Tag: 2021

2021, Movies

Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021, Jon Watts)

The MCU Spider-Man movies are probably the best overall series within the whole massive thing, though there may be better individual movies. But this is the weakest – and longest (and most self-important) – of the three and, in many ways, reverts back to the usual Marvel crap. There is a difference here, of course, …

2021, Movies

Venom: Let There Be Carnage (2021, Andy Serkis)

So I liked this substantially more than the first movie and I think it’s for one main reason: Venom is present from the beginning. I don’t remember if there were this many wisecracks in the first film but, if there were, I was already pretty bored when they started. Here it’s clearly a comedy (in …

Basketball, Sports

Your 2021-2022 Toronto Raptors

There are people who will tell you that this season was a disappointment. (I saw one commenter in the normally reasonably sane comment section of The Athletic call the season “a disgrace.”) These people, as far as I know, are fans who joined due to the championship, or the years of success preceding it, as …

2021, Movies

No Time to Die (2021, Cary Joji Fukunaga)

I don’t quite no what to do here because I must admit that I have only seen Skyfall and Spectre once each. And I have very little memory of either, except the vague impression that I didn’t like them, and that they were going the way Bond movies always go near the Bond’s run, getting …

2021, Movies

Vince Carter: Legacy (2021, Justin C. Polk)

Vince Carter is not why I’m a basketball fan, that’s Steve Nash. But Vince Carter is why I paid enough attention to basketball to discover Steve Nash. And, of course, I was a pretty impressionable age when Vinsanity was happening. So I have a soft spot for him and for his story. (I am the …

2021, TV

Muhammad Ali (2021)

Burns and Co’s second documentary series focused entirely on one person is even longer than and more in-depth than Hemingway. But, fortunately, Ali’s life is, in many ways, a grander subject. At least for the first half, the series is in many ways an alternate history of the post war United States. And even when …

2021, TV

Hemingway (2021)

This 3-part series is, to my knowledge, the first time a single person has gotten the “Ken Burns Treatment.” Given how much stuff Ken Burns’ has created, I certainly could be wrong. But it’s the first of the prestige PBS Ken Burns’ series I am aware of that focuses on one person. (The Roosevelts is …

2021, TV

Only Murders in the Building (2021)

This is an inventive and consistently funny mystery comedy that pokes fun at our obsession with true crime podcasts. As Jenn said, it fees kind of miraculous, a show like this with a central relationship that is basically grandchild-grandparents, rather than a friendship, a romantic relationship or even a parent-child dynamic. It feels like a …

2021, Movies

Red Notice (2021, Rawson Marshall Thurber)

This is a fairly entertaining movie that would be actually pretty fun if it wasn’t so stupid. It’s a frustrating experience to watch a movie where a bunch of the jokes land really well but the script is bad and the plot is ridiculous. The filmmakers don’t appear to trust their audience and the film …

2021, Books, Non-Fiction

Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty (2021) by Patrick Radden Keefe

This is a well-written but maddening and saddening biography of the Sackler family, who are best known as the owners of Purdue Pharma and Purdue Frederick, i.e. the OxyContin people. It’s not really the story of OxyContin or the opioid epidemic, but rather just the history of the family. It’s a revealing story about how …

2021, Movies

Black Widow (2021, Cate Shortland)

Much like Captain Marvel, this is a necessary and needed corrective. And much more than Captain Marvel, we can legitimately wonder what took so damn long. Most of the other Avengers got their movies a long time ago. (The Hulk got his own movie, remember.) But being a necessary corrective to a patriarchal movie franchise …

2021, Movies

Schumacher (2021, Hanns-Bruno Kammertöns, Vanessa Nöcker, Michael Wech)

This is an extremely workmanlike documentary about the first part of the career of Michael Schumacher and a tiny little bit about the accident. Much like the Jacques Cousteau documentary I just watched, it feels sanitized but in this case even more so. It also feels incomplete.

2021, Movies

Saloum (2021, Jean Luc Herbulot)

My first Senegalese film (as far as I know), this is a tonally inconsistent horror movie which tries to trick you into thinking it’s something else more than once. It’s super stylized and some of my confusion with it likely stems from having never been to Africa and knowing literally nothing about this part of …

2021, Movies

Arthur Rambo (2021, Laurent Cantet)

This is the story of a rising French literary star (and YouTube personality) whose career is derailed right at the moment of his big triumph by his Twitter history. it’s something that happens seemingly every day in our world and yet I don’t think I’ve seen yet seen a movie that explicitly deals with this, …

2021, Movies

True Things (2021, Harry Wootliff)

This movie follows a predictable arc, if you’re familiar with its type: the main character is struggling with their life, a mysterious stranger comes in and entrances said character (or “insert other plot device here”) , and then life lessons. (Sorry for the mild spoiler.) I point this out so early in the review because, …

2021, Movies

Vengeance Is Mine, All Others Pay Cash (2021, Edwin)

This film is many things all at once. It is, kind of incredibly, based on a novel, which made my confusion over what happens all the deeper, as the thing that I can’t resolve feels like its the kind of issue that wouldn’t exist in a book. So I’m wondering if something was lost in …

2021

Dashcam (2021, Rob Savage)

The people who made this movie are extremely enamoured with Annie Hardy. I didn’t know anything about her though she’s actually only a few months older than me. If I had encountered her music when I first encountered Anal Cunt or when I was, say, 22, I can imagine also being enamoured by her music. …

2021, Movies

Huda’s Salon (2021, Hany Abu-Assad)

This is an excellent, taut thriller about blackmail and hard choices in Palestine. It is mostly extremely well done and really worth checking out both for how it works as a movie and for its message of how hard it is to be moral in a place where you feel like you have no allies. …

2021, Movies, TV

Attica (2021, Stanley Nelson)

All I really knew about Attica was the scene in Dog Day Afternoon, a movie I’ve seen way too many times. I had some vague idea of the riot, but that was it. This documentary collects interviews from the prisoners, the “Observer’s Committee” and the families of some of the guards to re-tell the story …

2021, Music, TV

The Bob’s Burgers Music Album Vol. 2 (2021)

The second volume of music from Bob’s Burgers is another massive collection of original songs interspersed with some deliberately bad covers. Like the first volume it is full of catchy stuff performed extremely campily. It’s more evidence that this show has about the best use of music of any similar “sitcom” since The Simpsons. There …