THE FIFTH ESTATE

1.5 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 128 minutes

One of the picture’s multitudinous shortcomings is the fact that its subject is literally an international man of mystery and neither its director nor screenwriter, Josh Singer, seem to have any more idea who he is and what makes him tick than you or I…


Posted on October 22, 2013 by

FRANCES HA

4.5 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 86 minutes

Watching Frances Ha, it hit me: Greta Gerwig is the anti-Zooey. Both actresses are quirky, sweet, funny and attractive but there’s a significant distinction. Deschanel’s built a career as the poster chick for the Manic Pixie Dream Girl. The MPDG is a filmmaking term for bubbly cinematic creatures which exist to teach brooding young men […]


Posted on October 16, 2013 by

RUSH

2 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 123 minutes

Ron Howard does indeed possess a beautiful mind. Let us count the ways the world would be diminished without him: First, there never would’ve been an Opie (and what a barren patch the universe would be had there never been such a thing as an Opie). Or a Richie Cunningham. Artists have achieved immortality for […]


Posted on October 2, 2013 by

2013 MANHATTAN SHORT FILM FESTIVAL PREVIEW

From September 27 through October 6, movie houses, universities, galleries, cafes, museums and maybe even a truck or two will feature the same ten finalists-selected from a record 628 entries from 48 countries-more or less simultaneously on six continents from the midwest to the Middle East…



Posted on September 25, 2013 by

THE FAMILY

0.5 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 110 minutes

Obviously Robert De Niro was abducted by aliens and the fellow we’ve watched sleepwalk through nearly twenty years of shlock is a pod person…


Posted on September 16, 2013 by

ONE DIRECTION: THIS IS US

3 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: PG
Running Time: 92 minutes

What I learned watching this film is that what it means to be the biggest band in the world has changed completely in my lifetime…


Posted on September 4, 2013 by

BLUE JASMINE

1 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 98 minutes

There’s the germ of an intriguing idea in there-the notion of Blanche/Jasmine’s downfall as a metaphor for the country’s economic collapse-and I’m for anyone inclined to remind a 21st century audience of Tennessee Williams’ genius. The problem is Allen’s grown lazy and sour…


Posted on September 3, 2013 by

JOBS

1.5 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 128 minutes

Stern and Whiteley’s is a story about big business when it should’ve been a story about big ideas…


Posted on August 21, 2013 by

WE’RE THE MILLERS

2 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 110 minutes

The picture’s committee of writers clearly couldn’t decide whether it wanted to go for R-rated raunch or heart-tugging sentimentality so opted for both…


Posted on August 14, 2013 by

WAR ON WHISTLEBLOWERS: FREE PRESS AND THE NATIONAL SECURITY STATE

4.5 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 66 minutes

I know it’s hard to believe things have gotten so Orwellian so fast just when they were supposed to get better but Greenwald’s done his homework. His film’s just been released on DVD and I strongly recommend it…


Posted on August 7, 2013 by

THE WAY WAY BACK

4 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 103 minutes

Faxon and Rash don’t reinvent the teen wheel here, just give it a fresh spin. We know where things are headed but enjoy the ride anyway because we’re in such great company and such capable hands…


Posted on July 31, 2013 by

THE CONJURING

1 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 112 minutes

Wan’s exercise in old school chills fails not just because it doesn’t feature a single cheap trick we haven’t seen a hundred times before but because it’s got too many central characters and too little focus…


Posted on July 24, 2013 by

GROWN UPS 2

3 Stars
Year Released: 2013
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 101 minutes

Not all are classic moments in cinema. Several—including a car wash gag I neglected to mention—are a hoot and half though. There’s a definite sense that “Grown Ups 2″ was probably more fun to make than to watch…


Posted on July 17, 2013 by

HELP! (BLU-RAY)

4.5 Stars
Year Released: 1965
MPAA Rating: G
Running Time: 92 minutes

Great cinema it isn’t. Great fun, great music and great company more than make up for that though…


Posted on July 15, 2013 by

THE GATEKEEPERS

5 Stars
Year Released: 2012
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 101 minutes

In the world there are only a handful of human beings who have been where these six have been and seen what they have seen. Their accounts of attacks by and against their enemies make the average spy novel look like something out of Mother Goose…


Posted on July 10, 2013 by

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