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Rating History

Nocturnal Animals
24 days ago via Rotten Tomatoes

Tom Ford's effort is a remarkably proficient saga that spans genres. It's both a cruel Texas crime drama as well as gauzy middle-age melodrama. It's not important that you like these people, but you will understand them. It will engender your empathy as you react to the situation of these different people. It's artful sophistication blended with ugly sadism. The mix is tonally diverse but it all makes sense right down to the conclusion. I was initially put off by the final shot. It wasn't what I was hoping for but then as I deliberated on the piece, I realized the ending actually bested my expectations. Tom Ford has crafted a meta mystery-thriller on which to reflect.

fastfilmreviews.com

Hacksaw Ridge
Hacksaw Ridge (2016)
24 days ago via Rotten Tomatoes

Hacksaw Ridge is unexpected. I was anticipating another "war is hell" melodrama. Yes ok, it is that. I likewise got a surprising tale of faith as well. A man whose unconventional beliefs made him a social outcast. An inspirational account of heroism presented without qualification, as simply "a true story." Not based on. In keeping with the nature of the subject, that's an audacious label. Over time, his determination forced people to accommodate to his eccentricities until he ultimately won them over through sheer ability. The saga of Desmond Doss is a passion project through which director Mel Gibson undoubtedly identifies with the man. The chronicle is pretty inspiring and Gibson extracts the excitement out of the drama in classic fashion. Even when he is delving in clichés, he brings such heart and intensity, you can't help be won over.

fastfilmreviews.com

Arrival
Arrival (2016)
24 days ago via Rotten Tomatoes

To its credit, Arrival eventually answers all of its questions. The problem is that when the enigma is slowly disconnected, then so is the film. Subplots become red herrings. The narrative isn't ultimately preoccupied with the alien threat. It's fascinated by how language molds who we are. The idea is that people approach the world differently because of vocabulary. Reality varies according to the linguistic tools employed. Terminology frames our understanding. Dr. Banks is changed by the experience. That's the gist of the account, but I've purposefully omitted the closing truth. Your enjoyment of Arrival will derive out of how fascinating you think the final reveal is. Perhaps it will positively blow your mind. It has a philosophical gist. In keeping with the production's chilly tone, I found the ending too dispassionate. The denouement is rather underwhelming after such a promising introduction. Denis Villeneuve has erroneously created a drama left unfulfilled.

fastfilmreviews.com

Doctor Strange
33 days ago via Rotten Tomatoes

Doctor Strange is a formulaic origin story with dazzling computer-generated imagery. Director Scott Derrickson adheres closely to the superhero blueprint. He makes sure to add humorous quips that are indeed genuinely funny. After he accepts a card from Mordo, Strange asks, "What's this? My mantra?" "It's the wi-fi password," Mordo responds. "We're not savages." Where filmmaker Derrickson steps outside the box is in the hallucinogenic head trip effects. The kaleidoscopic metropolis is rendered as if designed by M.C. Escher. Master of the mystic arts, Kaecilius (Mads Mikkelsen), and his minions chase after Strange and Baron Mordo through 3D manipulated landscapes that delight the eye. As one of the Ancient One's former pupils, Kaecilius is a stock villain. Unfortunately, he's a snooze. His dialogues with Dr. Strange are completely ridiculous. Virtually everything he says is gibberish, but the visuals aren't. It's fun to watch, but it isn't revelatory. The Matrix or Inception did these ideas earlier and did them better. It's still fun to look at though. Doctor Strange is a dubious trendsetter - the first MCU movie where spectacle outshines a boilerplate adventure.

fastfilmreviews.com

Loving
Loving (2016)
33 days ago via Rotten Tomatoes

At the core of Loving are two performances that are flawlessly executed. Joel Edgerton as Richard is not the civil crusader you might expect. He's strong but quiet, almost stoic, a man who is ill-at-ease with the prospect of becoming famous. Yet his affection for his wife remains his strongest weapon. His late-in-the-film declaration brought tears to my eyes. In contrast, Ruth Negga as Mildred is the one who starts things in motion. She too is a reserved, almost mousy woman who appears to softly defer to her husband one moment but then takes charge of the situation the next. A phone call from Bernie Cohen (Nick Kroll), the ACLU lawyer assigned to their case, shows her at first hesitant and then decisive. Ruth is emboldened by the chance to better her family's life. An ordinary woman driven to do extraordinary things. In fact, the duo shows such restraint that their lack of ferocity can be a bit surprising. These two are the least revolutionary types you could possibly imagine and yet their actions changed the fabric of the nation. That's kind of inspiring. It gives hope to the masses because it means anyone can make a difference. The emotion is intimate and the humanity present within their circumstances becomes more palpable. Sometimes a revolution doesn't start with a bang.

fastfilmreviews.com