Posts Tagged ‘Film’

SCHOOLYARD NERD TO HIP HIP STAR

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Not long after The Notorious B.I.G. (aka Christopher Wallace) was killed in 1997, a grieving Voletta Wallace made this candid admission about her late son’s hip-hop records: “He used filthy language because the stories he was telling were filthy.” But Notorious, a new biopic about the late rapper, does not share the ambivalence of a [&hellip
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CHERRY BLOSSOMS

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Doris Dorrie is best known for the 1985 German film Men, a modest feminist comedy taking on sexual hierarchies. Its praise made Dorrie the Sofia Coppola of her day, celebrated as a standard-bearing female director. But unlike Coppola, Dorrie actually examined her characters social and psychological circumstances—perhaps because she had a fundamental connection to feminist [&hellip
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TELLING STORIES

Written by admin on . Posted in Arts & Film, Film

Imagination is Adam Sandler’s response to bad times. As Bedtime Stories’ hotel employee Skeeter Bronson, Sandler helps his single-parent sister (Courteney Cox) during her new job search by babysitting his niece and nephew. He tells them bedtime stories that spur their own fantasies and—magically—come true in his own life. This is an inspired metaphor for [&hellip
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DEFIANCE

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Torn between making an art movie and an uplifting entertainment feature, Edward Zwick can’t stop the gun-battles and genocide of his Holocaust movie Defiance from seeming like cheap thrills and mawkishness. It’s time for Zwick to man-up to his intelligence and go for broke. Defiance needed the moral and formal rigor of a Jean-Marie Straub [&hellip
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CHRISTMASTIME FOR NAZIS

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Spoiler Alert: Tom Cruise’s Col. Claus von Stauffenberg of Germany’s Tenth Panzer Division does not kill Adolf Hitler in Valkyrie. Although director Bryan Singer and screenwriters Christopher McQuarrie and Nathan Alexander devote the film’s plot to dramatizing von Stauffenberg’s historically correct plan, they get no deeper than telling audiences what they already know. Singer’s approach [&hellip
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REVOLUTIONARY ROAD

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As The Wheelers, a perfect-seeming, golden-blond, white American middle-class married couple in Revolutionary Road, Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet press all the high-drama buttons, yet they don’t resemble anyone anybody actually knows. Their marital problems, based on each person’s sulky personality—Frank’s a restless philanderer, April’s a frustrated artist, they’re both jealous of each other—could fill [&hellip
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THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON

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It takes almost three hours for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button to wind down and approximate the climax of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey. Kubrick’s fascinating image of a gigantic embryo floating in space and contemplating the Earth—then the audience—combined absurdity and magnificence. All mankind’s historical experience and scientific knowledge was distilled to [&hellip
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THE WRESTLER

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Hype for Mickey Rourke in The Wrestler is an embarrassment; the excellent actor has had greater roles and given more interesting performances (his tabloid exploits notwithstanding). As a middle-aged, small-time wrestler living in a New Jersey trailer, Rourke’s Randy “Ram Jam” Robinson tells his estranged daughter, “Now I’m an old, broken-down piece of meat, and [&hellip
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CHE

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“How does it feel to be a symbol?” Benicio del Toro is asked in his role as Che Guevara. “Of what?” he replies and is told: “The revolution.” But in Che, Steven Soderbergh’s two-part art thing, this revolution is about style—not politics. After decades as a poster boy for counterculture hipness, Che Guevara provides Soderbergh [&hellip
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