Reviews

Wild Horse, Wild Ride (Screen Media Films, PG)

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Written by Sarah Boslaugh Thursday, 20 September 2012 08:04

wildhorses sqThe beauty of the land and the horses themselves, and the varied personalities of the trainers, more than carry the film.

 

Searching for Sugar Man (Sony Pictures Classics, PG-13)

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Written by Sean Lass Thursday, 13 September 2012 19:55

sugarman 75The music alone would be enough to make the movie worth seeing, but this is a good story well told.

   

Sleepwalk with Me (IFC Films, NR)

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Written by Matthew Newlin Thursday, 13 September 2012 19:42

sleepwalk 75The film is highly autobiographical of Birbiglia’s life on stage and off, which allows an easy transition of signature brand of comedy into the medium of film.

 

Arbitrage (Roadside Attractions, R)

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Written by Matthew Newlin Thursday, 13 September 2012 19:30

arbitrage 75Arbitrage makes it feel like Nicholas Jarecki has been directing films for years.

   

For a Good Time, Call... (Focus Features, R)

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Written by Adrienne Jones Thursday, 13 September 2012 19:17

forgoodtime 75If you won’t get in line for a film about making friends and talking dirty, what will you go see?

 

Rabbit-Proof Fence (Miramax Films, PG-13)

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Written by Sarah Boslaugh Thursday, 13 September 2012 18:59

rabbitproof 75Rabbit-Proof Fence aspires to epic status, but it’s really more of a well-done genre film.

   

The Words (CBS Films, PG-13)

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Written by Laura Hamlett Friday, 07 September 2012 10:22

thewords sqWriting about writers is very hard to pull off, and at this, the movie fails miserably.

 

Compliance (Magnolia Pictures, R)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Friday, 31 August 2012 11:57

film compliance_smThere’s the faintest smack of exploitation to Compliance. To a certain extent it’s needed for the film to work—you really kind of need to see Becky naked and humiliated in a McDonald’s stock room to get the full gut punch of the movie.

   

Celeste and Jesse Forever (Sony Pictures Classics, R)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Friday, 31 August 2012 11:53

film celeste-jesse_smEven the divorce can’t keep them apart, despite the fact that they have definitive proof that a romantic relationship between them just doesn’t work.

 

2 Days in New York (Magnolia Pictures, R)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Friday, 31 August 2012 11:49

film 2-days_sm

It’s the type of movie that thinks it’s automatically hilarious when a naked old man bends over.

   

Lawless (The Weinstein Company, R)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Wednesday, 29 August 2012 08:49

film lawless_smLawless is John Hillcoat’s best feature film to date, showing his talents as a director more than any of his previous films have.

 

Killer Joe (LD Entertainment, NC-17)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Thursday, 23 August 2012 09:29

film killer-joe_75This is the sort of movie where, every time a girl is naked, you get a long, lingering look at them, but when boys are naked, they’re carefully arranged so as not to show any of the hangy-down bits.

   

The Imposter (Indomina Releasing, R)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Thursday, 23 August 2012 09:11

film the-imposter_75It is as if Layton is making fun of his interviewees.

 

Sparkle (TriStar Pictures, PG-13)

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Written by Adrienne Jones Friday, 17 August 2012 00:00

Sparkle also suffers for literally not having enough Sparkle.

 

 

 

   

Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry (Sundance Selects, R)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Wednesday, 15 August 2012 21:05

film never-sorry_75Any documentary that makes you more aware of the world in which you live should be celebrated.

 

The Queen of Versailles (Magnolia Pictures, PG)

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Written by Sarah Boslaugh Wednesday, 15 August 2012 20:59

film versailles_75One of the film’s pleasures is simply getting to visit a world that few of us will ever know.

   

The Campaign (Warner Bros., R)

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Written by Jason Green Friday, 10 August 2012 07:39

The latest in a string of “let’s just shove Will Ferrell into a vaguely silly occupation—television anchorman, children’s soccer coach, NASCAR driver, ‘70s ABA player—and let the sparks fly!” movies, The Campaign is basically comfort food for people who love Will Ferrell movies.

 

The Bourne Legacy (Universal Pictures, PG-13)

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Written by Matthew Newlin Wednesday, 08 August 2012 15:56

film bourne-legacy_75Whereas Jason Bourne was practically emotionless, Aaron Cross has a macabre sense of humor that makes him feel more like a real person.

   

Farewell, My Queen (Cohen Media Group, R)

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Written by Sarah Boslaugh Wednesday, 08 August 2012 14:28

film farewell-queen_75Watching Farewell, My Queen is like being a spy in the house of history—in this case, the house is Versailles and the date is July 14, 1789.

 

Elena (Zeitgeist Films, NR)

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Written by Laura Hamlett Wednesday, 08 August 2012 14:25

film elena_75Elena’s trip, from the luxurious flat she shares with Vladimir to the crowded apartment where her son and his family live, sums up the stark contrasts of post-Soviet Russia.

 

   

Hope Springs (Columbia Pictures, PG-13)

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Written by Adrienne Jones Wednesday, 08 August 2012 14:20

film hope-springs_75The meat of this movie is the counseling, and because of it, there are moments that are hard to watch.

 

Ruby Sparks (Fox Searchlight Pictures, R)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Friday, 03 August 2012 16:21

rubysparks sqI’ve come to respect the way it successfully comments on the whole manic pixie dream girl persona, while still having something bigger and more useful to say.

   

Total Recall (Columbia Pictures, PG-13)

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Written by Sean Lass Friday, 03 August 2012 16:07

total sqWhen you remove blood from the action, you also remove stakes, and when you remove stakes, you remove tension—and when you remove tension, no one gives a shit.

 

Dark Horse (Vitagraph Film/Brainstorm Media, NR)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Thursday, 02 August 2012 10:29

darkhorse sqI don’t mean that he’s gone too far into being potentially offensive, but rather that he seems to have forgotten how to ground his unlikeable characters while making them memorable and interesting.

   

The Watch (Twentieth Century Fox, R)

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Written by Sean Lass Friday, 27 July 2012 10:55

thewatch 75I really like the aliens in The Watch. They look creepy, and slimy, and legitimately intimidating.

 

Trishna (IFC Films, R)

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Written by Matthew Newlin Friday, 27 July 2012 10:48

trishna 75Trishna begins as a very slow and seemingly unfocused film, but Michael Winterbottom manages to make a sharp left turn in the second half, going from a contemplative travelogue to an impassioned drama.

   

The Detective’s Lover (Running Wild, NR)

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Written by Sarah Boslaugh Friday, 27 July 2012 10:41

det lover_75This is an enjoyable film that was clearly made on a micro budget and that, for the most part, makes the most of its resources.

 

The Dark Knight Rises (Warner Bros. Pictures, PG-13)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Friday, 20 July 2012 10:53

dkrises sqNolan’s Gotham City has always been a particularly dark one, but here it dances around violence and death without ever really showing it.

   

Beasts of the Southern Wild (Fox Searchlight Pictures, PG-13)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Friday, 20 July 2012 10:43

beasts sqSome movies are good for realistically depicting the world we live in; others are good for creating a world of their own. Beasts of the Southern Wild is the rare movie that does both things: It shows us our world, but in a fresh light.

 

Pink Ribbons, Inc. (First Run Features, NR)

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Written by Matthew Newlin Thursday, 19 July 2012 17:12

pinkribsincThe terminology used by Komen and its ilk is not only disingenuous, it’s offensive.

   

Natural Selection (The Cinema Guild, R)

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Written by Matthew Newlin Tuesday, 10 July 2012 20:37

natlselec sqThe quiet scenes between Raymond and Linda are pure poetry and a fantastic course on subtle writing.

 

Take This Waltz (Magnolia Pictures, R)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Tuesday, 10 July 2012 20:23

takethis sqDid I mention how much I didn’t like all the characters in this film?

   

To Rome with Love (Sony Pictures Classics, R)

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Written by Sean Lass Thursday, 05 July 2012 17:41

torome sqThe characters talk about the same issues in the same way they have for the last four decades.

 

Savages (Universal Pictures, R)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Thursday, 05 July 2012 17:32

savages sqI spent most of this movie hoping it would end like Hamlet does.

   

Turn Me On, Dammit! (New Yorker Films, NR)

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Written by Sarah Boslaugh Thursday, 05 July 2012 10:40

turnmeon 75This seems to be the summer for smart foreign films that pump new life into seemingly moribund American genres.

 

The Amazing Spider-Man (Columbia Pictures, PG-13)

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Written by Sean Lass Tuesday, 03 July 2012 16:47

spider-man2I’m sick of movies that exist to set up franchises.

   

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