Review: The Hollow Ambition of 'Dunkirk'

Dunkirk is best explained by quantum mechanics. Seriously. Quantum mechanics states that light acts as both a wave and a particle depending on how you observe it. Depending on how you think it, Dunkirk is both a great movie and an unwatchable mess. It’s an adventurous, ambitious, experimental blockbuster, and a mind-numbingly conventional, mundane prestige vanity project by a big name director. It’s a chest-beating, jingoistic call for national pride and a subversion of militaristic hero worship that tends to accompany that pride. It’s both a particle and a wave, depending on how you look at it.

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You Call That Scary?: The Absence of Terror in 'It Comes At Night' and 'Get Out'

Last weekend I saw It Comes at Night, the sophomore effort from writer-director Trey Edward Shults. His debut film, Krisha, was one of my favorites of last year, with an energetic style and a merciless yet empathetic approach to storytelling. Alas, It Comes at Night was disappointing, a half-cocked gambit to avoid the sophomore slump that feels more like the idea of a horror movie than the real thing. Despite some impressive, practically lit cinematography and an engrossing atmosphere, the film sadly feels like a rough draft.

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Peaks and Valleys: Fire Walk With Me

I’ll see you again in 25 years.

Spoken (backwards!) by the recently murdered Laura Palmer, it seemed just another cryptic sentiment in a show full of codes, but the show’s creators, David Lynch and Mark Frost have once again defied expectations. It took a little more than 25 years, but Twin Peaks is returning to our screens and fulfilling Laura’s promise. The show was a sensation in 1990, fueling water-cooler conversations around the world, but this new “TV Event” isn’t the first televisual addendum to the original show. In 1992 there was Fire Walk With Me, a film that served as a prequel, examining Laura’s final days. It was not readily embraced. Booed at Cannes (though what isn’t?), it was dismissed by critics and, even with an established fanbase, failed to ignite the box office. Some quarter of a century later, it’s still the subject of debate. Some have reclaimed it as the lost gem of Lynch’s career. Others remain unconvinced. Here at Optimism Vaccine, we’re split down the middle. So we decided we’d lay out our best takes, positive and negative, and let you decide…

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