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Movie Reviews

  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    55th San Francisco International Film Festival Gets Under Way: 'Farewell My Queen,' 'Trishna,' 'Twixt'

    Among the fiction films, famed auteurs are not in abundance, having seen the Coppola, Winterbottom, and Johnie To films: the new Kassovitz and Guedigian appeal to the Francophile in me, but those are not exactly marquee names. Star power seemed reserved for the tributes to Judy Davis and Kenneth Bra...

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  • The Playlist
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    Tribeca Review: 'Jack And Diane' An Unsatisfying & Empty Relationship Movie

    Though the descriptor "werewolf-lesbian-psycho-drama" piqued immense interest when word first got out, Bradley Rust Gray's "Jack And Diane" doesn't follow through on its weirdo/intriguing premise. Little work is done from the get-go to make the emotional connection betwee...

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: '96 Minutes' Is About An Hour And A Half Too Long

    You might as well be prepared: “96 Minutes” is one of those multi-strand indie movies where the chronology is distorted, and you spend the runtime putting the pieces back together. You may be interested in just how every piece fits, how we got to a girl bleeding out in the backseat of a car (probabl...

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    SFIFF Review: 'Tokyo Waka: A City Poem'

    Would someone please summon Alfred Hitchcock? "Tokyo Waka; A City Poem" is, among other things, an ode to the crows that seem everywhere in that Japanese city. They attack people, they eat anything available, and they raid the city’s zoo to steal baby prairie dogs and other small animals that they ...

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  • Indiewire
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    TRIBECA REVIEW: Gay Israeli Drama 'Yossi,' Sequel to 'Yossi and Jagger,' Is Possibly Eytan Fox's Finest Work

    "Yossi and Jagger" showed the potential for a complex exploration of gay identity in modern Israel that director Eytan Fox has now fully realized with a sequel of sorts, "Yossi," possibly his most accomplished work to date.

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  • Indiewire
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    Critic's Notebook: Is the American Indie Film Extinct?

    The film is about a traveler in a foreign land, stationed there for work; while on assignment, he falls in love with a native, even though the foreigner is due to return home soon. The film, made with a complicated formalist approach and focused on the foreigner's attempts to understand this new...

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  • Indiewire
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    What to See, What to Skip: New Reviews This Week

    Nicholas Sparks seems to have an endless supply of romance novels which are apparently ripe for big screen adaptations and which women can drag their boyfriends to. This week sees the release of the latest of those adaptations: the Zac Efron starring "The Lucky One." If that doesn't appeal to you,...

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Early Reviews: Woody Allen's 'To Rome With Love' Falls Short of 'Midnight in Paris,' Does Not Please Romans

    Woody Allen's "To Rome With Love," his love letter to the eternal city, has not pleased the natives. It seems he misjudged the zeitgeist. Many Italian critics thought his glossy postcard view of Rome did a disservice to the hard economic times the city faces.  Early reviews below....

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  • The Playlist
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    Tribeca Review: Thai Existentialist Hitman Film 'Headshot' Proves The Genre Still Has A Pulse

    The hitman genre has been done to death. If cinema can be a reflection of the times we live in, and a recorded piece of history of what the filmmakers are concerned with at the time of inception and production, then it’s amazing any of us are still alive. When done well, the genre can be a lot of fu...

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: 'Penumbra' Flirts With Early Argento, Settles For Late-Period Dario

    “We are surrounded by monsters!” bellows the deep-voiced heavy metal singer in the end credit music for “Penumbra,” the new Spanish-language thriller opening this week. Given the subject matter, he may be drawing too broad a picture, given that so much of this singleminded scarefest relies on perspe...

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