Monthly Archives: February 2022

Lucky Grandma (2019) ☆☆☆(3/4): Can she really be lucky?

“Lucky Grandma” is a little comedy film which also works as an engaging mix of crime thriller and character drama. Mainly revolving around one cantankerous old Chinese lady, the movie delves into its distinctive cultural background as humorously going up … Continue reading

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Lunana: A Yak in the Classroom (2019) ☆☆☆(3/4): A new teacher comes to the town

You cannot possibly be grouchy about Bhutanese film “Lunana: A Yak in the Classroom”, which was Bhutan’s submission to Best International Film Oscar in last year and then garnered a surprise nomination on last Tuesday. While it is pretty plain … Continue reading

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Licorice Pizza (2021) ☆☆☆1/2(3.5/4): A charming coming-of-age tale a la Paul Thomas Anderson

Paul Thomas Anderson’s new film “Licorice Pizza”, which recently received 3 Oscar nominations including the one for Best Picture, is his sweetest work since “Punch-Drunk Love” (2002). At first, the movie seems to be just another familiar mix of coming-of-age … Continue reading

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Ascension (2021) ☆☆☆(3/4): Chinese Dream from bottom to top

Documentary film “Ascension”, which received an Oscar nomination in last week, is often mesmerizing in its restrained but effective presentation of the social/economic landscapes of the Chinese society. Because it simply looks at a number of various places and people … Continue reading

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The Good Boss (2021) ☆☆1/2(2.5/4): A mild Spanish social satire starring Javier Bardem

Spanish film “The Good Boss”, which was selected as the Spain’s entry to Best International Film Oscar instead of Pedro Almodóvar’s “Parallel Mothers” (2021), is a mild social satire which could be tauter and edgier for more laughs. Although it … Continue reading

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Death on the Nile (2022) ☆☆(2/4): Dirge on the Nile

Kenneth Branagh’s “Death on the Nile”, which is finally released after a rather long period of delay due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, is a bland and joyless product which did not refresh me much at last night. I happened … Continue reading

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MLK/FBI (2020) ☆☆☆1/2(3.5/4): A close look into the FBI surveillance on MLK

Documentary film “MLK/FBI” is often compelling in its calm but sobering presentation of what happened between one great American figure and a very powerful government agency quite willing to suppress him by any means necessary. While it will not probably … Continue reading

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Nightmare Alley (2021) ☆☆☆(3/4): A fatalistic neo-noir film by Guillermo del Toro

Guillermo’s del Toro’s latest film “Nightmare Alley” is an admirable genre piece whose strength mainly lies in mood and details rather than the story itself. There are several weak parts in the story which could be improved more in my … Continue reading

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Kingmaker (2022) ☆☆(2/4): A strategist behind one candidate

South Korean film “Kingmaker” fails to enlighten or surprise or excite me as a fictional tale loosely inspired by the real-life story of a number of South Korean political figures in the 1960-70s. I guess the movie changes their names … Continue reading

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Cliff Walkers (2021) ☆☆☆(3/4): Agents on the cliff

Zhang Yimou’s latest film “Cliff Walkers” is a taut and melancholic period drama thriller which is a bit better than I expected. Although it is familiar to the core in terms of story and characters, the movie is still a … Continue reading

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