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This tag is associated with 204 posts

Movie review: “King Arthur: Legend of the Sword”

Generic sword & sorcery fantasy wrapped in pseudo-Arthurian legend, Guy Ritchie’s ill-conceived, atonal King Arthur: Legend of the Sword is a frustrating and incoherent mess with the occasional flash of brilliance. Granted, it couldn’t have been worse; if it had been, that would have made it more entertaining. This story is a drastic re-imagining of Arthur’s origins, … Continue reading

Movie review: “Live by Night”

When Ben Affleck adapted Dennis Lehane’s gritty crime novel Gone Baby  Gone to the big screen in 2007, he established himself as a nascent directing talent and reinvigorated a career that had become a joke. He displayed a vice-like grasp of the material; his grip on Lehane’s pulpy gangster tale Live by Night is depressingly weak. the young … Continue reading

Movie review: “Silence”

Martin Scorsese once said that the two most important things in his life were “my art and my religion.” Nowhere has that been more evident than in Silence, a passion-project in every sense, written and rewritten by Scorsese over the course of 25 years. An intense study on faith, the human condition, and what it … Continue reading

Movie review: “Nocturnal Animals”

Visually stunning, often chilling, and occasionally clunky, fashion designer-turned-filmmaker Tom Ford’s Nocturnal Animals is a stronger sophomore effort than most. It’s a Texas Gothic crime thriller sutured to a potboiler melodrama about the existential despair of L.A. socialites in a David Lynchian fashion — though with less surrealism and more coherence. Make of that what you will. … Continue reading

Movie review: “Arrival”

The timing of Arrival is rather fitting, seeing that it is a brainy, ambitious, and hopeful science fiction drama about breaking a seemingly unbreachable language barrier, hitting theaters just a scant few days after one of the most rancorous and divisive elections in the history of the United States. Will it heal a divided nation? … Continue reading

Movie review: “Hacksaw Ridge”

Mel Gibson has returned to the director’s chair after a ten-year absence, and his war film Hacksaw Ridge proves to be a worthy effort. It’s a blunt-force but highly effective treatise on the horrors of war as well as those who rise above the brutality to maintain as much humanity as one can on a battlefield. … Continue reading

Movie review: “The Birth of a Nation”

Writer, director, and actor Nate Parker’s ambitious telling of Nat Turner’s 1831 slave revolt is timely movie; it’s also a missed opportunity, a tepid tale hamstrung by Parker’s limited experience and the constraints of biopic filmmaking. The title itself is an audacious bit of trolling, seeing that it is shared by D.W. Griffith’s 1915 silent epic that … Continue reading

Movie review: “Ben-Hur”

It’s almost impressive that director Timur Bekmambetov (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) had the gumption to remake a cinematic icon. Unfortunately, that’s the extent of his daring. He opts to play it safe and more than a little toothless with the godfather of Biblical epics, rather than going for broke with a more stylized interpretation. As a result, there’s not of … Continue reading

Movie review: “Jason Bourne”

It’s ironic and inevitable that after four movies a franchise about a super-spy/super-soldier with amnesia would start to develop a feeling of deja vu. Its predecessors have always been cutting edge, gritty, faced-paced, timely, and raw in their sensibilities; but with Jason Bourne the world seems to have caught up with the franchise. Its style has … Continue reading

Movie review: “The Legend of Tarzan”

Less pompous than Greystoke (1984) but more cartoonish than Disney’s 1999 animated version of the material,  The Legend of Tarzan is pretty to look at but ultimately hollow and occasionally shoddy. This latest adaptation of Edgar Rice Burrough’s pulp character hinges on a clever premise with a built-in conflict, mainly the early days of King Leopold II … Continue reading

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