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Movie Reviews

  • Caryn James
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    Review: Terror Meets Humor in Ben Affleck's 'Argo'

    Argo places us so much in the middle of the furious crowd storming the American Embassy in Tehran -- and the captives inside who see it coming -- that the episode is viscerally frightening. Back home, the Hollywood players who create a fake movie as a cover for the CIA rescue mission of Amer...

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  • Indiewire
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    Did This Year's Views from the Avant-Garde Sidebar at NYFF Require Extra Patience? That Was the Point.

    Did This Year's Views from the Avant-Garde Sidebar at NYFF Require Extra Patience? That Was the Point.

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  • The Playlist
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    HIFF Review: Charming 'Sin Bin' Heavily Indebted To The Work Of Wes Anderson

    Young filmmakers often reference their heroes outright. This isn't a phenomenon exclusive to creatively wayward directors; look at the early films of genuine auteur Paul Thomas Anderson to see wholesale theft from Martin Scorsese and Robert Altman (to name a few). But when the references are a distr...

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Now and Then: 'Decoding Deepak,' or What the Bleep Does He Know?

    Early in "Decoding Deepak," the titular spiritualist and his filmmaker son float languidly over Thailand's Chao Phraya river delta, on their way to the former's ordination as a Buddhist monk. "Don't try to make sense of it, just roll the cameras and try to keep up," the director sighs. Mission accom...

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    'Lincoln' Early Reviews: Praise for Daniel Day-Lewis & Tommy Lee Jones, Spielberg Exercises Restraint

    Early reviews are coming in for Steven Spielberg's "Lincoln," NYFF's secret screening on October 8, modestly praising Daniel Day-Lewis' performance and a "scene stealing" turn by Tommy Lee Jones as Thadeus Stevens. Critics are less impressed with...

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: Broken Souls Come Together In Contrived Melodrama 'Least Among Saints'

    There are two films at war in “Least Amongst Saints,” and neither is very compelling. The first is a faith-forward feature about redemptive spirits, where Anthony (writer/director Martin Papazian) attempts to pull himself out of a PTSD funk fueled by alcohol and bad decisions upon his return from th...

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: 'Smiley' An Internet Age Horror Film That's Not Quite Worth Booting Up

    Thirty minutes into Michael Gallagher’s “Smiley,” we were ready to turn off the film, but in the interest of reviewing the movie, we persisted. It was an arduous journey, a deceptively tolerable horror flick that briefly flirts with an interesting idea or two and then casts them aside for cheap scar...

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  • Indiewire
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    Spielberg Unveils Unfinished 'Lincoln' at NYFF, Proves It's Better Than the Trailer

    Last year, the New York Film Festival launched a new tradition, the secret screening, by premiering an unfinished cut of Martin Scorsese's "Hugo." On Monday night, the 50th edition of the festival continued that tradition by unveiling a supposed work-in-progress cut of Steven Spielberg's talky perio...

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  • The Playlist
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    NYFF Impressions: Steven Spielberg Unveils His 'Lincoln' History Lesson In Surprise Screening

    Characterized by refreshing restraint, its passionate convictions and patience, if Steven Spielberg’s worst tendencies are his propensity for the sentimental and overwrought (as evinced recently in much of “War Horse”), his latest, “Lincoln,” thankfully possesses almost none of those unfortunate tr...

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  • The Playlist
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    HIFF Review: Disney's 2D & 3D Animated 'Paperman' A Romantic & Inventive Short

    This year's Hamptons International Film Festival has largely been defined by movies that make you want to cry your eyes out until they're squishy red gobs. Pictures like "Rust and Bone," "Amour" and "Silver Linings Playbook" challenge even the manliest audience members to sit there with a straight f...

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