Movie Diary 12/3/2019

Varda by Agnes (Agnes Varda, 2019). An essay film with the filmmaker summing up her career by looking back at her movies; like some of Varda’s other documentaries, it has a deceptively breezy tone that somehow contains a sense of mystery and gravity.

Richard Jewell (Clint Eastwood, 2019). The story of the security guard who called attention to the bomb at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, and was then publicly questioned as a suspect. A nimble storytelling style, and a wonderful central performance by Paul Walter Hauser (the doofus conspirator in I, Tonya). The timing of the film couldn’t be worse. (full review 12/12)

Just Mercy (Destin Daniel Cretton, 2019). A true-life wronged-justice story, with lawyer Michael B. Jordan representing Death Row denizen Jamie Foxx. No punches pulled, thankfully. (full review 1/9)

1917 (Sam Mendes, 2019). A WWI suspense film in two seemingly unbroken takes. Whatever else this is, it is certainly something to watch (and, btw, in the race for two-minute Oscars, Andrew Scott makes his bid). (full review 1/9)

The Aeronauts (Tom Harper, 2019). Balloonists Felicity Jones and Eddie Redmayne ascend on an expedition that owes more to Indiana Jones than to science. Ridiculous on many counts, and not hard to watch. (full review 12/5)