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Movie Reviews

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    Review: 'Enemies Closer' Starring Jean-Claude Van Damme

    Why are action movies ashamed to be action movies? It’s as if one day, Hollywood figured they could teach actors how to kick better than they could teach martial artists how to act, turning a legion of would-be dramatic leading men into shit-kickers. The era of Schwarzenegger, Stallone and Willis is...

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    Sundance Review: Nick Cave Docudrama '20,000 Days On Earth'

    Though he’s never been a superstar, after four decades of making music there is no question that Nick Cave is a legend. Singer, songwriter and occasional composer, Cave has been playing in bands since he was in his teens, from his post-punk group The Birthday Party, to his back-to-basics side projec...

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    Sundance Review: Jerry Sandusky Went to Jail. Then What? Penn State's Future Is Focus of Amir Bar-Lev's 'Happy Valley'

    "Happy Valley" magnifies the impact of Sandusky's downfall on the various members of the Penn State community, aiming less to extend the public narrative than to deepen it.

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    Sundance Review: Fela Kuti's Wild Life of Sex, Drugs, and Afrobeat Takes Center Stage in 'Finding Fela'

    "Finding Fela," prolific documentarian Alex Gibney’s latest work, faces the challenge of depicting a contradictory artist.

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    Sundance Review: Katie Couric-Produced Obesity Doc 'Fed Up' Hits the Mark

    The activist documentary "Fed Up" relays its message with the directness of a well-thrown dart: There is a public menace that threatens the children, threatens the future prosperity of the country and threatens you. The target of these accusations is sugar — specifically its pervasiveness in our foo...

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    Sundance Review: Ryan Reynolds Makes A Crazy Comeback With Marjane Satrapi's 'The Voices'

    "The Voices," the new horroresque dark comedy from celebrated "Persepolis" director Marjane Satrapi, ought to be a major career moment for star Ryan Reynolds.

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    Sundance Review: 'Song One' Is Exclusively An Ode to Anne Hathaway

    For a first-time filmmaker, getting an A-list actor as major as Anne Hathaway to produce and star in your movie is unquestionably a big win; that shouldn’t mean, however, that the movie should work for its star, rather than the other way around.

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    Sundance Review: A Mining Town Faces a Devastating Challenge In Impressive Debut 'Little Accidents'

    "Little Accidents," director Sara Colangelo’s first feature (developed in the Sundance Institute’s Writers’ Lab from her 2010 short of the same name) takes place in a small Appalachian mining town in the aftermath of a fatal accident. The only survivor, Amos Jenkins (Boyd Holbrook), is under pressur...

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    Sundance Review: Baseball Maven (And Kurt Russell's Dad) Bing Russell Saluted By His Grandsons In 'The Battered Bastards of Baseball'

    "The Battered Bastards of Baseball," a documentary by siblings Chapman and Maclain Way, manages to be many things at once: an affectionate ode to their grandfather, a distinctive snapshot of a noble experiment and a bittersweet glimpse at the possibilities of the many ways in which the game of baseb...

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    Sundance 2014: Highs and Not so highs

    A funny, perhaps Freudian slip occurred while I was putting together a list of my favorite and not so favorite films from Sundance 2014. I wrote the title "Love is Violence," an accidentally amalgam of two of the most memorable (and very different) movies from the festival, Ira Sachs' lovely and int...

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