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Movie Reviews

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    REVIEW | After Words: Oren Moverman's "The Messenger"

    With so many films about the Iraq war come and gone, the arrival of "The Messenger," a becalmed, observant drama about Casualty Notification Officers (those whose work it is to stoically inform next of kin of their loss) seems oddly appropriate, especially as it's released at that moment when the public's attention is being wrenched towards Afghanistan and the ongoing situation in Iraq drifts ever further from consciousness. Oren Moverman's directorial debut is structured around absences -- those who've died, actions taken elsewhere. His protagonists are largely obsessed with aftermaths, even as they works towards becoming actors in their own...

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    REVIEW | All Fall Down: Chris Smith's "Collapse"

    At the turns of decades and centuries, it's fairly common for sky-is-falling prognostication to spike wildly. This angst often finds expression in popular entertainments, such as the appearance, as if on cue, of the clunky misfire "Knowing" and the upcoming sure-to-be tedious "2012." What these kinds of spectacles provide is something like diversionary exorcism--the world outside may seem bad, but there's some comfort in recognizing that visual effects artists can always imagine even worse. These films are about as easy to dismiss as History Channel specials on Nostradamus, and probably less fun, so Chris Smith's often unnerving documentary...

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    REVIEW | Authenticity Takes on Absurdity - and the "Goats" Lose

    EDITOR'S NOTE: This review was originally published as part of indieWIRE's coverage of the Toronto International Film Festival.

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    REVIEW | Bold Strokes: Lee Daniels' "Precious"

    EDITOR'S NOTE: This review was originally published as part of indieWIRE's coverage of the Sundance Film Festival.

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    REVIEW | A Day in the Life: Katherine Dieckmann's "Motherhood"

    "What Does Motherhood Mean to Me?" wonders Eliza, Uma Thurman's harried West Village mother of two, as she works her way through a day of tough city living in Katherine Dieckmann's "Motherhood." Somewhat sadly, this existential pondering doesn't spring organically from the material at hand: an episodic catalogue of indignities visited by the evil urban environment upon those who choose to procreate therein. Instead, our heroine, a creative sort left at wit's end by the mundane distractions of her life, fresh from finishing a quickie post to her mom-blog "The Bjorn Identity," is sparked to answer this rather large question by a crude pop-up in...

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    REVIEW | Plain Ride: Mira Nair's "Amelia"

    [An indieWIRE review from Reverse Shot.]

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    REVIEW | Off The Edge: The Primal Power of Von Trier's "Antichrist"

    With "Antichrist," Lars Von Trier fully lives up to his reputation as an outrageous provocateur and master image-maker. Love it or hate it, boo it or applaud it-as audiences did both simultaneously after the world premiere here in Cannes-the film is the most shocking of the festival so far, with cri...

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    NYFF Critics Poll: The Complete Lineup, Graded A to F (Final)

    indieWIRE has conducted a survey of various bloggers and critics, surveying the films from the 2009 New York Film Festival. We asked them to grade all of the films that they've seen at the festival, and have averaged the grades of each film.

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    REVIEW | City Slicksters: “New York I Love You”

    Thanks to the surprise success of producer Emmanuel Benbihy's "Paris, je t'aime," we will now have to endure a series of planned omnibus-film tributes to cities around the world clunked together with submissions from various trendy directors. After Paris, New York is the brow-furrowing first of thes...

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    REVIEW | Pointlessly Disjointed: Jay DePietro's "Peter and Vandy"

    EDITOR'S NOTE: This review was original published as part of indieWIRE's coverage of the 2009 Sundance Film Festival. "Peter and Vandy" opens this Friday in theaters.

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