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- A bunch of ornery cowpokes from The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
The Oath: As reviewed in an earlier issue of the Express, actor-turned filmmaker Ike Barinholtz’s energetic political satire starts off as a harmless family sitcom, then zig-zags into a no-holds-barred dispatch from the epicenter of America’s culture wars. Barinholtz and Tiffany Haddish lead a spirited cast into the eye of the Trump-era home-front hurricane.
Suspiria: Surrealist grand-daddy André Breton once declared: “Beauty will be convulsive or not at all.” Director Luca Guadagnino (Call Me by Your Name) takes that advice seriously in the twisted tale of a young ballerina (Dakota Johnson) and her hellish debut in a Berlin dance troupe, adapted from Dario Argento’s 1977 horror pic of the same name. The all-grotesque supporting cast includes Tilda Swinton, Chloë Grace Moretz, Mia Goth, Angela Winkler, Ingrid Caven, 1977’s leading lady Jessica Harper, Sylvie Testud, and Renée Soutendijk. A genuine mindbender.
White Boy Rick: First-time actor Richie Merritt burns a hole in the screen as the title character, a Detroit teenager up to his eyeballs in the dope trade, circa late 1980s. And that’s changeling thesp Matthew McConaughey right behind him as Rick’s none-too-law-abiding dad. It’s a peppy, ultra-violent actioner, courtesy of writers Andy Weiss, Noah and Logan Miller, and director Yann Demange, who knows his way around tough neighborhoods (he made the Belfast “troubles” thriller ’71).