Posted Feb 08, 2023
      Romeo and Juliet (1968) Michael Wood The movie wears well, and is certainly better than I remembered, but time has also made it a different film, in certain ways closer to Shakespeare than it used to be or was probably meant to be.
      Posted Feb 08, 2023
      Living (2022) Michael Wood The unlived life is a great modern theme. Not reality’s disappointments, but reality itself as a form of evasion, the wrong road taken... [Living] is a brilliant treatment of this theme, an essay on its mixed familiarity and elusiveness.
      Posted Jan 12, 2023
      Decision to Leave (2022) Michael Wood The film lingers over the second murder case a bit too long, as if we needed a complete rerun of the first in order to get all the ironies, but the questions set up on its shifting ground are intriguing.
      Posted Nov 12, 2022
      Nope (2022) Michael Wood [Nope] takes this word as its title and offers several other interesting usages. All of them suggest that what we’re thinking or saying is absurdly wrong: a proposition that doesn’t need to be made, or that can’t be responded to in any other way.
      Posted Oct 07, 2022
      Bullet Train (2022) Michael Wood Fantasies of crime, especially unruly ones, often have ideas of order and control at their heart, a reach of power we rarely have in ordinary existence.
      Posted Sep 23, 2022
      Lost Illusions (2021) Michael Wood It’s notable that this nastiness is really interesting, because in the context that Giannoli is creating, anything that moves is interesting.
      Posted Jul 22, 2022
      Everything Everywhere All at Once (2022) Michael Wood The film has been billed as a science-fiction comedy, but it doesn’t really belong to either genre, despite the abundance of fantasy and the fact that it’s often very funny.
      Posted Jun 02, 2022
      The Worst Person in the World (2021) Michael Wood Julie is played by Renate Reinsve with an amiable calm that fails to conceal worry.
      Posted May 05, 2022
      Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy (2021) Michael Wood The tour de force in the film is the last story, 'Once Again', which makes extraordinary play with chance and the imagination.
      Posted Mar 25, 2022
      The Tragedy of Macbeth (2021) Michael Wood The low-key acting adds a human element to scenes that are often played as formalities.
      Posted Jan 20, 2022
      Last Night in Soho (2021) Michael Wood Wright has been accused of ostensibly criticising nostalgia while thoroughly indulging in it. There is something in this, but it would be hard to make a movie about the past without some sort of regret.
      Posted Nov 13, 2021
      No Time to Die (2021) Michael Wood [No Time To Die] begins inside a memory and ends with a kind of apocalypse. Sound familiar? Not really. Memory has never been a prominent theme in the series, and the mood of this instalment is different in many ways.
      Posted Oct 23, 2021
      Annette (2021) Michael Wood [Carax and the Mael brothers] leave us with plenty of entertaining questions -- and questions about entertainment.
      Posted Sep 24, 2021
      The Money Order (1968) Michael Wood The plot makes it seem like a frenetic farce, while the human situation drops into dire neorealist gloom.
      Posted Jul 06, 2021
      Nomadland (2020) Michael Wood In McDormand's marvellous incarnation [Fern] is difficult to understand, tight, untalkative, but also helpful to others, and given to smiling occasionally in ways that contradict her dryness.
      Posted Jun 04, 2021
      Judas and the Black Messiah (2021) Michael Wood The film has the look and sound of a stylish thriller.
      Posted Apr 30, 2021
      The United States vs. Billie Holiday (2021) Michael Wood Andra Day is a singer who is appearing as an actress for the first time in this movie, and her performance as Holiday is amazing.
      Posted Mar 13, 2021
      One Night in Miami (2020) Michael Wood [There are] four sequences that have the feel of allegorical fables, each showing a moment of change in a man's life and preparing the ground for the night of the film's title, when four paths will cross and when key questions come into focus.
      Posted Feb 18, 2021
      Mank (2020) Michael Wood It's slow, funny, thoughtful, and asks all its questions in delicately indirect ways.
      Posted Feb 03, 2021
      Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Michael Wood Lavish, stylish, sometimes silly, always engaging.
      Posted Feb 02, 2021
      Heimat (1984) Carole Angier Edgar Reitz's Heimat is not just a brilliant film about Germany. It is a brilliant film about our time, anywhere -- perhaps about any time anywhere.
      Posted Feb 02, 2021
      Time (2020) Michael Wood The film is very conscious of how mobile the mind can be in relation to time, and how good the medium is at keeping up with this roving.
      Posted Nov 21, 2020
      Enola Holmes (2020) Michael Wood It's clear that both character and actress are having an equally good time.
      Posted Nov 21, 2020
      I'm Thinking of Ending Things (2020) Michael Wood It holds many more mysteries than the novel. Too many, in fact, for any single solution, though pieces of the plot do hint at a sort of answer, which as it happens is also the one the novel provides.
      Posted Oct 02, 2020
      The Bad and the Beautiful (1952) Michael Wood The movie doesn't really know what to do with the unruly implications it has manufactured.
      Posted Aug 31, 2020
      Da 5 Bloods (2020) Michael Wood [Lindo] portrays a man who says he is broken but also loves his brokenness, somehow believing that it allows him to get the better of everything else.
      Posted Aug 11, 2020
      The Truth (2019) Michael Wood The film is well written and directed, but none of it would work without the amazing work of its leading women.
      Posted Aug 11, 2020
      Napoleon (1927) Anita Brookner Above all, there is energy, extravagance, ambition, orgiastic pleasure, high drama and the desire for endless victory: not only Napoleon's destiny but everyone's most central hope.
      Posted Aug 05, 2020
      Arkansas (2020) Michael Wood Arkansas in many ways feels more like a play or a talk show than a movie, and... it can be very funny when there doesn't seem much to laugh at.
      Posted Jun 12, 2020
      Hitler: A Film From Germany (1977) David Blackbourn Syberberg eschews a naturalistic or documentary style of presentation. There may be more hard facts than soft focuses in the film, but the facts are woven into images from which they are inseparable.
      Posted May 06, 2020
      The Servant (1963) Michael Wood Joseph Losey's The Servant hasn't lost any of its mystery over the years since 1963; it might even have gained a bit.
      Posted Apr 08, 2020
      Parasite (2019) Michael Wood [A] funny, inventive, scary film.
      Posted Feb 21, 2020
      Marriage Story (2019) Michael Wood It may be that the very good acting of Johansson and Driver offers the best answers to these questions, not because they are plausibly ordinary, but because they seem to know so well what it means to leave their fantasy roles behind, bereft of magic...
      Posted Jan 24, 2020
      The Irishman (2019) Michael Wood All of these performances are amazing, but I would single out Pesci for special mention.
      Posted Dec 11, 2019
      Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949) Michael Wood I keep wondering how the film manages to stay so light in spite of the notional black comedy of its plot. I think it has something to do with the sense of being out of time that I mentioned earlier: not timeless, but resistant to time.
      Posted Sep 20, 2019
      L.A. Confidential (1997) Michael Wood What makes LA Confidential such a perfect film of the Nineties is not that the legend takes over from the fact, since that's almost invariably the case, but that the legend is so knowingly, so unanxiously embraced -- as legend.
      Posted Jun 28, 2019
      Amy (2015) Lidija Haas Winehouse, both in her public appearances and in the private films and audio recordings, is funny, sharp, brash, as crude as she is elegant.
      Posted Jun 28, 2019
      Gangs of New York (2002) Joshua Brown Gangs of New York is to Fernando Wood's Manhattan what Fellini's Satyricon is to Nero's Rome, with a touch of Monty Python filth on the faces and clothes.
      Posted Jun 27, 2019
      E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982) Paul Joannides Spielberg's visual inventiveness in much of E.T. is of sufficiently high quality to make one regret those passages where he falls below his best.
      Posted Jun 27, 2019
      Avengers: Endgame (2019) Michael Wood The late unsuperness of our heroes may be a real guide, a source of hope rather than disappointment.
      Posted Jun 14, 2019
      Roma (2018) Michael Wood Yalitza Aparicio underacts so wonderfully, does so little with words, that we almost always know what her character is feeling: when she is contented, entertained, worried, frightened.
      Posted Jan 18, 2019
      Miami Vice (2006) Michael Wood You come away with your head full of images, and ready to go back for more.
      Posted Dec 10, 2018
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