Jaime’s Film Diary: March 15, 2020

As expected, I’ve been keeping my Letterboxd up to date – so here’s yet another update for here in regards to what I have been watching as of late.

Continue reading →

‘The Laundromat’ TIFF Review: Soderbergh’s Latest True Story Comedy is a Baffling Joke

✯✯✯

There came a point where Steven Soderbergh had announced an intention to retire from filmmaking yet it seemed all too clear that he couldn’t leave the medium. It was long-thought that his last theatrical feature film was going to be Side Effects, but he came back to the big screen with Logan Lucky four years later – which he soon followed with films that were shot entirely with the use of iPhones, Unsane and High Flying Bird. Knowing the sort of filmmaker that Soderbergh has established himself as over his prolific career, it’s only fitting that he made another film that takes down an entire system but even the results of what this could sound like turn out so much stranger than expected. As for whether or not the film is good, I’m still having trouble finding out the answer to that myself.

Continue reading →

Traffic Review: Steven Soderbergh’s Finest Hour in the Mainstream

✯✯✯✯✯

This is arguably director Steven Soderbergh’s finest hour in Hollywood, not only because it is the film for which he had finally won a Best Director Oscar, but alongside Erin Brockovich it helped him break into the more mainstream territory. But even as we talk about how it only continues to make him one of the most fascinating filmmakers of his own kind, it’s also amazing to think about how this film does not allow confine itself to the conventions of popular cinema at the time, because it also feels like a film that breaks down against the very system which even allowed it to get made. Soderbergh, having already established a firm ground for himself starting up a new movement of independent filmmakers with sex, lies, and videotape, has also found himself stretching beyond normal once again in a film about the drug trade.

Continue reading →

Unsane – Review

✯✯✯✯½

Being an autistic 19-year-old college student, watching Unsane felt so much more uneasy than I would have suspected. What I knew about Unsane prior to walking into the theater was that it was Steven Soderbergh’s own shot at the horror genre, with the added twist of being shot entirely on an iPhone. I knew Soderbergh would be the sort of filmmaker who could do so much more as he works with the fact that the film is shot entirely on an iPhone, but I did not expect that said aspect would not only be present as a mere gimmick but in order to encompass everything about Unsane that allows it to work so beautifully.

Continue reading →

Logan Lucky – Review

✯✯✯✯

Steven Soderbergh has always been one of the most interesting American filmmakers working today, and for good reason. After he was supposedly going to “retire” from directing films after the made-for-television Liberace biopic Behind the Candelabra, he comes back with another heist comedy along the lines of the Ocean’s films with Logan Lucky. But what made Soderbergh so fascinating among many other contemporaries was how he transitioned between making films for wider audiences and independent productions akin to Richard Linklater. And even when he made films for a more mainstream appeal, he still manages to retain the charm of his smaller productions – among many reasons Logan Lucky continues a streak of wonder from a diverse filmography. One end you’ll have a good time, another you’re finding some sort of odd experiment with his name on it – and Soderbergh somehow manages to remain intriguing with the many highs and lows of his own career.

Continue reading →

Waking Life – Review

✯✯✯✯✯

One of my favourite versions of filmmaker Richard Linklater other than the naturalistic and ever-growing Before trilogy would be his meandering animated experiment Waking Life. But maybe this meandering is the only way that Waking Life can work as perfectly as it does, and it’s another brand of Richard Linklater that I wish I could see more of. It draws back to what he created in his debut film, Slacker, but something about Waking Life makes it feel like a more fully realized project in itself. But it’s a sort of Richard Linklater that I like atop all the rest because of how it feels just like what its title describes it as: a wake-up call for our lives and our minds, and without a doubt one of Linklater’s very best films.

Continue reading →