Brooklyn is a well-meaning new version of the kind of movie we used to make much more easily. It's not masterful, but at least it's respectable.
Vertigo is as much about its director's view of sex as a masterclass thriller. It decodes not only Master Hitchcock but an entire cinematic point-of-view.
Superman creates a well-meaning mythology that predicts the most profitable film genre. Its many imitations are only partial, however. The original still soars.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is as sloppy for its artists as embarrassing for its fans. It is brand mismanagement in visual form.
An analysis of Villeneuve’s dreamy thriller, Hitchcock accelerated to spiritual attack speed. Arachnophobes beware.
Ad Astra attempts to be a space opera and family melodrama. Failing both makes even its best intentions seem misplaced from other films.
Ari Aster's Midsommar shows the dark side of empowerment, which is its main success. That so many consider it a self-help film is its main curiosity.
Robert Altman's adaptation of Popeye feels more like a redaction. His serious silly world is more interesting as a failure than enjoyable as a living cartoon.
1917 is a capable demonstration of technology matched to an overreaching story. Exactly what meets the eye.
Conan the Barbarian throws itself into the brutal past, wielding its actor's charm like a broadsword. Only plot conventions are strong enough to hurt him.
Inglorious Basterds resurrects the best in war films while ignoring the worst in war. The result is wrathful Tarantino magic.