Specialty Releases

Film Review: “The American Meme” Does Justice to Vapid Cultural #Phenoms

The American Meme (Bert Marcus, 2018) 3 out of 4 stars. We can’t #hashtag our way out of this: #fame is the name of the game. But when everyone strives for celebrity status, however brief its duration, then what does stardom … Continue reading

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Film Review: In the End, “Never Look Away” Looks Not Closely Enough

Never Look Away (“Werk ohne Autor”) (Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, 2018) 2 out of 4 stars. Never Look Away – or “Werk ohne Autor” (“work without an author”) in the original German – begins in a Dresden museum in 1937, where a … Continue reading

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Film Review: “The Ballad of Buster Scruggs” Sings an Uneven Tune

The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (Ethan and Joel Coen, 2018) 2 out of 4 stars. A collection of 6 short Westerns from Ethan and Joel Coen, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs is nothing if not uneven. Though infused throughout with the brothers’ … Continue reading

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Film Review: Scots Rule in “Outlaw King”

Outlaw King (David Mackenzie, 2018) 3 out of 4 stars. Despite the copious online coverage of the mid-film reveal of star Chris Pine’s genitalia in all its naked glory (don’t get too excited, as it’s only up there for a nanosecond), the … Continue reading

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Film Review: In “Maria by Callas,” the Diva Shines

Maria by Callas (Tom Volf, 2017) 3½ out of 4 stars. A documentary both elliptical and precisely structured, weaving in and out of broad temporal montages and detailed historical sequences, Maria by Callas tells the story of its subject with deep love and … Continue reading

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Film Review: The Stars Align in “Studio 54”

Studio 54 (Matt Tyrnauer, 2018) 4 out of 4 stars. From director Matt Tyrnauer – who last gave us Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood, profiling the erotic lifestyles of Hollywood’s heyday – comes another lurid tale, this one of sex, drugs … Continue reading

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Film Review: “The Guilty” Is Depressing As All Hell, but Masterfully Realized

The Guilty (Gustav Möller, 2018) 3 out of 4 stars. The Guilty is the feature debut of Danish director Gustav Möller, and is a beautifully executed thriller that takes place entirely in one location, far away from the action, keeping the viewer … Continue reading

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Film Review: Redford Shines in “The Old Man and the Gun”

The Old Man and the Gun (David Lowery, 2018) 3 out of 4 stars.  Would that the delightful, slow-paced mayhem of a crime spree profiled in the first two-thirds of David Lowery’s The Old Man and the Gun could sustain itself. That … Continue reading

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Film Review: Stylish “Galveston” Is a Heartless Place to Linger

Galveston (Mélanie Laurent, 2018) 2½ out of 4 stars. Galveston, based on the eponymous book by Nic Pizzolatto and directed by Mélanie Laurent (Diving), is both a stylish slow-burn of a noirish thriller, meticulously acted by a cast that includes Ben … Continue reading

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Netflix Film Review: “22 July” Is Both Effective and Deeply Unpleasant

22 July (Paul Greengrass, 2018) 3 out of 4 stars. It takes a certain kind of masochist to embrace the cinematic adaptation of a horrific real-life event. This does not make Paul Greengrass (Jason Bourne), the director of 22 July – a retelling … Continue reading

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