Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

Whether you consider it a strength, or the movie’s most damning flaw, I think this much cannot be denied: The Godfather, Part II knows the scale of the movie it’s following, and it is hellbent on topping it. 1972’s The Godfather, adapted from Mario Puzo’s 1969 crime novel, was never supposed to be one of […]

In 1936, when the film was new, MGM sold The Great Ziegfeld as the longest talkie ever made, and at 176 minutes (185 in the roadshow version), I certainly can’t dispute that. This of course makes the film my nemesis. Further cementing that antagonism: this was the first biopic to win the Best Picture Oscar,* […]

The cliché – and it is a cliché that the film justifies – is to describe A Brighter Summer Day, Edward Yang’s monumental fourth feature, from 1991, as “novelistic”. Indeed it is, and I can think of no word that better captures the film’s sprawl (it comes in with a running time just a few […]

A review requested by STinG, with thanks to supporting Alternate Ending as a donor through Patreon. Do you have a movie you’d like to see reviewed? This and other perks can be found on our Patreon page! 2008’s Love Exposure is 237 minutes long, and it somehow manages to need every one of them. In […]

Recently, in reviewing the 14-hour La Flor, I suggested that most films that are very, very long achieve their great length in part by trying to make themselves deliberately unpleasant and hard to watch. Here we have a perfect case in point: An Elephant Sitting Still is three hours and 54 minutes long (so let’s […]

Depending on how you count the intermissions that are baked right into the print – there are five of them, all about 15 minutes in length – La Flor is anywhere from about 13.5 hours long to a bit less than 15 hours long. This is, of course The Big Fact about the film that […]

Not, by any means, the most important fact about Martin Scorsese’s exhaustive new biographical epic The Irishman, but to me easily the most distracting: it is not titled The Irishman. The film has been adapted by Steven Zaillian from Charles Brandt’s 2004 nonfiction novel I Heard You Paint Houses, and that is the only title […]

As far as I was concerned, Avengers: Endgame only needed to overcome two bars, both of them fairly low: it had to be less of an atonal episodic hodgepodge than Avengers: Infinity War, and it had to be less unbearably fucking dreary than Captain Marvel. Missions both accomplished, and honestly by a pretty handy margin […]

With great pride, I present this review of the 7000th feature film I have seen. Out 1 is the Mount Everest of cinephilia.  The 13-hour* serial is, depending on how you feel about definitions, possibly the longest extant narrative film (there have been several experimental films that are longer, as is Peter Watkins’s 1987 documentary […]

I don’t quite know how the career of Frederick Wiseman works – why 2015’s In Jackson Heights seemed to rate such a tiny speck of a release, and now his follow-up, Ex Libris – The New York Public Library is getting substantially more exposure. At least, more exposure by Frederick Wiseman standards, which is to […]

Every week this summer, we’ll be taking an historical tour of the Hollywood blockbuster by examining an older film that is in some way a spiritual precursor to one of the weekend’s wide releases. This week: after many, many years, Stephen King’s most monumental work, The Dark Tower, is finally seeing the first fraction of […]

A second review requested by John Grimes, with thanks for donating twice to the Second Quinquennial Antagony & Ecstasy ACS Fundraiser. So as I sit here preparing to confront Giant Robo: The Animation – The Day the Earth Stood Still (and that’s the last time we’ll be typing that all out, thank you very much), […]