No-Town Music

Detropia

At its worst, cinema verite is aimless pretense masquerading as artistic intent. At its best, it is Detropia, a documentary that adds soul to statistics, going inside the implosion of a once proud city using a sprawling, haunting approach. That isn’t to say that directors Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady don’t infuse the proper factual context for their mournful postmortem. Neither transcendent nor...

entered on 10/27/12 at 05:36 PM | read more »



Being Near Emma Watson

The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Reconciling the public’s fascination with Emma Watson’s blossoming sexuality with realizing the first time she was on-screen she was 11 years old is really difficult. Doing so in a movie where her character’s sexuality is fundamentally warped because of an experience at 11 years old feels like a pretty clear indictment of said fascination. So if we could take a second from obsessing over the...

entered on 10/20/12 at 06:10 AM | read more »



Take the Psycho Path

Seven Psychopaths

With massive mainstream media marketing rollouts and the box office boons reaped by free social media, movies so rarely surprise us these days. Shock cameos are spoiled in the space of a tweet, while most trailers render buying the proverbial “movie cow” moot when you got the “third-act milk” for free in the preview.

Guess what? You’re so not ready for Seven Psychopaths.

And don’t worry...

entered on 10/20/12 at 06:06 AM | read more »



Object of My Affleck-tion

Argo

It’s easy to thrill people when they don’t know what’s coming. Okay, maybe not easy—paging Mr. Shyamalan—but certainly less difficult than whipping up tension in a film based on a decades-old actual incident, the resolution of which is but a Google search away. Between that and having to painstakingly recreate 1970s mustaches, actor/director Ben Affleck’s Argo faced several hairy problems. But...

entered on 10/14/12 at 06:20 PM | read more »



Margarine-al Humor

Butter

In the wake of a Presidential debate that was almost fact-free on one side and nearly lifeless on the other, smearing Butter on one’s eyes seemed like a good option for poll junkies. This allegedly politically charged ensemble comedy promised a send-up of campaign rhetoric, a no-holds-barred takedown of our no-holds-barred electoral system and a scantily-clad Olivia Wilde. One out of three...

entered on 10/05/12 at 09:20 PM | read more »



“Glee” Clubbed

Pitch Perfect

At the point where the fist pump from The Breakfast Club becomes a plot point, shortly after a near-mute Asian girl who ate her own twin in the womb makes snow angels in another girl’s vomit, Pitch Perfect moves from “cult classic” to “recommended for any human who likes funny.” Toss in the nonchalant itty-bitty beauty of Anna Kendrick, and it doesn’t matter how many cliches you overstuff this...

entered on 09/29/12 at 03:49 AM | read more »



R2D2 and the AARP

Robot & Frank

First things first: although she’s only eight years younger than him, nobody will accept that Susan Sarandon would want to kiss Frank Langella on his mouth parts. That premise requires a bigger suspension of disbelief than the rest of Robot & Frank, which presumes the world now has robotic versions of Mr. Belvedere.

Writer Christopher D. Ford and director Jake Schreier have composed a quiet...

entered on 09/28/12 at 06:40 PM | read more »


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Lucy

A girl ingests a drug that makes her God. For real.

GRADE
C+


Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Those damned apes are back and anything but dirty.

GRADE
B+


We Are the Best

Set in Stockholm in 1982, this is punk rock female adolescence at its finest.

GRADE
A


Snowpiercer

Awesome, literal class warfare on a train that holds the only humans that survived the new ice age.

GRADE
A-


Obvious Child

Billed as a comedy, this is actually a sophisticated, empathetic look at a crucial issue.

GRADE
B+


The Signal

Crazy good and just plain crazy, this is indie sci-fi at its best!

GRADE
A+


Ping Pong Summer

Drowning in 1980s nostalgia, this deserves to be a cult hit.

GRADE
A-


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