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BLACK PANTHER Review – ****

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Five weeks into its release, with over $600 million in the till in North America alone and reviews good enough to spur talk of Oscar glory, is there much left to be said about Black Panther? Is there much I can add to the chorus of acclaim, especially since, as my rating gives away, I am in tune with it? Perhaps not. What I can talk about is how my appreciation for the film grew from my first viewing to my second, and how the film, sitting as it now does atop a mountain of praise, earned its position.

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My Six-Month Film Awards: 2017

2017 Six Month Best Picture

Time flies when you’re having fun, and even if I haven’t been having as much fun as I’d hoped – I’ve only seen 19 films for this year so far, compared with 35 this time last year – it’s still hard to believe it’s already time for this year’s Six-Month Awards.

Because I’ve seen so few films, I considered not doing them, but was persuaded to otherwise; partially for consistency’s sake (thank you, Maggie!), and partially because I love doing these posts. So let’s see what we’ve got!

Picture:

  1. A Quiet Passion
  2. Kedi
  3. Wonder Woman
  4. Baby Driver
  5. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

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SICARIO Review – ***½

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Take your pick, they’re both good posters. Better than the movie, even.

After impressing me greatly with the haunting Prisoners and the marvelously maddening Enemy, I was eager to see what Denis Villeneuve would do next. Then, this opened at Cannes, to solid but not outstanding reviews, and the trailers failed to truly excite me. So my level of anticipation dropped accordingly. Then subsequent reviews proved more favorable, so much so that it now sits at 93% on Rotten Tomatoes–and I thought Villeneuve might have done it again after all.

I should have trusted my initial reaction. While not a bad film by any means, Sicario lacks a real reason for existing, and fails to say much about cartels or the War on Drugs that hasn’t been said before, nor does it feature such compelling characters or such dazzling craftsmanship as would compensate. It’s well done in most every aspect, but never takes that vital leap into being something special.

(NOTE: I also saw The Martian this weekend, and quite liked it, but I’d like to see it again before writing my review.)

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