‘Queen & Slim’ Review: A Gripping, Yet Frustratingly Safe Tale of Survival

✯✯✯½

There’s something scary about the mere thought that what you’re witnessing in Queen & Slim could be very well happening today. Yet there’s a greater resonance that comes forth from how the stories of many black lives across the United States have been immortalized – most often not for their achievements, but as symbols against racism after their lives have unjustly been cut short. In this feature debut from music video director Melina Matsoukas, Queen & Slim tells a story of a modern day Bonnie & Clyde – lovers who are on the run from the law, after having been thrusted into a life or death situation. What soon follows is a harrowing, if occasionally frustrating tale of life or death, with a dash of social relevance within today’s political climate.

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‘The Dead Don’t Die’ Review: Jarmusch’s Zombie Comedy is Dead on Arrival

✯✯

Jim Jarmusch is one among the most unique American filmmakers working today, for his deadpan sense of humour and otherwise outwardly visual style makes him stand out from many others. But even being too involved with that sense of being so distinctive can take a director like Jim Jarmusch somewhere, and in the case with The Dead Don’t Die it seems to have gotten the better of him. If anything, this almost feels like an actively lazy effort from Jarmusch which isn’t something that I would have expected from him, and even as a longtime fan of the filmmaker I was hoping that even for as messy as the results would have been, The Dead Don’t Die would at least be something I can find enjoyment from. And the joys are definitely present within the film after all, but there’s a point to which you also find yourself getting quite weary because Jarmusch isn’t really doing terribly much here that wouldn’t already feel as if it came out from a feature-length effort of an overeager student filmmaker. Which I suppose is the point, but it didn’t work at all for me.

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The Snowman – Review

✯✯

I’m still baffled how a product like The Snowman ended up becoming as ravaged as it is despite the amount of esteem that its crew seems to have, whether it be the fact that Martin Scorsese was an executive producer who was signed on to direct, to have Tomas Alfredson take over. I would only have expected that from the fact Tomas Alfredson had directed the excellent Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy he would only have transitioned rather smoothly when directing another mystery film of a smaller scope with The Snowman, but clearly something had gone wrong. If I were to get something out of the way, The Snowman as it is does not work, but it isn’t wholly bad – rather just a film whose potential is evident but never expressed properly. So how exactly do you pinpoint where everything went wrong with The Snowman?

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Demonlover – Review

✯✯✯✯½

Now for one of the most underrated films of its own time we talk about Olivier Assayas’s Demonlover, which has found itself categorized as a part of the New French Extremity movement. This erotic thriller drew a wide range of reactions going from great dislike to high praise. On behalf of the latter half of its own audience what I can only come to say about Demonlover is that it might indeed very well be one of Olivier Assayas’s best films. If there was anything to be proven with Demonlover it was that Assayas was certainly amongst the most versatile filmmakers of his very own kind, going from experimental drama films now to a cyberpunk erotic thriller – it’s a shame that this film has gone underseen over the years but here’s hoping it gets a critical reevaluation that I believe it deserves. Perhaps it may prove a baffling work for some but I still think there’s something all the more hypnotizing about that quality to Assayas’s work: and it’s absolutely brilliant.

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