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Review

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    Berlin Review: The Trials Of 'Camille Claudel 1915' Make For Trying Watching, Even With Juliette Binoche In Peerless Form

    Director Bruno Dumont ("The Life of Jesus," "Outside Satan") has made a name for himself with challenging, sometimes controversial films that often feature non-professional actors and considered, not to say glacial, pacing interrupted with scenes of violence. But with "Camille Claudel 1915" he aband...

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    Berlin Review: River Phoenix's Last Film 'Dark Blood' A Serviceable Movie, But A Fascinating Project

    River Phoenix died at in 1993 at just 23 years of age, and to a certain generation of then-teenage movie fans, of whom this writer was one, it was maybe the first of that kind of celebrity death, the kind you remember where you were when you heard about it. I was in a car with my mom, and I recall t...

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    Berlin Review: Animated 'The Croods' Sacrifices Story & Character On Altar Of Impressive 3D Visuals

    We suspect our reaction may be out of step with the general consensus of press at our Berlin Film Festival screening of the "The Croods" today, if the guffaws and applause were anything to go by, but really that had us kind of baffled. The DreamWorks film, from writer/directors Chris Sanders ("How t...

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    Review: 'Saving Lincoln' A Shoddily Assembled Biopic With Special Effects That Distract Instead Of Enhance

    Sports fans are familiar with that common, irrational howl: the too-invested fan who screams towards the field or at the screen, veins bulging in their forehead prompted by too much lubrication. How could you call that play? Why are you substituting the righthander from the bullpen? Do you not under...

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    Review: ‘The Jeffrey Dahmer Files’ Is An Uneasy, Largely Unsuccessful Mixture of Fact And Fiction

    The title of the new true crime documentary “The Jeffrey Dahmer Files” is evocative and provocative. It suggests a couple of things, too. One, the word ‘Files’ insinuates that this is going to be a probing documentary, something that reaches into the storied history of one of America’s most infamous...

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    Berlin Review: Giuseppe Tornatore's 'The Best Offer' Is A Campy, Overcooked Mess

    If director Giuseppe Tornatore has had an up-and-down time of it since his breakthrough, 1988's almost universally adored, Oscar-winning "Cinema Paradiso," it has to be said that his most recent film, "The Best Offer," marks a definite low point, even as one of the downs. But that's probably what's ...

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    Berlin Review: Ken Loach's 'The Spirit Of 45' An Effective But Conservatively Presented Doc About Radical Social Change

    British filmmaker Ken Loach has never been one to hide his politics. In fact the throughline to his long, exemplary career, whether on TV or in theaters, whether documentary or narrative, whether small-scale domestic drama (“Sweet Sixteen,” “Kes,” “Ladybird, Ladybird”) or sweeping historical epic (“...

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    Review: It's Ad Men vs. Bad Men In Pablo Larrain's Exciting, Funny, Moving 'No' Starring Gael Garcia Bernal

    "No" is exactly the kind of film you hope to stumble across -- a film that hadn't been on your radar until buzz from too many quarters too diverse to be ignored made you seek it out, discovering a film that's extraordinarily well-made, superbly acted, funny, human, warm, principled and, yes, as enth...

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    Review: Korean Action Flick 'The Berlin File' is Mostly Fun, Always Silly & Rather Inconsequential

    To paraphrase Mugatu from "Zoolander," Berlin, the setting for the enjoyable sub-“Bourne” Korean action flick “The Berlin File,” is so hot right now. No less than David Bowie has returned to the city in his seemingly dropped-from-the-sky comeback single, “Where Are We Now?” Shortly thereafter came t...

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    Review: John McClane Becomes A Non-Entity In The Faceless & Tedious McActioner 'A Good Day To Die Hard'

    If you were to tell the even the average civilian who frequented movies that the script for "A Good Day To Die Hard" was actually just another generic actioner found in a studio pile and then subsequently retrofitted to fit the "Die Hard" brand, said average schmoe would have no reason to doubt you....

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