Search

Articles

    Analysis

      Blog

        Podcasts

          Throughlines

            February 14th, 2018

            Dr. Strangelove

            A Cold War satire that leaves you cold.

            Incomplete Story
            February 8th, 2018

            Professor Marston and The Wonder Women

            The secret identity of this film is the brilliant mutation of message into narrative structure.

            Complete Story
            February 6th, 2018

            The Florida Project

            Reporting the day’s events misses an opportunity to say something about the day’s events.

            Incomplete Story
            January 30th, 2018

            Mom and Dad

            A meaningless tale of familial violence that borders on saying something significant.

            Incomplete Story
            November 20th, 2017

            Winter's Bone

            An overwhelming sense of brooding darkens the tone of an otherwise Triumphant narrative.

            Complete Story
            November 6th, 2017

            A Bronx Tale

            A unique and complete storyform forms the foundation for this masterpiece of narrative.

            Complete Story
            October 23rd, 2017

            Blade Runner: 2049

            Large expanses between story points cloud an otherwise meaningful message about what it means to be human.

            Complete Story
            October 17th, 2017

            se7en

            An effective account of telling a story about the dangers of the stories we tell.

            Complete Story
            September 30th, 2017

            The One I Love

            Love the one you're with, lest you go home with someone else.

            Complete Story
            September 22nd, 2017

            Paterson

            A moving exploration of projecting thoughts into existence, of transforming intent into reality.

            Complete Story
            September 15th, 2017

            The Prestige

            A story of battling magicians foretells the consequences of risking it all for the roar of the crowd.

            Complete Story
            September 8th, 2017

            Get Out

            Breaking structure creates tremendous shock value-while maintaining the integrity of the message.

            Complete Story
            September 1st, 2017

            Okja

            Whether you intend to or not, leaving out key portions of an argument trends a story towards propaganda and coercion.

            Incomplete Story
            August 25th, 2017

            The LEGO Batman Movie

            A send-up of the Caped Crusader that masquerades as a clever and hilarious parody of story structure.

            Complete Story
            August 18th, 2017

            Dunkirk

            A missing Relationship Story Throughline and a deficient Main Character Throughline steer this narrative towards propaganda.

            Incomplete Story
            August 14th, 2017

            The Big Sick

            A brilliant, if not slightly long, exploration of what happens when one bases their life on the reactions of others.

            Complete Story
            August 7th, 2017

            Logan

            A narrative told through Four Throughlines elevates this film to legendary status.

            Complete Story
            July 31st, 2017

            Captain America: Civil War

            A classic story of revenge, told from a surprising perspective.

            Complete Story
            July 3rd, 2017

            Despicable Me 3

            An emotionally vapid experience lacking connective tissue to tie the various threads of storytelling together.

            Incomplete Story
            June 23rd, 2017

            Sing!

            Familiar & common because of its refusal to stray from the bare bones of story structure.

            Complete Story
            June 12th, 2017

            Wonder Woman

            A confident and exciting exploration of the power of female intuition over probability.

            Complete Story
            June 7th, 2017

            Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie

            Missing Throughlines cast this beautifully animated film into the bin of easily forgotten fare.

            Incomplete Story
            May 15th, 2017

            BFG

            Boredom arrives when the Author fails to provide a greater context for the conflict within a story.

            Incomplete Story
            March 6th, 2017

            Arrival

            A non-linear understanding of story makes it easier to appreciate the structure of this untraditional story.

            Complete Story
            February 24th, 2017

            Moonlight

            By leaving out a key component of the narrative, the filmmakers draw the Audience in--allowing them to become a part of the storytelling process.

            Complete Story
            February 1st, 2017

            The Yellow Birds

            Give your typical soldier an atypical method of problem-solving and open yourself up to a wider and more appreciative Audience.

            Complete Story
            January 28th, 2017

            I Don't Feel At Home In This World Anymore

            Shifts in the type of conflict and modes of expressing that conflict result in a shocking and jarring experience.

            Incomplete Story
            November 29th, 2016

            Moana

            Beautiful animation in service of a story-by-numbers, Disney delights while following a familiar pattern of narrative.

            Complete Story
            November 10th, 2016

            Hacksaw Ridge

            A moving and emotional film that effectively convinces us of the importance of staying true to one's convictions.

            Complete Story
            November 10th, 2016

            Trolls

            Fun, but misguided and episodic, an unfortunate consequence of its fractured narrative.

            Incomplete Story
            November 1st, 2016

            Captain Fantastic

            Powerful, insightful, and touching--the very definition of a moving and brilliant narrative.

            Complete Story
            October 11th, 2016

            Ex Machina

            A brilliant psychological thriller coded with a strong and meaningful story structure.

            Complete Story
            October 10th, 2016

            The Nice Guys

            High on fun, low on structure--a perfect example of a schizophrenic storymind.

            Incomplete Story
            August 24th, 2016

            Hell Or High Water

            A film that promises much, but delivers little when it comes to a functional and meaningful narrative.

            Incomplete Story
            August 17th, 2016

            Florence Foster Jenkins

            A delightful biographical comedy with a twist--Meryl Streep is neither the Main Character nor Influence Character.

            Complete Story
            August 2nd, 2016

            Eddie The Eagle

            Simple, familiar, and predictable--all things that could have been avoided with a deeper understanding of the story's thematics.

            Complete Story
            July 28th, 2016

            The Dark Horse

            From the first shot to the last, this masterful narrative takes us in and offers a powerful and emotional experience.

            Complete Story
            July 20th, 2016

            Hunt For The Wilderpeople

            A brilliant, wonderfully told film that can attribute much of its praise to its solid storyform.

            Complete Story
            July 20th, 2016

            Angry Birds

            Waiting an hour to begin a story results in a narrative that is difficult to remember.

            Incomplete Story
            July 6th, 2016

            45 Years

            A wonderfully crafted narrative supported by a stunning performance.

            Complete Story
            July 4th, 2016

            Zootopia

            A functioning and powerful storyform carries the message of this film for this generation, and the ones to come.

            Complete Story
            July 1st, 2016

            Little Boy

            Breaking structure to argue faith is a recipe for critical disaster.

            Incomplete Story
            June 13th, 2016

            When Marnie Was There

            A sophisticated and unique narrative structure supports this beautifully animated film.

            Complete Story
            May 18th, 2016

            Brooklyn

            A solid Main Character Throughline anchors this complete and well-written story.

            Complete Story
            April 26th, 2016

            Creed

            Another film may have won the night, but this film won the fight.

            Complete Story
            April 12th, 2016

            Inside Out

            A brilliant piece of filmmaking that uses what goes on inside of our heads to tell us a story about what goes on inside our heads.

            Complete Story
            April 6th, 2016

            Beasts Of No Nation

            A shocking, yet deeply meaningful look at child soldiers in Africa tops the list of 2015.

            Complete Story
            March 30th, 2016

            James White

            Breaking structure is a poor strategy for attracting eyeballs.

            Incomplete Story
            March 24th, 2016

            The Big Short

            A fantastic docudrama relating the tale of the US housing market collapse in 2007.

            Incomplete Story
            March 22nd, 2016

            Kilo Two Bravo

            Continuing the trend of expert filmmaking with little to no story.

            Incomplete Story
            March 14th, 2016

            Bridge Of Spies

            A beautiful documentary perfect for the History channel, but deficient in terms of story.

            Incomplete Story
            February 24th, 2016

            99 Homes

            A phenomenal thriller that pulls you in with its confident and complete narrative.

            Complete Story
            February 19th, 2016

            Steve Jobs

            A cold and under-developed Main Character Throughline distances us from becoming emotionally involved with the film.

            Incomplete Story
            February 2nd, 2016

            Cop Car

            Incomplete Throughlines explain why this film feels like a short stretched into a mediocre feature.

            Incomplete Story
            January 27th, 2016

            While We're Young

            A strong and well-woven storyform supports this entertaining and moving film.

            Complete Story
            January 18th, 2016

            The Revenant

            A tale of survival and revenge, not *a story* of survival and revenge.

            Incomplete Story
            January 12th, 2016

            Sicario

            A masterful thriller that makes meaning out of the meaningless.

            Complete Story
            January 5th, 2016

            Dope

            A solid & sophisticated Main Character Throughline anchors this smart indie.

            Complete Story
            December 23rd, 2015

            Star Wars: The Force Awakens

            The compulsion to see this film again can be attributed to a solid and complete story structure.

            Complete Story
            December 2nd, 2015

            The Peanuts Movie

            Gorgeous animation in the service of a broken and episodic tale.

            Incomplete Story
            November 22nd, 2015

            Minions

            Missing Throughlines account for this film's low rating.

            Incomplete Story
            November 4th, 2015

            Trainwreck

            Meaningful dick jokes explain this film's popularity.

            Complete Story
            October 21st, 2015

            The Martian

            An entertaining space tale with little more to offer.

            Incomplete Story
            October 11th, 2015

            Furious 7

            A fine tribute that could have been more.

            Incomplete Story
            September 30th, 2015

            Captain America: Winter Soldier

            The best Marvel comic book film falls just short of telling a complete story.

            Incomplete Story
            July 20th, 2015

            Ant-Man

            Diversionary fun; no real story.

            Incomplete Story
            May 11th, 2015

            The Sweet Hereafter

            Emotionally heavy, yet thematically rich and fulfilling.

            Complete Story
            May 7th, 2015

            Avengers: Age of Ultron

            Mindless comic-book fun.

            Incomplete Story
            March 13th, 2015

            Nightcrawler

            A rare gem; entertaining AND thematically compelling.

            Complete Story
            March 10th, 2015

            Ida

            A bleak, yet emotionally powerful, portrayal of a young woman's rediscovery of her true calling.

            Complete Story
            March 4th, 2015

            The Theory of Everything

            A split in a key relationship fractures an otherwise insightful narrative.

            Incomplete Story
            February 27th, 2015

            Whiplash

            A master class in solid & meaningful narrative structure.

            Complete Story
            December 30th, 2014

            Chef

            With half the narrative missing, this film's central argument fails to land.

            Incomplete Story
            December 17th, 2014

            Enough Said

            A message of catharsis reinforced by a competent & effective story structure.

            Complete Story
            December 16th, 2014

            A Most Wanted Man

            Deficient emotional throughlines relegate this film to a one & done experience.

            Incomplete Story
            December 3rd, 2014

            Copenhagen

            An incomplete narrative that feels more like a triptych than a story.

            Incomplete Story
            December 3rd, 2014

            Guardians of the Galaxy

            Incomplete Story
            November 12th, 2014

            Interstellar

            An interesting, yet emotionally unfulfilling ride through the experiences of a holistic-minded Main Character.

            Incomplete Story
            June 16th, 2014

            How to Train Your Dragon 2

            An animated film that argues for the use of violence over discussion.

            Incomplete Story
            May 6th, 2014

            The Past

            A sporadic & inconsistent Overall Story Throughline accounts for this film's lethargic and unsatisfying narrative.

            Incomplete Story
            April 29th, 2014

            Mother

            A powerful look at the unstoppable drive that is the maternal instinct.

            Complete Story
            April 23rd, 2014

            The Grand Budapest Hotel

            Incomplete Story
            April 14th, 2014

            The Spectacular Now

            Incomplete Story
            March 3rd, 2014

            12 Years a Slave

            Incomplete Story
            February 24th, 2014

            Brother Bear

            Incomplete Story
            February 19th, 2014

            The LEGO Movie

            Complete Story
            February 10th, 2014

            Frozen

            Complete Story
            January 25th, 2014

            her

            A film that demands repeated viewings almost certainly rests upon a strong structural foundation.

            Complete Story
            January 22nd, 2014

            American Hustle

            Incomplete Story
            January 17th, 2014

            Nebraska

            Complete Story
            January 16th, 2014

            Lone Survivor

            Incomplete Story
            January 13th, 2014

            Don Jon

            Incomplete Story
            January 3rd, 2014

            Dallas Buyers Club

            Complete Story
            January 2nd, 2014

            The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

            Incomplete Story
            January 1st, 2014

            Short Term 12

            Complete Story
            December 31st, 2013

            Inside Llewyn Davis

            Incomplete Story
            December 30th, 2013

            Mud

            Complete Story
            November 21st, 2013

            Gravity

            Incomplete Story
            April 15th, 2013

            Zero Dark Thirty

            Incomplete Story
            March 26th, 2013

            The Croods

            Incomplete Story
            March 24th, 2013

            Life of Pi

            Complete Story
            March 9th, 2013

            ParaNorman

            Incomplete Story
            March 8th, 2013

            The Intouchables

            Incomplete Story
            March 4th, 2013

            The Master

            Incomplete Story
            February 19th, 2013

            The Sessions

            Incomplete Story
            February 11th, 2013

            End of Watch

            Incomplete Story
            November 6th, 2012

            Wreck-It Ralph

            Complete Story
            October 17th, 2012

            Argo

            Incomplete Story
            October 15th, 2012

            Prometheus

            Incomplete Story
            October 2nd, 2012

            Looper

            Incomplete Story
            May 11th, 2012

            The Avengers

            Complete Story
            January 11th, 2012

            The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

            Incomplete Story
            November 30th, 2011

            Rabbit Hole

            Complete Story
            November 30th, 2011

            Your Highness

            Incomplete Story
            November 8th, 2011

            Captain America

            Incomplete Story
            November 3rd, 2011

            Crazy, Stupid, Love

            Complete Story
            October 28th, 2011

            Drive

            Incomplete Story
            October 20th, 2011

            50/50

            Complete Story
            October 19th, 2011

            Horrible Bosses

            Incomplete Story
            October 18th, 2011

            Moneyball

            Complete Story
            October 1st, 2011

            Bridesmaids

            Incomplete Story
            September 30th, 2011

            X-Men: First Class

            Incomplete Story
            August 31st, 2011

            Win Win

            Complete Story
            August 28th, 2011

            Tangled

            Incomplete Story
            August 24th, 2011

            Jane Eyre

            Complete Story
            August 22nd, 2011

            Battle: Los Angeles

            Incomplete Story
            August 16th, 2011

            Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2

            Complete Story
            August 8th, 2011

            Rise of the Planet of the Apes

            Incomplete Story
            August 6th, 2011

            Of Gods and Men

            Incomplete Story
            June 30th, 2011

            The Tree of Life

            Incomplete Story
            June 22nd, 2011

            The Adjustment Bureau

            Incomplete Story
            June 13th, 2011

            Super 8

            Incomplete Story
            June 13th, 2011

            The Housemaid

            Incomplete Story
            May 29th, 2011

            Even the Rain

            Complete Story
            May 29th, 2011

            Kung Fu Panda 2

            Incomplete Story
            May 21st, 2011

            Thor

            Incomplete Story
            April 21st, 2011

            Faster

            Incomplete Story
            April 17th, 2011

            Hanna

            Incomplete Story
            March 23rd, 2011

            Animal Kingdom

            Complete Story
            March 23rd, 2011

            Blue Valentine

            Incomplete Story
            January 7th, 2011

            True Grit

            Incomplete Story
            January 3rd, 2011

            The Kids Are All Right

            Incomplete Story
            December 22nd, 2010

            Tron: Legacy

            Incomplete Story
            December 16th, 2010

            The Fighter

            Incomplete Story
            December 9th, 2010

            Black Swan

            Complete Story
            December 2nd, 2010

            Megamind

            Incomplete Story
            December 2nd, 2010

            The King's Speech

            Complete Story
            November 17th, 2010

            127 Hours

            Incomplete Story
            October 29th, 2010

            Let Me In

            Complete Story
            October 13th, 2010

            The Social Network

            Complete Story
            October 6th, 2010

            Easy A

            Incomplete Story
            September 28th, 2010

            Get Him to the Greek

            Incomplete Story
            September 24th, 2010

            The Town

            Complete Story
            September 8th, 2010

            Kick Ass

            Incomplete Story
            July 20th, 2010

            Inception

            Incomplete Story
            June 21st, 2010

            Toy Story 3

            Complete Story
            May 18th, 2010

            Iron Man 2

            Incomplete Story
            May 4th, 2010

            Date Night

            Incomplete Story
            March 27th, 2010

            How to Train Your Dragon

            Complete Story
            March 12th, 2010

            Two Thousand Twelve

            Incomplete Story
            February 8th, 2010

            The Invention of Lying

            Incomplete Story
            January 2nd, 2010

            500 Days of Summer

            Complete Story
            January 2nd, 2010

            Avatar

            Incomplete Story
            December 22nd, 2009

            The Princess and the Frog

            Incomplete Story
            December 15th, 2009

            Up In The Air

            Complete Story
            December 6th, 2009

            Coraline

            Incomplete Story
            November 26th, 2009

            New Moon

            Complete Story
            October 31st, 2009

            Where the Wild Things Are

            Incomplete Story
            October 9th, 2009

            Zombieland

            Complete Story
            October 7th, 2009

            Sunshine Cleaning

            Incomplete Story
            September 27th, 2009

            State of Play

            Incomplete Story
            September 26th, 2009

            Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs

            Complete Story
            September 24th, 2009

            The Informant

            Incomplete Story
            September 17th, 2009

            Nine

            Incomplete Story
            September 8th, 2009

            Adventureland

            Incomplete Story
            September 7th, 2009

            Gran Torino

            Complete Story
            September 1st, 2009

            The Hurt Locker

            Complete Story
            August 30th, 2009

            Watchmen

            Incomplete Story
            August 29th, 2009

            I Love You, Man

            Complete Story
            August 28th, 2009

            District 9

            Complete Story
            August 25th, 2009

            Inglorious Basterds

            Incomplete Story
            August 25th, 2009

            The Counterfeiters

            Complete Story
            August 23rd, 2009

            Let The Right One in

            Incomplete Story
            August 21st, 2009

            Taken

            Incomplete Story
            August 18th, 2009

            Funny People

            Incomplete Story
            August 18th, 2009

            Moon

            The lack of a thorough examination of all Four Throughlines hinders this film from rising above.

            Incomplete Story
            July 23rd, 2009

            Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

            Incomplete Story
            July 9th, 2009

            Public Enemies

            Incomplete Story
            June 25th, 2009

            Bruno

            Incomplete Story
            June 25th, 2009

            The Proposal

            Incomplete Story
            June 11th, 2009

            The Hangover

            Complete Story
            June 6th, 2009

            Up

            Complete Story
            May 21st, 2009

            Star Trek

            Complete Story
            May 17th, 2009

            The Lives of Others

            Complete Story
            April 27th, 2009

            The Wrestler

            Complete Story
            April 7th, 2009

            Doubt

            An unconventional exploration of thematic structure and positioning of the Audience.

            Complete Story
            April 8th, 2008

            I Am Legend

            Incomplete Story
            January 25th, 2008

            Rambo

            Incomplete Story
            January 24th, 2008

            27 Dresses

            Complete Story
            December 24th, 2007

            The Mist

            Incomplete Story
            August 10th, 2007

            Stranger Than Fiction

            Incomplete Story
            August 3rd, 2007

            300

            Incomplete Story
            July 25th, 2007

            Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

            Incomplete Story
            July 9th, 2007

            Ratatouille

            Complete Story
            June 28th, 2007

            Babel

            Incomplete Story
            June 11th, 2007

            South Park: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut

            Complete Story
            May 10th, 2007

            Little Children

            Incomplete Story
            May 2nd, 2007

            Laura

            Complete Story
            April 23rd, 2007

            Casino Royale

            Complete Story
            April 17th, 2007

            Training Day

            Complete Story
            April 3rd, 2007

            Children of Men

            Complete Story
            March 30th, 2007

            Meet the Robinsons

            Incomplete Story
            March 16th, 2007

            Notting Hill

            Complete Story
            March 9th, 2007

            Hotel Rwanda

            Complete Story
            February 27th, 2007

            The New World

            Incomplete Story
            February 15th, 2007

            The Maltese Falcon

            Incomplete Story
            August 15th, 2006

            Taladega Nights

            Incomplete Story
            August 11th, 2006

            Amelie

            Complete Story
            July 26th, 2006

            Pirates 2: Dead Man’s Chest

            Incomplete Story
            July 19th, 2006

            Tarzan

            Complete Story
            July 17th, 2006

            Superman Returns

            Incomplete Story
            June 23rd, 2006

            Nacho Libre

            Incomplete Story
            June 15th, 2006

            The Break-Up

            Incomplete Story
            June 29th, 2005

            War of the Worlds

            Is it sad to say that I saw this film in Spielberg's private screening room on the Universal lot...and hated it?

            Incomplete Story