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A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media
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David Lynch’s first movie Eraserhead (1977) combines surrealism, low-budget horror, and black comedy. It rapidly became a staple of the midnight movie circuit and provided endless fodder for coffee-house intellectuals and academic film theorists. Eraserhead is quite simply a gnostic anti-sex film. The film is premised on a gnostic dualism, which holds that the material... Read More
Mexican director Alfonso Cuarón’s Children of Men(2006) is loosely based on P. D. James’ 1992 novel of the same name. Cuarón is solidly Leftist, but Children of Men seems more and more like a Right-wing vision of dystopia with each passing year. (Cuarón’s 2001 film Y Tu Mamá También, is basically Marxist propaganda and soft-core... Read More
Jodorowsky’s Dune, Frank Pavich’s 2013 documentary, tells the story of the “greatest movie never made,” Alejandro Jodorowsky’s abortive adaptation of Frank Herbert’s Dune. Jodorowsky is a Chilean-born Jewish filmmaker and author of graphic novels and books on spirituality, psychology, magic, and divination. I have reviewed his The Dance of Reality at Counter-Currents. In 1974, after... Read More
David Lynch’s Dune (1984) is a flawed masterpiece. When I first saw it, I was deeply disappointed. Frank Herbert’s original novel made a powerful impression on me. I could see Herbert’s world, and Lynch’s vision was not my vision. But when my initial impression faded and I returned to Lynch’s film with an open mind,... Read More
I loved 2015’s Jurassic World, the reboot of the Jurassic Park “franchise” starring Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard, directed by Colin Trevorrow, and co-authored by Trevorrow and Derek Connolly. Jurassic World blew away the Jurassic Park films. It is highly entertaining and also surprisingly wholesome. Along with the main attractions, the dinosaurs, Jurassic Worldis... Read More
The Expanse is a SyFy network original series that is now nearing the end of its third season. The Expanse is the most imaginative and absorbing science fiction series since the reboot of Battlestar Galactica (2003–2009). The Expanse is based on a series of novels by S. A. Corey. I have not read them, so... Read More
I had a bad feeling about this. It wasn’t just Solo‘s cursed production history: the original directors were sacked near the end of shooting, and Ron Howard was brought in to finish the movie, reshooting 70 percent of it. It wasn’t just the rumors that Alden Ehrenreich was not up to the role of Han... Read More
Unbreakable (2000) is many people’s least favorite M. Night Shyamalan film, but I think it is his best: brilliantly conceived and scripted, beautifully acted and filmed, and quite moving. Since the film is almost two decades old, I trust nobody will complain about spoilers. Unbreakable is a superhero film, but it does not contain any... Read More
Batman: The Dark Knight Returns is an animated movie adaptation of Frank Miller’s graphic novel The Dark Knight Returns. Released in two 76-minute parts in 2012 and 2013, then combined into a 148-minute edition DVD and Blu-ray, this is lame, sclerotic, constipated, Z-grade animation drawn out to paralyzing lengths, completely lacking the visual style and... Read More
“Only White Nationalism Will Make Wakanda Real”
I saw Black Panther with a friend in Seattle last week. Judging from the reverent silence in the theater — broken only occasionally by our laughter at unintentional bits of humor — it was an all-white audience. The serious tone of Black Panther is a departure from recent Marvel movies, which constantly undercut heroism with... Read More
The Last Jedi isn’t an awful film. Not Force Awakensawful. But it is pretty bad. Down there at the bottom of the scrap heap, with The Force Awakens and The Phantom Menace. The question on my mind was whether The Force Awakens was just a Phantom Menace moment, a rocky start to a trilogy that... Read More
Watchmen is the greatest superhero movie of all time, and when it was released, its director Zack Snyder was poised to follow Christopher Nolan into the first rank of directors working today. But instead, he has directed an ever worsening series of turkeys: Sucker Punch, Man of Steel, Batman v Superman, and now Justice League,... Read More
Akira Kurosawa’s Rashomon (1950) is commonly found on lists of the world’s greatest movies, and deservedly so. Rashomon features avant-garde narrative techniques (flashbacks, multiple points of view), dynamic black-and-white cinematography by Kazuo Miyagawa, compelling Ravel-like music by Fumio Hayasaka, subtle and intensely dramatic performances, and a complex but tightly edited script, all combined into a... Read More
It is dangerous work, making a sequel to a classic like Blade Runner, Ridley Scott’s 1982 magnum opus. French Canadian director Denis Villeneuve’s Blade Runner 2049 is a very good film, but it inevitably falls short of the original. I first discovered Villeneuve’s work with his 2016 science fiction film Arrival (discussed with John Morgan... Read More
Ridley Scott’s 1982 movie Blade Runner is a science fiction classic and surely the director’s finest work. Blade Runner excels on all levels. It is a highly imaginative vision of the future realized with a stunning visual style. The script is intelligent, even poetic. The cast is uniformly strong, with a number of powerful performances,... Read More
I remember the moment in 1996 when I first heard about David Cronenberg’s Crash on National Public Radio. I exploded in outrage. I thought the story of a group of people who made a sexual fetish of car crashes had to be the stupidest movie concept of all time. Not decadent or perverted, mind you—although... Read More
I saw Alien: Covenant on the big screen this summer in Budapest. I didn’t write a review then, because another reviewer had it covered. But having seen it for a second time, now on Blu-ray, I feel moved to comment. Covenant is an excellent film, indeed the best in the series since Scott started it... Read More
I feel like the skinhead who went to see Cats because he’d heard that T. S. Eliot was a fascist. Japanese cartoons are very popular in our circles. They have even been reviewed at Counter-Currents. The closest thing I had seen to a Japanese cartoon is Twilight of the Cockroaches. But that mixed animation and... Read More
Valerian? Isn’t that a root one chews to fall asleep? I saw Luc Besson’s The Fifth Element near the end of its run in the theaters, and it was love at first frame. I loved its Manichean/ancient astronauts plot, unique and dazzling visual style (imagine the Coen brothers remaking Barbarella), the madcap action, blond Bruce... Read More
Dunkirk is Christopher Nolan’s most emotionally powerful movie. It deals with the evacuation of 400,000 British, Canadian, and French troops trapped on the beach at Dunkirk after being defeated by the Germans in the Second World War. Dunkirk is a strange work, especially for Christopher Nolan, who typically directs long films with complex plots, extensive... Read More
When the Young Turk government dragged the Ottoman Empire into the First World War on the side of the Central Powers, their aim was to create a pan-Turkic empire incorporating Turkic lands that were part of the Russian Empire. A major impediment to these plans were the Christian minorities of Eastern Anatolia: the Armenians, Greeks,... Read More
Watchmen is one of the most thoroughly Right-wing, even fascistic works of recent popular culture, despite the right-thinking Leftism of the creators of the original graphic novel, Alan Moore, who wrote the story, and Dave Gibbons, who illustrated it—and of Zack Snyder, who directed the movie adaptation, which to my mind is the greatest superhero... Read More
Hidden Figures, a.k.a., We Wuz Astronautz, tells the story of three black women who worked at NASA in 1961 struggling for equal rights both as blacks and as women. The movie tells us that it is “based on true events,” and the three women — mathematician Katherine Johnson, computer programmer Dorothy Vaughan, and engineer Mary... Read More
Martin Scorsese’s Silence is a very fine film that seems to belong to an entirely different world. Imagine what American movies would be like if our film industry were not controlled by hostile and decadent aliens who have weaponized the medium against European man and culture. Silence is such a film. It is wholly untouched... Read More
Passengers, directed by the Norwegian Morten Tyldum, is the best science fiction movie of the current season, so if you have seen Rogue Oneor are simply skipping it, you have an even better option. Passengers is something quite rare: a science fiction film that is entirely fresh and new, not part of a series, and... Read More
Now Expanded & in Audio Version
Warning: a few minor spoilers Rogue One is quite simply one of the best Star Warsmovies ever. It has an interesting plot, a tight script, good pacing, uniformly good acting, excellent special effects, amazing sets, spectacular new worlds, and dazzling battle scenes. I really loved this movie. When I first saw the teaser trailer I... Read More
Denial is a very boring and deceptive movie about a legal case, David Irving v Penguin Books and Deborah Lipstadt, in which British World War II historian David Irving sued American Jewish historian Deborah Lipstadt and her British publisher for libel over allegations made in her 1993 book Denying the Holocaust, in which she accused... Read More
I have seen a lot of Star Trek on the big and small screens, and from the perspective of middle age, it seems like an appalling waste of time. Recently, I watched a number of episodes from the original series, which I had not seen since childhood, and found them quite creaky and often laughable.... Read More
Disney’s Zootopia is cute, clever, and entertaining. But in terms of its message, it is pure evil. The Angry Birds Movie is plausibly interpreted as a pro-nationalist, anti-immigration, anti-Muslim allegory, whether that was the intended meaning or not. Zootopia, however, clearly intended as pro-diversity, anti-nationalist propaganda. But worse than that, Zootopia is basically a syringe... Read More
In any matchup between Batman and Superman, I side with Batman. I’ve never liked the character of Superman, because he is not a man at all. He’s basically a god. He’s not a human being who has raised himself to the pinnacles of human excellence. He’s an alien who is simply endowed with superior abilities.... Read More
Ridley Scott’s The Martian is a superb movie: suspenseful, inspiring, and deeply moving, with an excellent plot, fine performances, compelling pacing, and completely believable special effects. The Martian in set in the near future when space exploration is once again a national priority and manned Mars missions are regular undertakings. On one such mission a... Read More
Now a Video!
The new Star Wars movie is exactly what I deduced it would be from the trailers and the fact that it was directed by J. J. Abrams, a filmmaker so vulgar and artless that he makes Jerry Bruckheimer seem like Ingmar Bergman. The Force Awakens is not an homage but a ripoff. It is not... Read More
Warning: spoilers ahead I’m feeling a quantum of disappointment with the latest James Bond movie Spectre. But maybe my expectations were unreasonably high. The last Bond movie, Skyfall, was one of the very best. And Spectrehas two of the most artful and enticing trailers ever produced (here and here). With such a buildup, maybe I... Read More
I was a dinosaur kid, and it does not take much to reawaken the wonder. Thus I enjoyed 1993’s Jurassic Park a good deal, although I thought it much inferior to Michael Crichton’s book. The best thing about it, frankly, is John Williams’ wonderful music. That, and a droll little detail: “Objects in mirror are... Read More
Miller’s Crossing (1990) is the third Coen brothers movie, and in my eyes, it remains their best. Miller’s Crossing is set in an unnamed Midwestern city during the 1920s. (It was primarily filmed in New Orleans.) It tells the story of Tom Reagan (Gabriel Byrne), who serves as advisor to two warring gangsters, Leo O’Bannon... Read More
Good Kill is an OK movie starring Ethan Hawke and directed by New Zealander Andrew Niccol, who also directed Hawke in Gattaca, the dumbest anti-eugenics movie ever made (beautiful but dumb). Hawke plays Major Thomas Egan, an Air Force pilot assigned to pilot drones in the “war on terror.” (Can we have the word “terrorism”... Read More
There is little satisfying critical literature on the Coen brothers’ 1991 film Barton Fink. Most viewers are inclined to think that this is because the film is a pretentious, meaningless piece of crap. And Barton Fink is surely the most widely detested film by the Coens. The fact that it swept the 1991 Cannes Film... Read More
Mad Max: Fury Road is the fourth — and the best — Mad Max movie directed by George Miller. Miller was born George Miliotis — the son of Greek refugees from Turkish ethnic cleansing in Anatolia — and is also the creator of two other, and very different, film franchises, the Babe the talking pig... Read More
James O’Meara’s article on “Essential Films . . . & Others” was inspired by my “Ten Favorite Films,” but it inspired me in turn to reflect on my own list of essential films, essential defined by Coleridge as “that to which with the greatest pleasure the reader returns.” For many of my favorite films are... Read More
The Loved One (1965) is my all-time favorite comedy. Based on a 1948 novel of the same nameby Evelyn Waugh, The Loved One stands alongside Flannery O’Connor’s Wise Blood (the book and the movie
In his remake of King Kong, Peter Jackson dragged out the big ape’s death so long it felt like a lifetime. At the time, it merely seemed like a lapse of taste. In hindsight, it seems like the beginning of a whole new career characterized by megalomania, greed, one-upmanship, self-indulgence, and bad taste. It was... Read More
Alejandro Jodorowsky’s The Dance of Reality is an extraordinary film. Born in Chile in 1929 to a Jewish family originally from Ukraine, Jodorowsky began his career on the stage as an actor and director, then moved into film. His earlier films are Fando y Lis(1968), El Topo (The Mole, 1970), The Holy Mountain (1973), Tusk... Read More
Agora (2009) should simply be called Hypatia, for it tells the story of Hypatia of Alexandria, the philosopher and mathematician who was murdered by a Christian mob in 415 CE. Hypatia’s life coincides with the destruction of ancient paganism by Christianity, thus her murder symbolizes the death of a whole civilization. After the death of... Read More
“I aim to misbehave”
Joss Whedon’s 2005 film Serenity is the sequel to his short-lived 2002 science fiction series Firefly. Even though only 14 episodes of Firefly were shot, and their quality is somewhat uneven, it is one of the best science-fiction series ever and showed enormous promise. Whedon, who also created Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, and Dollhouse,... Read More
When the great masterpieces of American cinema are taken back to Beijing as war booty, The Monuments Men will be in no danger. When I heard that it was directed by, co-authored by, and starred aging bimbo George Clooney, that was all I really needed to know. The previews were “too much information”: I learned... Read More
Nebraska is a low-budget, black and white movie starring Bruce Dern and Will Forte (Saturday Night Live), as well as Bob Odenkirk (Saul Goodman in Breaking Bad). Nebraska was nominated for the Palme d’Or at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival, where Dern won the Best Actor award. Since then, Nebraska has been nominated for 6... Read More
I was hoping that the first installment of The Hobbit trilogy would be merely a Phantom Menace moment, and that Peter Jackson would produce leaner, tighter sequels that would pull this ill-conceived trilogy out of the crapper. But no. I am saddened to report that The Desolation of Smaug is freighted with the same problems... Read More
I have never liked the character of Superman. He is not a man who has transcended humanity toward something higher. He is simply an alien, who looks like one of us, and who comes equipped with a whole array of superpowers. From a Nietzschean and Faustian standpoint, that translates to zero appeal. I am not... Read More
Joss Whedon’s Firefly is a science fiction series that lived and died on the Fox Network in the Fall of 2002. Fourteen episosdes were shot, but only eleven were aired before the series was canceled, to the consternation of the surprisingly large number of loyal fans that the show conjured up in the split second... Read More
Youth Without Youth (2007) is Francis Ford Coppola’s stunning film adaptation of a novella of the same name by Mircea Eliade (1907–1986), the Romanian scholar of comparative religion and Iron Guard sympathizer. I highly recommend this beautiful, mysterious, endlessly captivating movie. In style, it is classic; in substance, it is eternal. Filmed on location in... Read More
PastClassics
Are elite university admissions based on meritocracy and diversity as claimed?
The sources of America’s immigration problems—and a possible solution
The evidence is clear — but often ignored
What Was John McCain's True Wartime Record in Vietnam?