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Movie Reviews

  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Things I Learned at the Kubrick LACMA Exhibit, from Weegee to NASA Technology

    Give yourself plenty of time to check out the Stanley Kubrick exhibit at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. It's huge. And it rewards drilling into the details. There's a room devoted to each film, and they wouldn't let me take pictures (although @BrettRatner managed to sneak a few on Twitter). M...

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: 'In The Family' A Sincere, Heartbreaking Indie Drama

    It’s tough for the drama. For every movie that is successfully earnest and sincere in its heartbreaking story, about fifty others are willed into the cinema that rest on familiar tropes, forced emotions lacking any legitimate heart, and a trusty sensational score that knows just when to blare. Their...

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  • The Playlist
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    Rome Review: 'Tar' With James Franco Is A Dreamy Collage Of Pretty But Overfamiliar Aesthetics

    It's difficult to know quite what to make of 'Tar,' a multi-authored project seemingly coaxed into being by the sheer force of James Franco's current artistic cachet. Playing In Competition in the XXI sidebar of the Rome Film Festival, the film represents the work of twelve newbie directors -- NYU f...

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Weekend Preview: Must-See 'Silver Linings Playbook,' Wright & Knightley's Beautifully Mounted 'Anna Karenina'

    The Oscar race is about to get real now that David O. Russell's crowd pleaser "Silver Linings Playbook" is hitting theaters. The satisfying film stars Bradley Cooper at his all-time best and Jennifer Lawrence on form. Joe Wright's "Anna Karenina" has proved more devisive ...

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  • The Playlist
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    AFI Review: 'The ABCs Of Death' Won't Win Over Non-Horror Fans, But That's OK

    Horror anthologies have been on the rise of late, with movies like "Trick 'r Treat," "Chillerama" and the found footage anthology "V/H/S" keeping the tradition alive. The latest anthology is "The ABCs of Death," which combines 26 shorts in what is less of an interwoven narrative like "Trick 'r Treat...

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  • Indiewire
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    Surveying the Gotham Nominees For 'Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You,' Screening at MoMA Through Monday

    While the Gothams are the first major film awards ceremony of a season that culminates with the Oscars, a lot more movies qualify for consideration at the IFP-hosted ceremony than the much larger one scheduled for February. This is particularly clear with the category for "Best Film Not Playing a Th...

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  • Indiewire
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    Critic's Notebook: Why 2012 Is A Banner Year For Found Footage Films

    In 2012, found footage took a few promising steps out of the horror genre.

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  • Indiewire
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    Forget 'Lincoln' and the Civil War: The Dominant Conflict In This Fall's Movies Is the Israeli-Palestinian One

    While deeply reverential toward the dead, "Lincoln" is defined by the celebration of the capacity for salvation from wartime strife. Meanwhile, movies grappling with the current Israeli-Palestinian conflict signal a far more dire situation by analyzing it in real time.

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: 'La Rafle' A Somber, Flat, Occasionally Moving Reminder Of One Of France's Darkest Moments

    If we accept that Holocaust films have become a genre onto themselves, espousing survival against impossible odds or perhaps bravery in the face of organized genocide, a chance to hold on to a shred of humanity when up against deplorable conditions, then it's fair game to discuss the cliches many le...

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  • Caryn James
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    Clunky Title, Terrific Film: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence in 'Silver Linings Playbook'

    David O. Russell is the master of messed-up families, from the incestuous mother-son duo in Spanking the Monkey through the loving fraternal rivalry of The Fighter and even the band-of-brothers military guys in Three Kings. But he has never had a family so superbly cast and played as the one&nb...

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