Category: "Drama"

Charlie Wilson’s War Review

Wasn’t sure what I would end my Tom Hanks marathon on, but after just watching “American Made,” the subject of  this film felt very relevant. This review comes from February 11, 2009, which would make it a second-semester college film. That’s right, I did things like watch “Charlie Wilson’s War” instead of partying.

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The Green Mile Review

It’s hard to include this review in this Tom Hanks appreciation series, because I didn’t write about Hanks’ performance, but the rest of the pickings include reviews that were very short and admittedly weak (and also didn’t mention Hanks’ performance). Anyway, “The Green Mile” is a great movie! This review is from July 17, 2010.

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Captain Phillips Review

Jumping way forward in time for my next Tom Hanks archive review (in the spirit of T.Hanks-giving) to probably his best performance of this decade, though I suppose it’s neck and neck with “Sully,” given the similarities. I’m not sure how this didn’t make it onto the site, possibly because I was too late to […]

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Philadelphia Review

Because Thanksgiving is approaching, I thought I’d do a month of reviews from my archive of films starring Tom Hanks (or, T. Hanks). This is perhaps my oldest written review of a Hanks film.

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The Founder Review

“The Founder” tells the story of McDonald’s Corporation founder Ray Kroc, the salesman and idea-chaser who turned two humble brothers’ speedy burger concept into the biggest restaurant chain in the world. But Kroc isn’t actually the most interesting part of his own movie.

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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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The Theory of Everything Review

The stories of great people, particularly the great thinkers, have been source material for a number of acclaimed and awarded biopics, a sub-genre that has evolved a lot in the last decade. You can tell just by comparing two of 2014’s best, each focused on one of the greatest British minds of the 20th century. […]

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Whiplash Review

Jazz music and psychology create a furious cinematic swell in Damien Chazelle’s “Whiplash,” a striking breakthrough effort that will have toes tapping and pulses racing. Centered on a 19-year-old aspiring Jazz drummer pushed to his limits for better and for worse (usually worse) by a merciless instructor, “Whiplash” tells a simple story of how far […]

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The Imitation Game Review

Biopics have become so commonplace today that they often lack the prestige they carried 10-20 years ago. So when one stands out, it deserves an extra bit of recognition and praise, and “The Imitation Game” is one such film, commanded by a fascinating performance from Benedict Cumberbatch.

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Birdman Review

Washed up celebrities, surrealism, truth and the theatre converge into an extraordinary film from Alejandro González Iñárritu (“Amores Perros,” “21 Grams”), a master of weaving multiple story lines together tackling dark but powerful themes about human nature and love. “Birdman” does not veer from these themes, but it is a dramatic structural shift for Iñárritu; […]

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Foxcatcher Review

“Foxcatcher” is anything but a wrestling drama. Although based on the true story of Olympic gold medalist Mark Schultz and his brief years of training under multi-millionaire John du Pont, “Foxcatcher” expands well beyond the wrestling ring into the minds of two men longing to find greatness.

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12 Years a Slave Review

Slavery is rightfully considered the darkest mark on America’s 237-year history. It was the issue that defined 19th Century America, and one of many examples in humanity’s narrative of the oppression of one people at the hands of another. “12 Years a Slave”  is a brutal but necessary reminder of that evil. It is a […]

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42 Review

In telling chapters of history, films have the benefit of hindsight. As obvious as that statement sounds, Oscar-winning screenwriter Brian Helgeland takes advantage of almost 70 years of history in writing/directing “42,” to the point where he can set the stage with the perfect emotional tone for telling the story of Jackie Robinson, one of […]

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Life of Pi Review

Man vs. nature is an ever-occurring theme in literature and film, but few dare tag on “vs. God.” Although to be fair, “Life of Pi” implies a certain connection between God and nature, that they aren’t exactly separate entities. Ang Lee’s adaptation of Yann Martel’s celebrated and oft-considered “unfilmable” novel tackles this crisis of faith […]

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Arbitrage Review

The timeless narrative of people who do bad things getting what they deserve has become so entrenched in the way we look at books, movies, television and more. For that reason, many who finish “Arbitrage” will find themselves rather bewildered.

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