Friday, November 25, 2016

Arrival (2016) ***

A terrific first half is not enough to save this well designed take on classic 50's sci-fi, which is a shame since it's not a superhero flick and that's marvelous.

UPDATE: A second viewing made everything clear to me. Now I know why Amy Adams always looks confused!

Monday, November 21, 2016

Finding Dory (2016) **

Technically impressive (though not nearly as much as the accompanying short) this exhausting hero-in-peril fish story is primarily for the 7 and under set.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Steve Bannon Trump Tower Interview: Trump's Strategist Plots "New Political Movement" | Hollywood Reporter

"Like [Andrew] Jackson's populism, we're going to build an entirely new political movement," he says. "It's everything related to jobs. The conservatives are going to go crazy. I'm the guy pushing a trillion-dollar infrastructure plan. With negative interest rates throughout the world, it's the greatest opportunity to rebuild everything. Ship yards, iron works, get them all jacked up. We're just going to throw it up against the wall and see if it sticks. It will be as exciting as the 1930s, greater than the Reagan revolution — conservatives, plus populists, in an economic nationalist movement."

The Lobster (2015) ****

Exceptional direction from Yorgos Lanthimos of an allegorical tale about love and how to find it. Or something like that.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Trump in the White House: An Interview With Noam Chomsky

On November 8, the most powerful country in world history, which will set its stamp on what comes next, had an election. The outcome placed total control of the government -- executive, Congress, the Supreme Court -- in the hands of the Republican Party, which has become the most dangerous organization in world history.

Apart from the last phrase, all of this is uncontroversial. The last phrase may seem outlandish, even outrageous. But is it? The facts suggest otherwise. The Party is dedicated to racing as rapidly as possible to destruction of organized human life. There is no historical precedent for such a stand.

Wednesday, November 09, 2016

3quarksdaily: An American Tragedy

The election of Donald Trump to the Presidency is nothing less than a tragedy for the American republic, a tragedy for the Constitution, and a triumph for the forces, at home and abroad, of nativism, authoritarianism, misogyny, and racism. Trump’s shocking victory, his ascension to the Presidency, is a sickening event in the history of the United States and liberal democracy. On January 20, 2017, we will bid farewell to the first African-American President—a man of integrity, dignity, and generous spirit—and witness the inauguration of a con who did little to spurn endorsement by forces of xenophobia and white supremacy. It is impossible to react to this moment with anything less than revulsion and profound anxiety.

I don't know, I'm TRYING to feel the hyperbole but perhaps I've become inured to it since November 7, 2000.

Monday, November 07, 2016

The Seventh Seal (1957) ****

A great film, clunky in parts but filled with iconic images and some powerful, memorable scenes.

Friday, November 04, 2016

Inferno (2016) **

Easily the best in the series (quite a low bar there) this goofy thriller boasts a fine international supporting cast and lovely Florence as scenic backdrop. Don't worry too much about the plot, trust me. Too bad director Ron Howard didn't seem to put much effort into his job relying on a shaky camera for the action scenes and extreme close-ups during most conversations.