The redemption of fictional reality in Atonement
Writers grow tiresome when they (a) write about writers, (b) write about writing, or (c) write about the difference between “fiction” and “reality.”
Sleek, funny, sad
Failed ambitions and general fecklessness characterize Martin.
The spirit of childhood in Edenic Turkey
The coast of Turkey looks downright Edenic in Reha Erdem’s meditative and visually exquisite pastoral.
Children at war
Like countless reality TV shows and other current-day documentaries, this film from Sean Fine and Andrea Nix is organized conveniently, and conventionally, around a contest.
Margot has snob appeal
Noah Baumbach’s The Squid and the Whale marked him as the reigning bard of disaffected 16-year-olds from privileged, culturally elite, miserably broken families.
Todd Haynes’s not-Dylan movie
If Bob Dylan were a real movie director, I’m Not There is probably the movie he’d make about his own life
Christmas movies have always meant boring white people going home to settle lifelong resentments and eat ham.
Frank Darabont’s adaptation of the Stephen King novella spawns a horror beyond human comprehension. Yes, I’m talking about another performance by Marcia Gaye Harden.
Not quite the Bourne franchise
Timothy Olyphant, long a garnish in films like Go and Live Free or Die Hard , takes centerstage in this video-game-to-big-screen-actioneer.
Better than generic holiday fare
Wicked (cartoon) witch sends adorable fairy-tale princess down a rabbit hole and she’s deposited, suddenly human, in present-day Times Square.
As Beowulf (mostly in voice), the reliable and paunchy Ray Winstone develops a digitally chiseled physique.
A meditation on 400 years
Lengthy, beautifully composed shots of gravestones and historical monuments encourage us to mourn fallen heroes as well as to recognize our own vulnerability to larger forces.
An antidote to intelligence and insight
Kirsten Sheridan’s movie is about Music: how Music connects all of us, how Music is everywhere, how all Music is uplifting, dammit, no matter what.
Changing the way we see
The shapes and lines of Kelly’s big, bright, flat-color abstractions are, it turns out, taken from life.
Film in the Time of Oprah
Granted, this is hardly the first Hollywood film to feature Latinos practicing ESL in their own land, but with lines like “Her smell is in my noh-streels,” it’s among the dumbest.
Meet Super Creep
This one’s a lot to sit through.
A sex-gore flop
Bentley and Nichols do wonders with a property otherwise as appealing as an empty parking garage on Christmas Eve.
The camera war
The Iraq War movies are starting to resemble the war itself: miscalculated, mishandled, unpopular, and with no end in sight. Scialfa
A cohesive revision from Ridley Scott
Neither the dick nor the dancer is entirely “human,” but that’s the clever conceit of Ridley Scott’s dystopian vision of 2019 Los Angeles.
Equally at ease reciting a soliloquy from Hamlet as he is imitating Meryl Streep, Reilly flips off those who dismiss him or, worse, think he’s dead.
Richard Kelly goes for broke in Southland Tales
Richard Kelly’s wildly ambitious and widely loathed Southland Tales now seems among the most believable works of film futurism ever made in this country.
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