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Movie Reviews

  • The Playlist
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    Review: 'Free Angela & All Political Prisoners' A Fascinating Chronicle Of Justice & Strength

    "Black power means dignity," is a phrase that lingers from Shola Lynch's documentary about activist and scholar Angela Davis. And dignity is just one of the many qualities that one can attach to Davis, a bold and powerful figure whose own battle for justice and freedom is chronicled in "Free Angela ...

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: 'Down The Shore' With James Gandolfini & Famke Janssen An Overheated Jersey Melodrama

    What is it about Jersey that causes filmmakers to make films which constantly talk about escaping from or dreading a return to the Garden State? If I didn’t just answer my own question, there’s always “Down The Shore,” an actors' showcase melodrama that captures the small town as a prison where char...

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Now and Then: Why We Love GIFs, from Taylor Swift to Goats (VIDEO)

    Disclaimer: this will not be your usual romance. It involves Taylor Swift, a goat, and a lemon among its cast of thousands. It has no clear "meet cute," and may not reach a happy ending. In one sense at least, it has no beginning or ending at all. But somewhere along the way we fell in love with the...

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    DVD/VOD Review: 'Michael Jackson's This Is It' (A Rarely Seen Portrait Of The Artist At Work)

    When this film was released in 2009 I wasn't sure if I would see it, given my profound disapproval of what I felt was Sony's obviously exploitative decision to produce and release the documentary, so soon after Michael Jackson's death.

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  • Women and Hollywood
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    SXSW Review - The Other Shore

    Diana Nyad is a warrior. There has never been a woman so aptly named after a Goddess. The Other Shore tells the story of Nyad's attempts to accomplish the near impossible feat, swimming the 103 treacherous from Cuba to Florida. As the documentary - directed by Timothy Wheeler - unfolds Nyad is co...

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    Book Review: Debbie Reynolds' Messy Life Makes 'Unsinkable' Memoir Readable

    Written by Debbie Reynolds and Dorian Hannaway, “Unsinkable,” a memoir of Debbie Reynolds’ messy life after middle age overtook the bubbly teenager who spent decades starring in MGM musicals, is not a good book, but it’s worth reading.

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    Review - John Akomfrah's 'The Nine Muses' Is A Deeply Moving Experience

    It’s been a long time since a film has moved me in quite the way that John Akomfrah’s The Nine Muses did. It wasn’t that happy, tingly, feel-good feeling you tend to get with some films that has you smiling as you leave the cinema and which you soon forget (the feeling and the actual film) once you’...

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    Review - Andy Okoroafor’s 'Relentless' (Arthouse Exploration Of Contemporary Nigeria)

    Review - Andy Okoroafor’s 'Relentless' (Arthouse Exploration Of Contemporary Nigeria)

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    Book Review: Lavish Art Abounds In The Art of The Croods

    There are two things a competently written art book should do: Give the reader an in-depth, inside look at how a film is created, and make one feel as if one is experiencing the world of the film without actually being in the theater. Noela Hueso succeeds at both on her first attempt at an “Art of” ...

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    Review - Ghanaian Crime Drama 'The Destiny Of Lesser Animals'

    A decade or so after being deported from the United States, Ghanaian police inspector Boniface Koomsin (played by Yao B. Nunoo), desperate to return, pays his way towards obtaining a fake passport, only to have it immediately stolen. In an attempt to recover it, he enlists the help of the local cop ...

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