Features

The Matrix, Ranked

The Matrix, Ranked

In 1999, The Matrix, written and directed by the Wachowski Sisters, was released and instantly became a cultural phenomenon, thanks to its ground-breaking visual effects and thought-provoking philosophical themes. The film launched an entire media franchise, and since then, three direct sequel films, an animated anthology film, three video games, a comic book series and numerous books have been released. While none of the subsequent films admittedly quite live up to the quality of that first film, a couple of them come damn close, even if the worse films in the franchise leave a lot to be desired. Here is…
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The Jackass Films, Ranked

The Jackass Films, Ranked

Before there was TikTok, or Vine, or even YouTube, there was MTV's Jackass TV series, which fed viewers (mostly teenage boys and young men) a constant, uninterrupted stream of dudes with questionable intelligence performing ridiculous stunts (with often disastrous results) and tormenting each other with disgusting or dangerous pranks. Even though the show only ran for three seasons between 2000 and 2001, the concept proved so popular and the group of lovably bone-headed guys proved so beloved that the series was spun-off into multiple subsequent TV shows and, perhaps more culturally significantly, a total of nine feature-length films. While it…
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Short/Feature: Breaking Fast

Short/Feature: Breaking Fast

Breaking Fast The Short: Year: 2015 | Rating: In a bizarre twist that I absolutely did not see coming, I liked the short version of Breaking Fast much better than the feature that it ended up being adapted into. The actors were much more natural; so much so, in fact, that the whole "Kal-El" bit that was cringe-worthy in the feature was actually adorably awkward here. This short, which focuses mostly on Kal and Mo's first "date," feels almost Before Sunrise (1995)-esque at times, a tone which is painfully absent from the feature; in fact, as I mention below, it lacked…
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Short/Feature: Short Term 12

Short/Feature: Short Term 12

Short Term 12 The Short: Year: 2008 | Rating: Literally the only way I could find this short film was by buying the Short Term 12 Blu-ray from Amazon, and after watching it, I can kind of see why. I haven't seen the feature film since it came out back in 2013, but I definitely don't remember it being so unrelentingly tragic and bleak. Compared to other short/feature combos I've watched, like The Way He Looks and Whiplash (both 2014), I will say that Short Term 12 is perhaps the best example of a microcosm of what the feature film actually ended up being. Thankfully the feature…
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Short/Feature: Whiplash

Short/Feature: Whiplash

Whiplash The Short: Year: 2013 | Rating: Even in this one-scene, 18-minute short version of Whiplash, writer-director Damien Chazelle proves that he knows how to capture and enthrall an audience. You literally cannot look away and are kept on the edge of your seat from beginning to end. Such a prodigious talent (and that might be an understatement). Language: EnglishGenre: DramaRuntime: 18 min.Rating: TV-14 Director: Damien ChazelleStarring: Johnny Simmons, J.K. Simmons, Nate Lang, C.J. Vana The Feature: Year: 2014 | Rating: It's not very often that I increase my rating on a film after a rewatch, but having just seen Whiplash for the…
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Short/Feature: The Way He Looks

Short/Feature: The Way He Looks

The Way He Looks The Short: I Don't Want to Go Back Alone Original title: Eu Não Quero Voltar SozinhoYear: 2010 | Rating: Just as one might expect, I Don't Want to Go Back Alone is basically just a non-fleshed-out prototype for the feature-length The Way He Looks. It's fine, effective, but man, I'm not a big fan of how Leo's friends treat him sometimes. You can't just kiss a blind kid and run away, man. That is seriously uncool. Language: PortugueseGenre: Romance, DramaRuntime: 17 min.Rating: Not Rated Director: Daniel RibeiroStarring: Ghilherme Lobo, Tess Amorim, Fábio Audi, Nora Toledo, Júlio Machado The Feature: The…
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