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Movie Reviews

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    TRIBECA REVIEW | Religious Rebels: "Sons of Perdition"

    The Mormon outcasts at the center of "Sons of Perdition," a documentary directed by Tyler Meason and Jennilyn Merten, bring authenticity to a sensationalist hook. The polygamous community of the "Crick," a Fundamentalist Latter-Day Saints (FLDS) enclave run by the dictatorial Warren Jeffs until his ...

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    TRIBECA REVIEW | Non-Fiction Innovation: Clio Barnard's "The Arbor"

    Documentaries often toy with the conventions of non-fiction storytelling to the detriment of their content, but Clio Barnard's innovative "The Arbor" provides a welcome exception to the norm. Tracking the experiences of British playwright Andrea Dunbar and her children, Barnard uses actors to lip-sy...

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    TRIBECA REVIEW | The Subtext of Longing: Lee Isaac Chung's "Lucky Life"

    During one of many understated scenes in Lee Isaac Chung’s “Lucky Life,” a character expresses the desire for “a chance to slow down a bit more,” and his friend concurs. Such an abstract wish could serve as the tagline for Chung’s meditative, lyrical and yet hauntingly familiar look at the elusive nature of memory among day-to-day experiences. The movie revolves around the weekend getaway of four friends: Jason (Kenyon Adams), Alex (Richard Harvell) and recently married couple Mark (Daniel O’Keefe) and Karen (Megan McKenna). Although Jason is dying of cancer, he seems pensive rather than sad. The rest of the group attempts to follow his lead,...

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    TRIBECA REVIEW | High School Conventions: "Beware the Gonzo"

    The time has come for a moratorium on high school comedies. Done to death in the heyday of John Hughes knock-offs and poorly resurrected many times since then, the angst-riddled coming-of-age genre invites replication rather than ingenuity, and rarely yields an enjoyable product. Case in point: "Bew...

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    TRIBECA REVIEW | An Off-Key Trainwreck: Olivier Dahan's "My Own Love Song"

    It's no easy task to figure out at what point "My Own Love Song" transitions from a string of basic mediocrities to hilariously awful contrivances. My own theory is that this happens somewhere between the incoherent split-screen car chase and the animated birds. Others may write it off even earlier ...

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    TRIBECA REVIEW | Colombian Squalor: "The Two Escobars"

    The history of Colombia's tattered international reputation is not an unexplored field, but Jeff and Michael Zimbalist's Tribeca Film Festival world premiere documentary "The Two Escobars," provides an original strategy for framing it. A study in contrasts, the movie oscillates between two men with ...

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    Romantic Comedy—French Style

    Romantic Comedy—French Style

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    REVIEW | Sensational Metaphor: Tom Six's "The Human Centipede (First Sequence)"

    Easy to deride, and easier to dismiss, "The Human Centipede (First Sequence)" nonetheless works as a calculated provocation. Demented in premise and execution, Dutch filmmaker Tom Six's grotesque exercise in shock cinema has enough competence on its own terms to allow for a deeper reading. Put blunt...

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    Big Screen | "Weird" Korean Western is New Critic's Pick

    Perhaps bracing for the upcoming summer season, it's a somewhat slower weekend at the movies on the specialty front (though there should be a significant amount of holdover business). Openers include Kim Ji-woon's Korean Western "The Good, The Bad, The Weird," Michele Mulroney & Kieran Mulroney's R...

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    film review: Catching Up With Movies, Both New...

    This is superior storytelling, with a definite point of view; there’s clearly a masterful hand at work behind the camera. And nobody portrays dread, or a sense of unease, quite like Polanski.

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