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M.O.

Terse, perceptive, and sometimes even witty film reviews from a critic without portfolio.

Collated under Film Reviews is a library of every review I’ve posted to date, ordered alphabetically. Alternatively, for those who like to live life on the edge, you can scroll below to read each in the all-but random order I posted them. I trust you’ll file yourselves accordingly.

Bridge of Spies : Review

Spielberg is constantly manipulating the screen with his use of lighting and camera angles to spin mundane scenes into something interesting, and it’s a constant pleasure to watch. Tom Hanks is as ever, ever-dependable, getting a lot of joy out of the fish-out-of-water who finds he’s surprisingly good at sleuthing. Its Mark Rylance though who delivers the best performance—upstanding, understated, and utterly unflustered—as rumbled Soviet spy Rudolf Abel. Conversely, the legalistic story about Abel’s prisoner exchange with U2 pilot Francis Gary Powers lacks a certain spark. Even if the mawkish epilogue you always fear is coming with Spielberg had been discarded, the run-time would still be overextended, and there’s never quite enough drama to spice up its talky formality. It’s eminently watchable though—another solid entry in the director’s sizeable biographical line.

B+

Rocky IV : Review

Running out of ideas on round four, Sylvester Stallone gives up on filmmaking to create a series of sweaty training montages set to ‘80s AOR. And to be fair to him, this is the best series of sweaty training montages set to ‘80s AOR you’re ever likely to see, drenched in unintentional camp and buttressed by characters I’ll continue to like even if the set-up has grown stale. Also contains a gloriously kitsch cameo by the Godfather of Soul.

B-

Review Roundup : The Internet Dump

Over the last couple of months, film reviews have been littered across the internet as if by some kind of manic cyberspace litter bug. Here they are all in one place.

Grades displayed below won’t necessarily match those on the sites, which use their own rating systems (or none at all), so there can be some approximating involved. This is simply my translation of those scores using my own.

Battle Royale With Cheese

Dr. Bird’s Advice For Sad Poets : C+

Martin Eden : C+

The Indiependent

French Exit : B-

Old : C+

The Reason I Jump : B

The Suicide Squad : B

UK Film Review

2088 (short film) : C+

Petrichor (short film) : B+

True Calling : D