There are very few things that I respect more than a movie that is unafraid to embrace its own stupidity. Kong: Skull Island has thinly written characters, extreme tonal dissonance, and a complete and utter disregard for the talents of Oscar-winning actress Brie Larson, but it’s absolutely glorious in its brazen spectacle. Its thin characters and tonal dissonance don’t matter as much because it thoroughly commits to its premise, and it seems like the movie is one ridiculous–but hilarious–visual gag after another. It’s not trying to be something it’s not, and that’s something I appreciate in any movie, especially a nostalgia-laced B-movie blockbuster about a giant ape.
Raw occasionally loses itself trying to say everything it wants to say, but it is undoubtedly an audacious (and quite witty) project that is never not interesting to watch. When it works, it works beautifully, and several moments in the film are early contenders for best scene of the year; the final scene in particular is brilliant and has a killer ending line. The score by Jim Williams and the directing from newcomer Julia Ducournau are top notch, and as sisters in the film, Garance Marillier and Ella Rumpf do a hell of a job selling the emotional through line of the script. The film takes us through an examination of identity, burgeoning sexuality, addiction, freedom, and the line between man and animal, but at the end of the day, it’s a story about two sisters and their love for each other. This isn’t a cannibalism movie. It’s a story about humanity filtered through a fairly ridiculous setup, and it works.
Others Considered: Dead body (The Nice Guys), Ending (The Witch), Would That It Were So Simple (Hail, Caesar!), First encounter (Arrival), Final scene (Aquarius), Sabotage (Star Trek: Beyond), The fire (Divines), Final battle (Hardcore Henry), Horseback ride (Certain Women), Conversation (Indignation)
Honorable Mentions: The arm (Green Room), William Carlos Williams (Paterson), Diner ending (The Lobster), DMV (Zootopia), I Am Moana (Moana), Airport battle (Captain America: Civil War), Limo scene (Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping), The party/Whitney Houston (Toni Erdmann)
Doesn’t quite sustain its high energy, rapid-fire delivery throughout, but the quick-moving parts contribute to a very enjoyable story. The script is witty, the voice performances are stellar–especially Cera–and the self-referential humor actually means something with regards to the central character. Compare the humor and the social commentary to that of the movie’s predecessor all you want, but this one still deserves a lot of credit for engaging with and understanding its main character. This is an analysis of the Caped Crusader filtered through history, comedy, and a simple but resonant thematic base about ego and loneliness. At the same time, it’s also an infectious kaleidoscope of color that recognizes the fun of its premise: a bunch of legos running around fighting each other.
A Patient Report on “A CURE FOR WELLNESS”
Quick Background: Patient was presumed to live a relatively healthy lifestyle, with normal vital signs related to cinematography, score, and production design. Patient exhibited effective atmosphere building. Patient cast Jason Isaacs. However, also directed by Mr. Gore Verbinski. Mr. Verbinski’s films have grossed 3.72 billion worldwide, therefore allowing him to make both the “highest grossing directors” list and the “overpaid directors” list.