Woody Allen has proved to be a filmmaker of many talents in his five-decade career, yet he continues to — every few films — push himself into new territory, and he’s done so with “Blue Jasmine.” Cate Blanchett stars as the severely troubled titular character and she and Woody prove to be a perfect match […]
“The Grand Budapest Hotel” is Wes Anderson’s most imaginative effort yet. The perpetually quirky master of symmetry expands his scope in a way not seen since “The Life Aquatic,” but this story is infinitely more accessible and entertaining.
Every Academy Awards ceremony draws criticism in one form or another, and this year the majority of social media boo-birds looked away from Ellen Degeneres, away from John Travolta (how can you get mad?) and settled upon the branches of the Best Actor race. “Leonardo DiCaprio was robbed again,” they said.
In a time when TV is dominated by shows about morally twisted main characters you can’t help but root for, “Dallas Buyers Club” fits right in, plus it adds a layer of historical relevance and social responsibility those shows usually lack.
“The Spectacular Now,” based on the novel by Tim Tharp, does us the unusual favor of depicting teenage relationships without any romanticism or moral agendas. It’s a little surprising that it was adapted by Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber, writers of “(500) Days of Summer,” because that film definitely exaggerated its core romantic relationship, […]
If you’ve been on the site in the last month, you’ve probably noticed something’s missing. This year, I failed at the Oscars. I failed at the Oscars because I didn’t watch them. I didn’t even write about them, something I’ve done extensively for the last four ceremonies on Movie Muse. This year, however, I did […]
You might be wondering — aren’t I a little late on the “Top 10 Films of 2013″ list? Sigh. Yeah, I probably am. But at least I beat the Oscars. I refused to slide any further into the new year than Oscar Sunday. 2013 was a great year for movies, but it was a tough […]
When people ask me what my favorite movie is, I shudder. I hate that question. In fact, don’t ever ask me what my favorite anything is. The things I love in this world have a depth of variety and a multi-faceted nature that make it impossible to anoint one as “the best.” Ask me what […]
Whatever stigma exists about movies based on toys both in general and in your mind, “The LEGO Movie” will dismantle it — brick by glorious brick. The writer/director combo of Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (“Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs,” “21 Jump Street”) prove themselves yet again as masterful comic storytellers with an endless […]
They’ve done it again. The 2010 hit “Despicable Me” offered up a kind of family-friendly entertainment that only a cold-hearted cynic could actually despise. Its “Looney Tunes”-like slapstick offered light and lovable counter-programming to the visually stunning and emotion- filled animated films of the big studios such as DreamWorks and Pixar. In “Despicable Me 2,” […]
The man made famous for glorifying the mob moves over to Wall Street —Martin Scorsese’s latest, “The Wolf of Wall Street,” based on the memoir of crooked stockbroker millionaire Jordan Belfort, is a tale of excess: money, drugs, profanity, nudity, sex — even (pardon the cliché) rock ‘n roll, given the soundtrack. So how does […]
If you’re an actor with any degree of prominence, you’ve probably asked your agent to get you into the next David O. Russell picture. Including “American Hustle,” the dude has helped his actors to 11 Oscar nominations in his last three films, with a nod in every major acting category each of the last two […]
Summertime — there’s no season more influential in a young person’s coming of age. Being out of school means a chance for a new experiences and self-discovery, and spending that time in a new location always feels like a fresh start. In “The Way Way Back,” Nat Faxon and Jim Rash (“The Descendants”) portray the […]
Even an outrageous stoner comedy can successfully appeal to a wide audience with a little ingenuity. “This Is the End” could’ve stopped at being a comedy in which a bunch of friends are faced with the apocalypse, but what really makes Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen’s film work is that there’s a big glass window […]
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 […]