Chinese protectionism/censorship (they only allow 34 Hollywood movies a year) has helped incubate a domestic film industry. As Richard Hanania points out, citing a study by James McMahon, that as of now, 9 out of 10 of the highest grossing films in Chinese history are domestic, all released in the last few years. Something like... Read More
LEVIATHAN (2014) Rating: 2/5 Finally watched this major Cannes hit, and understood why it was so popular with the "professional" critics, if not quite as much with normies (Metacritic: 92% vs. 73%; Rotten Tomatoes: 98% vs. 80%). No redeeming characters. Main "hero" is a boorish, highly unlikable, impulsive, and violent alcoholic. His wife is... Read More
CUTIES (2020) Rating: 3/5 You can access all of my latest book, film, and video game reviews at this link, as well as an ordered, categorized list of all my film reviews and ratings here: The latest conservative triggering is over a French film called Cuties (Mignonnes). Having premiered this January without incident, it... Read More
CONTAGION (2011) Rating: 4/5 You can access all of my latest book, film, and video game reviews at this link, as well as an ordered, categorized list of all my book reviews and ratings here: Contagion (2011), which I watched in February - my only film so far this year - chronicles the spread of... Read More
This five part movie about the adventures of an Astartes spec-ops squad in the Warhammer 40k universe is my favorite cinematic product of 2020. It's hard to know where to even start - the atmospherics, animation, pacing, special effects, the sounds and music - they are all perfect. Perhaps my single favorite thing is how... Read More
The Witcher (Wiedźmin) is a fantasy series by Polish writer Andrzej Sapkowski that was mostly written in the 1990s. It is set in a European-inspired continent riven between constantly feuding kingdoms, ruled behind the scenes by a cabal of mages, while monsters from Indo-European folklore reive on the hapless, mudfooted peasants. A class of specially-trained... Read More
THE JOKER (2019) Rating: 5/5 You can access all of my latest book, film, and video game reviews at this link, as well as an ordered, categorized list of all my film reviews and ratings here: The Joker seems to be all things to all people. Tyler Cowen believes it is "the most anti-Leftist movie... Read More
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD RATING: 3/5. You can access all of my latest book, film, and video game reviews at this link, as well as an ordered, categorized list of all my book reviews and ratings here: *** I am interested in China. I am not so much interested in films. But I am very interested... Read More
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD Bespoke, Reading right-wing takes on Game of Thrones Season 8 (e.g. the replies to Gregory Hood's recently article) is rather bewildering. Justified disappointment with D&D's mishandling of everything is interspersed with a certain glee that SJW-feminist white girl Daenerys got her well-deserved comeuppance for invading Westeros with hordes of raping swarthy foreigners,... Read More
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD RATING: 5/5. So all you losers whining about the Battle of Winterfell, or: The Charge of the Dothraki Brigade. You're approaching this as you would a real medieval battle, criticizing show writers D&D for giving Winterfell such an absurd order of battle (cavalry go first; trebuchets out in front; palisades right behind... Read More
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD RATING: 3/5. I largely lost interest in Game of Thrones by the end of Season 5 (the only TV series I follow through the excellent cable alternative qBittorrent). So much so that it was not until just a week ago that I realized Season 8 had already started. As I explained in... Read More
Hollywood Reporter: 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' Negative Buzz Amplified by Russian Trolls, Study Finds It obviously has nothing at all to do with any issues hinted at by the discrepancy between its 4.5/10 user rating and 8.5
RATING: 9/10 NOTES: "Russia's 300." Also reminiscent of Ironclad, and perhaps Valhalla Rising. See my other reviews here: The Legend of Kolovrat (English: Furious) is a reasonably faithful retelling of the Tale of the Destruction of Ryazan [in Russian; not aware of an English translation], a medieval chronicle describing the Mongol invasion of Rus in... Read More
SPOILERS UP TO END OF SEASON 6 Review: 6/10 I am no longer a big fan of the series (the only TV series I follow through the excellent cable alternative qBittorrent). It's not even that I'm a stickler for book accuracy, or a "bookfag"; as I have pointed out, I believe that some things the... Read More
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD RATING: 8/10. (Please note my ratings system is harsh and virtually no films get a 10). In 2011, American sci-fi giant Neal Stephenson bewailed the pessimism prevalent in the genre and called for writers to start thinking more positively about the possibilities of technology in order to inspire new generations to "get... Read More
I am a blogger, thinker, and businessman in the SF Bay Area. I’m originally from Russia, spent many years in Britain, and studied at U.C. Berkeley.
One of my tenets is that ideologies tend to suck. As such, I hesitate about attaching labels to myself. That said, if it’s really necessary, I suppose “liberal-conservative neoreactionary” would be close enough.
Though I consider myself part of the Orthodox Church, my philosophy and spiritual views are more influenced by digital physics, Gnosticism, and Russian cosmism than anything specifically Judeo-Christian.