Zola (2020)

It’s tweet-sized in its story, too often feeling like a short film stretched thin with gaps where deeper character or theme development should be. The scattered script pieces are excellent though, provoking in their subject matter, plot thrills, and relational dynamics, and Paige’s great Zola provides a steady emotional core throughout. Its construction is also amazing: the film grain, fades, and freeze frames, the unique camera angles, the vocalized texts, the unnerving sound design and score.

The Devil All the Time (2020)

Well-made, not just in its technical elements but in the way it deftly ties its many characters and generation-long plot threads together in such a satisfying (and ultimately surprisingly positive, as suspicion and violence give way to trust and sleep) manner, making for a powerfully morbid epic on the dangers of religion. That said, it’s done through a distanced, fairy tale-like approach that prevents it from ever reaching emotional dramatic excellence despite solid turns by the whole cast.

Logan Lucky (2017)

Strangely slow-paced for a heist flick, and maybe a little meandering, but as it sinks in you realize that’s part of its unique, down-to-earth charm. The pace provides time to invest in the cast of quirky, blue-collar characters (steady Clyde and hard-luck, hard-working Jimmy have a great dynamic) and the heist is still lots of fun (the jail stand-off was a highlight). It may not have the flash and pop of a Rihanna hit, but it’s got the staying power and folksy warmth of a John Denver classic.
7ly Good)