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Review

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    Review: 'Daylight' An Uneven But Compelling Psychological Drama

    Few people will disparage an expectant mother. People are people, good and bad, but there's something majestic, alluring, and graceful about a pregnant female. It's some inexplicable aura that surrounds them, a soft soothing light that alters the mood of anyone they come in contact with. A meaningfu...

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    Review: 'Winnie the Pooh' Is A Cuddly, Gorgeously Animated Treat

    There have been a lot of animated movies released this year, but virtually none of them has been any good. The technology, while increasingly sophisticated and skilled at rendering lifelike Easter bunnies and parrots and pandas and oddly anthropomorphic automobiles, seems to be brought to the screen at the cost of a similar sophistication in storytelling. Which is why "Winnie the Pooh," Disney's new take on the beloved A.A. Milne character, rendered, lovingly, in comparatively low-tech traditional animation, comes as such a surprise. It might be the greatest animated feature of the year so far (besides "Rango") – and you don't even have to we...

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    Review: 'Tabloid' Is Documentarian Errol Morris At His Wildly Absurdist Best

    Lately, documentarian Errol Morris has focused his films on terribly serious subject matter. 2003's "Fog of War" centered on Robert S. McNamara, one of the chief architects of the bloody, morally nebulous Vietnam War, and 2008's underappreciated "Standard Operating Procedure" told the story of the Abu Ghraib prison scandal through the photos themselves. The films were great, but they lacked the playfulness and oddball charm of earlier Morris films like his debut "Gates of Heaven" (about a pet cemetery) and 1997's "Fast, Cheap, and Out of Control," about a bunch of weirdos with amazing professions (lion tamer, topiary artist, robotics expert, ...

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    Review: ‘The Tree’ Is A Harrowing, Sometimes Drab, Look At Life & Loss

    Films about the loss of a loved one – a parent, a child, a partner, a friend – have been a staple of cinema almost since its inception. Our inability to forget or move on with our lives is one of the characteristics that makes us human and filmmakers are always looking for new ways to examine how we...

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    Review: 'Rapt' Succumbs To Derivative Plotlines & Insubstantial Moments

    Where do we start with Stanislas Graff? Played with quiet confidence by Yvan Attal, the man is the chairman of a seriously lucrative business, well-respected by his peers. A loving family surround him, fit with two admiring teenage daughters and a wife that doesn't think sleeping in a separate room is a red flag of any sort. In secret, Graff is a heavy gambler and we're treated to a brief snippet of the showboat at a grimy poker game. And, just like any wealthy male in a film like this, he's got a separate flat where he sees whatever mistress he's currently shagging. Director Lucas Belvaux establishes the whole of this guy efficiently, moving...

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    Review: A Fat Man, Animals That Sound Like Sitcom Characters & The Terrible 'Zookeeper'

    Early on in “Zookeeper,” Sony’s latest commercially craven piece of garbage from Adam Sandler’s Happy Madison production company, an animal sees two bears fighting. Her response is, “They look like two bean bag chairs!” Ignoring the idea that this character, a giraffe, has probably never even seen a...

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    Review: 'Ironclad' Is Made Of Flimsy Fabric

    There have been a wealth of medieval swordplay pictures in the last couple of years. Some have adhered to a jumpcut-heavy editing method to allow these pictures a contemporary feel. Others have taken advantage of more liberal times allowing these films the influx of the blood and guts appropriate to...

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    Review: John Carpenter Retires, Forgets That He Had To Direct 'The Ward'

    An open field. A girl. A fire. A mystery. Ignoring a brief and ultimately irrelevant prologue, the beginning of “The Ward” immediately pulls us into the story of a classic horror convention, the Survivor Girl. Except, tantalizingly, we don’t know what she’s survived and, given a few orchestral cues,...

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    Review: 'Horrible Bosses' Is A Middling, Generic Comedy That Murders Its Own Potential

    A dark comedies, even a generic, mass-marketed studio confection like this week's "Horrible Bosses," offers the promise of, if not laughs then, at the very least, a kind of dangerous edginess that sets it apart from the bland and safe "Hall Pass"es of the world. Of course, should the conceit falter ...

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    Review: 'The Ledge' Takes Hesitant But Significant Steps Toward Acknowledging Atheism

    Matthew Chapman’s “The Ledge” is sure to provoke plenty of ire. The film, Chapman’s first directorial outing since 1988’s “Heart of Midnight,” opens as a fairly conventional thriller – Gavin (Charlie Hunnam), stands out on a ledge and threatens to jump while detective Hollis (Terrence Howard) plays negotiator. As Hollis pieces together that Gavin’s not up here by choice, we jump into a series of flashbacks that explore a forbidden romance that takes root between Gavin and Shana (Liv Tyler), the wife of Joe (Patrick Wilson). Here’s the particular draw of “The Ledge” (and a marketing plot that’s been too heavily leaned on) – Gavin is a pronounc...

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