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Arabian Nights: Volume 1, the Restless One 4
Arrival 2.93
As I AM: The Life and Time$ of DJ AM 5
Bad Santa 2 1.29
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Doctor Strange 3.63
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Esteros 5
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Eyes of My Mother, The 3
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Hacksaw Ridge 4
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I Am Not A Serial Killer 5
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Mountains May Depart 4
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"Earns the supernatural like few horror movies do."
4 stars
Jay Seaver says... "SCREENED AT MONSTER FEST 2016: Tales of the supernatural naturally tend to rely on a lot of hand-waving when it comes to details, both because their audiences often kind of want things to be able to come out of nowhere and because more detail will inevitably bump up against the audience's basic suspension of disbelief, because this stuff isn't real and each bit of explanation is a potential spot where the viewer no longer buys it. It's especially tricky when the movie needs an expert who can't really show his or her expertise beyond results, at least most of the time. That "A Dark Song" attempts to buck that tend, building a whole movie around the process and logic of working with the supernatural, would make it interesting even if it wasn't also a tense drama." (more)
"Plenty gross, but also plenty interesting."
4 stars
Jay Seaver says... "SCREENED AT MONSTERFEST 2016: There's a last-scene reveal to "Raw" that, as well-done as it is, seems to run counter to the way the rest of the film works: If this is meant to shock and surprise, then why has everything else been so casual, so willing to play the horror as something that is simply not spoken about between the characters? It's an indecisiveness that often frustrates, because writer/director Julia Ducournau often seems to be onto something great with her horrific twist on the coming-of-age story." (more)
"Uncomfortable truths impressively presented."
5 stars
Jay Seaver says... "No matter the size or seriousness of a topic, if it is something to which its chronicler has a personal connection, then that account will almost inevitably reveal as much about the author as the subject itself; the personal is hard to escape. Had James Baldwin finished "Remember This House", his book on the Civil Rights movement and the three assassinations that punctuated it in the 1960s during his lifetime, that almost certainly would have been the case, and part of what makes "I Am Not Your Negro" so good is that director Raoul Peck runs with this rather than trying to stick with what Baldwin originally tried to create, a decision that retains his distinctive voice even while reminding the viewer that this was and is a people's struggle for a ideal rather than the string of individual triumphs and tragedies to which it is often reduced." (more)
"Scratch, scratch, scratch."
3 stars
Rob Gonsalves says... "We get it by now: Rob Zombie loves the grotesque excesses of the grindhouse flicks of his youth, and he has dedicated his filmmaking career (and a good portion of his music career) to genuflecting to the disreputable gore, T&A, and general nastiness of those films." (more)

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