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Syntheseizur

Cinema Addict - 1393 Film Ratings

Member Since: Aug 2, 2010

more Recent Ratings
62 15% Interview with the Vampire: The Vampire Chronicles (1994) - Aug 13, 2018
"It's strange how novel a more serious-minded vampire movie feels today, even one as campy as this. The movie's fundamental flaw is that it entrusts a young Brad Pitt as the narrator; he reads the dialogue like a high school student performing Shakespeare. There is an interesting take on immortality and morality, and the distinctive costuming and makeup is frequently awe-inspiring, but the violent tonal shifts (the wacky sound effects in particular) are jarring in a way they shouldn't be."
84 80% Training Day (2001) - Aug 13, 2018
"It's impossible to imagine anyone else pulling this off: Denzel lends an impenetrable confidence and credibility to an otherwise cartoonish villain, and Hawke plays both sides of his character so well he looks like he's aged 10 years by the end. It's on the strength of the sharp-edged dialogue, the nightmarish suspense scenes which threaten constant danger, and one of the most biting indictments of urban policing of its era that the film succeeds despite its stereotypical foundation."
68 24% The Verdict (1982) - Aug 08, 2018
"So dreary and conventional, wrapped up in a standard redemption narrative for a hard-luck lawyer, but Newman provides a strong heart to the narrative. For a structural master like Lumet, there are many issues here: the case ends abruptly, and certain plot points are introduced but never resolved. That said, the ambiguous ending is a fine touch, even though the romance itself also feels underdeveloped. The photography, striking for often staying static on a whole room, is also worth recognition."
83 75% Memories of Murder (2003) - Aug 08, 2018
"A police procedural that actively wrestles with the consequences of not merely just bureaucratic procedure, but also police brutality and corruption, especially the chaos they wreak on the community and the institution itself. These elements are sublimated well enough, giving subtle commentary through Bong's black humor, but it still feels alive with careful political and cultural criticism. It's also one of the best-looking procedurals ever made. An accessible but layered thriller."
59 13% Dead Poets Society (1989) - Aug 08, 2018
"Many plot issues keep me from rating this higher: the journeys of individual students end incomplete, Keating's personal story is underdeveloped, and some of the emotional and humorous beats fall flat. Of course, the film's inspirational point-of-view is undoubtedly infectious, and the movie has an interesting perspective on institutional education and how the most beneficial teaching methods are those which pierce the wall of bureaucracy and traditionalism, but it doesn't all ring true for me."
77 51% Dust in the Wind (1987) - Aug 08, 2018
"A mosaic portrait of coming-of-age in a shifting culture with phenomenal visual storytelling that juxtaposes the narrow concrete alleyways of Taipei against the lush mountains of the countryside. The characters themselves fall flat for me, but the film nicely tackles modernization, tradition, and the alienation of labor and the urban environment—common themes explored more thoroughly in other movies, but rarely so tender, soft-spoken, and visually sublime as they are here."
87 88% The Killing of a Sacred Deer (2017) - Aug 04, 2018
"Combines Greek tragedy, with all its brutally harsh ideas about justice, the institutionalization of family and society, ego and affluence, and the sensibilities of Park Chan-wook (his oblique black humor and grim, serpentine games of consequence, especially), with an alien perspective on human language and mannerisms. From the intentionally stilted and dispassionate dialogue to Farrell, Kidman, and Keoghan's eerily clinical performances, the film thrives on its uncanny energy to great effect."
91 93% The Cook, the Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover (1989) - Aug 04, 2018
"A marriage between the sumptuous and the grotesque so vile, fascinating, and gorgeous that you can't look away from it. Few political allegories are as visceral or as visionary, set in a self-contained world that so cleverly satirizes the complex relations between different political and cultural classes that have a perennial place in Western institutions. The playful color schemes, the painterly cinematography, and the pitch-perfect performances from the leads make it truly distinctive."
80 59% Mission: Impossible - Fallout (2018) - Aug 01, 2018
"A quintessential spy movie. Few films in the genre are so dense with double agents, unique action set pieces, exposition dumps, & plot twists; it's conventional on the page, but so well executed that you have to buy in. The action is dynamic enough to sustain the same amount of suspense whether in a fistfight in a nightclub bathroom or a helicopter duel in the mountains. It does all the dumb tropes, but shows how to get them right—or at least make them disappear in an expensive stunt showcase."
85 83% Woodstock (1970) - Jul 23, 2018
"Despite heavy skepticism about the mythologizing of Woodstock and hippie culture at large, the documentary is surprisingly, refreshingly nuanced. There are nutty moments (the yoga session, "seeding the clouds") and more profound and interesting ones (the rainstorm, the farmer's speech, and many of the performances, which emphasize the unique personalities of the artists), resulting in a multifaceted portrait of the event, the movement, and American life on the outskirts of the '60s."