Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

Forgive me if start talking about Tenet, the eleventh feature directed by Christopher Nolan (and, I am tempted to say, the most Nolan-ish of them all), by simply quoting what I had to say ten years ago about Inception, the seventh Nolan feature: “What some critics have praise/assailed as ‘confusing’ in [Tenet] is really just […]

It would be a blatant exaggeration to call Dunkirk an experimental film, or any such thing. But for a film with a $150 million price tag that’s been positioned as the biggest superhero-free Warner Bros. tentpole of 2017, it does just about as much experimenting as it could possibly dare. The film, on paper, is […]

There is nothing small about Christopher Nolan’s newest, longest film, the epic space drama Interstellar. Its strengths are as gargantuan and overpowering as its mighty flaws, and just as impossible to miss. I have absolutely no idea whether I liked it as a work of cinema, but I know this much for a dead certainty: […]

I had many expectations, and no expectations for The Dark Knight Rises, but I can say with absolute certainty that I was never even remotely prepared for this: that it would remind me, of all things, of a 1921 D.W. Griffith picture. Orphans of the Storm, to be precise, a story of the French Revolution […]

Be sure to check out the Christ opher Nolan Blog-A-Thon over at Bryce Wilson’s Things That Don’t Suck. It’s pretty rare for a movie that fails to live up to its hype as uniformly as Inception does (though Jesus, is it any surprise, with that kind of hype?) to still function as an enormously entertaining […]

Let us begin by shooting the giant elephant in the room: yes, Heath Ledger is actually that good, and people would still be saying he was that good even if he were alive. His work as the Joker is just about the finest imaginable, and one of the most intense, most dangerous performances of a […]

In the current comic-book movie flood that began in 2000, it’s always seemed to me that 2005 ought to be regarded as the highest water-mark, producing three of the smartest, most stylistically compelling and absolutely the darkest films of the genre: in April of that year, we were treated to Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller’s […]

The second of 2006’s fin de siècle magician thrillers is also the better of the two. That said, it’s not really fair to compare Christopher Nolan’s The Prestige to The Illusionist; the two films are playing entirely different games. In this case, we have a wholly effective thriller with very little at its core; but […]