An Honest Review Of “The Post”
I just saw the best film of 2017, and you didn’t.
Last night I watched the new Steven Spielberg film The Post with a room full of other film critics. As you’ve certainly heard by now, there is a press embargo on publishing reviews of the film for another week. And so I take great care in withholding all pertinent details when I tell you, a person who did not see the film I just saw, that the film I just saw (that you did not see) is absolutely brilliant.
There are a lot of things I could say, but out of respect for the agreement I signed last night, I shall hold my tongue. No spoilers follow in this review.
The first thing that struck me while watching the fabulous film The Post was how graphic the extremely intense and lengthy sex scenes were and how I did not expect everyone in the entire cast to die so violently. That Streep’s character kills all the male employees at The Washington Post with her gloved hands was interesting, as I was not aware Katharine Graham had done that in real life. But a cursory glance at Wikipedia indicates that indeed she did, before leaping into the Potomac, never to be seen again.
I’ll tell you more once I’m allowed. Until then, no details.
And what Call Me By Your Name skips in terms of explicit gay sex scenes, well, let’s just say The Post goes there. I mean, it really goes there. Repeatedly. Over and over and over again. Of course, I can’t tell you more yet because of the embargo, and I won’t.
But I’ve never seen anyone cum as hard on another man’s face as I did in The Post.
The Post is Spielberg’s best work since Munich, and not just because it also has a sex scene with Eric Bana that leaves you feeling kind of uncomfortable (that part’s not gay, in case you were wondering.)
There’s also the presence of Golda Meir, which I did not expect. It works. I won’t tell you who plays Golda Meir, as the pleasure of the cameo is one of the movie’s fantastic tricks. Sean Connery does his best cameo work since he appeared as Richard the Lionheart at the conclusion of Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, the film that made me become a critic.
God, I wish you could see it, but you chose not to be a film critic, a thing that I am.
You’ve probably seen some explicit sex scenes in film. I know I have. After all, I am the president of several film societies in small-to-midsize cities around the country (except Hartford. Fuck you, Hartford. You can’t keep Benincasa out for long!) I see a lot of prestigious motion pictures. And when it comes to explicit sex scenes in film, The Post is really something else.
You know how in great seafaring epics like Castaway (again, Hanks in superb form) and Overboard (ditto), there’s a moment where some water droplets get on the lens of the camera, because the camera is in the ocean? Usually it is not actually in the ocean, but in a tank in some large place in Burbank or Los Angeles (not telling tales out of school, you can look it up.) You know how that happens? This is called “cinema veritable.” It is meant to give you the impression that you are actually there in the water with the characters onscreen.
The Post has a moment not unlike that. You just have to see this movie in the theater, with popcorn, and take the whole family, and then you’ll find out what I mean.
What I mean is, an actor cums on the lens.
He appears to cum directly on the lens.
There is a striking viscosity made all the more pronounced by the way it’s lit.
This moment is when several critics around me began to weep. It’s that good.
Again, no spoilers. Bring your family.
I can assure you that several scenes in this film you, a civilian, have not yet been allowed to see will be taught in moderately-rated film schools for ten to fifteen years after the release date of this motion picture. They all contain loving, careful depictions of extremely hardcore sex acts, only some of which were legal in the time the film is set. Ahistorical? Perhaps, but I’ll forgive it. I forgave the cellphone scene in Nosferatu. I can handle this.
What a gorgeous journey.
The most beautiful part about The Post is how Spielberg worked consent into the gorgeously choreographed donkey punch sequence. I’ve heard that was CGI’d in last week because of the change in climate in this town. I respected that.
You know, there’s precedent for altering a donkey punch scene in a mainstream motion picture.
After 9/11, Hollywood had to scramble to adjust moments in certain upcoming releases. But that was easy. Any first-year film student can tell you it’s so much simpler to remove towers from a motion picture set in New York than it is to insert the concept of saying yes to sexual intercourse anywhere on planet Earth. I mean, what does that even look like? What does that even mean?
How difficult for the 2017–18 motion picture editors, many of whom are now more stressed than they’ve been in years. I know I personally feel more stressed right now than I did on or after 9/11. Have you ever sat in a roomful of fellow film critics for an entire two and a half hours? I wouldn’t call it terrorism, necessarily, but it feels like some kind of crime. I went to the bathroom and did EMDR on myself halfway through.
I also re-read The Four Agreements in its entirety, all while sitting on the toilet. I only missed about ten minutes of The Post. By the time I came back, someone cute had taken my seat, and I had to say something, and he was great about it, and now we are dating.
If you did not cum during The Paper, even when Michael Keaton was being extra goddamn adorable, you will cum hard and repeatedly during The Post, which also stars Marisa Tomei and Michael Keaton, but this time HE is pregnant.
Now a young lady on Film Twitter, of which I am the undisputed legal and spiritual ruler, wrote to me, saying she’d heard rumors Leonardo diCaprio was romanced by a bear in The Revenant and had been disappointed to discover the rumors were untrue. I know several people who share her agony, and all of you may be worrying I’m building The Post up inaccurately. I know you’ve been hurt before by film-related untruths and trust me, I take my job very seriously. I’d never lie to you about anything, ever. As a film critic, I simply cannot. We physically cannot. It’s not in our DNA.
All I can say is this: if bears butt-fucking blond boys dressed as pioneers is your thing, you’re gonna LOVE the third act of The Post.
In conclusion, see The Post once they allow peasants in. My 5,000-word take on the [redacted due to press embargo]* will summon the spirit of Pauline Kael, who will thank me for my eloquence.
I love being a film critic.
And I love The Post!
But alas, I can say no more.
I signed an oath.
*9-minute hot 3-D gay orgy sequence (they give you glasses when you walk in, you’ll be fine.)