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Mentaculus

Celluloid Junkie - 3138 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.
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90 89% Dracula (1992) - Jul 05, 2017
"In my 30 years of living, I have never before finished this - I always turn it off somewhere, disgusted. After finally forcing myself through, I firmly believe this is one of the most vile and evil films ever made, hyperbole duly noted. The film's logic - as if in a fever dream of a terminal patient, or in the last involuntary synapses of a man dying mid-coitus - shuns all Good in service of Love. The film's "deficiencies", I think, are distractions for the subversive moral. It's mad genius."
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."
61 37% The Children (1980) - Jan 25, 2019
"The actual concept is stupid (nuclear waste turns children into zombies whose hugs burn people alive!) but th--- no actually that's a great idea. Toys with the familial anxiety that the adults may have to murder their own brood to survive, eventually taking it to its furthest extreme with some onscreen gun- and swordplay. Clearly there's some angst and small-town Americana social chicanery at work, hidden inside a film that is triumphantly perverse and tasteless. "
76 64% Stone (2010) - Oct 16, 2011
"The conceit - the effects on a man's soul when regret, pride, arrogance and faith get thrown into a blender and set on 'puree' - is absolutely singular for a studio film. Especially one as expertly acted and well crafted as this. Yet the ending just ends. And whatever the reason (probably a weighty, pretentious one), it leaves a bad taste in your mouth. But I still want to recommend it as a bizarre, obscure film about the effects of faith on the faithless, which is a rare thing."
72 57% Don't Answer the Phone! (1980) - Oct 21, 2018
"The fuck. After a lot of these scummy films one recognizes genius - the true texts that reach with bravery towards the bottom of a trash can in a bathroom of a strip club kind of genius - where they pull the contents out with bare hands and say to themselves, “My God, there’s something here!” It’s a masterpiece of sleaze and casual racism, embracing nihilism and cynicism without apology. There’s also a creative impulse here far smarter than what’s on display. "
86 83% eXistenZ (1999) - Sep 10, 2008
"Watching this launches me into an embarrassing eXistenZial rant on philosophical spiritualism: the grotesquerie of material forms upon layers of physical condeCenZion; the fractal, analogous nature of interpretive time; the arcane mystery of our degree of free will, us as the architects or pawns of our condition as our consciousness leaps. A Word for God is the missing "Y" in the world of illusion and tranCendenZ (un)veils an End to things. It's gross and gorgeous, brilliant and psychotic."
94 94% Toy Story 3 (2010) - Jun 23, 2010
"Pixar is the only American animation studio that can take some of our most iconic characters, have them swim in existentialism, get tortured by a villain who refuses redemption, and send them to a literal hell and back - but do it with such undeniable tact, grace and aplomb nobody even bats an eye. Actually, it might make the ending that much more stirring. It's a good thing there are credits videos for those... um, other people, clearly... who teared up."
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."
94 94% Secret Sunshine (2007) - Jun 13, 2012
"Exhausting. This should be used in Christian circles - not to show the damnation of the faith, because it never goes down that rabbit hole; nor as propaganda, because the Church in many ways exacerbates Sin-ae's suffering. But that's why it should be seen. What Chang-dong Lee is showing is a person's slow mutation of insufferable grief into pride, and the community's part to play in the matter. Lee's getting to the point using only a few performances and nuanced cinematography is masterful."
10 2% Highlander II: The Quickening (1991) - Nov 03, 2010
"Writer to Studio Exec: "OK, so the Immortals are actually Aliens." Exec: "What about the first movie?" W: "What first movie? Anyway, it's the future, and McLeod is old, but he has to fight an evil corporation from hiding the ozone layer from them." Exec: "He's old? Isn't he immortal?" W: "He is immortal!" Exec: "OK, I'll give you $35 million. Just steal more ideas from Blade Runner and Logan's Run if you need anything.""