Category: movies

  • Bake a Motherfucking Cake as Fast as You Can Patti Cake$ a film by Geremy Jasper.  With Danielle Macdonald, Bridgette Everett, Cathy Moriarity, Siddharth Dhanajay, Mamoudou Athie. **** I should admit up front that I’m not a rap fan.  I’ve tried—my nephew once made me a tape of rap’s greatest hits—but I couldn’t get into it.  I like the rhythm at first, and the whole ... Read more
  • Taking in the Pain Wind River a film by Taylor Sheridan.  With Jeremy Renner, Elizabeth Olsen, Kelsey Asbille, Gil Birmingham.  ***** When Wind River ended I turned to my wife and said, “That’s the most violent movie I’ve ever seen,” a statement which I soon realized was ridiculous.  What I meant was that the violence was the most wrenching I’d ... Read more
  • He Showed Up Levi G. 1953-2017 I won’t say that Levi was my best friend in the world—I have many wonderful friends—but he was the friend with whom I most resonated.  When I was in Asheville we met every week for a couple hours, having breakfast and drinking coffee.  As soon as we sat down we fell into the ... Read more
  • The Coma Was a Come-on The Big Sick a film by Michael Showalter.  With Kumail Nanjiani, Zoe Kazan, Holly Hunter, Ray Romano.  *****  The Big Sick is so much the best movie I’ve seen this summer (I was happy just to find a movie I wanted to see), so unique as a romantic comedy, so perfect in the way it’s put ... Read more
  • Serve Lots of Wine Beatriz at Dinner a film by Miguel Arteta.  With Salma Hayak, John Lithgow, Connie Britton, Chloe Sevigny.  ***1/2 “Why have an ending that negates everything that happened in the whole movie?” my wife said to me as we left Beatriz at Dinner?  I’d been troubled by the ending, though I wouldn’t have put so strongly.  She ... Read more
  • The Wonder of Women Wonder Woman a film by Patty Jenkins.  With Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Robin Wright ***1/2 Arrival a film by Denis Villeneuve.  With Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Forest Whitaker ***** A Quiet Passion a film by Terence Davies.  With Cynthia Nixon, Jennifer Ehle, Duncan Duff ***   I’m as happy as everyone else that we finally have a movie about ... Read more
  • Alcoholics Preposterous Colossal a film by Nacho Vigalondo.  With Anne Hathaway, Jason Sudeikis, Austin Stowell.  *??? There’s a mind state called suspension of disbelief, where we overlook an unlikely aspect of a work of art because it is a premise of what we’re watching.  The idea that James Bond would always do the right thing at the right ... Read more
  • What’s Your Name, a film by Makato Shinkai, based on his novel.  With Ryunosuke Kamiki, Mone Kamishiraishi, Ryo Narita. I’ve been reading Kobun Chino’s commentary on the Song of Awakening, and the day before I saw this film read the following passage: “When the body of all the buddhas penetrates my nature there is interpenetration and fusion.  My nature ... Read more
  • Doc, Ya Gotta Level Wit Me  Full Frame Documentary Film Festival 2017 My Lineup: Whose Streets? / Still Tomorrow / The Good Postman / Abacus / Zaatari Djinn / Tribal Justice / Strong Island / Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities / Quest / The Force / May It Last: A Portrait of the Avett Brothers At ... Read more
  • James Baldwin Has a Question I Am Not Your Negro a film by Raoul Peck.  With James Baldwin, Samuel L. Jackson, Dick Cavett. ****1/2 In a way I wish the title of this film had gone further.  The speech in the movie that it most closely reflects it is one by James Baldwin on a television interview: “What white people have ... Read more