Film Freak - 831 Film Ratings
Member Since: Apr 6, 2013
|66 30%||His Girl Friday (1940) - Oct 16, 2019
"Judging canon cinematic work can be tough when you have to consider both the work of art & what it influenced. For the latter, it is obvious that many rom-coms featuring determined, successful couples, owes a debt to this film. But for the former, there's nothing. The gimmicks of virtuoso dialogue & sound mixing grow tired fast. As does the outdated and problematic racism, red baiting, and gaslighting. The film is fine, but nothing worth going out of your way for. Marginal recommendation. "
|50 7%||Joker (2019) - Oct 05, 2019
"If you're going to create a comic book villain origin story, my God, have someone other than the director of the Hangover make it. Joker plays like a Youtube mashup trailer of clips from Scorsese & Lumet pictures. But what is unforgivable is the admitted "apolitical" philosophy, that ties together Occupy and incels. Lastly, the unreliable narrator gimmick comes off as if written by a first year Creative Writing student. And don't get me started on that ending. Avoid at all costs."
|96 91%||Sweet Smell of Success (1957) - Aug 07, 2019
"Tabloid media serves as a fantastic setting for an exploration of betrayal, jealousy, wrath, and pride--themes as resonate today as they were in the mid 50's. The two leads echo Hamlet, Macbeth, or Othello as you witness villain protagonists on their downfall. The actors do a wonderful job with the endlessly quotable dialogue, and the photography makes every frame a masterpiece painting. The ending does rush to wrap up all the threads, but that's a minor complaint. Highly recommended. "
|50 7%||Kiss Me Deadly (1955) - Aug 06, 2019
"There should be nothing better than a picture that combines the post war anxieties of 50's noir & sci-fi tropes. But this movie fails from the start, as the screenwriter obviously detested a novel with a psychopathic lead with no reddeming qualities or skills. What makes Kiss Me Deadly unforgivable, however, is the improv troupe level acting, poor editing, and odd blocking and staging. Avoid at all costs and watch better noir flicks of the era (like The Killing or Odds Against Tomorrow). "
|95 90%||Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (2019) - Jul 25, 2019
"Sometimes I can forgive an artist for creating a composite of their Greatest Hits to make a new work. Tarantino does some of that here, with a film that touches on pop culture, American history, Los Angeles, westerns, war heroes, defeating fascists, and watching enjoyable characters talk and live their lives. This is also his warmest movie yet (especially with his two best leads since Jules & Vincent). But it really ramps up with that resolution--as Pitt does his finest work yet. "
|85 71%||The Killing (1956) - Jul 09, 2019
"Kubrick showed a talent for taking certain genres (war, sci-fi, horror) & bringing new elements to them. In The Killing he does that for noir--building on the familiar parts of duplicitous women, and criminal violence as a resolution. However, his terse dialogue, docudrama style photography, nonlinear storytelling, and fantastic lead (Hayden) elevate things. My one complaint is that the flashbacks try to be too cute--bordering on unnecessary at times. Recommended for fans of film & the director."
|80 63%||Odds Against Tomorrow (1959) - Jul 07, 2019
"Great film noir hinges on a few post WW2 American themes: soldiers returning home to no respect, women confronting men with their new independence, and violence as a solution to life's problems. Odds Against Tomorrow adds to those an extra element missing from other pictures: racial tension. The solid production moves well with great photography & jazz music. It can sometimes comes off a bit dated & as such is more of a time capsule than a timeless classic. Still, the haunting ending holds up."
|79 60%||Sunset Blvd. (1950) - Jun 27, 2019
"As a film about Hollywood, you can obviously see how it lead the way in future pictures about the motion picture industry. You can tell there are some almost docudrama style stories involved here as they built the world of Hollywood, past and present. And that, to me, was some of the problem. The narrative, at times, would lack engagement as it didn't have a POV, theme, or ideas on how work destroys ones psyche. Still, while uneven, Swanson is a cooky delight. Psychopaths sell like hotcakes! "
|90 80%||Gun Crazy (1950) - Jun 27, 2019
"If you're a fan of Bonnie and Clyde, Badlands, True Romance, Natural Born Killers, or Kalifornia, you owe it to yourself to see the film that gave way to those future pictures. On paper, Gun Crazy may seem like a simplistic fusion of popular 1950's genres--like melodrama & gangster films. But it evolves, especially via a keen take on the impact of violence on friends, families, and civilians. Cummins is flat out amazing, playing a psychopath who keeps escalating the plot. Highly recommended. "
|75 47%||John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (2019) - Jun 02, 2019
"Each time John Wick thinks he is out, they keep pulling him back in! This chapter is different as The Quest to and back from darkness is expanded--to include not just a culture/city, but also an entire world of people who can get shot in the face. The flick loses steam by not fully mining the sense of grief and loss. There's also some groan worthy writerly touches involving heroic sacrifice and the final scene. Still, the opening action sequence is inspired, as is the flick's sense of humor."