19 Dazzling Favorite Movies and Reviews from 2020 | Chaz’s Journal

Allison Shoemaker’s review of “The Queen’s Gambit

Editor Michelle Tesoro should go ahead and buy a bookshelf for all the hardware she’s about to pick up for “The Queen’s Gambit” right now; the chess sequences are all electric, and each in its own way. One will make you hold your breath. Two will likely bring you to tears. Some are funny. Some are infuriating. Some are, somehow, very, very sexy. Each is electric, and Tesoro and Taylor-Joy make them so through skill, talent, and precision. 

Peter Sobczynski’s review of “Nomad: In the Footsteps of Bruce Chatwin

It has everything that one looks for in a Herzog film—scope, ambition, moments of extraordinary visual beauty (it is too bad that few people will be able to see this on the big screen where it belongs), bits of mordant humor, and enough intriguing philosophical concerns to inspire and drive any number of post-screening conversations. In time, I suspect that it will be regarded as one of the great and meaningful works in a filmography that is not exactly lacking for such things. 

Collin Souter’s Short Films in Focus column on “World of Tomorrow 3

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Hertzfeldt’s work is made up of Gilliam-esque comedic asides, often having to do with technology that hasn’t been properly tested yet, but is used anyway. It speaks to our need for efficiency in the face of common sense. Robots are designed to carry on the likeness and memories of our loved ones, but the results are truly horrifying, providing the films with many doses of dark humor. The pop-up ads that come with this discount form of time travel is one of the series’ funniest gags. 

Scout Tafoya’s review of “The Amusement Park

The degenerate nature of his chosen study kept Romero a legend untouched by mainstream acceptance, still fighting tooth and nail for budgets in his old age. As Roger Ebert said in his review of “Dawn of the Dead”: “maybe … there’s a little of the ghoulish voyeur in all of us. We like to be frightened. We like a good creepy thrill. It’s just, we say, that we don’t want a movie to go too far.” “Too far” was the only place Romero was ever headed. It’s time the rest of us caught up.

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