For as rough and abrasive as Unsane appears in front of you it feels like such a breath of fresh air. I mean, I came out of it shook. It’s grimy and exploitative, knockout trash which feels like they’ve been mandated to throw in a new twist every ten or so pages. Y’all never got to wait long before it decides to throw something lurid up on the screen, but it’s carried off like a real miser is holding onto the purse strings.
What has the world done to you Lara? I remember paying some of one of the PS1 games as a child, I think it belonged to the boy down the bottom of the garden. It felt good, a game where you were the girl, there’s something to that. You read the history of the design and look at the marketing materials and the cynicism of the ploy is laid pretty bare. I guess the games were good enough and gamers were trash enough that it was just let slide for a neat decade.
It’s a mean fucking film. I know it’s supposed to be a satire of the bourgeoisie, the privileged elite, the art set. Those who have made the crucial mistake to be richer than everyone else, but continue to lead their public lives in a way so unrelatable to the rest of us. It comes up to rival Rick Alverson’s work in the level of sheer antipathy that it has for its subjects. That’s when I say in a small voice that sure, I sorta agree with it but I do actually like a lot of postmodern contemporary art.
Annihilation came out on Netflix over here and my internet is proper bad. My computer on a desk slightly too small for it in a room uncomfortably large right at the edge of the where the wireless over the other side of the house reach. It’s hit and miss usually, I get lucky and the image comes across mostly pristine, I don’t and I’ll just settle in watch a few episodes of Brooklyn Nine Nine because y’all don’t need super high definition to appreciate Andy Samburg’s face.
Sweet Country is one of those rare films that slides between a few genres without feeling obnoxious in the way that it chooses to do so. It starts out as a racially tinged social picture, 1920s white Australians trying to figure out between themselves their relationship to their aboriginal peoples with whom they share their country. Treading on each other’s toes as they try to navigate each other’s levels of racial resentment while the aboriginal diaspora around do their best to work with, or for, or around the white folk peacefully.
I don’t think there was ever a time when calling your lead character Dominika would have been subtle, but in a post Fifty Shades world it’s more about setting expectations. Those expectations are ones which the film constantly delights in frustrating. Dominika goes through the entire film without properly domming anybody, instead after receiving extensive training as a sexpionage agent (real term btw) she immediately goes and falls in love with the first man she’s sent to seduce.
I think You Were Never Really Here kinda holds up even better on the rewatch. Not to say that the first time viewing is bad in any way, but a mid-production budget cut the necessitated the excision of some fifteen pages of screenplay means that the sense of this adaptation is pushed within an inch of its life. There’s a late game revelation of the real villain of the piece that comes out sorta clunkily, split between some murmured exposition and an incredibly manipulative edit that the film has to then snap freeze for five minutes to allow some tone drama to play out.
So this is what happened to all the tightly constructed thrillers that we used to have twenty years ago. They just became the Funny Movies. Like, since the original Hangover they’ve both been cribbing from the same playbook, except instead of waking up with a cadaver and whatever local mob boss gunning for you, it’s just replaced with a series of spiralling comic hijinks. Game Night even draws up its own convoluted web of organised crime, shadowy masterminds who ain’t all that they seem, hard pressed paranoia. The only thing that makes it a comedy is that it’s about the Funny People.
There’s mess in the life of Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson. Nothing quite adds up for her in the way it’s supposed to, or maybe she’s just getting the sums wrong. It’s telling in a way that the character is bad at maths and you ever really find out what she’s good at. Aside from making a scene, or trying to be about as alive as she can be in any given moment. Her impulses rarely serve her well but they’re hers.