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Mentaculus

Celluloid Junkie - 3128 Film Ratings

Member Since: Jun 30, 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
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."
93 93% A Cuban Fight Against Demons (1972) - Aug 04, 2018
"A deep dive into madness and spiritual perversion so radical in its formal approach, it ends up unearthing universal truths long buried and repressed. An unseen, perhaps rightfully suppressed gem easily comparable to Marketa Lazarová and The Devils, but still distinct for its insurrectionist, violent commentary on Cuban politics and isolationism. The encounter with the Witch is a stunning moment in Latin American cinema history, a scream in a political valley of darkness."
98 98% Simon of the Desert (1965) - Dec 07, 2008
"SOTD is truncated, incomplete, and barely known - but it is the one Bunuel film I continually return to. This has something genuine to say about the falseness of altruism, the relationship between Man and God, and the death of the Enchanted Age. Or I'm reading too much into it. God bless Bunuel."
68 49% The Hang Up (1970) - Mar 18, 2019
"A rare roughie with a message. Perhaps, only a XXX feature is capable of the necessary deep, dark, dive into the consequences of incessant depravity on the love life of a vice cop. Moments reminded of Seconds and The Game, which is a glowing compliment. An attempted rape is so deeply disturbing it gave me pause - superseding genre and expectation."
1% Left Behind (2014) - Jan 14, 2015
"Dear World, on behalf of Christians everywhere, I am sorry. I am sorry we proselytize through fear and an anti-social lack of empathy. I am sorry we caricature minorities & faiths in embarrassing ways. I am sorry we throw our biggest budgets behind the iffiest of theologies, like pre-tribulation rapture and an age of accountability, while ignoring our most profound concepts. But above all, I am sorry we can honestly say Nicolas Cage is the classiest thing here and still keep the 9th commandment."
96 96% Showgirls (1995) - May 20, 2019
"Verhoeven pulled off a fucking coup, here, didn't he? Showgirls combines the myth-making Americana pomp of Busby Berkeley, and the subversive, knowing sex games of Russ Meyer, but then it took all of Bob Fosse's quaaludes and had a seizure going down on a hooker in a Vegas back room. Its Tits-and-Ass-and-Overacting glam is a smokescreen obscuring the truth of the musical mythos: Every kind act is shit on and every little shit gets ahead. It's neither serious nor a satire - it's a statement."
1% The Sweetest Thing (2002) - May 28, 2019
"“Thus” (points laser at screen) “‘Baby Got Back’ alludes to the innate desire in man to attain the unattainable. A threshold of man’s creative powers, seeking always the potentiality.” (Next slide.) “‘You’re Too Big to Fit in Here’ represents the same allusion, but embraces the destructive power - women destroying men’s creative aspect by assimilating it - yet it also features a sapphic car gag for male laughs and gaze, negating any subversive potential” (Receives PhD)."
91 90% Arrival (2016) - Dec 14, 2016
"The film's Prestige may be easily dismissed as a Shyamalan-esque plot contrivance, unless the film's construction itself reflects the linguistic ouroboros at the narrative's center. I see here a search for God - St. Augustine's "Today" - a spiritual mystery as resonant as it is troubling. When Adams asks, "Whose child is this?", questions of faith echo in the aliens' fog."
83 79% 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."
80 73% House (1977) - Mar 16, 2010
"I'm not going to pretend this is a good movie. It's not. It actually has to remind you at the beginning, "A Movie! House!" in case you get confused. But what it is is audiovisual insanity of the highest order: the absolute contempt for genre and script (horror/Toei Pink) creates an onslaught of editing and directorial experimentation not seen since the days Nikkatsu kicked Suzuki out on his ass for doing something new. Not a film; an experience."