Specialty Releases

Film Review: “Stan & Ollie” Honors the Great Laurel & Hardy

Stan & Ollie (Jon S. Baird, 2018) 3 out of 4 stars. Stan Laurel (1890-1965, born Arthur Stanley Jefferson) and Oliver Hardy (1892-1957, born Norvell Hardy) were mildly popular performers in their own right when, in 1927, producer Hal Roach paired … Continue reading

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Film Review: “The Standoff at Sparrow Creek” Delivers Mostly Solid Thrills

The Standoff at Sparrow Creek (Henry Dunham, 2018) 3 out of 4 stars. Just a few months ago, I had never heard of James Badge Dale, and now all of a sudden (or so it seems) he appears in three movies … Continue reading

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Film Review: With Nuance and Balance, “Untouchable” Explores Fraught Truths About Sex Crimes

Untouchable (David Feige, 2016) 4 out of 4 stars. Most human beings, I hope, can agree that the sexual abuse of children is a grievous wrong that should be punished to the full extent allowed by the courts. Beyond such a … Continue reading

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Film Review: “Mary Queen of Scots” Deserves a Better Fate

Mary Queen of Scots (Josie Rourke, 2018) 1 out of 4 stars. A narrative mess of a film occasionally buoyed by the raw beauty of well-photographed Scottish landscapes, Mary Queen of Scots begins as a sharp examination of the challenges faced by … Continue reading

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Film Review: “Vox Lux” Loses Both Voice and Light by the End

Vox Lux (Brady Corbet, 2018) 2 out of 4 stars. A film that starts with a bang and ends in a fizzle, Vox Lux impresses before it disappoints. Featuring a brilliant set of twin performances from Raffey Cassidy (The Killing of a … Continue reading

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Film Review: In “Dumplin’,” the (Plus-Size) Outsiders Triumph

Dumplin’ (Anne Fletcher, 2018) 3 out of 4 stars. A mostly sweet, if sometimes saccharine, coming-of-age tale of self-actualization that takes a firm stand against monolithic views of body image, Dumplin’, out on Netflix starting December 7, goes down easy, its … Continue reading

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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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