January 22

I can’t believe it’s 2022, it feels like the future.

Books

Heretics of Dune

This is Herbert at his perverse peak. You can sense the awkward sexual desperation in every explanation of the Honored Matres. Every time someone said “whores” I heard it in Danny Devito’s voice.

Less is More

Riveting and surprisingly upbeat. Despite outlining the incredibly apocalyptic circumstances of our present, Hickels built a case for optimism if we’re able to understand the interdependence we have with the planet. I liked how there was a call for more Animism too.

Movies

Border

This went to places I absolutely did not expect. It was very well shot, and rather fascinating.

Memories of a Murder

I saw this a long time ago, and it holds up. A strange, twisty police procedural with a great 80s style.

Izzy Gets the Fuck Across Town

First thought: oh wow I have that bra. Second thought: this was a bit of a mess but also a nice little story about holding on to dead dreams. Sarah Goldberg should be in more stuff.

Punch-Drunk Love

This was far more charming when I saw it in theaters as a 17 year-old. While well-shot and strange, the completely bizarre actions of both Sandler and his sisters really made it hard to follow. Luis Guzman and Philip Seymour Hoffman were great as usual.

The Most Dangerous Game

“My life has been one glorious hunt.” I’ve referenced this film for years but hadn’t seen it. A bizarre and fun movie about hunting people. After the Chaplin, I was worried this wasn’t a “talkie” but the sound was solid.

Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence

I’ve heard Ryuchi Sakamoto’s soundtrack for this movie many times, but it didn’t prepare me for the film itself. Takeshi Kitano! David Bowie!

Dune (1984)

This movie is so nostalgic for me, as I grew up watching it regularly. It holds up well, but I vastly prefer Momoa’s Duncan to whoever played Duncan in this. Seeing another director’s take on the same source material I appreciate a show-not-tell approach to Lynch’s though there’s no way a huge atmospheric Dune adaptation could’ve been greenlit in 1984. To his credit though, Lynch somewhat managed to encapsulate a whole damn book in one movie. The weird Alia baby still owns bones.

Police Story

Jackie Chan is a terrible boyfriend but an incredible physical actor. It’s been a decade or more since I’ve seen a good HK martial arts film, and this delivered. Comedy, practical effects, and an ton of very wrecked cars and sets.

The Kid

Trash babies are Charlie work. This made want to have a little urchin, simply for the scene where he does his nails and then stretches in his absurd overalls. Also I’m pretty sure I’ve seen someone in Chaplin’s outfit in Harajuku. The OG short king.

Worst Person in the World

From the music to the pacing, I really dug this. The choices were incredibly true to life and brutal. Probably don’t date someone 14 years younger than you.

Holiday

A strange gangster film about abusive relationships and karaoke.

In the Cut

Meg Ryan wearing a beige slip is a bad look and I worry that Mark Ruffalo’s character has a lot of childhood sexual trauma. This was a strange send-up of the erotic thriller. “I’m starting to feel like a chick here.”

Air Doll

Koreeda plus World’s End Girlfriend?! This is a strange film, and a delight. I love a scene of a man forlornly washing out a rubber vagina tube. In a way, this is the weirdest Toy Story movie.

Halloween Kills

This reboot sequel is silly but fun enough to make for a good time.

Monster’s Club

Too cerebral for a Wednesday.

The Eternals

Fun enough. There was a lot of backstory and buildup but it never went anywhere too wild. The source material isn’t my favorite either.

Dredd

What if the Raid was way sparklier and shootier? This was a lot better than I expected, but was still pretty goofy.

Event Horizon

Where we’re going we don’t need eyes

There Will Be Blood

A comforting rewatch of a disturbing film.

Benedetta

Come for the pageantry, stay for the sapphism.