This tag is associated with 9 posts

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: “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: “The Revenant”

Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu’s (Birdman) fact-based frontier revenge saga The Revenant has an unnerving way of lodging itself in the back of one’s mind for days. Equal parts beautiful and brutal, it’s easily one of the most unsettling films of the past few years. It’s also one of the best. Its setting is a particularly harsh time … Continue reading

Movie review: “In the Heart of the Sea”

Ron Howard’s latest may strengthen the clichéd argument that “truth is stranger than fiction”, but it also suggests that it is often more boring, too. Howard and screenwriter Charles Leavitt half-heartedly adapt Nathaniel Philbrick’s novel of the same name, itself a fictionalized account of the true story of the ill-fated whaling ship Essex, the inspiration for Herman … Continue reading

Movie review: ” ’71”

A disarmingly effective blend of “a night on the run” thriller and historical/political drama, ’71 is one of those rare movies that catches viewers almost completely off-guard and leaves the rattled to the core. Writer Gregory Burke and director Yann Demange, both television veterans making their feature film debut, stick with the notion that less is more and … Continue reading

Movie review: ‘300: Rise of an Empire’

Believe it or not, the pseudo-sequel 300: Rise of an Empire manages to one-up its predecessor, in the sense that it’s even more gratuitous, over-the-top, and fetishistic than Zack Snyder’s stylistic adaptation of Frank Miller’s graphic novel about the 300 Spartan warriors who held an invading Persian army of thousands at bay at the Battle … Continue reading

This Week’s Special Screenings

The Angelika Film Center’s month-long The Spectacular Now film series continues with Cameron Crowe’s semi-autobiographical comedy Almost Famous (1999) at 7:30pm, July 23, at the Angelika Theater. Details The Texas Theatre presents a 35mm print of Stand By Me (1986), various showtimes, July  25-28, at the theater. Details The Angelika Film Center’s After Hours feature for the week is Rocky (1976) at 11:45pm, July 26 and … Continue reading

Movie review: ‘A Dangerous Method’

After re-inventing himself with the gritty crime fare of A History of Violence (2005) and Eastern Promises (2007), director David Cronenberg turns in a surprisingly disappointing follow-up with A Dangerous Method, a limp and uninteresting historic drama that would thrive on — but is completely lacking — the psychosexual tension that usual permeates Cronenberg’s work. … Continue reading

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