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Review

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    AFI Fest Review: Kim Nguyen's 'War Witch' a Haunting, Brutal Surrealist Fable Matched by Powerful Lead Performances

    Before any political or societal context enters the brutal cinematic depictions seen in “Come and See” and “City of God,” each effort can first speak clearly enough from the image of a child holding a firearm. Gawky, nervous, and with an expression of terrified power, the iso...

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    Rome Review: Paul Verhoeven’s Partially Crowdsourced ‘Tricked’ Is A Short, Wickedly Enjoyable Soap Opera

    It’s actually just the tip of an iceberg that encompasses an online component, mobile apps and a TV show in his native Netherlands, but Paul Verhoeven’s 50-minute-long “Tricked” (“Steekspel") provided what the Rome Film Festival so far has rather lacked: sheer entertainment value.

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    Rome Review: 'Mental' With Toni Collette Is A Watchable Farce That Could Do With Going A Bit More Nuts

    Showing today Out of Competition at the Rome Film Festival, “Mental” marks director P.J. Hogan’s (“My Best Friend’s Wedding,” “Confessions of a Shopaholic”) reunion with his “Muriel’s Wedding” star Toni Collette. The intervening years may have made them both older, but not necessarily wiser, as “Men...

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    Rome Review: Amos Poe’s ‘A Walk In The Park’ A Confused, Discordant And Ultimately Empty Ordeal

    By the end of “A Walk in the Park” ’s 96 minutes, you will know a lot about Brian Fass. You will know of his various ailments, his depression, his relationship with his mother, the medication he is on, the mountain he nearly climbed, his electroshock therapy and the titular walk in the park that mar...

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    DOC NYC Review: 'Shenandoah' A Sharp Look At A Community With Skeletons In The Closet

    There’s a good chance you haven’t heard of Shenandoah, PA, but its landscape and demeanor should feel familiar. Formerly a bustling coal-mining town, the area is now a bit destitute... but you wouldn’t know it from the warmth emanating from its inhabitants, nor from the exuberant passion the communi...

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    Doc NYC Review: 'Persistence of Vision' Is A Heartbreaking Account Of A Thwarted Animated Masterpiece

    When Steven Spielberg and Robert Zemeckis needed a team to provide animation for their ambitious hybrid "Who Framed Roger Rabbit," they didn't turn to their own team at Disney Feature Animation who, with "Snow White and the Seven Dwarves," singlehandedly invented the animated feature (and was respon...

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    Review: Coen-Derived Caper Comedy 'Gambit' Features A Game Colin Firth, But That's About It

    Of all the genres to try and pull off, the romantic caper flick -- think "To Catch A Thief," or "Charade," or even "Ocean's Eleven" -- is one of the trickiest. For such a film to work out, it's got to be as light as a feather and feel entirely effortless, and all too many films aiming to hit that sw...

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    Rome Review: Overlong & Incoherent, Takashi Miike's 'Lesson Of The Evil' Is Sadly More Bore Than Gore

    The slasher picture, which is what we suppose this film eventually morphs into, relies on a certain novelty in how our successive victims are offed for us to retain interest -- there should be jumps, scares, the unexpected, the gruesome. But for all its (literal) buckets of blood and fetishistic slo...

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    Review: Todd Rohal's Third Feature 'Nature Calls' Is A Dull, Droning Wrong Number

    Curiously squandering an immensely talented cast, Todd Rohal's "Nature Calls," written when the writer-director lived in Austin, had more humor and humanity and life in its 10-minute post-screening talk here at SXSW than it showed in its previous 98-minute running time. Starring Patton...

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    Review: 'Citadel' Is A Sometimes Scary, Sometimes Silly Entry In the Hoodie Horror Sub-Genre

    Over the last few years an interesting subgenre has developed in British horror – dubbed "hoodie horror" by the press and named after the young, urban kids who wear hooded sweatshirts – these films are set primarily in England's low income housing "estates" and played up the fears of "Broken Britain...

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