Category: reviews

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Home Video Hovel: Girlfriends, by David Bax

Having now seen Girlfriends, available on Blu-ray from the Criterion Collection, it’s hard to imagine that Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach weren’t fans of Claudia Weill’s spirited and miraculous debut film when they wrote Frances Ha. Both concern a friendship...

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Stardust: Screwed Down Hairdos, by David Bax

Speaking generally, I don’t give a lot of thought to wigs. But Gabriel Range’s David Bowie not-really-a-biopic Stardust is so replete with unnatural-looking headpieces that even I–not a wig contemplator, as established–kept looking at the actors and finding myself thinking,...

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Happiest Season: Join the Chorus, by David Bax

Gathering the coolest ladies you know both in front of (Kristen Stewart and Mackenzie Davis) and behind (Clea DuVall) the camera and filling out nearly every supporting role with a cast member from a beloved 2010s sitcom, from Schitt’s Creek‘s...

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Run: Don’t Walk, by David Bax

Usually, when movies start out by showing us the peaceful, happy lives of their characters, it’s a major clue that something is either about to go wrong or is already very wrong just beneath the surface. Aneesh Chaganty’s Run is...

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Mangrove: Put the Charge on Me, by David Bax

There’s a lot of reggae and rocksteady on the soundtrack in Steve McQueen’s Mangrove (including a handful of classics by Toots and the Maytal, whose frontman Toots Hibbert passed away only a couple of months ago). And why wouldn’t there...

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The Last Vermeer: Paint by Numbers, by David Bax

Dan Friedkin’s directorial debut The Last Vermeer is a case study in how individual elements in filmmaking and performance can elevate what would otherwise be a soggy and tepid product. The most valuable example herein is the stately cinematography of...

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Ammonite: Can You Dig It?, by David Bax

In the opening scene of Francis Lee’s Ammonite, a brief sort of prologue set decades before the main story, we see a complete, fossilized ichthyosaur skeleton being arranged for display in a museum. Empirical though it may be, to contemplate...