POOR THINGS – Review by Susan Granger

I’m told that Yorgos Lanthimos’s films (Dogtooth, The Lobster, The Favourite) are an “acquired taste,” meaning that – at first viewing – they’re unpleasant but after being experienced repeatedly, they’re, perhaps, likeable and can be appreciated. Unfortunately, I have not found that to be true, particularly as it applies to his newest sci-fi dramedy Poor Things, a strange, surreal satire that won the Golden Lion in Venice and features Emma Stone’s graphic full-frontal nudity.. Adapting Scottish author/artist Alasdair Gray’s 1992 dementedly comic novel, screenwriter Tony McNamara focuses the late-Victorian-era story on the bizarre evolution of Bella Baxter (Stone), a suicidal pregnant woman reanimated by reclusive, facially-scarred mad-scientist Dr. Godwin Baxter (Willem Dafoe), who transplants into her cranial cavity the brain of the baby in her womb.

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POOR THINGS – Review by Diane Carson

Poor Things satirizes Victorian England through naïve Bella Baxter. Some directors enjoy pushing their films’ style and content beyond conventional formulas. That group includes Greek director Yorgos Lanthimos whose work includes The Lobster, The Favourite, and The Killing of a Sacred Deer. With his newest, Poor Things, Lanthimos has exceeded even his previous outlandish choices as Bella Baxter pursues a life of unregulated, hedonistic indulgence.

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POOR THINGS – Review by T.J. Callahan

Poor Things, a screenplay from the pen of Tony McNamara (Cruella, The Favourite), from a novel by Alasdair Gray, gets the Yorgos Lanthimos (The Lobster) treatment as he directs Emma Stone like you’ve never seen her before in this sci fi black comedy reanimated romance that can only be described as extraordinarily weird. One could look at Poor Things as a story of feminism. A depressed and kept woman breaks away to successfully take control of her life, but is her empowerment all done through a male perspective? This makes Poor Things, as odd as it is, the perfect discussion film.

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POOR THINGS – Review by Valerie Kalfrin

Poor Things, the latest film from provocative director Yorgos Lanthimos (The Favourite), is full of plenty of idiosyncrasies—par for the course from the Oscar nominee who crafted a romance (The Lobster) in a society where single people become animals should they fail to find a mate. Here, the scientist belches bubbles that float above the dining table, his house rife with animals spliced from different species, such as a duck with dog’s feet. The shots vary in composition and style, moving from scenes in black and white to those with a fish-eye lens and in hyper-saturated colors.

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CRUELLA – Review by Martha K Baker

A so-called “prequel,” Cruella quotes more than it originates. Set in the punking ’70s in London, the film traces the early days of the evil-doer known as Cruella back to the time that she was Estella. Even as a child, her white and black hair symbolized her good and evil sides.

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CRUELLA – Review by Pam Grady

You’ve got to hand it to the Mouse. Disney can make a princess out of anyone, even one of its legendary villains, Cruella De Ville, a kind of hard-hearted Snow White whose Evil Queen is her designer boss, the Baroness. For those of us who grew up loathing that simpering, eventually sleeping princess, this is more like it: a princess who gives as good as she gets.

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CRUELLA – Review by Susan Wloszczyna

What’s black, white and wittily wicked fun all over? Disney’s Cruella, an origin story of the puppy-snatching villainess from the studio’s 101 Dalmatians franchise that was launched 50 years ago with the much-beloved original animated canine classic In that version, the pelt-wearing, skunk-haired crone with jutting cheekbones swanned about as she waved her cigarette holder while plotting to make a black and white fur coat from puppies.

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THE FAVOURITE – Review by Brandy McDonnell

This is not your typical Oscar-bait historical drama, the kind with formally fancy costumes and stilted Queen’s English dialogue. Quite the opposite: “The Favourite” is an unapologetically profane, bracingly biting and wildly compelling tale of royal power plays fueled by three virtuoso women portraying refreshingly complex women.

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