Reminiscence didn’t really do anything for me, but I don’t think it was a total waste of time, either. If you’re a Hugh Jackman fan, this movie will definitely be up your alley. It comes from the “It’s like Inception!” vein along with Tenet, Arrival, or the lesser entries like Transcendence or In Time. It’s a world where you can go into a contraption and view memories, so it checks its high concept box. And with Jackman and Rebecca Ferguson leading the cast, you can’t go too wrong. Add in a love story, a mystery, and some intrigue, and you should be in for a solid ride if this seems like your thing.
The Voyeurs is definitely the wildest movie I’ve seen yet this year. After The Woman in the Window, it’s the second not-very-good variation on Rear Window I’ve seen this year — it’s just that this one features just a fraction of the star power. But even with its lack of star power, The Voyeurs does create an interesting setup in which a couple moves in to a new apartment where they see another couple in the building across the street who never closes their blinds. There are about five different twists along the way with increasing frequency once the first one hits about 45 minutes in. It’s not terrible by any means — it just had the chance to say a couple different things that were thematically coherent before getting too twist happy. But it is the perfect movie to keep you mildly interested in something that doesn’t demand 100% of your attention if you start it at 1:30 a.m. like I did.
The Card Counter
Between Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, and The Last Temptation of Christ, Paul Schrader wrote some of the best screenplays of the ‘70s and ‘80s, and with First Reformed, he wrote and directed a lot of people’s favorite movie of the last five years. Well, with The Card Counter, he’s back at it with another dark, lonely, and mysterious middle-aged man; this time it’s ex-con Oscar Isaac. This effort unfortunately didn’t grab me like the previous four movies I mentioned, but a lot of that might have just been because I didn’t quite get it. I’m not a poker player by any stretch of the imagination, so I had a hard time keeping track on that front. Plus, Schrader’s signature dry, objective style didn’t do me any favors in that regard. But it is an unequivocally “Schrader” movie, and I know many people will love it for that. It just wasn’t my thing this time around.