Category: "Reviews (Archive)"

Columbus Review

The quiet indie drama “Columbus” won’t win over many mainstream moviegoers, but cinema academic-turned-filmmaker Kogonada has crafted a visually immaculate feature debut that can be compared to little else.

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Wonderstruck Review

Graceful and quite literally quiet, “Wonderstruck” makes for an unconventional (or at least uncommercial) family film, but one worth enduring thanks to director Todd Haynes, the cast and composer Carter Burwell. 

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Win It All Review

Chicago-centric writer/director Joe Swanberg has teamed up yet again with Netflix and his favorite everyman actor, Jake Johnson, for another straight-shooting comedic drama in “Win It All.” Although Swanberg bets once more on his honest-to-goodness, real people living everyday life approach to storytelling, this film has a much stronger narrative focus, marking another step forward […]

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Lucky Review

“Lucky” puts us squarely into the boots of a nonagenarian — the routine, the attitude and the unknown. We follow Lucky (Harry Dean Stanton) as he goes about his day in the tiny desert town where he lives and his interactions with everyone from the employees at his favorite diner to the convenience store clerk […]

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Black Panther Review

Since it was announced, “Black Panther” has held the promise of something different from Marvel Studios. It’s been 10 years since the Marvel journey began with “Iron Man” and the narratives, spectacles and formula are in perpetual danger of wearing thin. Co-written and directed by Ryan Coogler (“Creed,” “Fruitvale Station”), “Black Panther” writes its own […]

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The Florida Project Review

We normally associate Orlando, Florida with the vibrant commercialism and magic of Walt Disney World and the Universal Studios theme parks, but in the shadow of Cinderella’s castle lie motels like the Magic Castle, where indie filmmaker Sean Baker invites us to journey in “The Florida Project.”

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Raw Review

A veterinary school freshman (Garance Marillier) develops a taste for raw flesh in the feature debut of French filmmaker Julia Ducournau. Part horror film, part coming-of-age drama, “Raw” is a visceral gut-punch of a film both in story and visuals, to the point that it is not recommended for the squeamish. That said, it’s gore […]

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Wind River Review

Taylor Sheridan makes his case for being one of the best working screenwriters today with “Wind River,” his third script to make it to the screen in three years and the first of the three that he’s directed.

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The Cloverfield Paradox Review

Netflix’s huge swoop up and surprise Super Bowl release of the newest film in the “Cloverfield” film universe should prove to be a daring stroke of movie-distributing genius – if for no other reason than it should help generate big ratings for a film that would’ve otherwise been killed by bad word of mouth.

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The Shape of Water Review

Guillermo del Toro already showed he could make a film like “The Shape of Water” before. His gift for turning historical fiction into fairy tales was abundantly clear in the stunning 2006 film “Pan’s Labyrinth” – it’s just a shame we had to wait so long for him to enchant us again.

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Mudbound Review

A racially tense southern-set period drama, “Mudbound” has a familiar tone and perspective, a vibe reminiscent of a more traditional era of cinematic storytelling. Yet that’s not to diminish the work of Dee Rees, whose feature follow-up to 2011’s “Pariah” is beautifully shot and firmly grounded in honest reality and modest hope.

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Lady Macbeth Review

Within minutes, “Lady Macbeth” sets a familiar period romance stage: a very young woman in 19th century rural England is sold into marriage to a cold fish husband and an even nastier father-in-law and in her isolation begins an affair with the stable groom on the family estate. We immediately sympathize with Katherine (Florence Pugh) […]

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A Ghost Story Review

Films that seem to make time stop or get us to consider how the small thread that is our lives fits into the massive tapestry of the universe are rare. Their artistic ambition usually leads to divisiveness among audiences, like an abstract painting that confounds one person but strikes a nerve in the next. “A […]

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Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri Review

After winning over theatre audiences in the ‘90s and early 2000s, Martin McDonagh moved into the filmmaking sphere and started racking up even more fans with “In Bruges” and the criminally underrated “Seven Psychopaths,” two sickly dark comedies lined start to finish with a brilliant albeit twisted humor and sharp dialogue. In “Three Billboards outside […]

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Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi Review

“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” reacclimatized fans to a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away by paying homage to decades of tradition, reuniting us with old friends and building a foundation for “the next generation.” This blueprint presented Lucasfilm and “Episode VIII” filmmaker Rian Johnson (“Brick,” “Looper”) with an opportunity in “Star […]

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