Breaking

Film Review: SPLIT

  Yes, it’s terrific. We have a new Hannibal. Extraordinary performance by McAvoy. It’s his next franchise. Will the next 10 years going to be all about Shyamalan all the time? Does he remember his last films with shame like … Continue reading

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Patriots Day Pays Effective Tribute to Boston in the Aftermath of Tragedy

Patriots Day (Peter Berg, 2016) 3 out of 4 stars A taut procedural about the investigation following the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, Patriots Day, from director Peter Berg (Lone Survivor), presents the facts of a case that we already know in an … Continue reading

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Film Review: Elle

Verhoeven is back. Huppert’s magnificent, fearless performance deserves the Best Actress Academy Award. Paul Verhoeven has done the impossible. (Whatever happened to Renny Harlin?) With ELLE, Verhoeven has resurrected his career as a first-class director. While he has worked consistently … Continue reading

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In Moving Lion, Dev Patel Roars

Lion (Garth Davis, 2016) 3 out of 4 stars Based on the memoir A Long Way Home, by Saroo Brierley, Lion tells the tale of how Brierley, born in extreme poverty in India, came to be adopted, as a young child, by … Continue reading

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Paterson Celebrates the Magic of Our Ordinary World

Paterson (Jim Jarmusch, 2016) 3½ stars out of 4 Ever since his first theatrical feature, Stranger Than Paradise, in 1984 – which won the Caméra d’Or (Best First Feature) award at the Cannes Film Festival – American indie auteur Jim Jarmusch has accumulated a … Continue reading

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Enjoyable, if Simplistic, Hidden Figures Sheds Needed Light on Hidden History of NASA

Hidden Figures (Theodore Melfi, 2016) 3 out of 4 stars Hidden Figures is the second feature from writer/director Theodore Melfi, who brought us St. Vincent in 2014. Where that film was a low-key, offbeat comedy starring Bill Murray, Melissa McCarthy and Naomi … Continue reading

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The Dilemma of Jackie: Beautiful to Behold, Unbearable to Watch

Jackie (Pablo Larraín, 2016) -1 out of 4 stars We first meet her in close-up, shot in muted grays and blues, with a series of oddly centered compositions, smoking, walking, and then greeting a journalist – never named, but clearly Theodore White – … Continue reading

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La La Land Is a Magical, Musical Paean to the Hollywood Dream Factory

La La Land (Damien Chazelle, 2016) 4 out of 4 stars From its exuberant opening musical number, set atop a traffic-jammed Los Angeles freeway overpass, La La Land announces its intention to win your heart through whimsy. With songs and score (alternately … Continue reading

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In Weary Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Take on the Death Star

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (Gareth Edwards, 2016) 1½ out of 4 stars Gradually, over the course of the 39 years since the release of the original Star Wars film (now redubbed "Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope"), the transmedia universe in … Continue reading

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Ho, Ho, Ho: “Office Christmas Party” Delivers Just Enough Laughs to Justify Its Existence

Office Christmas Party (Josh Gordon/Will Speck, 2016) 2 out of 4 stars There is something both comfortably and distressingly familiar about Office Christmas Party, a simultaneously laid-back and frenetic comedy about underdogs who triumph over adversity of their own making. Filled … Continue reading

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