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Mentaculus

Celluloid Junkie - 2877 Film Ratings

Member Since: Jun 29, 2007

Location: Los Angeles, California, USA

Bio: After a fairly Lynchian childhood in an American suburb, I moved to Japan at 13, saw foreign film, and it destroyed my fragile little mind. Now forever damaged, I live in LA, have degrees in Cinema and Religion, a Masters in Information Science, and watch too many films in between writing projects. Life goals: direct a film, and see a UFO.
more Featured Reviews
84 80% Jacob's Ladder (1990) - Jan 11, 2010
" "It is easy to go down to hell; Night and Day the Gates of Dark Death stand wide; But to climb back up again, to retrace ones steps to the open air, there lies the problem, the difficult task." -Virgil, The Aeneid, Book VI. Yet, "The mind is its own place, and in itself Can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven." -John Milton. The film's pluses and minuses lie in the contradiction."
42 16% Noah (2014) - May 11, 2015
"The entirety of my viewing I kept asking myself Why this was made. It's too off-script for a Christian audience, too religious for the blockbuster audience, too mystical for the Jewish audience, too campy for the adults and too adult for the kids. Luckily time will wash this one away as a mistake. On the plus side, Nick Nolte has finally been typecast as a rock. "
80 72% Retribution (2006) - May 24, 2010
"Fascinating as it completely summarizes Kurosawa's previous work, going so far as to copy, shot-for-shot, a glorious scene from Pulse. But it's not so much a retread as a potent embodiment of the director's obsessions. The murders are merely a parenthesis in a story of urban decay, moral morass (pun intended) and a worldview - closer here than ever before - about to teeter off the edge towards a personal and grand apocalypse. Very recommended."
90 89% Kuruizaki sanda rodo (1980) - Jun 02, 2015
"One can easily name off the film's clear progeny: Miike, Otomo, Kitano, Anno, Tsukamoto, Sono, Kurosawa, Yukisada. And it's easy to see why. From its opening moments, its raw, unrestrained, angsty energy is viral, and ultimately, its primary theme. Yet despite the pedigree it inspired and left in its wake, Crazy Thunder Road is its very own stray and rabid dog, and ultimately a sensation, requiring Western rediscovery."
99 98% My Darling Clementine (1946) - Apr 17, 2017
"Kurosawa once said My Darling Clementine is a template for what films can be - and it's hard to disagree with the sensei. Bridges myth and history, allegory and humanity, in a way only the great foundational fables can. Intervening years of romanticism and cynicism have not diluted its power in the slightest. "
97 97% Barry Lyndon (1975) - Sep 08, 2008
"Basically, Barry Lyndon is like walking through an art gallery, and each painting gives you just that much more of the story. I love the veneer of artifice (hinting at class divisions) that permeates the dialogue and narration, which is only underscored by the natural lighting and costumes: there's no romanticism here, everyone's simultaneously butt-ugly and beautiful. And I don't care how long this is, if you get swept up in the visual aura, this can be 8 hours long and still a joy to behold."
98 98% Videodrome (1983) - Sep 09, 2008
"All of Cronenberg's fascinations/obsessions, predominately his anxiety about society's influence over the body, only become more significant and horrifying in hindsight. My favorite films (of which this is one of them) leave me feeling as if it is a complete entity; nothing should or could be added or excised to make a more compelling feature. You could write books over what happens in this 80-min film."
53 26% Alien: Covenant (2017) - May 24, 2017
"It's as if Ridley took the feedback from Prometheus and Fox and said, "Fine, I'll make an Alien movie for those Plebes." The result may just have mild contempt on all of us - like we're being served from the kids menu although we damn well know there's a wine list somewhere. Three or so action set pieces are extraordinary in their execution, and Fassbender is a God among men. But as the credits rolled I could almost hear Scott quoting from another of his own films: "Are you not entertained?!""
85 82% Star Wars: Episode VIII - The Last Jedi (2017) - Dec 15, 2017
"Last Jedi manages to intercut a dozen characters of consequence between and through scenes, across the universe and within internal states, and somehow keep its core logic unscathed. And that logic is founded on a sly disregard for fan service. You want proclamations of heredity and lore? Go watch the Prequels. When Luke tosses his lightsaber, he dismisses an entire cottage industry built on safety and expectation. It's a blockbuster looking forward and not back. The sacred texts are burning."
83 78% Kingsman: The Secret Service (2015) - Jun 23, 2015
"Like the best satires, it's slyly written, and in absolutely terrible taste. A dizzying pastiche of Bond and modern actioners with a vicious populist message that is as wacky and culturally primed as Cooper's Behold A Pale Horse. As nasty and unrestrained as this film was, I immediately wanted to rewatch it. I think there's more being said here - in script, tone and especially its self-aggrandizing violence - than is immediately let on. Just like the best conspiracy theories."