Category: "Reviews (Archive)"

Brooklyn Review

As much as “Brooklyn” is a vibrantly realized 1950s period piece, the story itself is a throwback too; it’s a reminder of a classic storytelling technique seemingly uncommon at the movies today – draw in the audience in and charm its socks off.

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Bridge of Spies Review

Following “War Horse” and “Lincoln,” “Bridge of Spies” rounds out Steven Spielberg’s trilogy of histories in the 2010s, each film earning a Best Picture nomination for being a superb piece of craft — and having Spielberg’s name attached.

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Amy Review

A documentary on the life of Amy Winehouse could easily have been done in a conventional manner a long the lines of A&E’s “Biography” series and still been plenty compelling. Winehouse was an enigma whose tempestuous relationships with people and drugs made for ideal tabloid fodder as well as a fascinating character study. But Asif […]

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Sicario Review

Law enforcement battles with drug cartels tend to be the focal point of bullet-ridden crime thrillers with strong “Type A” heroes and despicable villains and a handful of characters who cross the line between the two. “Sicario,” on the other hand, is good-and-evil gray area for endless miles.

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Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace Review

I was 12 years old in 1999 when the “Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace” was released. So, in many ways, I was at the perfect age for this movie – squarely in the crosshairs of the marketing’s target demographic. I had been harvested, in a way, since my true love of the original […]

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Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back Review

“A New Hope” opened us up to a galaxy of possibilities. “The Empires Strikes Back” begins to show us just how large that scope really is. Not only that, but there is a definite sense that “Star Wars” has grown up a little bit in Episode V, including taking a much darker tone.

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Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope Review

It may have been a long time ago and in a galaxy far, far away, but “Star Wars” became an instant classic by feeling so close to home, so human, despite that. In all the intricacies of its universe that fans and not fans everywhere can indulge in to whatever level they choose, it’s really […]

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Insurgent Review

The “Divergent” series’ middle installment cracks open the series, bringing the entirety of the Dystopian world Veronica Roth created to viewers. We get a glimpse of the factions Amity and Candor before the very faction system is on the brink of dissolving.

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Ex Machina Review

If I were to tell you “Ex Machina” was a movie about artificial intelligence, your mind would most likely suspect it a traditional futuristic science-fiction flick. But “28 Days Later …” and “Dredd” screenwriter Alex Garland’s directorial debut is anything but conventional.

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Trainwreck Review

Amy Schumer has made the jump to the big screen in a big way with “Trainwreck.” The comedian whose Comedy Central show has gathered a well-deserved fan base couldn’t have made a better choice than to team up with Judd Apatow to bring her self-deprecating and shameless sense of humor to a movie genre in […]

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Jurassic World Review

When it comes to “Jurassic World,” critics will be damned. To date, the film has grossed more than $1.4 billion worldwide, good for fifth most all time, so nothing anyone was going to say could influence the desire to watch this highly anticipated return to Isla Nublar and the world first created by Steven Spielberg. […]

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Kingsman: The Secret Service Review

The days of the classy ’60s spy films seemed long lost. The world has gotten too complicated for simple stories of agents in tuxedos squaring off with megalomaniacs. Yet in walks “Kingsman: The Secret Service,” based on a Mark Millar and Dave Gibbons offering that sleek look and those beloved spy genre conventions but with […]

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Inside Out Review

When Pixar announced “Up” and “Monsters Inc.” director Pete Docter’s “Untitled Pixar Film that Takes You Inside the Mind,” there was little doubt that the animation giant and its brilliant minds had yet another work of genius in development. Flash forward and the revolutionary studio has not disappointed with this endlessly creative, whimsical journey now […]

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Mad Max: Fury Road Review

As hard as I tried, I could not get into George Miller’s “Mad Max” or “The Road Warrior.” Although the latter at least proved to be a more developed post-apocalyptic Australia concept with progressive action, it felt like a violent costume party for people who like things with engines. Now, 30 years after “Beyond Thunderdome,” […]

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Chicago Critics Film Festival: Me and Earl and the Dying Girl Review

Has the light-hearted coming-of-age cancer drama become a “thing?”

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