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Film Review

Personal and Political

by Ann Morrow August 1, 2013

thumb_31cinpicATTACK

  The Attack is about an Arab surgeon in Tel Aviv whose wife disappears and is suspected of terrorism. Yet despite its title and setting, this Lebanese film (adapted from an Algerian novel) can be thought ...

Testament

by Laura Leon August 1, 2013

FRUITVALE
© 2013 The Weinstein Company. All Rights Reserved.

  The comparisons to the Trayvon Martin case will be inevitable, but a discussion of Fruitvale Station should include questions such as how we measure the meaning of a life: How it is lived and how ...

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The Attendants

by Ann Morrow July 25, 2013

THE WAY, WAY BACK





©WWBSP LLC. All Rights Reserved.

  Sometimes all it takes is one summertime friend to change a hopeless wallflower into a confident cool guy. And that’s what happens to Duncan (Liam James), a 14-year-old so insecure he’s completely inarticulate. But what ...

Let’s Do It Again

by Shawn Stone July 25, 2013

thumb_30cinpicRED2

  As RED 2 begins, the world is on the brink of nuclear disaster. It’s time for the aging heroes of 2010’s sleeper hit, played by Bruce Willis, John Malkovich, Brian Cox and Helen Mirren, to ...

Monstrous Fun

by Shawn Stone July 18, 2013

thumb_29cinpicPACIFIC

  The trailer for this film was dispiriting. Even with the wonderful Guillermo del Toro (Hellboy, Pan’s Labyrinth) on board as director and cowriter, the bad vibe was inescapable and left just one wearying question in ...

The Singing Codgers

by Ann Morrow July 18, 2013

thumb_29cinpicSONG

  Marion (Vanessa Redgrave) may be old but she still wants to have a bit of fun, and so she joins a singing group at a nearby senior center. Her antisocial husband, Arthur (Terence Stamp), thinks ...

Let It Rip

by Laura Leon July 18, 2013

thumb_29cinpicUPS

  Farts. Barfs. Burps. Boob and dick jokes. It’s all here, in Grown Ups 2, the latest example of Adam Sandler’s inability to grasp that he’s approaching 50—and maybe his audience is, too. That said, I found ...

Softer Heart Still Shines

by Laura Leon July 10, 2013

thumb_28cinemapicME

  Pulling off a sequel to Despicable Me, in which the evil genius Gru (Steve Carell) steals the moon from the sky before succumbing to the sweetness of the three little girls he adopts, is a ...

Female Trouble

by Laura Leon July 3, 2013

thumb_27cinemapicHEAT

  The cop buddy film is legend, if not always legendary, but it has provided more than its share of enjoyable onscreen moments. I still remember the sheer joy that was Eddie Murphy running roughshod over ...

Snoozing Through Georgia

by Ann Morrow July 3, 2013

thumb_27cinemapicCOPPER

  During the Civil War era, “copperhead” was slang for Northerners who sympathized with the Confederate cause. There were even copperheads in New York state, though not all of them were against emancipation. But some were, ...

If First You Don’t Succeed, Blow It Up Again

by Shawn Stone July 3, 2013

thumb_27cinemapicWHITEHOUSE

  When I was younger, the films of Roland Emmerich bothered me. In fact, they bothered me much more than they should have. At first, this was because of the peculiar (and consistent) manner they fell ...

Love’s Labour’s Won

by Laura Leon June 26, 2013

Much Ado About Nothing

  Joss Whedon, noted mastermind behind TV hits like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and megaflicks like The Avengers, goes softer, yet more urgent, with his modern-day retelling of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing. Set in Santa ...

What Makes Right?

by Ann Morrow June 26, 2013

TE_01770.nef

  In this smart and topical eco-thriller, it’s an eye for eye, or as the members of the East, an environmental terrorism cell, put it: “Poison our habitat, and we’ll poison yours.” And for most of ...

Toothless

by Shawn Stone June 26, 2013

thumb_26cinpicZZZ

  I’m no expert, but when zombies come to mind they fall into one of three groups. First, there are the old-school voodoo zombies of the Caribbean, as seen in The Serpent and the Rainbow, White ...

Reboot Successful

by Ann Morrow June 19, 2013

thumb_25cinpicSTEEL

  Planet Krypton is heading for destruction. Rebellious leader Jor-El (Russell Crowe) prepares for the end by rocketing his newborn son to a life-form-compatible planet called Earth. The end is even nearer for Jor-El, though, when ...

Love Hurts

by Laura Leon June 19, 2013

thumb_25cinemapicMIDNIGHT

  Has it really been 18 years since film audiences were charmed by the flirtations of American Jesse (Ethan Hawke) and French Celine (Julie Delpy)? They met cute on a train crossing Europe, and enjoyed the ...

High Adventure

by Ann Morrow June 13, 2013

thumb_24cinemapicKON

  Adventure stories don’t get any more timeless than this 1947 true-life adventure of a half-dozen reckless young men rafting across almost 5,000 miles of Pacific Ocean. And just as Norwegian scientist Thor Heyerdahl, author of ...

Serious Soap

by Laura Leon June 13, 2013

thumb_24cinemapicLOVE

  The slow dissolve of a gray high-rise being washed over in egg-yolk yellow that precedes the narrative of Love Is All You Need is pretty much all you need to know about where this movie, ...

Late Bloomer

by Shawn Stone June 6, 2013

thumb_23cinemapicFRANCES

  This charming comedy tells the story of a woman who doesn’t realize how immature she is—or that she was supposed to grow up. When we meet Frances (co-screenwriter Greta Gerwig), she is a 27-year-old modern ...

The Old Razzle Dazzle

by Shawn Stone June 6, 2013

thumb_23cinemapicNOW

  Four talented street magicians—hustlers, really, plying their trade both inside and outside the law—are summoned by a mysterious, hooded figure to an obscure New York City location. Daniel (Jesse Eisenberg) is a master of sleight ...

Custom Engineered

by Shawn Stone May 30, 2013

thumb_22cinemapicFAST

  Bigger, faster, harder, louder: Those are the goals of any action blockbuster, and especially one with a number after the title. Fast & Furious 6 lives up to this mantra, with faster cars, bigger explosions ...

Field of Schemes

by Ann Morrow May 30, 2013

Dennis Quaid as Henry.

  In the golden cornfields of Iowa, the cherished Americana portrait of grain farming is changing under the domination of corporate agribusiness. Henry Whipple (Dennis Quaid), a fake-folksy farmer who sells GMO seeds to pay for ...

It’s a Small Small Small Small World

by Laura Leon May 30, 2013

thumb_22cinpic_EPIC

  Having been aggressively previewed at kids’ motion pictures for more than a year, and coming as it did on a weekend in which there was pretty much nothing to do except seek out any movie ...

Signifying Nothing

by Shawn Stone May 23, 2013

thumb_21cinpicSTAR

  Perhaps the most intriguing parts of J.J. Abrams’ sequel to his Star Trek reboot of four years ago are the opening and closing scenes. At the beginning, we join the starship Enterprise at the start ...

A Model Sociopath

by Shawn Stone May 23, 2013

thumb_21cinemapicICEMAN

  Michael Shannon is both chilling and sympathetic in this based-on-a-true-story crime drama about a hitman with a normal family life. Richard Kuklinski (Shannon) does his day’s work—shooting, poisoning, stabbing, and then dismembering the resulting corpses—and ...