Author Archive: Matt Cipolla

Senior year film student at Columbia College Chicago, Hollywood Film Festival pre-screener, and Best Social Media Presence for North Farmington High School's 2014 senior mock elections. Firmly believes that ".gif" is pronounced "jiff".

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Paddington 2

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Paddington 2

| January 17, 2018

I’m not too sure what it is about bears that exude wholesomeness, but whether they’re real and nameless, in a video game and named Banjo, or in a storybook and then in a surprisingly good live-action/CGI hybrid family film, they’re essentially the animal equivalent of a parental hug. With Paddington 2, that hug is transformed […]

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Phantom Thread

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Phantom Thread

| January 16, 2018

Paul Thomas Anderson seems to be that one director that cinephiles collectively melt for upon the mentioning of his name, yet it’s a reaction that has never swept over me. His movies are often maddening in how their technical expertise is undercut by overblown runtimes and some unfounded screenwriting decisions, and Phantom Thread generally lie […]

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Insidious: The Last Key

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Insidious: The Last Key

| January 11, 2018

One time last summer, I was walking down the street when a squirrel fell out of a tree and killed itself. Whether or not the act was intentional is still a mystery to me, but the fact that a creature with the tenacity of a crackhead and a tail made of brown cotton candy happened […]

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The Post

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The Post

| January 7, 2018

Upon hearing of a politically minded Steven Spielberg film starring both Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks, I thought that the syzygy of awards prospects was too ideal to be true. As a result, my expectations for The Post were hopeful in its potential if not a little jaded in what it would ultimately amount to, […]

Best Films of 2017

Best Films of 2017

| January 4, 2018

While 2017 was a disaster for reality, it was a minor miracle for movies, granting us a slate more consistent in themes yet more varied in quality than the previous year. And while a lot of the movies that stuck out gained my attention due to their audacity, what made the best of the year […]

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Molly’s Game

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Molly’s Game

| January 1, 2018

A revered screenwriter doesn’t make for a revered director, but the livelihood of Aaron Sorkin’s writing rose the possibility that his transition to being behind the camera would be smoother than most. With Molly’s Game, the writing becomes the directing and the directing becomes the writing, sometimes in welcome ways but also often in manners […]

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Downsizing

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Downsizing

| January 1, 2018

Satire functions in its own realm in that tone, intentions, and objects of scorn have to be placed within very specific contexts, and if anything, enduring failed attempts provides notes on what not to do in one’s own work. I didn’t expect Downsizing to be such a train wreck, but the newest from Alexander Payne […]

The Greatest Showman

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The Greatest Showman

| December 28, 2017

I used to wonder if I didn’t like musicals, but then I realized that I just see so many musicals that aren’t good. The Greatest Showman is something that can, in theory, work well, but it’s plagued by a script that isn’t sure of its scope and direction that detracts from its many pieces instead […]

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Father Figures

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Father Figures

| December 28, 2017

I don’t really know what it is about the holiday season that facilitates an influx of stupid comedies, but c’est la vie. The existence of Father Figures seemed like a foregone conclusion, and it’s something that, after sitting through it, also is as devoid of purpose or character as one would anticipate. A fair amount […]

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I, Tonya

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I, Tonya

| December 22, 2017

If I’m going to see a movie based on true events, I’d prefer to see one based on true events that are stranger than fiction. They’re just more inherently interesting. What they don’t do, though, is just give a free pass to the filmmakers, and thankfully I, Tonya is a movie that knows that. While […]