Articles by: Don Morton
Features

Faced with a bewildering plethora of new movie releases this Golden Week, self-indulgent Metropolis film critic Don Morton interviews himself.

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Europe

Find out why one local expat traveled from London to Tokyo—by bicycle

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Japan

An around-the-world biker makes a pit stop in Tokyo

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Movie Reviews

Visually immersive, experimental avant-garde horror film

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Movie Reviews

Nifty CG tornados but no suspense

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Movie Reviews

Good ambiguity and tension for a message movie

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Movie Reviews

Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous this is not

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Movie Reviews

Predictable and superficial but Edinburgh is a great backdrop

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Movie Reviews

Another toothless young adult adaptation

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Movie Reviews

Hollywood gets it right

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Movie Reviews

A banal erotic head-scratcher set to florid music

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Movie Reviews

Phantasmagorical guerrilla filmmaking

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Movie Reviews

Overlong crime saga with a riveting finish

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Movie Reviews

Not bad for a cynical, opportunistic, exposition-heavy cash grab

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Movie Reviews

Offbeat, understated and oddly endearing

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Movie Reviews

This German-Italian cornball should have stayed down below

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Movie Reviews

Sharply written, action-packed, unexpectedly funny and entertaining

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Movie Reviews

Emotionally absorbing and never less than visually astonishing

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Movie Reviews

No new theories on the Kennedy assassination

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Movie Reviews

A grim and gruesome feel-bad movie

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Movie Reviews

A tense, you-are-there adventure

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Movie Reviews

Modest in scale and never less than compelling

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Movie Reviews

More artifice than intelligence

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Movie Reviews

Campy slo-mo splatter

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Movie Reviews

As if Nicholas Sparks wrote Invasion of the Body Snatchers

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Movie Reviews

Kevin Costner is no Liam Neeson

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Movie Reviews

Unfulfilled premise ripe with promise

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Movie Reviews

Solid dialogue can't talk its way past a cheat ending

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Movie Reviews

Rare misstep for otherwise admired director Darren Aronofsky

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Movie Reviews

One of the most influential films never made

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Movie Reviews

Averting the apocalypse offers timely moments of comic relief

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Movie Reviews

A shapeless, occasionally violent film flavored with pompous religiosity

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Movie Reviews

Screaming, fuming, crazy-man Cage is ho-hum again

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Movie Reviews

A waste of lava

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Movie Reviews

A literal car wreck of a movie

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Movie Reviews

Entirely watchable, stylish sci-fi flick

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Movie Reviews

Quirky, surreal and totally original

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Movie Reviews

Joylessly banal subject matter

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Movie Reviews

Nature doc offers a swarm of information

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Movie Reviews

Scary because it stays within the realm of possibility

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Movie Reviews

Not just watchable, but totally engaging

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Movie Reviews

An aptly named issue drama

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Movie Reviews

Veteran actors having fun even if the movie is not

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Movie Reviews

Worth seeing for Idris Elba’s performance

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Movie Reviews

Interconnectedness and openheartedness on the soccer pitch

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Movie Reviews

Cloyingly sincere, comically earnest and astoundingly awful

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Movie Reviews

Polished shocker is lurid but never campy

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Movie Reviews

Fourth-rate cast bereft of direction sinks this film

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Movie Reviews

Simply the best work Cate Blanchett has ever done

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Movie Reviews

River Phoenix' final film gets desperate release

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Movie Reviews

Iconic cult-fave film well worth another look

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Movie Reviews

Not uniformly awful

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Movie Reviews

A prestige whodunit for grownups

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Movie Reviews

An entertaining few fanboy hours at the movies

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Movie Reviews

Cheesy defense of Vienna from the Ottoman Empire historical flick

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Movie Reviews

Counterintuitive, articulately argued documentary on nuclear power

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Movie Reviews

Only if you're into superhero flicks

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Movie Reviews

Surprising and genuinely moving

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Movie Reviews

Fine performances keep the obvious from getting maudlin

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Movie Reviews

The latest YA fantasy recycled from better movies

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Movie Reviews

A delectable comedy as dark as night

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Movie Reviews

Heroic 12-pint pub crawl with Simon Pegg and Nick Frost

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Movie Reviews

Paranormal inactivity and cheap parlor tricks

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Movie Reviews

Artfully filmed look at homelessness in Dublin

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Movie Reviews

'70s prison break like a Hank Williams song

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Movie Reviews

Sly and DeNiro back in the ring

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Movie Reviews

Juvenile trash...but funny

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Movie Reviews

Gruesome and almost unwatchable

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Movie Reviews

Nicely animated, pro-girl animation

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Movie Reviews

Fast, fresh and absurdly enjoyable

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Movie Reviews

Serious message delivered lightly

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Movie Reviews

Minimalist movie making to the max

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Movie Reviews

True-ish story of amateur opera sensation Paul Potts

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Movie Reviews

No politics, just battlefield realism

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Movie Reviews

Uneven, uninvolving bomb

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Movie Reviews

Michael B. Jordan leads a superb cast

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Movie Reviews

Sentimentalized, sanitized story of the making of Mary Poppins

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Movie Reviews

Doesn't convince that a remake was at all necessary

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Movie Reviews

Low-key, mismatched-buddies story

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Movie Reviews

Heartbreaking but honest tale

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Movie Reviews

What actors who don’t pay their taxes have to do

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Movie Reviews

Nicely animated, pro-girl animation

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Movie Reviews

Fast-paced, fun and thought-provoking

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Movie Reviews

A horror-film history lesson that pulls no punches

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Movie Reviews

Plenty of gallows humor

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Movie Reviews

Doc on the splatter illustrator

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Movie Reviews

A ludicrous cat-and-mouse game

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Movie Reviews

Groan-worthy awfulness

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Movie Reviews

Entertaining eye candy, but little depth

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Movie Reviews

Quickly devolves into a splatter comedy

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Movie Reviews

Skin-deep movie

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Movie Reviews

Another minimalist Alexander Payne road-trip dramedy

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Movie Reviews

A very unpleasant movie

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Movie Reviews

Early performances from Jennifer Lawrence and Chloe Grace Moretz

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Movie Reviews

A raw and raucous story

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Movie Reviews

Adds precisely zilch to the legal suspense genre

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Movie Reviews

Personality-free, by-the-numbers action retread

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Movie Reviews

Heartbreaking, existentially complex tale of the immigrant experience

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Movie Reviews

Paul Walker has more opportunities to act in one of his last roles

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Movie Reviews

Civil Rights movement told White House servant's story

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Movie Reviews

The Man with the Mallet returns

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Movie Reviews

Every sloppy scene screams “film school project!”

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Movie Reviews

A movie that matters

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Movie Reviews

Brooding disquiet and sexual tension the Brits do so well

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Movie Reviews

Required viewing for all parents

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Movie Reviews

Imaginative, maybe, but mostly just silly

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Movie Reviews

Works both as drama and as spectacle

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Movie Reviews

Rare flat-out comedy from Scorsese

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Movie Reviews

A twisted tale well told

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Movie Reviews

A twisted tale well told

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Movie Reviews

Five obsessive cinephiles sound off on The Shining

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Movie Reviews

Five obsessive cinephiles sound off on The Shining

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Movie Reviews

Brutal, meaningless, torture-porn tale

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Movie Reviews

Not much in terms originality or surprises, but good for a few yucks

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Movie Reviews

A movie that Mark Twain would like

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Movie Reviews

Overlong, extremely violent and just plain ugly

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Movie Reviews

Overlong, extremely violent and just plain ugly

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Movie Reviews

Two hours of repetitive video-game-like training sequences

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Movie Reviews

Third film in unplanned triptych

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Movie Reviews

Third film in unplanned triptych

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Movie Reviews

Sincere yet unpolished little feelgooder

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Movie Reviews

De Niro and Travolta engage in skippable brutality

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Movie Reviews

De Niro and Travolta engage in skippable brutality

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Movie Reviews

Refreshing take on the vampire genre from Jim Jarmusch

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Movie Reviews

Refreshing take on the vampire genre from Jim Jarmusch

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Movie Reviews

Powerful yet modest, moving portrait of universal marriage

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Movie Reviews

Powerful yet modest, moving portrait of universal marriage

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Movie Reviews

Soulless, non-Pixar, DisneyToon cash-grab

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Movie Reviews

Soulless, non-Pixar, DisneyToon cash-grab

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Movie Reviews

Shipwreck narrative that justifies the overused and abused 3D treatment

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Movie Reviews

Shipwreck narrative that justifies the overused and abused 3D treatment

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Movie Reviews

Heartwarming film with no emotional button-pushing

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Movie Reviews

Heartwarming film with no emotional button-pushing

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Movie Reviews

Secretary to the Beatles finally speaks but it all sounds alike

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Movie Reviews

Secretary to the Beatles finally speaks but it all sounds alike

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Movie Reviews

Painstakingly crafted B&W silent movie from Spain

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Movie Reviews

Painstakingly crafted B&W silent movie from Spain

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Movie Reviews

One of the worst movies ever made

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Movie Reviews

One of the worst movies ever made

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Movie Reviews

forced, flaccid, and tonally clueless multiplex fodder

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Movie Reviews

forced, flaccid, and tonally clueless multiplex fodder

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Movie Reviews

Unwarranted, inferior sequel

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Movie Reviews

Unwarranted, inferior sequel

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Movie Reviews

mildly effective thriller devolves into insultingly stupid drivel

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Movie Reviews

mildly effective thriller devolves into insultingly stupid drivel

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Movie Reviews

Effective horror flick without excessive gore

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Movie Reviews

Effective horror flick without excessive gore

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Movie Reviews

Action-thriller actually has Dwayne Johnson's best work

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Movie Reviews

Action-thriller actually has Dwayne Johnson's best work

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Movie Reviews

Clunky Twilight clone set in the deep south

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Movie Reviews

Clunky Twilight clone set in the deep south

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Movie Reviews

Tom Hanks upends the conventional idea of an action hero

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Movie Reviews

Tom Hanks upends the conventional idea of an action hero

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Movie Reviews

Aggressively not funny and most decidedly not a Monty Python movie

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Movie Reviews

Aggressively not funny and most decidedly not a Monty Python movie

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Movie Reviews

The rock guitarist's tale through his words and photos

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Movie Reviews

A fresh look at the coming-of-age story

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Movie Reviews

A fresh look at the coming-of-age story

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Movie Reviews

Brutal ultra violence mixed with sitcom gags

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Movie Reviews

Brutal ultra violence mixed with sitcom gags

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Movie Reviews

Deliciously twisted, darkly humorous home-invasion flick

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Movie Reviews

Deliciously twisted, darkly humorous home-invasion flick

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Movie Reviews

Chloë Grace Moretz is good, but not so very scary

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Movie Reviews

Chloë Grace Moretz is good, but not so very scary

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Movie Reviews

An innocuous but unnecessary romp bringing together the original cast

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Movie Reviews

An innocuous but unnecessary romp bringing together the original cast

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Movie Reviews

Polished and inevitably rousing look at baseball player Jackie Robinson

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Movie Reviews

Polished and inevitably rousing look at baseball player Jackie Robinson

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Movie Reviews

Astounding performance from Douglas and Damon in this love story filled with emotional tension

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Movie Reviews

Astounding performance from Douglas and Damon in this love story filled with emotional tension

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Movie Reviews

Ashton Kutcher resembles the man, but doesn't show us what made him tick

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Movie Reviews

Ashton Kutcher resembles the man, but doesn't show us what made him tick

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Movie Reviews

Pomo for the unbelievably if fleetingly popular boy band du jour

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Movie Reviews

Pomo for the unbelievably if fleetingly popular boy band du jour

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Movie Reviews

Love, war, birth, death, motherhood, sensuality, horror, drama

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Movie Reviews

Love, war, birth, death, motherhood, sensuality, horror, drama

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Movie Reviews

Mad scientist flick gets a steam punk make over

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Movie Reviews

Mad scientist flick gets a steam punk make over

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Movie Reviews

Two A-listers in an enjoyable time-waster

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Movie Reviews

Two A-listers in an enjoyable time-waster

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Movie Reviews

Michael Shannon puts in a menacing performance as real-life hit man

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Movie Reviews

Michael Shannon puts in a menacing performance as real-life hit man

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Movie Reviews

Tarantino meets Kaufman in the tale of a dognapping gone wrong

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Movie Reviews

Tarantino meets Kaufman in the tale of a dognapping gone wrong

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Movie Reviews

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo director's first English-language film

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Movie Reviews

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo director's first English-language film

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Movie Reviews

Nicholas Sparks adaptation by the once-great Lasse Hallstrom

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Movie Reviews

Nicholas Sparks adaptation by the once-great Lasse Hallstrom

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Movie Reviews

Downer on a level that you really need to be a Brit to enjoy

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Movie Reviews

Downer on a level that you really need to be a Brit to enjoy

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Movie Reviews

All-star Ocean’s 11 with illusionists

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Movie Reviews

All-star Ocean’s 11 with illusionists

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Movie Reviews

Well-intentioned tabloid fantasy

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Movie Reviews

Well-intentioned tabloid fantasy

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Movie Reviews

Polished but clearly promotional doc on the legendary band

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Movie Reviews

Polished but clearly promotional doc on the legendary band

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Movie Reviews

Lifeless retread of Men in Black

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Movie Reviews

Lifeless retread of Men in Black

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Movie Reviews

Juxtaposes teen girls with shocking violence, and mostly fails

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Movie Reviews

Juxtaposes teen girls with shocking violence, and mostly fails

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Movie Reviews

An art auction employee (James McAvoy) is the inside man in the theft of a Goya, but gets conked on the head and can’t remember where he stashed it. Vicious-criminal partner (Vincent Cassel), after trying torture, turns to a hypnotherapist (an electric Rosario Dawson) for answers. It’s not dull, but it’s so caught up in ...

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Movie Reviews

An art auction employee (James McAvoy) is the inside man in the theft of a Goya, but gets conked on the head and can’t remember where he stashed it. Vicious-criminal partner (Vincent Cassel), after trying torture, turns to a hypnotherapist (an electric Rosario Dawson) for answers. It’s not dull, but it’s so caught up in ...

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Movie Reviews

The haunted house formula redefined by a master

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Movie Reviews

The haunted house formula redefined by a master

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Movie Reviews

Chap but efficient triller shot inside a real Soviet sub.

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Movie Reviews

Chap but efficient triller shot inside a real Soviet sub.

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Movie Reviews

Robert Redford's tribute to ‘60s idealism

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Movie Reviews

Drab kids-versus-commies fiasco

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Movie Reviews

Marginally watchable and instantly forgettable cop flick

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Movie Reviews

Before he would return from his forced exile from Apple

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Movie Reviews

Touring England’s lamest tourist attractions in a caravan

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Movie Reviews

Abrupt, puzzlingly pointless ending

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Movie Reviews

Three high school kids gain amazing abilities from a alien

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Movie Reviews

Jeremy Irons takes us on a tour of global paradises

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Movie Reviews

The fun story along with the rapid-fire sight gags

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Movie Reviews

Look at it as an antidote to Twilight

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Movie Reviews

Handcrafted some of the most elegant books on the planet

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Movie Reviews

Matt Damon stars in this thought-provoking sci-fi flick

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Movie Reviews

Romance between a zombie and a human

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Movie Reviews

Bill Murray as FDR grows on you

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Movie Reviews

Surprisingly fun and refreshingly old-school superhero movie

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Movie Reviews

Social commentary

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Movie Reviews

Social outrage at Big Pharma into high-stakes gamesmanship and duplicity

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Movie Reviews

Superman story just can’t be shoehorned into the dark

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Movie Reviews

A major impact on American literature

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Movie Reviews

A self-involved villain you’ll love to hate

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Movie Reviews

A fun and satisfying blockbuster

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Movie Reviews

A retired cat burglar with a failing memory

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Movie Reviews

Trying to stem a zombie apocalypse

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Movie Reviews

Beyond a cop-buddy movie

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Movie Reviews

Predictable, misogynistic and dismaying

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Movie Reviews

Big, dumb & loud disaster

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Movie Reviews

Pure, soul-sucking ugliness

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Movie Reviews

Love found and lost

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Movie Reviews

Angelina Jolie’s directorial debut

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Movie Reviews

A Maldives mini-Mandela

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Movie Reviews

Transformers meets Godzilla

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Movie Reviews

Like a Road Runner cartoon—except overlong and unfunny

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Movie Reviews

Smart with a heart

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Movie Reviews

Hormonally charged yet pallid lesbian-vampire flick

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Movie Reviews

Best enjoyed by drunk genre fans

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Movie Reviews

Tommy Lee Jones delivers subtle, groundbreaking performance

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Movie Reviews

Ice T asks penetrating questions

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Movie Reviews

So daring it’s boring

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Movie Reviews

Spliff-glazed 96-minute promo

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Movie Reviews

Amazingly uplifting despite its bleak title

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Movie Reviews

Jack Black in a groundbreaking, original role

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Movie Reviews

Young directors try to squeeze more out of found-footage genre

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Movie Reviews

Deeply felt film about life and art

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Movie Reviews

Potent, primal

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Movie Reviews

The further slide of once-great Pixar into Disney mediocrity

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Movie Reviews

Compulsive, suspenseful and violently authentic

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Movie Reviews

Another accounting office-mandated second sequel. But perhaps “sequel” is not the right term, since the first two were essentially the same, frat-friendly, retracing-our-drunken-steps movie. The bored-looking cast aside, this lazy, lame action/caper flick is completely unrelated to either of them. Giveaway: there’s no drinking, no bachelor party, no friggin’ hangover fer crissake… and no laughs ...

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Movie Reviews

Delivers the advertised goods

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Movie Reviews

Workmanlike and spooky-ish

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Movie Reviews

Tries a bit too hard

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Movie Reviews

Tries a bit too hard

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Movie Reviews

Makes Oblivion look good

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Movie Reviews

Just another doc about the man

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Movie Reviews

For people who considered The Hangover too mature

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Movie Reviews

Is over-caffeinated Luhrmann right for the 20th-century classic novel?

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Movie Reviews

The ordeal of one lucky family

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Movie Reviews

Divertingly forgettable flick that Don didn’t hate

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Movie Reviews

Confusing ugly with art

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Movie Reviews

One disgusting movie

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Movie Reviews

Allen blends the plausible with the surreal in a scenic postcard

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Movie Reviews

Plays like a superhero movie. A very bad one

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Movie Reviews

Sporadically entertaining, completely forgettable sledgehammer

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Movie Reviews

Gainsbourg elevates metaphor flogger to watchable level

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Movie Reviews

Disturbingly good, delightfully demented, somewhat warped

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Movie Reviews

Illuminating and inspiring

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Movie Reviews

Will remind you of many better movies

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Movie Reviews

It’s a little sad

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Movie Reviews

Exceedingly unpleasant, humorless satire

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Movie Reviews

A romantic dramedy that flaunts formula. And is funny

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Movie Reviews

A cinematic achievement that’s fresh and original

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Movie Reviews

Script’s tight and surfing footage most excellent

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Movie Reviews

The Jewish Exorcist mainly for horror buffs

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Movie Reviews

Don’t call him a fashion photographer

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Movie Reviews

It looks like it’s funny—but something’s missing

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Movie Reviews

A credible Hawke holds it together

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Movie Reviews

Must-see for designers

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Movie Reviews

Everyone’s favorite Man in a Can is back in form

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Movie Reviews

A fun, stylish and male-baffling documentary

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Movie Reviews

Dim-witted celebration of righteous bloodshed

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Movie Reviews

Pretty good Bad Movie potential

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Movie Reviews

Gedding too auld for dis

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Movie Reviews

Cancer weeper made less mawkish by Dakota Fanning’s sassy turn

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Movie Reviews

Sideways look at the daily business of being a hood

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Movie Reviews

Soon-to-be-adults chatter and flatter in flick that grows on you

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Movie Reviews

Vibrant story of sexual progress

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Movie Reviews

Joyful, challenging and life-affirming

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Movie Reviews

No History Channel biopic

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Movie Reviews

Succeeds more on its stars’ charisma

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Movie Reviews

Disappointing adaptation of a pretentious novel

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Movie Reviews

Loach lightens up with a caper comedy

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Movie Reviews

Recommendation: rent the 1960 film first

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Movie Reviews

Brilliantly alive

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Movie Reviews

Decidedly less inspiring

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Movie Reviews

Cult fave in the making

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Movie Reviews

Toy Story for GenXers

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Movie Reviews

Slow kids will find it diverting

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Movie Reviews

Tense and believable, keeps you guessing and involved

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Movie Reviews

No fun

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Movie Reviews

You’ll be glad you did

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Movie Reviews

Tight and believable, but pay attention

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Movie Reviews

Only for those not yet suffering from found-footage fatigue

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Movie Reviews

Don gushes

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Movie Reviews

Wicked smart movie that subverts cliché

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Movie Reviews

Stone should know better

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Movie Reviews

Relegated to forgettable hokum

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Movie Reviews

Pattinson inexplicably getting work

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Movie Reviews

Not a shot fired, but one of the best war movies you’re likely to see

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Movie Reviews

SFX dazzle-over-substance extravaganza

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Movie Reviews

Tarantino unchained

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Movie Reviews

A comedy of bad manners

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Movie Reviews

Made watchable by a good young actress

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Movie Reviews

Best depiction of alcoholism since 1963

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Movie Reviews

Gets it all right

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Movie Reviews

The glaring drawback is the face

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Movie Reviews

Bleeds authenticity to a fault

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Movie Reviews

Will shake you up and then follow you home

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Movie Reviews

Not a very scary tiger

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Movie Reviews

Three self-absorbed, boozing, coke-snorting shrews

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Movie Reviews

Excellent date movie

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Movie Reviews

Cross-dressing comic actor Tyler Perry may not be the best choice for a cinematic reboot of formulaic author James Patterson’s forensic-psychologist super-detective franchise (Morgan Freeman has played Cross twice), but he certainly is the worst. Madea chasing bad guys would have been more believable, not to mention less painful to watch. This dismal, disjointed mess ...

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Movie Reviews

Better than Sly’s 1995 version

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Movie Reviews

Respects its audience’s intelligence

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Movie Reviews

Implodes in the second half

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Movie Reviews

Nova Scotia filmmaking at its finest

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Movie Reviews

About as generic as creature features get

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Movie Reviews

Statham remakes his movie—this time with J.Lo

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Movie Reviews

Takes itself awfully seriously

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Movie Reviews

Don’t be thinking Boogie Nights

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Movie Reviews

This cast could make the phone book riveting

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Movie Reviews

Drink your blood from a boot

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Movie Reviews

Went direct to DVD for several good reasons

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Movie Reviews

Enchanting as well as ambitious

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Movie Reviews

Gets much right

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Movie Reviews

Walks the cusp of twee

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Movie Reviews

Juvenile interspecies bromantic comedy

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Movie Reviews

Not a comedy

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Movie Reviews

McTeer’s exuberant performance a must-see

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Movie Reviews

A facking fan toime

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Movie Reviews

Doesn’t cheat

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Movie Reviews

50 Cent making Steven Seagal look like Daniel Day-Lewis

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Movie Reviews

A betting man would lose

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Movie Reviews

...the cleaners

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Movie Reviews

A celebration of a life well lived

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Movie Reviews

A campy riot of screensaver SFX

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Movie Reviews

Sounds a little nerdy—it’s anything but

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Movie Reviews

Admirably ambitious and beautifully mounted

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Movie Reviews

Insult, anger, or bore

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Movie Reviews

So unfunny it’s sad

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Movie Reviews

Torture porn with a culinary motif

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Movie Reviews

Gentle, harsh, uplifting and wrenching

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Movie Reviews

The book is non-fiction. The flick is non-entertainment

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Movie Reviews

How do you turn one book into a nine-hour trilogy?

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Movie Reviews

Impossible to dislike

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Movie Reviews

Wes Anderson’s most accessible to date

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Movie Reviews

Enjoyable if slightly soggy

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Movie Reviews

Fifty more years, please

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Movie Reviews

Comically unfrightening sci-fi slog

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Movie Reviews

No particular reason

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Movie Reviews

Surprisingly emotional

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Movie Reviews

Ballet documentary uniformly moving

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Movie Reviews

Keep your Saw movies

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Movie Reviews

Woody Allen’s angst-ridden heart not in it

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Movie Reviews

Whiffle ball that telegraphs every pitch

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Movie Reviews

Entertaining poppycock

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Movie Reviews

The bigger mystery is how...

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Movie Reviews

Pile of pointless pretentiousness

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Movie Reviews

Incompetent rip-off with one bright spot

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Movie Reviews

Former actor Nicolas Cage dismantles his career further

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Movie Reviews

Van Damme is still back

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Movie Reviews

An enigma we’re fortunate to have

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Movie Reviews

Too inured to being visually fooled?

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Movie Reviews

Arduous rom-com ploy

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Movie Reviews

Affleck’s best directorial effort

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At least she’s not in it

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Pure, simple—and pretentious—trash

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You will not know where this is going

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Merchandise

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No mere fanboy love letter

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Spanish found-footage horror kind of works

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High concept

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Literate, thoughtful, well-acted, and...

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Smart and mannered. With spanking

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’90s-style CG gore

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How Not to Make an Action Thriller

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Exhausting but thoroughly watchable

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Vroom

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What its target audience expects

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Really a gay fantasy

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A murderous cash machine would be more entertaining

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Tone is random

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Statham stays solid

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Poe as an action hero?

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A valid first step toward Mel’s return to form.

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Bordering on torpid

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Nicely complex and compellingly watchable

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Padding blander than usual

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A little precious

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Soderbergh can do anything

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Dynamite

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Twilight it ain’t

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Above-average if not quite inspired

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Nazis on the moon

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Nine annoying people trapped together

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Docu-concert/inflated origin story

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A courageous assertion of creative resistance

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Far less clever

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Overlong celebrity karaoke party

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Cookie-cutter brain-eater

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Doesn’t live up to sumptuous settings

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Seriously silly good-bad movies are getting harder to find

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Sly and witty

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Discover Vancouver punk history

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Yes, pretty inspiring

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Bargain-basement Bourne

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Quietly revelatory

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Skimpy clothing and acrobatics

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Fading to a flicker

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Wisdom and perspective

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Laughed some, but more often didn't

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Laugh, cry, think

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A superhuman juggling act

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Poetic study of the will to live

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Illuminating the issue of light pollution

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BGV for surf bars

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Total Redundancy

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Bucks Hollywood formula

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Leading auteur goes moronic

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Live through it

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I used to know a girl like that

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Would have been engaging

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Happy Meal

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Wickedly hilarious

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Frothy and pretentious

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Spiritless sequel

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Get it together, Pixar

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Besson out of comfort zone?

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Makes up in spunk

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Rudderless, cast-attrition sharksploitation

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Adroit adaptation of Connelly page-turner

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Thinking family approved

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Is your Spider sense tingling?

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A great film about the end of the Hawaiian monarchy?

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The tragedy that befell Manchester United's legendary 1958 squad

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Scarier than The Omen?

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Falls short of Lynchian aims

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Hunter S. adaptation unfinished?

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“I live. I love. I slay. I am content.”

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How did they make three gifted comics so dull?

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Inventiveness, rowdiness, and goofy social realism

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Antidote to Nicholas Sparks

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Don was not bored

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Six very bad twenty-something actors

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Creepy, dark, maudlin, humorless and a bit dull

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Most of the dialogue is yelled

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A compact LOTR

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Cage continues career-destroying habit

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Good for the board

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Worst offender is the star

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Mumblecore meander is wildly creative

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Human beings might find it a tad contrived

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It’ll make you smile

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Medieval fanboys take note

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Locked in a basement with an overacting Rosanna Arquette

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Reason is unimportant in torture porn

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It’s hard to criticize a movie about a one-armed surfer, but...

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Go along on a great journey

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Movie Reviews

A worthy adaptation by Cary Fukunaga of the Charlotte Brontë classic often considered to be one of the first examples of feminist Western literature. It focuses, as have most of its 27 filmed versions, on the time the young title governess spends at the gloomy Thornfield Hall, where things go bump in the night, and ...

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Juvenile jumble of clunky clichés

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Yet another “found footage” failure

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Vacuous feature-length sitcom

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What are the filmmaker$ up to?

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Nostalgia is better than it used to be

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Must see

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Cheerful hagiography

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Unique supernatural sex scene

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Vinny D does pretty good

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Mah na mah na!

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Dorff is solid, but credibility erodes

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Another freight train of a pro wrestler turns to the movies

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Mean-spirited, obvious and flaccid

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The most unpleasant 82 minutes of blunt trauma you’ll ever...

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Hopelessly bland

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Another Payneian insight on the human condition

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Not bad if you like this sort of thing

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Tedious and profoundly ridiculous

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What makes people...

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Arty ping pong but do we care?

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Will appeal mostly to fans

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Can’t wait to see what he does next

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Pop songs in choir robes

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Even moving

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Movie Reviews

Okay, I took some flak recently for going easy on a couple of rom-coms. (I just can’t help it—sniffle—they’re so fulfilling!) Well, it gets worse, because here comes an endorsement of a chick flick. As you might surmise, this distaff Hangover is about a wedding; more specifically about the mismatched mess of misfits chosen by ...

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Movie Reviews

Consider yourself a thinking grownup?

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You’ll leave the theater spitting.

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There’s a lot to be said for lowered expectations

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Impressive debut from Ken Loach’s son Jim

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Scary because it’s true

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For $350 million you’d expect something more than “not terrible”

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Best eight-meter crocodile thriller ever

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The true horror sets in...

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Big snore unless you’re 10

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Sergio Leone meets Federico Fellini

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It’s everything they say it is

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Pulp Fiction rip-off that never leaves the diner scene

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Delightful, star-studded—if somewhat formulaic—doc

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Few surprises

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Mostly Italians and Japanese complaining

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Minimalist and mesmerizing

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Stylish noir-actioner for thinking people

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Deeply cynical and disturbingly truthful

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Loach always worth a look

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Rewarding crowd-pleaser

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Moronic cobbling

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Coherent, gorgeous, and all without CGI

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Beautiful and insightful

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Original, enigmatic movie

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Clever, kinetic, and cute as hell

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A vampire Hitler can't save this one

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Oscar-winning performance surrounded by movie-like substances

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Will stay with you

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Compared to what Conan Doyle wrote more than a century ago...

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Predictable, repetitive and dull as dirt

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Grating geek gripes at times hilarious

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Imagine yourself at the play

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Two-dimensional

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Good, old-fashioned movie magic

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A fine substitute for never getting in there

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Drink a lot and laugh at with friends

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A reminder of why we go to the movies

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Outdated Cold War potboiler

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Movie Reviews

What was the rea$on the saga was split in two?

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Movie Reviews

Oily villain performance worth your ticket price

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Movie Reviews

Well worth your time

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Movie Reviews

Save your money by putting your head in a metal wastebasket

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Fiennes does assured Shakespeare in his directorial debut

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Are you willing to pay 109 minutes?

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Inaccessible yet compulsively watchable filmmaker + disaster genre

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Cathartic, illuminating and honestly (mostly) moving

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Bright spot a drunken priest

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Preposterous predicament

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Movie Reviews

The book’s still better

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Movie Reviews

Don never thought he’d enjoy a spatter flick

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Action, drama and a socially conscious message—done not particularly well

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Honest tale of both romantic and filial love

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Way better than Don’s making it sound

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Lives up to its name

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Kind of works as a screwball caper comedy

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A sensitive handling of a complex character

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Scarier-than-most effort from Guillermo del Toro

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Pointless, half-baked psychodrama

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Movie Reviews

Imagine George Romero in the deserts of Africa

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Al Pacino needs a new agent

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Sporadically funny and not entirely terrible

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Brutally unsentimental Australian Goodfellas

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Enigmatic and haunting hall of mirrors

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An antidote to Twilight

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Coppolla's still got it

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One that will stay with you

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More of a fond homage than a straight spoof

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A bit twee, self-conscious and morbidly cute

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Movie Reviews

Uncle Don’s tips for improving your New Year’s Eve

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You want a cancer comedy? Go see 50/50

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Movie Reviews

Um, why?

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Movie Reviews

Someone blows up the Kremlin and frames the IMF, resulting in the activation of the title protocol, shutting down the entire organization and leaving Ethan (Tom Cruise) and co. (Paula Patton, Simon Pegg and Jeremy Renner) to save the world and clear the group’s name, all without support. It’s the best M:I flick of the ...

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Movie Reviews

All the ingredients but no glue

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A cinematic recreation of Bruegel’s 1564 The Way to Calvary

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It’s got heart

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Impossible to dislike

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Walking the cancer/comedy cusp is a slick trick

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A very well done video game

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Comedy about pizza boy fails to deliver

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Unwatchable, neo-grindhouse hyper-violence

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With a real actor, a focused director, and fewer contrivances, this could have been a nice little indie

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Believable and engaging

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Iraq War corpse runs rampage with ensuing hilarity

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A 1970 film about 1968 student anti-war protestors

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Fails.

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Forgettable B-movie

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Leave the theater feeling well and truly entertained

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The most soulful statistics-based movie you're going to see

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A convincing and realistic scenario of a lethal epidemic

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Shouted dialog, funny hats, and 3-D

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Ponderous, anti-erotic, softcore porn flick

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Depends on the audience’s continuing tolerance

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Finely observed story adapted from Pulitzer-winning play

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A wonderfully wise, multilayered film about happiness

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Shriekquel, screamake, whatever

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Profane, juvenile, and pretty good

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One of the best thrillers you’re likely to see this year

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Dumas is spinning in his grave

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Well-done doc on the charming pianist

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Unreal plot. Real tension

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No mere left-wing rant

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The humble reviewer is not impressed

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A crossbreed that will surprise followers of both genres. Or not

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A sophisticated, wonderfully weird computer animation for smart people

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Movie Reviews

Not-as-bad-as-some example of superhero genre

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Movie Reviews

Rainy-day London cop movie

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Pity that CG tech teams are not eligible for Best Actor Oscars

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Another low-budget Blair Witch “found-film” chiller

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Doc about self-congratulatory wonk especially irritating for being right

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Pseudo-SF, paranoid thriller is a briskly-paced, fun head trip

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Unspeakably lame

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An interesting skewer on the FD theme

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Can you withstand a volley of pulpy war clichés?

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The likeable leads' chemistry make a formulaic rom com work

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The most grounded of the Fast and Furious flicks

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Flawed-but-solid entertainment

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Excellent performances almost save it

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A horror film for corporate climbers

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Gauzy romantic drama for swoony moviegoers

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Campy fun if you have a few drinks first

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A competently filmed man-against-nature flick

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The movie Sucker Punch wanted to be

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Good-naturedly tongue-in-cheek green-screen flick

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Adorably cloying

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Butts-in-seats $uperhero formula

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An unconventional approach to what makes rock… rock

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An earnest plea for nuclear disarmament

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The bear is back

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A smooth, gimmick-free, Hitchcockian thriller for grownups

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Makes up in “boo!” moments for what it lacks in originality

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Indie doc is mainly for Britpop cognoscenti

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Cool concert doc about David Byrne's all singin'-all dancin' tour

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Soft-core campy remake of 1978’s Piranha, itself a rip-off of Jaws

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High-tech action plus deep mystery

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One of the best movies you've never heard of

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Wahlberg makes the perfect foil for Ferrell in this skit-form film

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Self-important, engorged romantic melodrama

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Lame talking animal flick

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An energetic, slightly darker continuation of the wonderful first movie

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Family story imbued with a new perspective

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Jason Statham's latest meathead movie

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Ozzies on the open water

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PBS doc on John & Yoko's antics in the Apple

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An over-the-top homage to grindhouse supernatural revenge films

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Movie Reviews

The invading Americans once banned anything related to traditional Hawaiian language and culture, but it is flourishing now, thanks to efforts such as the Kamehameha Schools Song Contest, in which thousands of students compete with songs written in the islands’ own language. The film follows a handful of “student directors,” as they prepare and rehearse ...

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Movie Reviews

The sailboat carrying a quintet of thirtysomethings off for a jaunt through the Bermuda Triangle is overturned in a freak storm, but they manage nonetheless to board a passing Ghost Ship. Natch. They’re not the first ones there. Or more accurately, this is not the first time they’ve boarded it. Sisyphean story (think Groundhog Day ...

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Movie Reviews

A geeky, often bullied 12-year-old (Kodi Smit-McPhee⎯The Road) is befriended and then defended by his mysterious young neighbor (Chloe Moretz⎯Kick-Ass) who only comes out at night and has unusual appetites. Call it an antidote to Twilight. This character-driven horror flick is a toned-down remake (by Matt Reeves⎯Cloverfield) of Sweden’s darker Let the Right One In, ...

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Movie Reviews

Julian Schnabel’s controversial 50-year saga about four women and their influence on the Palestinian complexities, based on a semi-autobiographical novel by Rula Jebreal, is a noble effort. But the director’s dogged adaptation (nearly a transcription) and flat storytelling results in something that’s more baffling than it is cathartic. Fine cast includes Hiam Abbass, Alexander Siddig ...

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Movie Reviews

The transformation from loser to super hero... again

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Movie Reviews

I read somewhere that poor judgment in investing is what’s forcing Nicolas Cage to appear in cheap hooey like this. Sad, but preferable to believing that it’s poor judgment in role selection. During the Crusades, Nic and Ron Perlman are tasked with delivering a young maybe-witch (a good Claire Foy) through a dark forest to ...

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Movie Reviews

84-year-old Kimani Ng’ang’a Maruge never got an education, having spent his youth as a Mau Mau fighting for Kenyan independence (for which he was awarded ten years in the camps). So when in 2002 Kenya declared free education for all, he shows up for school. On his side is a young schoolteacher (an excellent Naomie ...

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Movie Reviews

I chuckle at those who gush that this vapid, morally idiotic, unabashedly mindless mess is the “best Transformers movie yet!” There was a good one? It does have a marginally more cohesive plot than T2 (hardly difficult), starting with the intriguing idea that one of the Apollo missions was actually to check out an alien ...

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Movie Reviews

A vaguely Taliban man is captured and tortured by US forces, but escapes when the prison van taking him to an “advanced interrogation techniques” facility in wintertime Poland overturns. Starving and freezing, he wanders through the woods killing (lest he be killed) all he encounters to get food (mother’s milk at one point). Not everyone ...

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Movie Reviews

A rusty Mel Gibson takes a break from drunken anti-Semitism to make this disappointing, less-than-thrilling revenge thriller (his first film in eight years), adapting (cramming) a six-hour BBC miniseries into a single gloomy, poorly paced movie. The twenty-something daughter of a Boston cop is shotgunned on his front porch. The shooters are initially thought to ...

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Movie Reviews

Go for a ride with Pixar... and Don Morton

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Movie Reviews

Don's take on the Rotter's eighth episode

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Movie Reviews

An alien-invasion saga boasting a character-based, well-written narrative with adequate acting that reportedly cost less than $20,000 to make? Right. Apparently a NASA probe carrying samples back from the Jovian moon Europa crashed in Mexico, soon after which these giant squid-tree-thingies, kind of like LOTR’s Ents, except really mean when attacked, began to appear. The ...

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Movie Reviews

Indifferently directed hokum produced and written by M. Night Shyamalan has five thinly drawn characters trapped in a stalled elevator. One of them is the title character, who injures or kills one of the others each time the lights go out (the movie’s most interesting moments). Little atmosphere or suspense for a stalled-elevator flick, it’s ...

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Movie Reviews

L.A. Frenchman Thierry Guetta one day picked up a video camera and began to document the inherently impermanent street art movement. He traveled the world recording and frequently assisting the likes of Shepard Fairey, Invader, and the legendary anonymous Brit known only as Banksy. He said he was making a movie, but it turns out ...

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Movie Reviews

A cop (Channing Tatum) is assigned to the same working-class Queens neighborhood where he grew up in the projects, and by the way killed a couple of crack addicts. The deaths were covered up by the police because his cop dad had just been killed in the line of duty. Now someone who Knows has ...

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Movie Reviews

The reason this flashy, witless, Michael Bay-produced action/adventure/romance/sci-fi/teen drama/superhero/monster movie manages to cram in so much is that it’s cobbled together from the best bits of a dozen better movies. Mainly Twilight, substituting moody teenage aliens for moody teenage vampires. Yet still it fails. Mysterious hunk (of wood) Alex Pettyfer, the new guy in school, ...

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Movie Reviews

The plot in this slow-burn, deliberately paced art house Euro-thriller is not new: A cold-blooded, soul-weary professional assassin preparing for One Last Job is inspired through his interactions with a priest and a hooker to re-examine his hollow life and begins the slow journey back to humanity. But (co-producer) George Clooney, acting against type, puts ...

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Movie Reviews

A mad German scientist kidnaps three tourists, one a Japanese. He then offers them a quaint AV lecture on what he plans to do with them, namely join them, mouth-to-anus, to create the title creature. Then he does so. If this seems remotely entertaining to you, get some help. The outrageousness of the concept alone ...

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Movie Reviews

Natalie Portman portrays Emilia, a woman mired in grief over the death of her baby daughter at the age of three days. She’s also having problems relating to her young stepson, which are not being helped by the machinations of her husband’s first wife. Yes, Emilia is a home wrecker, the other woman, and is ...

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Movie Reviews

A ham-fisted editing together of the first few episodes of Steven Seagal’s low-rent TV show, a formulaic cop opera imitating far better programs. You know, the ones with the wise, middle-aged team leader (usually an over-the-hill movie actor) guiding his/her band of young but talented undercover cops. There’s little cohesion (or logic, or intelligence), and ...

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Movie Reviews

Concert footage from the 1981 Rolling Stones tour, directed for some reason by Hal Ashby (Harold and Maude; Being There; Shampoo). The brief, soundless glimpses backstage only served to make me wish I were watching a documentary, perhaps on the state of the “Greatest Rock ‘n’ Roll Band in the World” at that time, already ...

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Movie Reviews

Hotheaded and, it has to be said, gullible god of thunder (Chris Hemsworth) reignites an ancient war in Asgard, whereupon his dad, Odin (Anthony Hopkins), strips him of his powers and cast him down to live among the mortals of New Mexico, one of whom is this cute scientist (Natalie Portman). Being SFX-driven “entertainment,” expect ...

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Movie Reviews

A mixed quintet of squabbling city/country kids is descended upon by the title witch/nanny (writer Emma Thompson) and, as in the first film, are taught the values of good behavior (while engaging in plentiful poo jokes). We’ve seen this before, and it would not especially impress were it not for the good writing, acting (Thompson, ...

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Movie Reviews

The problem with being a sequel to a film better than anyone thought it would be is being revealed as the film they expected in the first place. But though it lacks the surprise factor, this sloppy seconds raunch-fest remake does what it set out to do. Gross you out. The sleaze level is cranked ...

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Movie Reviews

Now, I realize that films take a while to get to Japanese screens, but 1948? Kidding. It’s being shown here now to capitalize on the wild success of Black Swan, for which it was a major inspiration. And that’s a good idea. It deals with a fictitious ballet based on a Hans Christian Andersen tale ...

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Movie Reviews

Director J.J. Abrams’s (Mission Impossible III, Star Trek, lots of TV) new film conjures up memories of Steven Spielberg’s early works, like Close Encounters of the Third Kind or ET (but without the cute). In fact, you’d call it a Spielberg rip-off if Spielberg himself weren’t the producer. It’s 1979. Six young kids having a ...

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Movie Reviews

A father and son (Rainn Wilson & Devin Brochu) paralyzed with grief at the recent loss of Mom are descended upon by the title character (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), an antisocial headbanger whose unconventional manners and anarchic antics eventually (somehow) pull them out of their life-threatening funk. Kind of like a violent, foul-mouthed, pothead Nanny McPhee with ...

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