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Movie Reviews

  • The Playlist
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    Cannes Review: Sprawling, Uneven Crime Saga 'Blood Ties' Falls Short Of Epic Scope

    If there is any movie this year at Cannes that is absolutely brimming with promise on paper, it's Guillaume Canet's "Blood Ties." With an extended cast featuring Clive Owen, Billy Crudup, Mila Kunis, Matthias Schoenaerts, Zoe Saldana, James Caan, Marion Cotillard, Noah Emmerich and Lili Taylor among...

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    Cannes Review: ‘Grand Central’ Weaves A Lyrical Tale Of Love And Radiation Around Tahar Rahim & Lea Seydoux

    Director Rebecca Zlotowski scored big in 2010 when her debut feature “Belle Epine” (aka “Dear Prudence”) won the Prix Louis Delluc for best first film, and snagged star Léa Seydoux a nomination for Most Promising Actress at the Césars. Three years on and Seydoux has certainly made good on that promi...

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    Cannes Review: 'Seduced And Abandoned' Enjoyably Explores The Surreal World Of Film Financing

    It's hardly any surprise for people who follow film news (or read this site) that cinema, at least as far as the major Hollywood studios go, is mostly a dead art. With a shift toward four-quadrant, brand pushing, sequel spawning blockbusters, the days of the $50 million drama are a distant memory. A...

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  • The Playlist
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    Cannes Review: ‘Borgman’ Delivers A Deliciously Dark, Twisted Cannes Competition Treat

    Caustic, surreal, creepy, and blackly funny, Dutch polymath Alex van Warmerdam’s “Borgman” is the trickster god in this year’s Cannes competition pantheon. Tonally similar to recent cultish favorites from Yorgos Lanthimos and Ben Wheatley (“Dogtooth” feels like a particularly close and favoured firs...

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  • The Playlist
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    Cannes Review: The Coens Brothers' 'Inside Llewyn Davis' Is A Funny, Melancholy Look At A Wayfaring Stranger

    Long hours on the road, sleeping on sofas, eating very little, playing shows for little money; it's a wonder why anyone struggles to make it as a musician. But for Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) there really isn't any other option to playing music. "...And what, just exist?" he counters, when his sister...

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  • Indiewire
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    Cannes: Why 'Inside Llewyn Davis' Isn't the Minor Coen Bros. Movie It Looks Like

    "That's a folk song," says Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) in the opening scene of Joel and Ethan Coen's aptly titled "Inside Llewyn Davis." One could usually make a similar pronouncement about the Coen brothers' usually eccentric works -- yep, that's a Coen movie, folks -- but this one's a different sto...

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Cannes Fest Diary 2: Dull Coppola, Brilliant 'A Touch of Sin'

    I began the search for a room in Cannes quite late. I checked hotels.com, home to “Cheap Hotels, Discounts, Hotel Deals and Offers,” which is why I was a bit taken aback when my first offer was for a week at the Carlton for $52,000. What I wound up with was not quite the Carlton; it’s more of a bed ...

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  • The Playlist
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    Cannes Review: 'A Touch Of Sin' Sees Jia Zhang-ke Change Things Up, With Peculiar, Bloody Results

    Ooh-ed and aah-ed over, but largely in more arcane cinephile circles, Chinese director Jia Zhang-ke (Venice winner “Still Life,” Cannes 2012 doc ”I Wish I Knew,” “The World”) has made a name for himself to date with detailed, glacially paced, social realist films, often in the documentary tradition,...

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  • Indiewire
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    Cannes Review: 'The Dance of Reality,' Alejandro Jodoroworsky's First Film in 23 Years, Is a Return to Form

    In the opening minutes of "The Dance of Reality," zany cult director Alejandro Jodorowsky's first movie in 23 years, the director appears onscreen reciting a poem that compares money to blood, Christ and Buddha, then equates death to consciousness and wealth. It's that wacky combination of evocative...

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  • The Playlist
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    Cannes Review: The Mind Heals The Soul In Meandering & Unsatisfying 'Jimmy P.'

    If Freddie Quell came back from World War II as an unhinged animal, Jimmy Picard (Benicio Del Toro) is the polar opposite, an intensely quiet but no less wounded man, who is out of sorts in post-war America. But he is also a Native American, which brings to his life a whole set of experiences (espec...

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