Author Archives: Josh G.

BlacKkKlansman

One year after white supremacists marched in Charlottesville, Spike Lee is here with BlacKkKlansman, shedding light on our nationalist upswing through the lens of the true-to-life 1970s infiltration by two cops (one black, one Jewish) of a chapter of the KKK.

You might think this straight-up satire, if you didn’t know it’s (mostly) true.

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My Summer at the Movies

Last week, I caught Eighth Grade, the first movie written and directed by comedian Bo Burnham. I don’t know his comedy, though I’m watching his “Kill Yourself” bit right now. It’s the perfect late-summer movie. Pick this one when your MoviePass won’t let you into Mission Impossible: Fallout.  Burnham captures the strange and terrifying world of […]

All of Alfred Hitchcock’s Sound Films, Ranked

That’s right, I watched every Hitchcock movie from 1929 on, and compiled a master list from #44 down to #1.

Which of Hitch’s less familiar movies have been overlooked? And which (wink, The 39 Steps) are a little overrated?

All You Really Want

I have the feeling Jagged Little Pill has a long future in store.

The new musical, directed by Diane Paulus, isn’t content just to give us nineties nostalgia. The creators reexamine Alanis Morissette’s hyper-popular 1995 album to fit the issues facing us today. Start checking them off; they’re all here, from coming out to opiate addiction to sexual assault. It’s a lot for one show to attempt, and the writing doesn’t always prioritize story over message. But we realize how character-driven Morissette’s songwriting has always been. Her work is so personal and confessional that it seems to belong here on the musical stage.

Hereditary

A door that’s locked tight. A mysterious tree house outside the bedroom window. A scribbled word on the wall. A creepy-as-hell little girl.

For most of its runtime, Hereditary pulls bits and pieces from horror movies across the ages to create something gripping and bewildering.

Women in Love, in Pain, in Death

He based her on his mother. The cantankerous, mischievous, elegant dowager, 92 years old–or only 91, by her admission–that leads Three Tall Women is Edward Albee’s invocation of the woman who never accepted him. He left home, like the son in the play; we can assume his being gay had something to do with it. (There’s one fleeting reference to walking in on him with others.) And possibly he never forgave her, at least in life. “A” never forgives her son, either. They reconcile when she’s older, when she needs him, but they never dig deep enough for absolution.

He’s Your Feller and You Love Him

Is there a classic musical more divisive than Carousel? With its transcendent score pitted against a 1940s take at gender politics, Rodgers and Hammerstein’s show returns to Broadway when we’re all anxious how abusive Billy Bigelow and the quietly devoted Julie Jordan will land.

A Quiet Place

Spring can be a drab time to go to the movies, but some well-made genre movies and smaller gems find a way to stand out. While Black Panther crushes it on the superhero front, John Krasinski’s A Quiet Place has become a surprise box-office hit. Even with the presence of two married stars, this horror movie feels […]

Best Picture Revisited: Grand Hotel (1931-1932)

“I want to be alone.”

These memorable words, in Greta Garbo’s Russian-accented delivery, are part of her enduring image. She was the reclusive actress who shied from fame and publicity throughout her estimable career. In the context of Grand Hotel, directed by Edmund Goulding, Garbo’s depressed ballerina urges her handlers to leave her, so that she can remove her costume and forget the disappointing crowd at the performance. Garbo doesn’t employ any dramatics to get our attention in this scene; she doesn’t need to.

Oscars Week: My Final Predictions

Whatever happens, I’m pretty certain Kobe Bryant will be an Oscar winner by Monday morning.