A Star Is Born (2018)


A Star Is Born (2018). Didn’t fall in love with it as it seems so many others did. Really loved the first hour or so. The build-ups to the musical set-pieces were perfectly manipulative – such perfect pace and timing and stakes. Ally’s career seemed a bit too easy and magical, and the snapshots of whirlwind success kinda killed the second half for me. But it’s not just her story. Good stuff.



Nosferatu. The cut back and forth during the sleepwalk is so good. I like those creepy Venus fly traps and spiders. The score in my version had some Sibelius quotes – nice. Didn’t expect the tie-in with the plague, but I really like it.

Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider. So fun! I love how you see our characters growth – a bike race in familiar neighborhoods, a foot chase from some teenage thugs, waterboarding with a showerhead? We get lower stakes, and mistakes, but similar thrills. Even when the difficulty ratchets up, we see a cycle of vulnerability, fear, panic… and then determination. Our hero is not invincible, not inevitable. (Reminds me of Die Hard that way.) I like seeing the increasing influence of MMA in recent action films – more grappling, jujitsu, throws, locks, holds.

The Lodger


The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog. Preeeetty good. Theater screening with live accompaniment. So much more beautiful to look at than I expected for something created 90+ years ago. Sometimes it’s hard not to laugh at old-timey-ness (in plot, acting style) of old movies (or books, for that matter), but if you can be present and give yourself over, you’ll see why they’ve stuck around. Filed under: Hitchcock.

Green Room


Green Room. Dark. Having a harder time with irredeemably bad villains (outside of your comics types). Never quite hangs together. Tensions not high enough, light moments fall just a little short.

Lean On Pete


Lean on Pete. Tempted to call it my favorite of the year. So many characters that seem to live on outside the frame, defying the template you might expect of them, in “this kind of movie”. I was all-in from the first few seconds.

Arnold Schönberg: Playing Cards

Arnold Schönberg: Playing Cards. I love those designs.

This facsimile edition of playing cards painted by the composer Arnold Schönberg in c.1910 was published by Belmont Music Publishers in 1981 and produced by Ferd Piatnik (Vienna), with a preface by the composer’s daughter, Nuria Schoenberg-Nono. The original cards were made in watercolours and gouache on cardboard with gold and silver, size: 10.5 by 5.5 cm. No reverse has been found for the cards so a coloured pattern painted in one of his diaries was used.

Filed under: not just a composer.

The Score


The Score. Decent cat-and-mousing. Shape-shifting characters seems like a whole thing back in the 90s/2000s. Fun to see actors that are just plain old now in their younger and more athletic days. I love when movies show all the gadgetry and tools that thieves put to use, borrowing from other realms to suit the need.