Specialty Releases

Film Review: Shoot Down “The Seagull” to End Its Misery

The Seagull (Michael Mayer, 2018) 1 out of 4 stars. To be fair to director Michael Mayer (Flicka) and his troupe of actors, I have never been a fan of the original 1896 play The Seagull. The deeply talented Russian … Continue reading

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Film Review: In Powerful “Summer 1993,” a Child Overcomes Trauma

Summer 1993 (“Estiu 1993”) (Carla Simón, 2017) 4 out of 4 stars. A heartbreaking coming-of-age tale about a 6-year-old girl adjusting to a new life with a new family, Summer 1993 showcases remarkable, naturalistic performances from its ensemble of actors … Continue reading

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Film Review: In “Bye Bye Germany,” Jewish Holocaust Survivors Have the Last Laugh

Bye Bye Germany (Sam Garbarski, 2018)  3½ out of 4 stars. First, a few words about German actor Moritz Bleibtreu. Ever since I first saw him in Tom Tykwer’s 1998 Run Lola Run (in which he played Lola’s boyfriend, Manni), … Continue reading

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Film Review: “Godard Mon Amour” Pokes Impish Fun at Its Aging Enfant Terrible

Godard Mon Amour (Michel Hazanavicius, 2017) 3 out of 4 stars. Whether or not one has a favorable opinion of iconic French director Jean-Luc Godard – creator of such classics of the 1960s New Wave as Breathless, Contempt and, my personal … Continue reading

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Film Review: In Stunning “1945,” a Holocaust Reckoning Awaits

1945 (Ferenc Török, 2017) 4 out of 4 stars. Director Ferenc Török’s sixth feature film, 1945 opens with the seemingly innocuous image of two Orthodox Jewish men stepping off a train. Their arrival – and the horror and fear it provokes … Continue reading

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Film Review: Twisted “Flower” Never Quite Blossoms

Flower (Max Winkler, 2018) 1½ out of 4 stars. If the very first scene of Max Winkler’s second feature, Flower, don’t turn you completely off the movie, there’s a chance you’ll emerge at the other end having had a better … Continue reading

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Film Review: Timlin and Tucci Save “Submission” from Disaster

Submission (Richard Levine, 2017) 2½ out of 4 stars. Based on Francine Prose’s 2000 novel Blue Angel, in which a creative-writing professor at a small liberal-arts college in Vermont develops an inappropriate obsession with one of his students, Submission has … Continue reading

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Film Review: “On Body and Soul”

On Body and Soul (Ildikó Enyedi, 2017) Ildikó Enyedi is perhaps the most reliable female director from Hungary working today. She was awarded best director by the Hungarian film critics awards with “Simon, the Magician” in 1999, and won the Golden … Continue reading

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Film Review: In “Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool,” Actress Gloria Grahame Deserves a Better End

Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool (Paul McGuigan, 2017) 1½ out of 4 stars. The actress Gloria Grahame died in 1981, at the age of 55, mostly forgotten by an industry that had once celebrated her in the late 1940s … Continue reading

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Film Review: Overly Constructed, “The Insult” Still Packs a Powerful Punch

The Insult (Ziad Doueiri, 2017) 3 out of 4 stars. A brooding cinematic reflection on ethnic conflict and reconciliation, The Insult – from Lebanese director Ziad Doueiri (The Attack) – takes on the Middle East’s fraught history of sectarian violence in … Continue reading

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