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Movie Reviews

  • The Playlist
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    Review: ‘Seeking A Friend For The End Of The World’ Is Too Apocalyptically Cute

    “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World,” the directorial debut of writer Lorene Scafaria (she also wrote “Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist”), has a premise that, if handled correctly, could really shake up romantic comedy conventions in new and exciting ways. It’s set during the final weeks of...

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    L.A. Film Fest Review: 'Seeking a Friend for the End of the World' Struggles to Make Its Apocalyptic Romance Into a Touching Affair

    "Seeking a Friend for the End of the World" valiantly tries to inject a familiar premise with renewed emotional discernment and instead flails about in search of it. The directorial debut of screenwriter Lorene Scafaria ("Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist"), "Seeking ...

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Tale of Two First-Time Directors: 'People Like Us' and 'Seeking a Friend for the End of the World' Debut at LAFF

    There are times when writer-directors should be allowed to direct their own material. And there are time when they should not. I would argue that "Star Trek" and "Alias" co-scribe Alex Kurtzman has more than earned his shot at directing his semi-autobiographical relationship drama "People Like Us" (...

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    Now and Then: 'Girls' Was the Season's Best New Series. When Did That Happen?

    The pilot of "Girls" was an ugly, awkward little thing, delivering its one-liners with a nervous titter. Despite its refreshingly frank appraisal of modern sexual mores, its quartet of young women came off largely as archetypes, not characters. But I stuck with the series, and it paid off.

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    LAFF 2012 Review: Award-Winning Documentary 'Call Me Kuchu' Captures Humanity Amidst Hysteria

    That feverish pitch, or air of mass belief that I experienced during the missionary rally is the same thread brought out in the documentary, Call Me Kuchu, where co-directors Malika Zouhali-Worrall and Katherine Fairfax Wright examine religious fundamentalist fervor, much of it imported from abroad,...

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    Must-Watch: Poignant 'Sugar' Explores Struggles Faced By Dominican Ball Player w/ Subtlety & Realism

    Here’s a film I should’ve watched three years ago upon its limited theatrical release; although it was indeed limited to only NY and LA. Sony Film Classics' 2009’s Indie Sugar is not your average sports flick; it avoids the usual for the love of the game and the glorious c...

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    L.A. Film Fest Review: 'Ruby Sparks' A Delightful Romantic Comedy That Tugs At The Heartstrings & Rings Of An Instant Classic

    It’s been six long years since Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris’ narrative feature debut, the much beloved “Little Miss Sunshine.” But the directing duo is back with a new film, “Ruby Sparks,” and with it, prove that some things are worth the wait. With a script by its 28 year old star, Zoe Kazan, ...

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    'The Newsroom' Reaction: Early Reviews Are Tough on Aaron Sorkin

    The mark of a great writer is that you can recognize their voice. There's no other Charlie Kaufman or Woody Allen or Aaron Sorkin. But what happens to a lauded player at the top of Hollywood's writer pyramid after winning the Oscar for "The Social Network" and sharing a nomination for "Moneyball" an...

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  • The Playlist
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    L.A. Film Fest Review: 'Dead Man's Burden' Is A Stunningly Shot, Slow Burner Of A Classic, Yet Modern Western

    One of the most cinematically gorgeous independent films in a long time, “Dead Man’s Burden” (along with fellow 2012 indie “Beasts of the Southern Wild," shot on Super 16) truly makes the case for celluloid. While watching this meditative Western, one simply wants to drink in the beauty of the image...

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