The doc adopts the viewpoint specifically of those who knew him best, and seeks to separate the person from the emblem.
This snapshot of catharsis follows a familiar trajectory, but it refreshingly resists elevating the characters’ relationship to the level of grandiose.
Andrea Pallaoro’s film isn’t especially beholden to plot or dialogue, impressionistically shaping its story through pervasive silence.
A movingly authentic exploration of a working-class milieu and the traumas that ripple through a town in the wake of a tragic accident.
A micro-budgeted affair of the heart that’s never precious, but tender and moving and occasionally explosive in its intrinsic emotion.
The film’s time-jumping strategy cleverly illuminates the way in which we go over and fixate on isolated incidents in our minds of breakups past.
Even at its most compelling, it remains inconsistent and superfluous, a lesson that sometimes a movie can feel more fully formed in 19 minutes rather than 90.
Whereas Bad Santa was nastier and riskier, as well as more mischievously winsome, A Merry Friggin’ Christmas is as curiously timid as it is morally dubious.
Christian Schwochow’s film is a tense psychological slow burn, putting us in the muddled headspace of its protagonist as she gradually comes unglued.
It effectively demonstrates how the systemic cause of the Deepwater Horizon explosion was tied as much to our dependence on fossil fuels as to the oil industry’s greed.
The lack of domestic drama is what makes the doc so gratifying as a portrait of a family averting turmoil in spite of challenging circumstances.
Though this setup is perhaps infused with too much piety, cheating audience empathy toward the main character, it nonetheless generates a compelling air of social fatalism.
It subtly counteracts the cliché that creative expression can save your life by making its protagonist a hipster Peter Pan whose creative expression is an excuse not to grow up.
The film suggests an ineffectual mishmash of Ruby Sparks-ish high concept and modern Elizabethan comedy.
The premise of faith-based assisted suicide as a motivating factor for a madman’s killing spree is initially intriguing, but quickly revealed as solemn window dressing.
Cherien Dabis is least successful at connecting her character May’s marital crisis to the rumblings of her repressed heritage.
The main character is less of an individual, and one whom we wish to see avenged, than a transparent martyr for the collective sins of the wealthy few.
It falls back on the trappings of the film’s innumerable teenage gross-out forefathers with tiresome vulgarity and rote misunderstandings in place of genuine insight.
The film is far from a technical matter, fiercely promoting Swartz’s legacy and challenging us with the same questions its central subject was compelled to ask.
The film’s impression of personas is less traditionally sinister than representative of its inquiry into identity and what happens when social barriers begin to fall away.