A GHOST STORY (2017)

Normally if you told me there was a five plus minute static shot of a woman eating pie I’d tell you to fuck off, not my kind of movie. But goddamnit I loved A GHOST STORY.

The slow, roaming, long (long!) shots that open the first half of the film lull you into a sense of dreaminess that make the cuts and bursts of dialogue that come later feel like an exciting, meaningful, and gripping splash of cold water to your mug.

It’s a haunting, perfectly (slow!) paced tragic love story that makes you feel angst…


It’s fun to see a niche community represented in a movie almost always. It provides some patois that’s excited and educational.

The film moves nicely with some heartfelt moments, but unfortunately you’re not sure if the character’s hearts are the right place.

It sort of felt like the story should have been the exact same, but everyone in the movie should have been 10 years younger. Not only would the story make a bit more sense, but the immature behavior of the characters would make more sense. …


Hmm. Ok. Maybe my expectations of what a Star Wars movie could be and what it is are not aligned.

With the new Rogue franchise I was hoping there’d be a tonally or structurally different approach to the Star Wars story — nope. Just more of the same.

On one hand it makes plenty of sense — people love it and the box office reflects that. On the other, here we are in an endlessly vicious cycle of basic hero-quest-redemption story lines.

It all just seems so predictable. Like there are only a few possible types of stories in the…


Something about modern comedies makes you feel like they should always be 15–30 minutes shorter. Not because comedies need to be shorter or because they’re any less valid of a genre than others, but it feels like they often phone in several chunks of the story.

Office Christmas Party falls into this same trap. Why are we watching a dance party for several minutes? There isn’t gags or jokes so lets save us all the time and establish the energy in the room and move on.

The movie has some charming moments but never hits a laugh out loud moments…


One of the most gripping films I’ve seen — for the first 90% of it.

Sexy, dark, beautiful, mysterious, tense — FUCKING TENSE — and complex. Unfortunately the payoff wasn’t there. Or I didn’t get it. But either way is that my fault or the filmmakers? Hard to tell. Regardless it was working for me but didn’t meet at the end — like watching beautiful ribbons dance in the wind then instead of a beautiful flowery ribbon they tie together in a square not. That’s it?

The performances were noir-esque but more grounded. Dark, quirky, with more than a few…


LA LA LAND (2016)

Fun, quirky, and a nice blend of novel and nostalgic that together feels fresh.

The only main criticism I have of La La Land is that it thematically feels a bit light. Some statements and ideas about professional ambition over love and for what cost are prevalent throughout — and thus the movie ends on an emotional down note — but I wish there was a bit more to chew on conceptually.

Other than that, a great ride. Fun song and dance, amazing chemistry and charisma from both Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone, and ambitious storytelling…


Image is everything.

An interesting look at Jackie’s manipulation of the post-death events that led to her not only establishing her husband’s legacy but also her own. I loved the theme and messages of the movie but somehow it didn’t resonate with me.

Maybe too many close ups of Natalie Portman’s sad eyes for too long. Maybe it was the stilted accent of Jackie or the plastered smile. While all accurate (I assume) I couldn’t help but be constantly reminded of the construction of the film itself.

Given the themes of ‘image is everything’ and acting in one’s own self-interest…


if diversity is the key to survival on the macro level, unification and gentrification is making us as whole less fit and more susceptible to getting wiped out. if we had diversity, maybe there would be survivors.

there’s been no beehive loss in cuba because they’ve been unable to import pesticides due to the embargo. so their cultural vacuum actually allowed their bee population to survive. said another way, their culture was ‘more fit’ for bees. …


We’re living in a cocktail of grief culture mixed with entrepreneurial self absorption and Search Party puts it on the rocks and says drink up. And it’s funny when you do.

Every episode follows 4 co-leads as they deal with their own personal issues, with the main driving force being the search for a missing classmate.

The acting absolutely carries the show. Charismatic and pointed — almost to caricature levels — the four friends’ banter and interactions are simply delightful. They feed into each other’s fun and neurosis, and are selfish people that you can’t help but love to watch…


Some stream-of-consciousness rambles on a new system of government written on the subway the day after the election.

I’m not sure if the entire system is broken and we should throw it out or if it’s primarily the election process. We have a situation where only picking between two parties seems insufficient — not inherently, but because they don’t fully (or even adequately) represent constituents’ views.

Speaking in silly analogies, if we think about a political party as a mixed fruit basket, the electorate are only given two fruit baskets to choose from. And unfortunately there are a few fruits in each basket (ie agendas or policies) that you may not like. …

Will Dennis

working on things. willdennis.com

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