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Movie Reviews

  • Indiewire
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    Review: 'Captain Phillips,' Starring Tom Hanks And Directed By Paul Greengrass, Is a Proficient Thriller With a Sly Political Agenda

    The saga of Captain Richard Phillips, the Massachusetts seafarer kidnapped by four Somali pirates during a routine cargo ship gig in 2009, taking place under media scrutiny, played out like a high seas suspense movie unfolding in real time. Plans for a feature-length adaptation were inevitable as so...

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    Toronto Review: Benedict Cumberbatch Is A Fine Julian Assange, But Bill Condon's Festival Opener 'The Fifth Estate' Can't Do Justice to the WikiLeaks Story

    Julian Assange is among the most captivating figures of the internet age partly because history has yet to reach a verdict about him. Living in London's Ecuadorian Embassy since last June to avoid extradition charges, Assange still runs the underground organization WikiLeaks' role. His persistence ...

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  • The Playlist
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    Venice Review: Japanese Remake Of Clint Eastwood's 'Unforgiven' Starring Ken Watanabe

    Lord knows that, over the years, Hollywood has plundered its fair share of Japanese cinema. From the appropriation of "Godzilla," "Seven Samurai" turning into "The Magnificent Seven," to the long run of J-horror re-dos, to—only last week—the announcement of a DreamWorks version of Cannes film "Like ...

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  • Shadow and Act
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    Review: John Akomfrah’s Dense, Intricate 'The Stuart Hall Project' (In UK Cinemas Tomorrow)

    It would be unfair to call The Stuart Hall Project a simple documentary. The film, directed by John Akomfrah, is a visual and sonic excursion into the life and philosophies of the Jamaican-born intellectual, a finely crafted collage of memory, distilling hundreds of hours of archival footage of...

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  • SydneysBuzz
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    LatinoBuzz Film Review: 'Mission Park'

    Armando Montelongo’s San Antonio-based production company’s first release is an ambitious crime drama directed by Bryan Ramirez, a San Antonio-native young filmmaker who makes his feature debut with this film. Taking its title from the street where the protagonists grew up, Mission Park ve...

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    This Weekend: Hannah Fidell's Must-See 'A Teacher,' Plus 'Salinger' Doc, Lynn Shelton's 'Touchy Feely' and More

    Very few new-release films are sitting positively with critics this weekend. But -- Tomatometer be damned -- Hannah Fidell's indie "A Teacher" is nonetheless a must-see, anchored by a startlingly complex performance from Lindsay Burdge as a high school teacher whose illicit affair with one of her st...

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: Diablo Cody’s Directorial Debut ‘Paradise’ Is A Cloying After School Special

    ​The prestigious fall film festival season is in full swing and anyone who remotely matters in cinema (or Hollywood) is represented in some shape or form—especially at the celeb-friendly Toronto International Film Festival which accepts over 250 films. But one name, an Academy Award-winner with a br...

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: 'Hell Baby' Starring Rob Corddry & Leslie Bibb

    There’s barely a movie inside of “Hell Baby,” the directorial debut of Thomas Lennon and Robert Ben Garant. In some ways, this feels like a relief: the two comedians, best known for “Reno 911,” have developed a reputation at the studios as script doctors for hire, though one look at the final pr...

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  • The Playlist
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    TIFF Review: Suspense Thriller 'Blue Ruin' Is Terrifying, And Excitingly Singular

    Dwight (Macon Blair), the lead character of “Blue Ruin,” is a haggard, defeated, middle-aged man. His clothing clings to him, as if to avoid callously slipping to the ground. His beard seems to have formed on his face the way weeds gather on undernourished lawns. One of our first glimpses of his eye...

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: Hannah Fidell's 'A Teacher' Is A Flawed But Striking Drama Nonetheless

    There’s a Rorschach-like appeal to “A Teacher,” Hannah Fidell’s penetrating new drama that could be about any single one of a number of contemporary neuroses. Yesterday’s troubled heroines, often played by gorgeous legends of silver screen, took one look up at a demanding camera and you immediat...

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