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Nathan S

Cinema Addict - 2204 Film Ratings

Member Since: Nov 8, 2006

Location: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA

Age: 28

Bio: Since my early teenage years, cinema has been my primary form of education. A travelogue which has afforded me experiences I otherwise have not had the opportunity of enjoying: of different eras, locations, languages, cultures, methods of thought. It's a fulfillment damn near spiritual.

My ratings are divided into five points for a more generalized representation of quality. The less reliance on nitpicky numerology, the better. I have awarded a sixth point to films which have had the largest and longest lasting influence on my own cinephilia. They are my all-time favorites, hence a movie is never given a six on first viewing.

The filmmakers who are most important to me include Chantal Akerman, Woody Allen, Robert Altman, Paul Thomas Anderson, Ingmar Bergman, John Cassavetes, Joel & Ethan Coen, Jules Dassin, Werner Herzog, Alfred Hitchcock, Buster Keaton, Masaki Kobayashi, Hirokazu Kore-eda, Stanley Kubrick, Akira Kurosawa, Fritz Lang, Sergio Leone, Richard Linklater, Sidney Lumet, David Lynch, Terrence Malick, Jean-Pierre Melville, Hayao Miyazaki, F.W. Murnau, Yasujiro Ozu, Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, Satyajit Ray, Nicolas Winding Refn, Kelly Reichardt, Jean Renoir, Eric Rohmer, Roberto Rossellini, Martin Scorsese, Isao Takahata, Hiroshi Teshigahara, Francois Truffaut, Ming-liang Tsai, Denis Villeneuve, Orson Welles, Billy Wilder, and Kar-Wai Wong.
more Recent Ratings
22% Westworld (1973) - Jun 21, 2019
"The general conceit is interesting, and it offers a lot to kick around: an early conception of computer viruses, frail masculine power fantasies, the American infatuation with the West. It even functions as a precursor to The Terminator, and this may all have renewed significance in a time when VR is gaining traction. But the simple and unfortunate truth is that the execution - dialogue, performance, costuming and setting, effects and audiovisual design - is all rather silly."
94% Shoplifters (2018) - May 17, 2019
"Challenging preconceptions of social responsibility, of traditional familial bonds, of right and wrong. This family's striving subverts moral codes, perhaps even tests the viewer's sympathy with a few late revelations, but a society's lack of cognizance for this unconventional existence is the true grievance. Kore-eda continues to make such overwhelmingly beautiful, deeply felt pictures with humble gestures. The frequent Ozu comparisons aren't unearned, but I also see glimpses of Ray and Renoir."
76% If Beale Street Could Talk (2018) - May 11, 2019
"Yes, this is the burnish of a Hollywood mid-century period piece. The acting is stagey, the visuals are meticulously, immaculately composed, and it carries the solemnity of a message movie. The choice to forego aesthetic realism doesn't necessarily preclude emotional truth. Jenkins uses a sumptuous palette to attune a subjective experience: the state of being black in a white man's world, furthermore conveyed as a memory, doesn't exist for every viewer. For this filmmaker, this is how it feels."
76% Happy Together (1997) - May 10, 2019
"It's maddening to watch these two dig their heels deeper into this unhealthy hovel they call a relationship. I love the effervescence of Wong's previous romantic idylls, but compared to those, this is downright cynical, and probably far more sober and realistic. Worth mentioning how forward-thinking this normalized depiction of gay love is: 20 years after this movie, homosexuality is only just beginning to break away from adversity stories, niche cult films, and otherwise token representations."
22% Ballad of a Soldier (1959) - May 10, 2019
"Unabashed, vain propaganda piece about hero worship and idolatry, with very little actual insight for the grief and trauma of war. Grotesquely, frustratingly sappy. Alyosha is barely a character at all; he's a rough outline of the idealized Russian Soldier - literally the exaltation bestowed upon him by the narrator in the final line of the film. Often mentioned in the same breath as The Cranes Are Flying, beside which this film utterly pales."
76% Sando-me no satsujin (2017) - May 02, 2019
"It's true that this is not typical form of Kore-eda: the subject matter is grim, humorless, and shot in cold neutral colors. But it is measured, soft-spoken, and lucid in the ways we expect from him, offering quite a bit of thematic consideration: the ethics of criminal defense, the morality of judgment, and perhaps most admissible, an undercurrent about the misgivings between parents and their children, which is of course this filmmaker's ongoing principle concern."
94% The Cranes Are Flying (1957) - Apr 29, 2019
"Shoehorned by the state or volunteered by its creators, this film contains plenty of rhetoric about the virtue of service and sacrifice during wartime, but in effect the prevailing feeling is the folly of such sentiment. Here is a war film about the trauma of civilian life on the homefront, and a sympathy for human welfare rather than fervent patriotism. What does the war bring any of these characters except heartache? Par for Kalatozov's course, the cinematography is overwhelmingly spectacular."
22% My Blueberry Nights (2007) - Apr 25, 2019
"Urban nocturne, elevated trains screeching by, lonely and longing faces, aglow in neon wash and suspended in framey slow-motion. It certainly looks like a Wong film, but the translation into Americana is somewhat inauthentic and unappealing. Perhaps his romantic expressions - usually saccharine anyway - just don't sound great in English, or perhaps it's that Jones and Law simply don't have the chops. Probably both. The middle section featuring Strathairn and Weisz is the most tolerable."
76% Edge of Tomorrow (2014) - Apr 18, 2019
"It's mostly very flip with heavy themes, which are a cyclical trauma of war and death. But it's a fun conceit, jokey and cleverly edited. In fact it's often outright hilarious. Unexpected, even if eventually landing with a safe and more familiar final act. I love this style of bulky, near retrofuture sci-fi design."
22% Ninja Scroll (1993) - Apr 04, 2019
"Hailed as a popularizer of anime outside of Japan, but lacking the sophistication and taste of contemporaries like Akira, Ghost in the Shell, or the collected Ghibli works. That's okay, genre films are fine, and this has some creative and ultraviolent set pieces. Even so, its list of shortcomings is long: the animation is boring, it's edited to accommodate commercial breaks, the adolescent depiction of sexuality is cringeworthy, and the supernatural elements are fairly standard anime stuff. Meh."