By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

Juvenile Cinephile On 2016

“Talked about on release, promptly torn apart, and seemingly disposed album of Lady Gaga’s transparent persona swap into country pop, ‘Joanne’ was an album that hit [personal] pleasure sensors. I appreciate belting, which Lady Gaga gives generously, I appreciate kitsch, I appreciate cheese, and I appreciate an artist just going there. Say what you will about Lady Gaga, but she has the gamesmanship and commitment of making a fool while still hitting whatever goal she sought, no matter how weird that goal was. This was the artist that gave us, ‘Venus,’ lest we forget. People’s problem with Lady Gaga is that her movements, turns, and persona swaps are again, so indicating, so transparent, and so seemingly inauthentic. Yet, in all of her work, somebody who is this music school-trained theater kid, postmodern artist hits either a point that is either transcendence or surrender against what we view as her approach, and embraces everything she could possibly be doing.”
~ Juvenile Cinephile On 2016

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“Let me put this bluntly, in language even a busy blogger can understand: Criticism — and its humble cousin, reviewing — is not a democratic activity. It is, or should be, an elite enterprise, ideally undertaken by individuals who bring something to the party beyond their hasty, instinctive opinions of a book (or any other cultural object). It is work that requires disciplined taste, historical and theoretical knowledge and a fairly deep sense of the author’s (or filmmaker’s or painter’s) entire body of work, among other qualities.”
~ Richard Schickel

“When Barry Jenkins introduced Moonlight, he said he hoped we see ourselves in the characters. We’re thrown into neighborhood combat with 10-year-old Chiron in Miami’s Liberty City where the empty lots, abandoned buildings, sidewalks — the shortcuts and escape routes — are his total known world. We intake vividly, like a 10-year-old, the cruel, the generous, the strangeness of others, the crack-addled neglect in a home he can’t escape. Jenkins’ characters’ lives move on, get stunted, are dulled to stupefaction, end tragically, end in separation. Moonlight is Chiron’s world. It’s the current lower-middle class, working class, disenfranchised- and-alienated-class world. Intimacy is Jenkins’ accomplishment. But, what we’re intimate with is another consciousness so totally and truthfully created, that we’re looking outward and inward simultaneously. That’s why Jenkins’ work is profound. Chiron is us and we are him, asking ourselves, ‘Who am I? Where do I fit?'”
~ Michael Mann On Moonlight