Matthew St.Clair

Cinema Sentries

TIFF 2021 Movie Review: ‘As in Heaven’ Both Distresses and Visually Captivates

Tea Lindeburg’s feature directorial debut As in Heaven isn’t exactly categorized as a horror film, yet it almost feels like ...
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TIFF 2021 Movie Review: Odessa Young and Josh O’Connor Dazzle in Sensual ‘Mothering Sunday’

After scripting the BBC miniseries Normal People which was cited for its frank portrayal of sexual intimacy, screenwriter Alice Birch ...
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Nine Days Movie Review: A Soul-Stirring Piece of Minimalist Science Fiction

Like any sci-fi masterpiece, Nine Days offers escapism with its fantastical concept while providing insightful commentary on ways of the ...
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Werewolves Within Movie Review: A Hair-Raising Horror-Comedy

Werewolves are more than just humans that turn into creatures under the shiny full moon. They’re also a manifestation of ...
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Cruella Movie Review: A Nearly Idiosyncratic Disney Retelling

Despite being a part of the family-friendly Disney brand, Cruella doesn’t entirely feel like a traditional Disney film which is ...
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The Retreat (2021) Movie Review: A Purely Functional Trip-from-Hell Thriller

When reading the synopsis to The Retreat, it reads like almost any other horror film about a trip gone wrong. ...
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Wrath of Man Movie Review: A Stock Jason Statham Action Starrer

One way to describe Wrath of Man is that it’s a Guy Ritchie movie. A machismo action flick with a ...
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SXSW 2021 Movie Review: Andrea Riseborough Once Again Shines in ‘Here Before’

One word that can be used to describe Andrea Riseborough is "dauntless." The unsung British actress has proven there’s no ...
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SXSW 2021 Movie Review: ‘Best Summer Ever’ Sings with Inclusivity

Without necessarily pitting the two films against each other, Best Summer Ever makes movies like the highly controversial Golden Globe ...
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Moffie Movie Review: A Dive into the Underworld of Chauvinism

Moffie, the latest effort from South African filmmaker Oliver Hermanus, isn’t a horror movie. However, it almost feels like one. ...
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SXSW 2021 Movie Review: Udo Kier is Flawless in ‘Swan Song’

Over the course of his career that spans almost six decades, German actor Udo Kier has been one of those ...
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SXSW 2021 Movie Review: ‘Language Lessons’ Reminds Us of the Value of Connection

Given how it’s been a year since the COVID-19 pandemic happened, the thought of watching an entire film involving people ...
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SXSW 2021 Movie Review: ‘See You Then’ Is a Vital and Intimate Telling of Womanhood

For a short, 74-minute movie about two old flames reuniting over the course of one night, See You Then manages ...
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SXSW 2021 Movie Review: ‘Potato Dreams of America’ Is Imaginatively Profound

Queer youth goes on a journey of self-discovery while concealing their identity out of fear. A simple story that we’ve ...
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The Vigil Movie Review: A Minimalist Exercise in Paralyzing Grief

A limited setting, an ominous score, and a “things go bump in the night” storyline. All are three simple yet ...
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Malcolm & Marie Movie Review: A Frustratingly Distressing Acting Showcase

Malcolm & Marie, the new Netflix drama starring John David Washington and Zendaya as our titular couple whose relationship is ...
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Sundance 2021 Review: ‘Ma Belle, My Beauty’ Is a Simple and Exotic Polyamorous Romance

Historically, cinema has had a fixation with monogamous two-person couples and love triangles involving two people vying for the affections ...
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Sundance 2021 Review: ‘Censor’ Is a Perceptive Fever Dream

When you’re deeply unsatisfied with the job that you have, it can feel like your soul is being crushed. Especially ...
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Saint Maud Movie Review: A Devilishly Terrific Directorial Debut

Typically, horror films centering on young women in peril involve them being put in a group that gets picked off ...
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The Midnight Sky Movie Review: Astronomically Insipid

Clearly, George Clooney can’t get enough of space. After previously getting stranded with Sandra Bullock in space in Gravity, he ...
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Wander Darkly Movie Review: A Decent Meditation on Love in the Afterlife

Wander Darkly follows Matteo (Diego Luna) and Adrienne (Sienna Miller), a couple whose relationship is on the rocks. Once they ...
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Ammonite Movie Review: Winslet and Ronan Get Lost at Sea

Similar to director Francis Lee's feature debut God's Own Country, Ammonite is an incredibly minimalist romance set against the backdrop ...
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Happiest Season Movie Review: A Vital Holiday Rom-Com

One way to describe co-writer/director Clea DuVall's Happiest Season is that it serves as a heartfelt holiday gem as satisfying as ...
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Jungleland Movie Review: Packs a Nearly Rigorous Punch

The newest fighting drama Jungleland feels like a cross between The Fighter and Of Mice and Men. Like the former ...
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Dating Amber Movie Review: Well-Acted and Painfully Frank

Dating Amber is easily the first coming-of-age queer story I've seen to give me such severe PTSD. Seeing the two ...
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Kindred (2020) Movie Review: A Nearly Surface-Level Chiller

This year, we have a clear trend of eerily similar horror films about women dealing with gaslighting and fighting for ...
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The Forty-Year-Old Version Movie Review: A Winningly Profound Directorial Debut

The benefit of artistic expression is that it allows artists to vent their frustrations. Whether it’s through a script, a ...
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TIFF 2020 Review: Get the Hell Out Is an Incredibly Bonkers Zombie Comedy

To put it bluntly, Get the Hell Out is a lot. A lot of storyline and thematic material rolled into one adrenaline-fueled ...
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TIFF 2020 Review: Violation Mixes Heavy-Handed Symbolism with Harrowing Trauma

When Violation first opens, it shows a wolf observing its dying prey. Accompanied by an ominous score, the opening sequence provides a ...
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The Devil All the Time Movie Review: Actors Elevate Excessively Grim Crime Drama

As William Shakespeare famously wrote in his play The Tempest, “Hell is empty. And all the devils are here.” Words that ...
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Entwined Movie Review: An Ingenious yet Underdeveloped Horror Pic

When our main protagonist Panos (Prometheus Aleiferopoulos) enters the ominous town of Alyti, he's informed that he's the only and ...
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I’m Thinking of Ending Things Movie Review: Charlie Kaufman’s Eccentric Foray into Horror

I'm Thinking of Ending Things has a seemingly straightforward plot. Woman goes on a road trip with her partner to meet ...
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The Lawyer (2020) Movie Review: Builds a Solid Case

Given how The Lawyer is about two men who form an instant connection as they take part in online dating, it offers ...
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Summerland Movie Review: A Satisfactory Lesbian Drama

After starring as Vita Sackville-West in Vita & Virginia, Gemma Arterton continues her small niche of starring in lesbian period dramas ...
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The Old Guard Movie Review: An Insightful Thrill Ride

Unlike usual film adaptations of comic books, it's hard to necessarily label The Old Guard as a superhero film. It does feature ...
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Relic (2020) Movie Review: Gritty Familial Horror with Supernatural Elements

Relic is a rare example of an atmospheric horror film that opts for sadness rather than scares. While it does present ...
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The Truth (2019) Movie Review: Truthfully Middle-Ground

In a way, The Truth feels like a spiritual sequel to Clouds of Sils Maria. Another film distributed by IFC Films dealing with ...
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House of Hummingbird Movie Review: A Coming-of-Age Story with Peculiar Wings

The aptly titled House of Hummingbird follows 14-year-old Eun-hee (Park Ji-hoo) as she tries to fly her way through life without a ...
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Disclosure (2020) Movie Review: Emotionally Informative

Disclosure is a look at the way the trans community is represented in the media told through the voices of artists ...
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The Short History of the Long Road Movie Review: A Subversive Portrayal of Adolescence

The Short History of the Long Road is a simple, slice-of-life road movie that takes some jarring U-turns. What starts off as ...
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I Will Make You Mine Movie Review: A Love Quadrangle Also About Music

Contrary to what the title may suggest, I Will Make You Mine is not some kind of twisted stalker thriller. While it ...
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Body Cam Movie Review: Almost as Horrific as Real Life

Grief itself is a ghost. A relic from the past that finds ways to haunt us wherever we go. It ...
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CRSHD Movie Review: A Vigorous and Earnest Directorial Debut

CRSHD follows a similar pattern to other “one wild night” comedies involving a group of friends looking to engage in a ...
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Bull (2020) Movie Review: Rob Morgan Takes the Lead

Within a span of a few years, Rob Morgan has quickly become one of our finest character actors. He's gone ...
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15 Years Movie Review: A Plaintive Gay Relationship Drama

15 Years is a gay romance that is as universal as it is culturally specific. As it dives into the domestication ...
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Circus of Books Movie Review: Mom and Dad Run a Porn Shop

When Karen and Barry Mason opened up Circus of Books, an LA gay-porn shop, at first, it was a simple ...
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The Other Lamb Movie Review: A Surface-Level Lucid Nightmare

The Other Lamb follows the journey of Selah (Raffey Cassidy), a girl who was born into an all-female cult called The ...
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Inside the Rain Movie Review: A Pretty Heartfelt Mental Illness Dramedy

Rosie Perez has been having a slight career resurgence, having recently stole the show in Birds of Prey and being a highlight ...
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Swallow Movie Review: Haley Bennett Carries Slow Burn Psychological Thriller

Hunter (Haley Bennett) seems to have it all. An idyllic home life with a wealthy and seemingly supportive husband, Richie ...
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Saint Frances Movie Review: A Topical Gem of Less Biblical Proportions

It seems that even in today's society, the idea of a woman not wanting to be a parent is viewed ...
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Sundance 2020 Review: ‘I Carry You with Me’ and ‘Minari’ Handle Themes of Home and Immigration

The Sundance Film Festival is typically a strong hub for breakout indies that are U.S.-based and in the English language. ...
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Birds of Prey Movie Review: A Chaotic Breath of Fresh Air in the DCEU

Given how Margot Robbie was one of the few saving graces of Suicide Squad, it should come as no surprise ...
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Sundance 2020 Review: Promising Young Woman Is a Promising Directorial Debut

When Promising Young Woman begins, a cover of the song “It’s Raining Men” plays in the background as Cassie (Carey ...
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The Garden Left Behind Movie Review: A Simplistic Political Experience

When artists like Alicia Vikander and Jared Leto win prestigious awards for movies handling the trans experience, dedicating their awards ...
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Sundance 2020 Review: The Nest Is a Colossal Bore

Sean Durkin's awaited follow-up to Martha Marcy May Marlene has the makings of a strong retro thriller, yet succumbs to being like ...
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Sundance 2020 Review: Ben Whishaw is the Driving Force of Surge

Ben Whishaw has a knack for playing characters down on their luck with Joseph from Surge being the latest entry in his ...
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Sundance 2020 Review: Herself and Miss Juneteenth are Actress Vehicles About Hopefulness

When one hits a speed bump in life, it's never too late to try and start over. Two films that ...
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Sundance 2020 Review: ‘Falling’ Definitely Falls Flat

Viggo Mortensen's directorial debut Falling attempts to dive into the uncomfortable topic of families divided over politics, yet succumbs to its need ...
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Zombi Child Movie Review: A Slow Exploration of Voodoo and Adolescence

With Zombi Child, director Bertrand Bonello pulls off both a reinvigoration of the zombie genre and a reclaiming of its origins. ...
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1917 Movie Review: A Visually Bold Look at the Heart of War

After reinvigorating the Bond franchise with Skyfall and ending his run on a whimper with Spectre, director Sam Mendes makes a leap into ...
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Like A Boss Movie Review: A Middling Investment

The new comedy Like A Boss is like a cone of vanilla ice cream with sprinkles. It does its job at being ...
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Queen of Hearts (2019) Movie Review: Trine Dyrholm Guides This Effective Melodrama

Queen of Hearts, Denmark's Oscar submission for Best International Feature Film, is indeed a slight parable to Alice in Wonderland. However, ...
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TIFF 2019 Capsule Reviews: ‘Pain and Glory’ and ‘Bad Education’

Both Pain and Glory and Bad Education are completely different films, yet they’re connected by their depictions of middle-aged gay ...
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TIFF 2019 Movie Review: Dev Patel Dazzles in ‘The Personal History of David Copperfield’

One way to describe The Personal History of David Copperfield is that it's a change of pace. It's a stretch ...
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TIFF 2019 Movie Review: Riz Ahmed is a Powerhouse in Sound of Metal

Sound of Metal is definitely my tempo. One key reason is that it’s a starring vehicle for Riz Ahmed. He’s ...
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TIFF 2019 Capsule Reviews: ‘Jojo Rabbit’ and ‘Knives Out’ Allow Change in Directorial Pace

One major plus of being in a franchise is using your clout to make bold, original material. Whether you’re an ...
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TIFF 2019 Movie Review: ‘A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood’ Is Incredibly Wondrous

Just last year, the documentary Won’t You Be My Neighbor? offered a heart wrenching look at the life of the ...
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TIFF 2019 Capsule Reviews: Two Cannes Favorites Make a Big Splash

At this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, we’ve gotten two Cannes premieres from foreign directors exercising films that are simultaneous ...
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TIFF 2019 Movie Review: ‘Waves’ Is Emotionally Shattering and Immersive

Given how Waves is a coming-of-age story about an African-American male growing up in south Florida made by A24 Films, ...
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TIFF 2019 Movie Review: Jennifer Lopez Is Oscar Worthy in ‘Hustlers’

While Jennifer Lopez has proven herself to be a successful movie star, it feels like it’s been a while since ...
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TIFF 2019 Movie Review: Michael B. Jordan and Jamie Foxx are the Strong Force of ‘Just Mercy’

When Destin Daniel Cretton arrived with Short Term 12, he announced himself as a humanistic voice in the indie world. ...
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Tribeca Film Festival 2019 Review: Burning Cane Is a Visceral yet Rhythmic Directing Debut

The Devil may not be an enemy that can be seen at first glance. However, he can still take many ...
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Tribeca Film Festival 2018 Review: Cargo Is a Powerful Zombie Drama

When it comes to films depicting the zombie apocalypse, we see the same repetitive formula: Survivors must fight for their ...
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A Quiet Place Movie Review: Silence Has Never Been So Scary

Even though just saying the title now gives me chills, I will not stay silent on how amazing A Quiet ...
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