Da 5 Bloods
On the Record
I May Destroy You
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"80 years after its release, Citizen Kane continues to be addressed by many as "the greatest movie ever made". It became the most popular film of all-time, one that went through decades of in-depth essays. Everything that needed to be said about it has already been stated, recorded, and written. No movie warrants higher expectations from its viewers, but this massive hype makes it a dangerous film. People fear being judged for not understanding the worldwide acclaim or simply disliking it. Is it a tad boring? Are some actors flat? Is the story not as mesmerizing and memorable as you'd expect? Don't be afraid to say "yes" because all of these opinions are entirely reasonable. None of this contradicts the indisputable influence it had on filmmaking and in the history of cinema. Everything about this movie's production and origin, the precedent-setting technical aspects, and the innovative storytelling all prove that Orson Welles was a perfectionist filmmaker far ahead of its time. Is it the best film ever? That's a never-ending debate I don't wish to be a part of. But it's undeniably one of the most magnificent masterpieces of cinema, one that every movie lover must watch."
"Nevertheless, this is still a phenomenal film, and it's another evidence of David Fincher's masterful visual filmmaking. Once again, Fincher works with his known crew members to create a sumptuous look and feel. With seamless editing, a memorable score, and fantastic camera work, Gone Girl is technically magnificent, but it's Gillian Flynn's debut screenplay that steals the spotlight. Boasting jaw-dropping twists, including an utterly shocking third act and respective ending, Flynn's narrative is incredibly engaging due to its remarkable structure and puzzling mystery, never losing an inch of excitement or interest. Ben Affleck is one of the best casting choices of the decade by interpreting a man whose life is deeply affected by the press and media, which should never be fully trusted (a clear and powerful message to the audience), while Rosamund Pike delivers her career-best performance with an emotionally devastating display. Despite the misstep of casting Neil Patrick Harris in such a dark movie and a couple of nitpicks regarding the investigation, everything and everyone else turn this into one of the best films of the 2010s."
"All in all, The Social Network is yet another masterful piece of cinema, this time delivered by not one but two magnificent filmmakers. David Fincher and Aaron Sorkin employ their mutual perfectionism and meticulousness to create an extraordinarily engaging narrative. Boasting a nonlinear but tremendously effective structure, the two pillars of any film - story and characters - are wonderfully built, even reaching the point of making the viewer feel invested in a despicable yet fascinating protagonist. Jesse Eisenberg shines in a career-defining performance, but Andrew Garfield and Justin Timberlake also rise to the necessary level of dedication, dealing with the rapid-fire dialogues and outstanding long takes seamlessly. Technically, great camera work offers a realistic feel, an addictive score increases the excitement levels, and flawless editing makes the different timelines shift seamlessly. Despite an occasionally unnecessary, irrelevant detour concerning a minor subplot, this is another brilliant addition to Fincher's filmography."
"All in all, Zodiac gains the most generous praise that a film based on a true story can ever receive from me. James Vanderbilt's screenplay convinced me to research everything about the real events as soon as the movie finished, which is undeniably an impactful effect of watching such a well-written, captivating narrative with well-developed, authentic characters. David Fincher's commitment to being as historically accurate as possible is visible on-screen, a remarkable result of a massive preparation that very few filmmakers would even think about performing. With some of the best editing work in the history of cinema, the lengthy runtime flows better than expected, but the amount of information to digest is overwhelming and tiresome, dropping the levels of entertainment, especially during a certain period of the second act. Nevertheless, a phenomenal third act, three outstanding performances from Mark Ruffalo, Robert Downey Jr., and Jake Gyllenhaal, and an emotionally compelling, realistic approach to extreme obsession turn the entire film into one of the best of its genre. Another massive recommendation from this side."
"In the end, Fight Club is and will probably remain David Fincher's most controversial movie for a long, long time. With an absolutely brilliant direction and execution, Fincher uses Jim Uhls' captivating, layered, unconventional screenplay to tackle themes such as consumerism, society's behavior, and mental health, seamlessly transmitting meaningful yet contentious messages. Once again, the filmmaking in display is technically flawless, going from the trademark authentic cinematography and production design to the unique score, all flowing superbly through excellent editing. Unfortunately, I don't belong to the group of people who utterly love this film. The excessive (sometimes unnecessary) use of flashbacks doesn't help, but it's the enormous build-up packed with overly explicit clues to a significant (yet unsurprising) plot twist that ends up partially ruining the viewing for me. I also wish that the script developed a few plot points more ambiguously, but Brad Pitt and Edward Norton elevate the whole movie so much with their ridiculously outstanding performances that these small issues don't keep me away from highly recommending one of the most memorable, iconic films of all-time."