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Film Review

In the Mood to Fight

by Ann Morrow September 5, 2013

thumb_36cinpicGRAND

  The grandmaster in Wong Kar-Wai’s latest visual rhapsody is Ip Man (Tony Leung), a legend in the history of the martial arts, and not just for his involvement in the training of Bruce Lee. According ...

In Neutral, With Feeling

by Laura Leon September 5, 2013

thumb_36cinemapicNOW

  The previews would have you think that The Spectacular Now is a comedy following in the steps of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, featuring the class cut-up who is friend to everybody but, famously, predictably unreliable ...

They’re Watching

by Laura Leon September 5, 2013

thumb_36cinemapicCLOSED

  With its birds-eye, security-cam views of Brits, ex-patriots, and tourists walking through, talking in, working, and just living in London, Closed Circuit makes us shiver at the  mere suggestion of 24/7 surveillance even as it ...

With a Bang

by Shawn Stone August 28, 2013

thumb_35cinemapicWORLDS

  Like The Great Gatsby, this new Edgar Wright comedy features a protagonist determined to re-create the past. Like Jay Gatsby, Gary King (Simon Pegg) is willing to move heaven and earth to bring his dream ...

Nowhere Man

by Shawn Stone August 28, 2013

thumb_35cinemapicJOBS

  As an actor, Ashton Kutcher is very tall. He also owns his “smug asshole” shtick. Both of these qualities are an asset as the titular Apple Computer cofounder Steve Jobs. In this surprisingly conventional and ...

Senseless Violence

by Shawn Stone August 22, 2013

thumb_34cinemapicKICK

  The problem with Kick-Ass 2 is, fundamentally, the same problem that undermined Kick-Ass. The title character, a weakling teenage fanboy (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) who reinvents himself as the “superhero” Kick-Ass, is a bore. In terms of ...

Backstairs at the White House

by Laura Leon August 22, 2013

The Butler (2013)
Forest Whitaker
(Screengrab)

  The main strength of Lee Daniels’ The Butler is its depiction of working-class blacks doing what they need to do to succeed and thrive in the context of great social change and upheaval. This is ...

Damsel in Distress

by Laura Leon August 22, 2013

thumb_34cinemapicBLUE

  As he has in the past, Woody Allen proves his talent for depicting frazzled women in a way that perhaps only Pedro Almodovar, or in the past, George Stevens, could. Blue Jasmine refers to the ...

The Future is Now

by Ann Morrow August 15, 2013

thumb_33cinemapicELYSIUM

  The year is 2154, the place a “diseased, polluted, and vastly overpopulated” planet Earth, and the writer-director is Neill Blomkamp, the filmmaker behind District 9, the unlikely 2009 sci-fi Best Picture Oscar nominee. In Elysium, ...

Nothing’s Shocking

by Laura Leon August 15, 2013

thumb_33cinpicMILLERS

  When drug dealer David Clark (Jason Sudeikis) gets mugged and his bankroll snatched, he has to scramble to find a way to avoid revenge by his boss (Ed Helms), a guy so well-off and twisted ...

Flying High

by Laura Leon August 15, 2013

thumb_33cinpicPLANES

  Disney’s Planes is very much like Pixar’s Cars, in that it’s animated (and available in 3D) and softly colored, and features machines that function with far more capabilities than those for which they were intended. ...

Sex Negative

by Shawn Stone August 15, 2013

thumb_33cinemapicLOVELACE

  It’s hard to imagine now, when a wide variety of sexual activity is available for your perusal just a few clicks away on the Internet, but watching porn used to be difficult. Most folks had ...

It’s Just Sex

by Shawn Stone August 7, 2013

thumb_32cinemapicTODO

  Brandi Klark (Aubrey Plaza) has accomplished everything she’s set out to do in her high school career. She’s class valedictorian. She’s been accepted to a great university far, far away from her Boise, Idaho, home. ...

Real Drama

by Shawn Stone August 7, 2013

thumb_32cinpicWOLVERINE

  This is the best big-budget superhero/monster/Sci Fi action movie of the summer. In The Wolverine, Logan (Hugh Jackman) rediscovers his calling as a soldier for the forces of good. Director James Mangold (Walk the Line) ...

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 ...