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Category Archives: FILM

HATE IT OR LOVE IT: The Guest

  Hate It or Love It is an adversarial discussion of pop culture items with a view toward forming a critical synthesis. One of us hated it, one of us loved it. The truth is in between.      Hate It   syvo: Adam Wingard and Simon Barrett’s The Guest is as juvenile, senseless, and […]

Sweet, Sweet Suffering: Agony and Ecstasy Through All Nine Hellraiser Films

Growing up, Hellraiser was always the most intriguing of the major horror franchises. Children of the 1990’s will join me in remembering quite well the fear and attraction associated with Pinhead’s visage, sitting temptingly on the shelves of Blockbuster and Easy Video. For kids or young adults just getting into the horror genre and perhaps […]

On Boyhood

I’ll get the review out of the way early, by way of a lite confession: I love most movies and Boyhood is no exception. It’s probably not great for a would-be critic and pop culture curator (icon??) like myself to be giddy every time I enter a theater, but it’s the truth. My mom says […]

Your Next Blockbuster: The X-Mendables

Comic book Hollywood is all about event cinema. Synergy. Blockbusters built on the shoulders of other blockbusters.  The Avengers. Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice. The Sinister Six. Justice League. Booster Gold: The Boostering. (I may have made that last one up, but we can dream.) These films are created for their built-in audiences and their easily accessible mythologies. All-Star […]

How Ti West Went Wrong with The Sacrament

The ascendancy of found-footage style to the forefront of mainstream horror moviemaking has been a mixed bag. For every pleasant surprise like V/H/S (2012) there’s an insufferable piece of shit like The Devil Inside (2012). But the reliable profitability of the approach and its conduciveness to creative versatility indicates that the trend isn’t stopping any […]

Only Lovers Left Alive and Jim Jarmusch’s Aural Aesthetic

The common cliché is that all actors want to direct, and all directors want to act. But legendary indie director Jim Jarmusch doesn’t want to act –he wants to rock. For decades, Jarmusch’s uncompromisingly independent filmmaking philosophy has inspired generations of radicalized film students, but music seems to be the man’s true passion. He has […]

DOPE Digest Special Edition: 2014 Oscars Editors’ Picks

For film buffs, this Sunday is the Super Bowl. Sure, any movie freak worth his salt will tell you that Oscars aren’t everything. Even still, it’s undeniable that the Academy Awards ceremony, for all its problems and drawbacks, still commands significant pop-cultural prestige and significance. Yes, they mean nothing. But they also mean everything. Tweet

Unpacking the Oscar-Nominated Live Action Shorts

A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of attending a screening of the Oscar-nominated live action short films at Williamsburg’s charming and cozy Nitehawk Cinema. This category has always been completely irrelevant to me in past years, and it probably still is for you. But, ya know, it doesn’t have to be that way. […]

Oscar Isaac and Inside Llewyn Davis: the benefits of being snubbed

Inside Llewyn Davis (2013) is one of the best films of the year and Oscar Isaac gives an incredible performance as the title character. He is responsible for carrying the emotional weight of the film while remaining unaffected and cynical on the surface. At times both painfully funny and tragically poignant, Isaac’s performance and the direction […]

The Case For (and Against) Matthew McConaughey

“Be the lean horse for the long ride. I figure I am in the third round of a fifteen round fight.” Matthew McConaughey, circa 2002 Last week, Matthew McConaughey shocked the world as he stood up to accept a Golden Globe for his role in Jean-Marc Vallée’s Dallas Buyers Club (2013). As the film’s leading […]