Life Itself revels in the shameless emotional manipulation stemming from the ham-fisted tendencies of its own maker.
This buckaroo of a disc does not blow it on the image and sound front, though the extras certainly don’t attest to Steven Spielberg’s seriousness of intent.
If it turned out to be Spielberg’s final film, it would make for a fitting final curtain call for his brand of escapism.
Thoroughbreds is a film about the disastrous perils of too little empathy, but it never evinces much of its own.
Initially colorful, the screenplay’s lurid and overripe dialogue eventually grinds the film to a halt.
It unites a mélange of teen-film tropes into a narrative overburdened with cultural references and framing devices.
The film consistently settles for the cheapest shock devices and the most shopworn totems of our current neo-gothic moment in the genre.
The signal refers to the Nomad hacker’s taunts, though it may as well point to the film’s nature as a self-styled calling card.
Director John Pogue is an elegant framer who orchestrates the film’s consistently chilly unease from a series of unassuming jolts embedded in the humdrum.
Bates Motel suggests what Gilmore Girls would’ve been like if it arbitrarily featured a tormented young Charles Manson.