Discovering good movies, one bad movie at a time

1999’s Baby Geniuses is complete garbage, shockingly misconceived as a concept, with horribly executed technique that plunges it into the darkest, mildewiest hollow of the Uncanny Valley. So imagine the horrors I have in store for us when I declare – and I mean it with the most utterly tranquil sincerity – that it didn’t […]

The book-length interview Hitchcock/Truffaut (one of the greatest texts about how filmmakers make films that you will ever read), was first published in 1966, at which point Alfred Hitchcock’s newest film was Torn Curtain, from that summer. He didn’t have very much to say about it to François Truffaut, skimming over a few sequences, point […]

In the annals of the great director/screenwriter collaborations, I don’t know that Carol Reed and novelist Graham Greene get as much credit as they deserve; I don’t know that they could get as much credit as they deserve. They worked together only three times, but the second of those resulted in one of the highest […]

Did The Rhythm Section deserve to set the grotesque record of having the worst opening weekend at the box office for any film to open in more than 3000 theaters? If we mean “deserve” in the sense of it being the worst film to open in more than 3000 theaters, or the one with the […]

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 […]

Of all the major American animation studios to have dominated computer animation in the 21st Century, Blue Sky Studios has almost always had to settle for being the scrappy, hopeless one. And this has only become more pronounced since the 2019 takeover of 20th Century Fox by the Walt Disney Company, which makes Blue Sky […]

Intermittently 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: the finest scene in Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time …in Hollywood finds Sharon Tate raptly watching herself in the […]

Consider a movie about spies. Consider a movie, in particular, about a normal woman who is thrust into the position of having to be a spy without any real training, and so ends up fumbling her way through major European cities by a combination of dumb luck and common sense, to humorous effect. What you […]

In the short period of time that Mission: Impossible – Fallout has existed out in the world, the claim “it’s the best action film since Mad Max: Fury Road” has gone from being a fun bit of hype-raising and a useful comparison to a lifeless cliché to a symptom of unmitigated critical groupthink, and yet […]

Red Sparrow is real dumb. We can and shall go into why that is the case, but it seemed important to get that read into the record as soon as possible. I cannot say how much of that dumbness was intrinsic to the 2013 source novel by Jason Matthews, and how much was introduced by […]

Depending on what you’re watching for, on a scene-by-scene basis The Villainess might be anything from a contender for 2017’s most powerfully image-driven film to a frustrating, confusing an alienating affair of watching non-characters maneuver through a non-plot while gushing jets of blood. And why I say “scene-by-scene basis”, I really almost mean a “shot-by-shot […]

Kingsman: The Secret Service is the quintessence of the kind of movie that I haven’t thought about from basically the moment I hit “publish” on my review back in 2014, but I remember thinking it was sufficient enough as junk food. It had the right amount of saltiness, it was greasy but not, like slick […]