Wednesday, July 23, 2014

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Posted July 23, 2014in Film Review

Skin game

“A Most Wanted Man” 3 stars Rated R 121 minutes Thriller Starring: Grigoriy Dobrygin, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Homayoun Ershadi Anton Corbjin’s unconventional post-9/11 spy thriller (based on John le Carré dated 2008 novel) remains an engaging experience in spite of myriad aspects that weigh it down. Notably, one of Philip

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Posted July 16, 2014in Film Review

Cultural touchstone

“Boyhood” 5 stars Rated R 166 minutes Drama Starring: Ellar Coltrane, Patricia Arquette, Ethan Hawke Just when you thought there was nothing new under the sun, Richard Linklater goes and makes the most anti-Hollywood movie ever conceived. In Linklater’s case, concept was everything — execution was quite another. Planning an

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Posted July 09, 2014in Film Review

Splendid isolation

“Me and You” 4 starsNot Rated 106 minutes Drama Starring: Tea Falco, Jacopo Olmo Antinori, Sonia Bergamasco Bernardo Bertolucci’s long awaited return to filmmaking after a decade-long absence is a beautifully photographed and provocative, coming-of-age drama in the vein of Bertolucci’s “La Luna” and his last film “The Dreamers.” As

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Posted July 02, 2014in Film Review

Sophomore slump

“The Rover” 2 stars Rated R 103 minutes Drama Starring: Guy Pearce, Robert Pattinson, Scoot McNairy Director/co-writer David Michôd suffers a sophomore slump in this disappointing follow-up to his well-crafted debut “Animal Kingdom” (2010), a crime drama about family of Melbourne gangsters led by a violence-prone matriarch (brilliantly played by

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Posted June 25, 2014in Film Review

Kinky boots

“Venus in Fur” 5 stars Not Rated 96 minutes Drama Starring: Emmanuelle Seigner, Mathieu Amalric Roman Polanski’s 20th film is an exquisite deconstructionist articulation of a quicksilver sadomasochistic tug-of-war between a middle-aged theater director and an enigmatic actress auditioning for a role in his upcoming play “Venus in Furs.” She

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Posted June 18, 2014in Film Review

Bromancing with guns out

“22 Jump Street” 2 stars Rated R 112 minutes Comedy Starring: Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, Ice Cube Everything about the concept of a “Jump Street” franchise reeks of Hollywood’s perpetual drive to repackage a formula and call it a movie. This year has been an abysmal year for Hollywood movies

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Posted June 11, 2014in Film Review

Time-warped nightmare profusion

“Edge of Tomorrow” 2 stars Rated PG-13 113 minutes Action Starring: Tom Cruise, Emily Blunt, Bill Paxton All high-concept, but affording only minimal entertainment reward by way of its stale ghost-in-the-machine storyline, “Edge of Tomorrow” is the “Groundhog Day” of sci-fi movies. Based on a Japanese novel (“All You Need

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Posted June 04, 2014in Film Review

Loose with math

“A Million Ways to Die in the West” 3 stars Rated R 116 minutes Comedy Starring: Seth MacFarlane, Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson Of the hundred or so gags, jokes and one-liners that comic genius Seth MacFarlane throws at the wall over the course of his bawdy and sometimes grotesque western

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Posted May 28, 2014in Film Review

Pure cinema

“The Dance of Reality” 5 stars Not Rated 130 minutes Drama Starring: Brontis Jodorowsky, Pamela Flores, Jeremias Herskovits After a 23-year hiatus from making feature films — his last was “The Rainbow Thief,” a work-for-hire film from 1990 starring Peter O’Toole and Omar Sharif that he disowned after it was

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Posted May 21, 2014in Film Review

Merchant ivory present

“Belle” 4 stars Rated PG 88 minutes Drama Starring: Gugu Mbatha-Raw Matthew Goode, Emily Watson However fated to be inexorably linked to “12 Years a Slave” — by mere virtue of its slave-related subplot — “Belle” is an accomplished period drama firmly in line with the top-drawer production values and

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