Releasing This Week in Theatres
The Pieces Of 'Puzzle' Fit Together A Little Too Neatly
Production: Chemistry: 
Puzzle is about a woman named Agnes (Goodbye Christopher Robin's Kelly Macdonald) who, while not unhappy, has led an unfulfilling life taking care of her husband, Louie (David Denman from "The Office"), and their two sons, Gabe (Austin Abrams from Paper Towns and Tragedy Girls) and Ziggy (The Ranger's Bubba Weiler). When she is given one as a gift for her birthday, Agnes discovers that she not only has an aptitude for jigsaw puzzles, but she has a passion for them as well. While purchasing a new puzzle,...

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Spike Lee's 'BlacKkKlansman' Is The Visionary Filmmaker's Best Movie In Years...And His Most Important
Production: Score & Soundtrack: 
Directing: 
Visionary filmmaker Spike Lee has never been one to shy away from political and social commentary. Films like Malcolm X and Do the Right Thing were more overt about it, but he even managed to sneak messages into his less preachy movies like Summer of Sam or his reimaging of Old Boy. BlacKkKlansman might be his most socially conscious movie yet. It also might be his most important. Set in the early seventies, BlacKkKlansman is about a young black police officer in Colorado Springs named Ron Stallworth...

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A Giant Shark And Jason Statham Can't Save 'The Meg' From Mediocrity
Production: Action Sequences: 
On its face, The Meg should be a slam dunk late summer flick. It has all the makings of a fun, 2-hour distraction, and yet somehow, it misses the mark in most of the important categories. For a movie with a giant shark terrorizing a group of oceanic researchers (as well as a few other faces), The Meg isn't sure if it wants to embrace its campiness or veer more towards a serious thriller. By the end, it's clear that The Meg is more disposable fun than anything else, but by then, it's too little too late. Jason...

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The Cute Characters In 'Christopher Robin' Can't Help The Movie Hit Its Mark
Production: Animation: 
Have you ever wondered what happens when the imaginative human protagonists in children's movies grow up and grow out of their wide-eyed wondrous ways? That is the concept that is explored by Christopher Robin. Christopher Robin sees the title character (Ewan McGregor from T2 Trainspotting and Miles Ahead) as an adult, working as an efficiency expert at a luggage company and living with his wife, Evelyn (Hayley Atwell from the Captain America/The Avengers movies), and daughter, Madeline (On Chesil Beach's...

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'The Darkest Minds' Turns A Message Of Acceptance Into A Series Of Painfully Awkward Encounters
Production: Score & Soundtrack: 
Chemistry: 
Ever since the triumphant conclusion of the Hunger Games series and the whimpering ending of the Divergent franchise, there has been a hole in the Young Adult Dystopian Movie Market. The Darkest Minds is here to try and fill that gap. The Darkest Minds takes place in a world where 98% of the children have been killed off by a mysterious illness. The surviving kids find themselves with special powers, abilities like telekinesis, electrokinesis, or hyper-intelligence, and are rounded up into internment...

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'Custody' Goes From 'Kramer vs. Kramer' To 'The Shining' In Ninety Minutes Flat
Production: Cinematography: 
A few years back, French director Xavier Legrand made a compelling short film called Just Before Losing Everything about a woman escaping an unhappy marriage with her kids. The film not only earned Legrand an Academy Award nomination for Best Live Action Short Film, but also inspired him to explore the characters more fully in a feature length movie. That movie is Custody. Custody is about a woman named Miriam Besson (Léa Drucker from In My Skin) who is trapped in a bitter custody battle with her...

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'Mission: Impossible - Fallout' Is Non-Stop Action Courtesy Of Tom Cruise
Production: Action Sequences: 
After five films worth of dizzying action, incredible stunts, and more double crosses than a British bakery, you'd figure that the Mission: Impossible franchise would run out of steam. Yet somehow, its latest entry, Mission: Impossible - Fallout, is just as exciting, fast-paced, and - most importantly - creative as ever. In fact, one could make the argument that Fallout is Mission: Impossible's best outing yet. No doubt it's among the best, due in large part to the dedication of its star, Tom Cruise. Once...

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'Eighth Grade' Is A Brutally Honest Look At Tweens In The Social Media Age
Production: Writing: 
Acting: 
YouTube star turned writer/director Bo Burnham has always been known for capturing reality at its most absurd, but also its most pure. His comedy specials try to paint a picture of every day life in a way that's a bit uncomfortable, sometimes controversial, and undeniably authentic. With Eighth Grade, Burnham makes the jump into feature films with the same knack for combining the awkwardness of everyday life with its inherent comedy, and he does it all through the eyes of an 8th grader named Kayla (Elsie Fisher). With...

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'The Incantation' Shows Just Enough Creepy Potential To Be Frustrating
Production: Production Design: 
Scary Factor: 
The Incantation is about a millennial named Lucy Bellerose (Sam Valentine from ThanXgiving) who travels to France to visit a castle that belonged to her deceased great uncle. She is greeted by the Vicar (writer/director Jude S. Walko), who emotionlessly lays out the rules of the grounds to her, including which parts of the house are off-limits to her prying eyes. There's still plenty to see, selfies to take, and vlogs to record, even within the strict rules, but some things just don't seem right, from...

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'Unfriended: Dark Web' Runs The 'Unfriended" Gimmick Into The Ground
Production: Scary Factor: 
A few years back, the creative little horror movie Unfriended took the simple concept of presenting its story completely on a computer screen and ran with it. That movie was effective enough, both critically and commercially, to warrant a sequel called Unfriended: Dark Web. Unfriended: Dark Web is about a guy named Matias (Colin Woodell from Unsane) who acquires a new laptop on craigslist. He uses it for all of his usual computing tasks, which include chatting with his girlfriend, Amaya (Stephanie...

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'Don't Worry, He Won't Get Far On Foot' Is Gus Van Sant At His Most Van Sant-iest
Production: Acting: 
As a filmmaker, writer/director Gus Van Sant has had his ups and downs. He's soared to heights with Elephant and Good Will Hunting, then scraped the bottom with Restless and Psycho (the most pointless remake ever produced, in this reviewer's opinion). For as inconsistent as the quality of his output has been, his production assembly line has been very consistent; for better or worse, he churns out a movie every few years. This year's offering from the Oscar-nominated director is Don't Worry, He Won't Get...

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'Skyscraper' Is A White Knuckle Thriller As Only The Rock Can Deliver
Production: Action Sequences: 
Part Die Hard and part The Towering Inferno, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's Skyscraper is a thrilling blockbuster built for the summer movie going season. It ticks all the boxes of a big budget action movie and features very little fluff. Does it defy the laws of physics and have plenty of logic leaps? Most definitely, but it's hard to worry about that too much when Johnson is serving up his typical brand of excitement. Johnson plays Will Sawyer, a security consultant hired to check out The Pearl, an opulent...

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Boots Riley's 'Sorry To Bother You' Has A Lot To Say...And A Really Weird Way Of Saying It
Production: Comedy Factor: 
Set in a bizarre parallel-universe version of Oakland, California, Sorry to Bother You is about a young man named Cassius Green (Lakeith Stanfield from Short Term 12 and Get Out) who gets a job at a telemarketing company. After a few frustrating calls, Cassius gets some advice from an old timer named Langston (Lethal Weapon's Donald Glover), who tells him to use his "white voice" to boost his productivity. This works like a charm, and Cassius is soon promoted to "Power Caller" and moved upstairs to an exclusive...

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Debra Granik's 'Leave No Trace' Is A Survival Story With Layers
Production: Acting: 
Cinematography: 
It's been about eight years since indie filmmaker Debra Granik burst onto the scene with Winter's Bone, the Sundance darling that not only garnered Granik an Oscar nomination, but essentially introduced the world to the pre-Hunger Games, pre-X-Men Jennifer Lawrence (who also was rewarded with the first of her four Oscar noms for her work on the film). Well, a couple of documentary projects later, and Granik is back with the narrative film Leave No Trace. Leave No Trace is about a military veteran named...

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'Ant-Man And The Wasp' Is A Fun Marvel Distraction
Production: Action Sequences: 
Any Marvel film that was released after Avengers: Infinity War and before Avengers 4 was going to have a hard time, especially one like Ant-Man and the Wasp that is set slightly before the events of Infinity War. Perhaps Marvel knew that, and rather than try to balance the tone of a light, Paul Rudd-led adventure with the somber, high stakes Avengers epic, the studio decided to give fans a fun distraction without any of that weight. In that regard, Ant-Man and the Wasp delivers. It's just as fun and funny...

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'The First Purge' Satisfies The Blood Lust, But Little Else
Production: Action Sequences: 
Scary Factor: 
Although they have been generally well received, the first three movies in the Purge series (The Purge, The Purge: Anarchy, and The Purge: Election Year) have been underwhelming to me personally. However, the concept of one lawless night is engaging enough to keep me coming back, because I know that someday, someway, they'll make a The Purge movie that I will love. Unfortunately, The First Purge is not that movie. Just as the title suggests, The First Purge is the story of the initial night where law and...

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'Sicario: Day Of The Soldado' Keeps The 'Sicario' Saga Going Full Steam
Production: Cinematography: 
Score & Soundtrack: 
In 2015, film fans learned that the word Sicario means 'hitman' in Spanish. Now, with the sequel Sicario: Day of the Soldado, we learn that Soldado means 'soldier.' Sicario: Day of the Soldado brings back Josh Brolin (Avengers: Infinity War, Deadpool 2) as government anti-terrorism agent Matt Graver. The president has just broadened the definition of terrorist groups to include the Mexican Drug Cartels, and the government feels that the best way to combat them is to have them fight themselves. Graver...

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'Who's Watching Oliver' Is A Dirty, Mean, And Nasty Movie With A Surprisingly Relatable Anti-Hero
Production: Acting: 
Scary Factor: 
Serial killer movies are a dime a dozen. In order to stand out from the crowd, they need a little something extra. Who's Watching Oliver has that something extra. Who's Watching Oliver is about an awkward young man, of course named Oliver (Russell Geoffrey Banks from Ghosthouse), who stalks the streets and nightclubs looking for women to bring home and kill. He does all of this under the watchful eye of his mother (Troy the Odyssey's Margaret Roche), who barks orders and shouts encouragement through Skype...

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'Big Legend' Is, For Better Or Worse, Just Another Bigfoot Movie
Production: Scary Factor: 
One of my earliest cinematic memories is of my mom taking me and my sister to a double feature of Orca and Grizzly, two of the greatest Jaws ripoffs ever made. Also, as a child of the seventies, I have always been fascinated by Bigfoot movies. So, on paper, Big Legend should be a slam dunk for me. In practicality, not so much. Big Legend is about an ex-military outdoorsman named Tyler Laird (Kevin Makely from "The Cavanaughs") whose fiancée disappears when the couple is attacked by a Sasquatch while...

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'Boundaries' Is A Road Movie That's All Journey And No Destination
Production: Acting: 
Boundaries is about a flakey animal lover named Laura Jaconi (The Conjuring's Vera Farmiga) whose estranged father, Jack (Christopher Plummer from All the Money in the World), gets kicked out of his nursing home. Arrangements are made for him to stay with Laura's sister, JoJo (Kristen Schaal from "Bob's Burgers"), but he doesn't want to fly from his home in Seattle to hers in California. So, Laura and her weirdo son, Henry (Lewis MacDougall from A Monster Calls), agree to drive him down the coast, with a...

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Recently Released in Theatres
'Hostiles' Is A Beautiful, If Forgettable, Revisionist Western
Production: Cinematography: 
In his relatively short Hollywood career, writer/director Scott Cooper has tackled the music drama (Crazy Heart), the revenge movie (Out of the Furnace), and the crime biography (Black Mass). Even though the genres are all markedly different, each of his movies has bared his distinct cinematic thumbprint. The same can be said for his newest movie, the revisionist western Hostiles. Hostiles is about a legendary retiring U.S. Cavalry officer named Captain Joseph J. Blocker (Christian Bale from American Hustle...

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'Phantom Thread' Is More Of The Same Pretentious Genius From Paul Thomas Anderson
Production: Acting: 
Score & Soundtrack: 
With the exception of maybe Quentin Tarantino and M. Night Shyamalan, Paul Thomas Anderson (Inherent Vice, The Master) is probably the purist modern film auteur working today. Taking on music video and documentary projects in between feature films, his big releases generally land a few years apart. Well, it's a lucky year for PTA fans, as his newest movie, Phantom Thread, is here. Phantom Thread is about a renowned London dressmaker named Reynolds Woodcock (Lincoln's Daniel Day-Lewis) who has built an...

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'Film Stars Don't Die In Liverpool' Shows Annette Bening Getting Better And Better With Each Movie
Production: Acting: 
In 1978, a young British man named Peter Turner struck up an unlikely relationship with Hollywood film actress Gloria Grahame. In 1986, he wrote a book about it, and now, that book has been adapted into the movie Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool. Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool begins in 1981 with Gloria Grahame (20th Century Women's Annette Bening) collapsing while getting ready to take the stage one evening. She refuses medical treatment, instead reaching out to her ex-lover, Peter Turner (Jamie Bell...

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It's Steven Spielberg vs. The White House In 'The Post'
Production: Acting: 
Cinematography: 
Whether it's subtle, as in Duel, or more overt, like in Minority Report, director Steven Spielberg has never been afraid to poke the bear. However, his poking is probably never been as obvious as it is in The Post. Set at the tail end of the Vietnam War, The Post stars Tom Hanks (Bridge of Spies, Sully) as Ben Bradlee, the executive editor of The Washington Post. Rival paper The New York Times scoops The Post on some leaked documents called The Pentagon Papers that prove that the U.S. Government falsified...

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'Paddington 2' Is More Of The Same Charming, Charismatic Bear That Everybody Loves
Production: Comedy Factor: 
A few years ago, Paddington, along with its eponymous protagonist, charmed its way into filmgoers' hearts everywhere. Now, thankfully, there's a sequel that's just as charming: the appropriately entitled Paddington 2. Paddington 2 picks up with Paddington Bear (voiced by Ben Whishaw from Cloud Atlas and The Lobster) living in London with the Brown family and enjoying life as a member of the Windsor Gardens community. His Aunt Lucy, who always wanted to visit London but never could, is turning 100, and...

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'Molly's Game' Proves Sorkin, Chastain Can Do No Wrong
Production: Directing: 
Molly Bloom could have won a medal at the Olympics in skiing. That didn't happen because of a freak accident. The best way to get over it and move on is to of course head out West to Hollywood. That's what Bloom did, working as an assistant to real estate entrepreneur Darin Feinstein. He just happened to co-own The Viper Room, where, each week a high stakes poker game would take place. Bloom had to help with the game, welcoming billionaires, Wall Street titans, politicians, and of course, the Hollywood elite....

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'Happy End' Almost Connects The Dots...But Not Quite
Production: Directing: 
Happy End is about a woman named Anne Laurent (Elle's Isabelle Huppert) who has taken over the running of her family's construction company from her eighty-year-old father, Georges (Jean-Louis Trintignant from Amour). As she is busy dealing with a catastrophic workplace accident that was caused by the negligence of her foreman son, Pierre (Franz Rogowski from Victoria), the ex-wife of her brother, Thomas (Amélie's Mathieu Kassovitz), is mysteriously poisoned and his daughter, Eve (Fantine Harduin from Fanny's...

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'Abe & Phil's Last Poker Game' Lets Martin Landau Be Martin Landau
Production: Acting: 
As an actor, Martin Landau did it all, from slasher movies (Alone in the Dark) to quirky biopics (Ed Wood), from science fiction television ("Space 1999") to science fiction television ("The Twilight Zone") to, well, science fiction television ("The Outer Limits"). And he kept doing it all, right up until his death in July of 2017. But, like most legendary actors who worked right up until their passing, he left a handful of projects in the bank that have been slowly trickling out. Unfortunately, the bank...

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'Insidious: The Last Key' Is A Compelling Paranormal Mystery...That's Still Very Much An 'Insidious' Movie
Production: Scary Factor: 
Most horror filmmakers would be ecstatic to have one lasting franchise. If they're really lucky, they might create two. James Wan, with his Midas touch, has been behind three, count 'em, three successful horror franchises - Saw, Insidious, and The Conjuring. Even the arguably weakest one, Insidious, has spawned three sequels, the last of which is the spanking new Insidious: The Last Key. Taking place after the events of Insidious: Chapter 3 but before those of Insidious, Insidious: The Last Key sees famed...

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It's Like Kevin Spacey Was Never There In 'All The Money In The World'
Production: Acting: 
Editing: 
On July 10, 1973, John Paul Getty III, grandson of billionaire oil tycoon J. Paul Getty, was kidnapped in Rome and held for ransom. Almost 45 years later, director Ridley Scott (Alien: Covenant, The Martian) turned the ordeal into the movie All the Money in the World. All the Money in the World begins with the kidnapping of Paul Getty (King Jack's Charlie Plummer). The kidnappers demand seventeen million dollars for his release, and his mother, Gail Harris (Michelle Williams from Manchester by the Sea),...

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Execution Is The Villain In 'I, Tonya'
Production: Acting: 
It's hard to imagine today, given the proliferation of scandalous news stories, that one could grab the attention of the world. Okay, that's not true, it seems to happen weekly. But, in 1994, that wasn't the case because the Internet as we know it didn't exist. You watched the news -- on a television. And one story did grab the attention of the world: the attack on figure skater Nancy Kerrigan that was allegedly instigated by fellow skater Tonya Harding. And with the release of I, Tonya, the real story of...

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Thanks To A Brilliant Timothée Chalamet Performance, 'Call Me by Your Name' Lives Up To Its Hype
Production: Acting: 
Score & Soundtrack: 
One of the most buzzed-about movies of the year coming off of the festival circuit is the independent darling Call Me by Your Name. But does it live up to the hype? Well, in most regards, yes. Yes it does. Set somewhere in Northern Italy during the year of 1983, Call Me by Your Name is about a graduate student named Oliver (Free Fire's Armie Hammer) who is assisting a Classics professor named Perlman (Michael Stuhlbarg from The Shape of Water) for the summer. When Oliver meets Perlman's musically talented...

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Alexander Payne's 'Downsizing' Is Not The Movie It's Pretending To Be
Production: Directing: 
Writer/director Alexander Payne has been money in the bank. From the teenage comedy of Election to the introspective drama Nebraska, his movies always hit the right notes. Until Downsizing. Downsizing takes place in a world where a process called cellular reduction, also known as Downsizing, has been perfected. The general idea is to shrink people down so that they use less resources and take up less space, therefore lessening their footprint and making it more economical for them to live. A man named...

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'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' Mixes Suspense And Surprises Into An Enjoyable - If Meandering - Popcorn Movie
Production: Action Sequences: 
When Star Wars: The Force Awakens was released a couple of years back, fans noted that the plot closely mirrored that of the original Star Wars (Episode IV: A New Hope). It should only be fitting that Star Wars: The Last Jedi would bear some similarities to Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back. Star Wars: The Last Jedi sees The Resistance, led by General Leia Organa (the late, great Carrie Fisher), being pummeled by The First Order to the point of almost being snuffed out. A small band of survivors, including...

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'Darkest Hour' Amounts To Little More Than An Oscar Grab For Gary Oldman
Production: Acting: 
One can always tell when it's Oscar season because theaters get flooded with indulgent, two-and-a-half-hour epic historical biopics with little more to offer other than a few brilliant performances. Which brings us to Darkest Hour. Darkest Hour begins with the appointment of Winston Churchill (Gary Oldman from Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) as Prime Minister of Great Britain by King George VI (Rogue One's Ben Mendelsohn). Britain is in the middle of World War II, and German armies have stormed through France...

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James Franco's Masterpiece 'The Disaster Artist' Is The Spirit Of 'The Room' With Higher Production Values
Production: Acting: 
Comedy Factor: 
In 2003, an ambitious dreamer named Tommy Wiseau got frustrated with waiting for his big Hollywood break, so he made that break himself by writing, directing, and starring in The Room. Initially ridiculed, The Room has gone on to become the biggest cult film of the twenty-first century. Wiseau's partner in crime, Greg Sestero (Retro Puppet Master) wrote a book called The Disaster Artist about the experience of making The Room, and indie hero James Franco (Spring Breakers, True Story) has adapted that book...

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'The Shape Of Water' Brings Guillermo Del Toro Back To The Realm Of Monsters
Production: Directing: 
A few years back, rumors swelled that director Guillermo del Toro (Pacific Rim, The Devil's Backbone) was developing a remake of Creature from the Black Lagoon, possibly as an entry into the ill-fated Universal Dark Universe. That movie never materialized, but that hasn't stopped del Toro from turning his work into his own sea monster movie called The Shape of Water. Set in the cold-war era of the early sixties, The Shape of Water is about a mute woman named Elisa Esposito (Sally Hawkins from Paddington...

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'Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri' Twists And Turns Its Way Into One Of The Best Movies Of The Year
Production: Acting: 
Playwright Martin McDonagh has been making quite a name for himself in Hollywood. He burst onto the scene in 2008 with In Bruges and continued his success with 2012's Seven Psychopaths. Now, he's back with his best work yet, the masterful Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is about a woman named Mildred Hayes (Frances McDormand from Fargo and Almost Famous) whose daughter was sexually assaulted and murdered in the town of Ebbing, Missouri. Frustrated...

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'Roman J. Israel, Esq.' Is The Movie Denzel Washington Fans Have Been Waiting For
Production: Score & Soundtrack: 
For the last few years, Oscar-winning actor Denzel Washington has been toiling away in either bland theatrical adaptations (Fences) or phone-in action films (The Magnificent Seven). The one constant has been that, no matter how bad the material is, Washington brings his A game to the screen, frequently elevating the quality of the film by simply being in it. Now, he finally gets a movie that is worthy of his talents with Roman J. Israel, Esq. Roman J. Israel, Esq. stars Washington as an attorney, of course...

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'Justice League' Is A Messy Superhero Team-Up That Lacks Weight
Production: Writing: 
Action Sequences: 
At the end of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, the DC Extended Universe put itself on a path with one inevitable destination. Now, that destination has arrived in the form of Justice League, the superhero team-up movie that would bring DC Comics' most iconic heroes together in one cinematic adventure. This is Superman (Henry Cavill), Batman (Ben Affleck), Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot), Aquaman (Jason Momoa), The Flash (Ezra Miller), and Cyborg (Ray Fisher) all on the same screen, for the first time in a live...

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'Lady Bird' Shows That Greta Gerwig Can Literally Do It All
Production: Comedy Factor: 
In front of the camera, Greta Gerwig has proven herself to be a powerhouse of independent cinema with show-stopping and scene-stealing performances in movies like Mistress America, 20th Century Women, and Maggie's Plan. Now, audiences get to see what she can do behind the camera with her solo directorial debut Lady Bird. Quite simply, Lady Bird is the story of a young girl named Christine McPherson, who calls herself Lady Bird (Brooklyn's Saoirse Ronan), as she makes her way through her senior year...

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After 27 Years, 'IT' Is Back To Terrorize The Kids Of Derry Once More
Production: Chemistry: 
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In 1990, prolific horror novelist Stephen King's most ambitious book, the simply titled It, was made into a two-part television miniseries. The book, and miniseries, was about a clown who terrorized a New England town and kidnapped its children every twenty-seven years. Now, just like in the book, IT is back, twenty-seven years later. Set in the late eighties, IT is about a group of outcast kids who jokingly call themselves the Loser's Club and live in the town of Derry, Maine (a Stephen King staple)....

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'Annabelle: Creation' Is More Of The Same From The Creepy James Wan-Iverse - And That's A Good Thing
Production: Scary Factor: 
The biggest hurdle facing Annabelle: Creation is the fact that, at first glance, it seems to be an unnecessary movie; the first act of Annabelle already covered the origin of the demonic doll. Or so we thought. As it turns out, that was only half of the story. Annabelle: Creation goes back a little further in time to bring fans the other half. Set about 12 years before the events of its predecessor, Annabelle: Creation is about a dollmaker named Samuel Mullens (Anthony LaPaglia from Big Stone Gap) who,...

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Not Even Matthew McConaughey And Idris Elba Can Save 'The Dark Tower' From Itself
Production: Writing: 
Stephen King fans have been waiting a while for a movie adaptation of The Dark Tower. The first book in the series was written in 1982, but rumors of the film started up about ten years ago. Now that the movie is finally here, the question that begs to be answered is "is it worth the wait?" No. No, it's not. The Dark Tower is about a boy named Jake Chambers (Tom Taylor from "Doctor Foster") who is plagued by dreams of a long-standing battle between a heroic Gunslinger (Idris Elba from Prometheus) and...

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'Atomic Blonde' Is More Than Just The Female Version Of 'John Wick'
Production: Score & Soundtrack: 
Action Sequences: 
Set in 1989, right before the fall of the Berlin Wall, Atomic Blonde stars budding action star Charlize Theron (Mad Max: Fury Road) as Lorraine Broughton, a British MI6 agent who is sent to Berlin to retrieve a list of double agents that was stolen when a fellow MI6 was murdered by a KGB thug. Once in Berlin, Lorraine and her contact, another agent named David Percival (Split's James McAvoy), navigate the criminal underworld to retrieve the list from the Russians, encountering helpful allies (Bill Skarsgard...

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'A Ghost Story' Executes Its Simple Concept Brilliantly
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Score & Soundtrack: Scary Factor: 
A few years back, director David Lowery hooked up with actors Casey Affleck and Rooney Mara for the critically acclaimed-yet-criminally underseen Ain't Them Bodies Saints. Since then, Lowery has made the reboot of Disney's Pete's Dragon, Affleck has won an Academy Award for Manchester by the Sea, and Mara has been nominated for one for Carol. Longing for simpler times, Lowery, Affleck, and Mara are all back together again, putting their big, ambitious projects aside for the very minimalistic indie A Ghost...

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'ClownTown' Is A Generic Stalk-And-Siege Movie That Still Manages To Pack A Few Good Scares
Production: Scary Factor: 
The news has been full of sightings of creepy clowns lately, some trying to lure kids into the deep dark woods while others are content just to lurk and look. Well, as if ripped from today's headlines, ClownTown wonders what would happen if these jokers took it a little further. After a pre-credits scene that is as obvious of a tribute to John Carpenter's Halloween as one is bound to find in movies today (there's even a character named "Mr. Strode"), ClownTown ends up being about a group of young folks...

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'The Magnificent Seven' Is A Good Popcorn Action Movie - Nothing More, Nothing Less
Production: Score & Soundtrack: 
Action Sequences: 
While it may be hard to prove that Hollywood is truly out of original ideas, there hasn't been any recent shortage of remakes and reboots. This summer alone has provided moviegoers with re-imaginings of Ghostbusters and Pete's Dragon, as well as a Blair Witch movie that, let's face it, may as well be considered a remake rather than a sequel. Well, summer's got one more familiar property for audiences: a remake of the seminal 1960 western The Magnificent Seven. The Magnificent Seven takes place in a typical...

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'Operation Avalanche' Is Lo-Fi For Film Geeks And Conspiracy Theorists
Production: Cinematography: 
Taking place in 1967 right as the Space Race between the US and the USSR was heating up, Operation Avalanche is about a pair of CIA agents named Owen Williams and Matt Johnson who are sent into NASA to uncover a mole planted by the KGB to sabotage the Apollo moon landing program. Filmmakers themselves, Owen and Matt pose as documentary directors who are making a movie about the program, but their primary objective is to uncover and flush out the Russian spy. During their investigation, they learn that the...

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'Blair Witch' Has The Same Fun Spirit As The Original, With More Storyline...And More Scares
Production: Cinematography: 
Scary Factor: 
There can be little doubt that The Blair Witch Project has been one of the most legendary and influential movies of the modern era. The 1999 no-budget classic practically jump-started the "found footage" trend of filmmaking (whether it gets credit or blame is up to you, dear reader). A year later a sequel was made - Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 - which confounded and alienated most audiences. Now, more than fifteen years later, the direct sequel for which fans have been clamoring is here, simply entitled...

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'Snowden' Shows Off Oliver Stone At His Most Polarizing
Production: Cinematography: 
In recent history, few figures have been as polarizing as National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden. Some feel he is a patriot, while others consider him a traitor. In Snowden, writer/director Oliver Stone (Platoon, Born on the Fourth of July) makes it clear which side of the fence he is on. Snowden begins in 2013 with Edward Snowden (Joseph Gordon-Levitt from Looper and The Dark Knight Rises) meeting film director Laura Poitras (Melissa Leo from Prisoners and The Big Short), reporter Glenn...

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Despite All The White Powder, 'White Girl' Is As Bland As White Bread
Production: Writing: 
White Girl is about a young college student named Leah (McFarland, USA's Morgan Saylor) who, along with her best friend/roommate Katie (India Menuez from Something in the Air), moves into a new apartment in a seedy part of New York. Looking to score some marijuana in her new neighborhood, Leah boldly approaches a Hispanic man on the street named Blue (Nerve's Brian Marc) and asks if he's selling - and promptly starts dating him. Leah ends up latching onto Blue's world of drugs and thugs, and also ends up...

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'The Neon Dead' Has More Neon Demons Than 'The Neon Demon'
Production: Cinematography: 
Score & Soundtrack: Scary Factor: 
Earlier this year, Nicolas Winding Refn's strangely hypnotic The Neon Demon was released to receptive-yet-confused audiences. To add to the confusion, there is now a movie called The Neon Dead that has found its way to American horror fans. Luckily, the two movies could not be more different. The Neon Dead is about a recent college graduate named Allison Hillstead (Marie Barker from "Horror Hotel: The Webseries") who, while getting ready for a job interview, discovers a zombie woman living in her home....

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'Sully' Shows Another Side Of The 'Miracle On The Hudson'
Production: Acting: 
Most Americans know the story. On January 15, 2009, US Airways Flight 1549 departed from LaGuardia Airport, bound for Charlotte, North Carolina. Just after takeoff, the plane ran into a flock of birds and both engines were disabled. The pilot, Captain Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger, was forced to put the plane down in the Hudson River, saving the lives of all 155 people on board. Well, finally, this incredible story has been made into a movie. But, Sully is not the movie that one might expect it to be. The...

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'Little Men' Is A Lighthearted Movie With A Powerful Undercurrent
Production: Directing: 
Coming-of-age movies usually deal with kids growing up. But sometimes, as Little Men shows, the adults go through some growing pains, too. Little Men is about a thirteen-year-old boy named Jake Jardine (Theo Taplitz in his first feature-length role) whose grandfather dies and leaves a Brooklyn building to Jake's father, Brian (Little Miss Sunshine's Greg Kinnear), and mother, Kathy (Jennifer Ehle from Fifty Shades of Grey). Since Brian is an under-employed actor, he decides to move the family from their...

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'Other People' Laughs And Cries With Raw, Genuine Emotion
Production: Comedy Factor: 
One of the most surprisingly funny movies to hit theaters last year was the festival darling Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, in which "Saturday Night Live" alum Molly Shannon played the mother of the titular girl who spends the entirety of the film dying of cancer. Now, it's Shannon's turn to face the deadly disease in Other People. Other People is about a struggling television comedy writer named David (Jesse Plemons from Black Mass) who moves back in with his family in order to help care for his cancer-stricken...

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The Light Between Oceans Is High Drama With Top-Tier Acting
Production: Acting: 
The Light Between Oceans is a tearjerker. It's the type of movie where, if you aren't hearing sobs at least a few times throughout the film, then you are likely in an empty theater, or you're seated in a room full of soulless monsters. Director Derek Cianfrance has never been one to shy away from tough subject matters, but here he finds a delicate balance between the wistfully happy and the unbearably depressing. At times it may feel like the film is trying to force the audience with contrived plot points,...

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'Morgan' Disappoints With Its Sci-Fi Predictability
Production: Scary Factor: 
From the trailers and advertisements, Morgan looks like it could be a sequel to last year's Ex Machina. While Morgan does share some of the same themes and ideas as Alex Garland's robotic masterpiece, and even goes so far as to flaunt some similar imagery, Morgan is no Ex Machina. The title character in Morgan, played by hip horror It-girl Anya Taylor-Joy (The Witch), is a Hybrid Biological Organism, which means that she (or it, depending on who's talking) was manufactured with synthetic engineered DNA...

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Fede Alvarez's 'Don't Breathe' Is An Edge Of Your Seat, Fright-Filled Thrill Ride
Production: Sound: 
Scary Factor: 
A few years back, writer/director Fede Alvarez took on the unenviable task of remaking Sam Raimi's legendary cult classic The Evil Dead. He knocked it out of the park; Alvarez's Evil Dead, a dark and brutal interpretation of the tongue-in-cheek original, was one of 2013's best movies. Now, with Raimi behind him once again as a producer, Alvarez is back with his follow-up - the equally dark and brutal Don't Breathe. Set in the rundown slums of Detroit, Don't Breathe is about a trio of burglars - a young...

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'Killer Party' Is A Zombie Movie With A Refreshing Lack Of Zombies
Production: Comedy Factor: 
Scary Factor: 
For the better part of three years, first-time filmmaker Alex Drummond's The Shower has been toiling away in its various forms on the festival circuit. Finally, it will be available to audiences - only the name has been changed to Killer Party. Killer Party is about a group of Hollywood twenty-somethings who are attending a baby shower. In the middle of the party, there is an outbreak that turns ordinary people into murderous maniacs, resulting in widespread rioting across the city. The guests lock themselves...

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'Hell Or High Water' Feels Like A Lost Coen Brothers Faux-Western
Production: Writing: 
Between his prison drama Starred Up and his sci-fi romance Perfect Sense, director David Mackenzie has been simmering away in the independent filmmaking underground. With Hell or High Water, he is poised to break through. Hell or High Water follows the exploits of Toby and Tanner Howard (Star Trek's Chris Pine and Warcraft's Ben Foster, respectively), a pair of brothers who systematically rob banks all over West Texas. It also follows a cop named Marcus Hamilton (Jeff Bridges from Crazy Heart) who, days...

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Fear Not - 'Pete's Dragon' Will Not Ruin Your Childhood
Production: Special Effects: 
Score & Soundtrack: 
In 1977, as a seven-year-old kid, I loved the original Pete's Dragon. The clever blend of animation and live action stuck me on the hook, and the catchy songs reeled me in. Not even the two-hour-plus running time discouraged my "Sesame Street" attention span. So, while everyone else was worrying about whether or not this year's Ghostbusters remake would ruin their childhood, I was quietly anticipating Pete's Dragon with a mixture of hope and apprehension. Hope won out. Pete's Dragon is about an orphan,...

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'Sausage Party' Is An R-Rated Toy Story, And It's Hilarious
Production: Comedy Factor: 
Imagine Toy Story, but instead of a talking cowboy doll and spaceman, the main characters were a talking hot dog and bun. And instead of the world of toys come to life, the world of food takes on a mind of its own. That's basically Sausage Party in a nutshell. Oh, and the food is raunchy, foul-mouthed, and borderline offensive at every turn. At its core, Sausage Party is about a grocery store filled with sentient food, all of which believe that being "chosen" by a human means they are moving on to some sort...

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'Suicide Squad' is a Messy Anti-Superhero Movie
Production: Action Sequences: 
What if Superman came down to Earth and, instead of helping the population, decided to enslave it? That's the question posed by Suicide Squad, director David Ayer's anti-Avengers, a movie where the bad guys unite under the flag of good, while at the same time consistently reminding us they are bad. It's a movie that, in principle, sounds intriguing, if for no other reason than we don't often see movies starring the bad guys. But unfortunately, outside of a few strong performances, Suicide Squad's concept is...

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Modern Action Movies Have Passed 'Jason Bourne' By
Production: Action Sequences: 
For all intents and purposes, the Bourne franchise has been batting 1.000 with Matt Damon in the lead role. The Bourne Identity came out with a surprise blend of espionage and gritty action, and its follow-ups, The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum, continued that legacy. Speaking of legacy, it's best to forget the Jeremy Renner-led spin-off The Bourne Legacy, which proved that it is Damon (and in part director Paul Greengrass) that makes the franchise tick. So then, with Damon and Greengrass back...

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'Macbeth' Is A High Production Value Adaptation That Lacks Purpose
Production: Acting: 
Like most of Shakespeare's plays, Macbeth is a story that has graced the silver screen its fair share of times. Some productions choose to play it in a modern context, others adapt Shakespeare's dialogue to a common tongue, and some simply play it straight. Justin Kurzel's Macbeth adapts Shakespeare as only a film could, putting the story into its correct setting and context, and preserving all of the sharp dialogue. It is, for all intents and purposes, exactly what Shakespeare fans will expect from a cinematic...

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The Whole Of 'The Danish Girl' Is Less Than The Sum Of Its Parts
Production: Acting: 
Sometimes, a movie will bring together a bunch of great elements, yet the movie itself will still be mediocre. The Danish Girl is one of those times.The Danish Girl is about a couple of married artists named Einar and Gerda Wegener (Eddie Redmayne from The Theory of Everything and Alicia Vikander from Ex Machina, respectively) living in Copenhagen in the 1920s. Einar is a successful and respected landscape painter, while Gerda is a talented-yet-struggling portrait artist. One afternoon, Gerda's model cancels...

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'The Wonders' Is A Confused Movie With No Real Story - But Lots Of Bees
Production: Directing: 
Every director dreams of making personal movies. The problem is that when a movie gets too personal it fails to connect with the majority of its audience. That's the main problem with the new movie from writer/director Alice Rohrwacher (Corpo celeste), Le meraviglie. Or, as it's known in English, The Wonders.The Wonders is about a family of beekeepers who lives in a crowded house in the Tuscan countryside in Italy. Although the mother, Angelica (the director's sister, Alba Rohrwacher from I Am Love), and...

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'Legend' Lacks Cinematic Punch, Despite A Solid Performance From Tom Hardy
Production: Acting: 
Legend seeks to tell the tale of Reggie and Ronnie Kray (Tom Hardy in dual roles), two East End London gangsters with a set of chips on their respective shoulders. Twin brothers with seemingly noble intentions despite criminal aspirations, the Krays are each a unique brand of gangster. Ronnie is a schizophrenic homosexual and prone to random bouts of violence or aggressive behavior; while Reggie is the more even keel brother, who wants nothing more than to control London through intimidation and a dapper look....

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'Victor Frankenstein' Is Not Your Grandfather's Frankenstein Movie
Production: Special Effects: 
Scary Factor: 
The first spoken line in Victor Frankenstein is "You know the story." And of course, everyone does. But it has never before been told like this.Shown from the point of view of the humble assistant Igor (played by Harry Potter himself, Daniel Radcliffe, who has also been making a name for himself in the horror world with movies like The Woman in Black and Horns), Victor Frankenstein begins at a circus where Igor performs as a hunchbacked clown. The deformed fool also has a very bright medical mind, and it...

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Wide Open and Brutally Honest, 'James White' Packs An Emotional Punch
Production: Acting: 
Borderline Films is the production company formed by film school pals Antonio Campos, Sean Durkin, and Josh Mond. The three filmmakers alternate projects, with two producing while the third writes and directs. So far, the partnership has been fruitful, with Durkin helming Martha Marcy May Marlene and Campos coming up with both Afterschool and Simon Killer. Now, it's Mond's turn to take the wheel with James White.Played by Christopher Abbott (A Most Violent Year), the title character in James White is a...

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'Theeb' Is Part Coming-Of-Age Story And Part Incredible Journey Film, All Held Together By Beautiful Scenery
Production: Acting: 
Cinematography: 
In the Arabic language, the word Theeb means "Wolf." It is also the name of the title character of an Arabic movie.The eponymous Theeb is a young boy, played by Jacir Eid, who is growing up amongst his Bedouin people in Arabia during World War I. With the help of his older brother, Hussein (Hussein Salameh), Theeb is learning the ways of his nomadic tribe, mastering tasks like shooting rifles and killing goats, in order to become a man in the eyes of his people. One day, a British soldier named Edward (Jack...

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'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2' Provides A Fitting End To An Inconsistent Franchise
Production: Action Sequences: 
Like those of Twilight and Harry Potter before, the saga of The Hunger Games is coming to a close. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2 signifies the fourth and final installment of the popular teen movie franchise. But does it go out with a bang or a whimper? Well, it kind of does both. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2 picks up right where Mockingjay - Part 1 left off, with Katniss Everdeen (American Hustle's Jennifer Lawrence) as the Mockingjay - the public figurehead of...

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Bryan Cranston Takes The Hollywood Ten From The Blacklist To The Black Market In 'Trumbo'
Production: Acting: 
Cinematography: Score & Soundtrack: 
One of the most embarrassing times in American film history occurred just after World WarII when the country's politics and patriotism got the best of it. The House Un-American Activities Committee, or HUAC, was formed to uncover citizens with ties to the Nazi and Communist parties. In 1947, the committee turned its witchhunt towards the Hollywood motion picture industry, and screenwriter Dalton Trumbo got caught up in the middle of it. Trumbo is his story.Trumbo stars Bryan Cranston (Godzilla, "Breaking...

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'Brooklyn' Is Saoirse Ronan At Her Tired, Poor, Huddled Best
Production: Acting: 
Set in the 1950s, Brooklyn stars Saoirse Ronan (The Grand Budapest Hotel) as Eilis Lacey, a young Irish woman who is excited to cross the Atlantic and start a new life in America. She says goodbye to her family and makes the journey, moving into a boarding house in Brooklyn, New York. At first, Eilis finds the city intimidating and gets extremely homesick. Eventually, however, Eilis discovers her place in New York, taking a job in a department store, going to night school to learn bookkeeping, and even...

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'The Night Before' Is A Modern Stoner Christmas Classic
Production: Comedy Factor: 
After tackling TV show heroes, the apocalypse, and even Kin Jong Un, it seemed only a matter of time before comedic writing duo Seth Rogen (Neighbors) and Evan Goldberg (This Is The End) took on the Christmas movie. However, after The Interview, it became clear that maybe giving Goldberg and Rogen unfettered control wasn't the best idea. So for The Night Before - Rogen & Co.'s send up of a Christmas movie (Home Alone, Die Hard, etc.) - the duo has enlisted some help. Rather than direct the movie themselves,...

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'Spotlight' Makes Heroes Out Of Reporters In A Surprisingly Suspenseful Pseudo-Mystery
Production: Acting: 
Set in Boston in the early 2000s, Spotlight is named after the four-person team of Boston Globe reporters who uncovered the massive sexual abuse scandal in the Catholic Church. The movie is the true account of their investigation. Led by Walter 'Robby' Robinson (Birdman's Michael Keaton), the team of Mike Rezendes (Mark Ruffalo from Infinitely Polar Bear), Sacha Pfeiffer (Aloha's Rachel McAdams), and Matt Carroll (Brian d'Arcy James from Time Out of Mind) digs into allegations of child molestation in the...

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'By the Sea' Is The Cinematic Equivalent Of Vaguebooking
Production: Cinematography: 
Angelina Jolie (or Angelina Jolie Pitt, as she's now known) really wants to be a director. Her behind-the-camera debut, In the Land of Blood and Honey, was a wreck. Her follow-up, Unbroken, still fell flat, despite the best efforts of a Coen Brothers script and a first-rate cast. Well, for her third foray into directing, the self-indulgent By the Sea, she brings along her husband, the one and only Brad Pitt (Fury, World War Z). Unfortunately, his presence doesn't help much. By...

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'Entertainment' Spends Some Quality Time With The Saddest Funnyman Around
Production: Acting: 
Comedy Factor: 
Entertainment is all about a bad stand-up comedian (Gregg Turkington, better known by his fictional comic alter-ego name Neil Hamburger) who is making his way to Los Angeles across the American southwest, doing gigs in crappy nightclubs and dive bars as he goes. Along the way, he calls his estranged daughter every chance he gets with the hope of reconnecting with her. He also meets colorful characters who help to enrich his touring experience. That's really all of a synopsis for...

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'Time Out of Mind' Lets The Audience Spy On The Life Of A Homeless Hero
Production: Cinematography: 
Sound: 
Time Out of Mind is a line from a Warren Zevon song and the title of an album by Bob Dylan. And now, it's a movie by writer/director Oren Moverman (Love & Mercy, The Quiet Ones). The film stars Richard Gere (Pretty Woman, An Officer and a Gentleman) as a homeless man named George who wanders the streets looking for a phantom person named "Sheila." What George really wants is to reconnect with his estranged daughter, Maggie (Jena Malone from Sucker Punch), and he spends much of each of his days standing...

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'Time Out of Mind' Lets The Audience Spy On The Life Of A Homeless Hero
Production: Cinematography: 
Sound: 
Time Out of Mind is a line from a Warren Zevon song and the title of an album by Bob Dylan. And now, it's a movie by writer/director Oren Moverman (Love & Mercy, The Quiet Ones). The film stars Richard Gere (Pretty Woman, An Officer and a Gentleman) as a homeless man named George who wanders the streets looking for a phantom person named "Sheila." What George really wants is to reconnect with his estranged daughter, Maggie (Jena Malone from Sucker Punch), and he spends much of each of his days standing...

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'The Hallow' Takes All The Usual Suspects And Turns Them Into A Creative Creature Feature
Production: Scary Factor: 
Director Corin Hardy has been so mired in the entertainment news reports of the on-again/off-again status of his next project, the controversial remake of The Crow, that many people have forgotten how he's got a new movie to promote. Well, he does: the nifty little creature feature The Hallow. The Hallow is about a scientist named Adam Hitchens (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter's Joseph Mawle) who moves his wife, Clare (Bojana Novakovic from Devil and Drag Me to Hell), and their infant son...

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'Suffragette' Is An Woefully Passionless Passion Project
Production: Acting: 
Cinematography: 
This year, there has been a surprising number of movies about civil disobedience. From the feel-good Jimmy's Hall to the god-awful Stonewall, theaters have been full of social activism and quests for political reform. There's one more to add to the pile: the British feminist movement movie Suffragette. Set in England in the year 1912, Suffragette stars Carey Mulligan (Inside Llewyn Davis) as Maud Watts, a young working-class mother who, through a co-worker named Violet Miller (Before I Go to Sleep's...

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'The Keeping Room' Serves Up A Heaping Helping Of Genre-Bending, Gender-Defying, Western-Revising Suspense
Production: Writing: 
Movies about the American Civil War usually focus on the soldiers, the men fighting on the front lines. There was another side to the war, one that is explored in The Keeping Room.Set in the South in 1965 right as the Civil War is winding down, The Keeping Room is about a trio of young women - Augusta (Brit Marling from Sound of My Voice), her younger sister Louise (The Homesman's Hailee Steinfeld), and a slave girl named Mad (Muna Otaru from "Whitechapel") - who have been left alone while the men of the...

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'Truth' Has A Message, But It Gets Lost In The Reporting
Production: Acting: 
Set just as George W. Bush was gearing up his bid for re-election in 2004, Truth stars Cate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine) as Mary Mapes, a news producer who, fresh off her Peabody Award-winning breaking of the Abu Ghraib torture and prisoner abuse scandal, is looking for her next big scoop. She thinks she has found it when she receives a tip that suggests that Bush used his family connections to sneak into the Texas National Guard, thereby avoiding Vietnam. Mary assembles an investigative team which consists...

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'Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension' Answers The Questions That Should Be Left Unanswered
Production: Cinematography: 
Scary Factor: 
When Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension was first announced, series producer Jason Blum promised that it would answer all of the questions that have been brought up by the first five movies. Well, considering the ambiguity of some of the franchise entries, that's a bold statement.Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension starts out promisingly enough, with a young man named Ryan Fleege (Chris J. Murray from Bad Roomies) moving into a new house with his wife, Emily (Brit Shaw from "Nashville"), and young...

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'Experimenter' Serves Up A Different Kind Of Mad Scientist Movie
Production: Acting: 
Directing: 
The subject of Experimenter, the new film from writer/director Michael Almereyda (Cymbeline), is psychologist Stanley Milgram (played in the film by Peter Sarsgaard from Black Mass), a researcher at Yale University in the early sixties who devises an experiment where one test subject quizes another on a series of word associations, and the tester is told to administer a painful shock to the other participant each time they get an answer wrong. The tester is told that the experiment is about memory retention...

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'Death Valley' Is A Brilliant Character Study With Idiotic Characters
Production: Cinematography: 
There has quite possibly never been a more appropriately titled movie than Death Valley; not only is it set in the desert area after which it is named, but there's plenty of death to be had in that breathtakingly cinematic valley.Death Valley is about a movie producer named Billy Rich (Freddy vs. Jason's Lochlyn Munro) and his actress fiancé Annie Gunn (Katrina Law from "Arrow") who, along with newlywed tourist couple Jamie and Roy Dillen (June's Victoria Pratt and Nick E. Tarabay from "Spartacus: War of...

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'Steve Jobs': A Portrait Of The Myth As A Broken Man
Production: Writing: 
Acting: 
Most know Steve Jobs as the mythic, silver-haired, bespectacled figure in the black turtleneck, who is best known for introducing the world to the Mac, iPod, and iPhone. However, few know the man behind the turtleneck; the brutal businessman, the impersonal inventor, and the selfish father who is synonymous with Apple. Danny Boyle's biopic Steve Jobs hopes to shed more light on that second figure, and does so with the help of a sharp script by Aaron Sorkin and a bold performance by Michael Fassbender. The...

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'Goosebumps' Serves Up All Of R.L. Stine's Monsters In One Bite-Sized Movie
Production: Score & Soundtrack: 
Comedy Factor: Scary Factor: 
R.L. Stine has sold millions of copies of his Goosebumps series of children's books, and a successful Saturday morning television show has been spawned off of the property. So, when the time came to make a movie of the series, how did the filmmakers think of a story that hadn't already been done when all of the good books had been previously made into T.V. episodes? Goosebumps figured it all out. Goosebumps is about a teenage boy named Zach Cooper (Dylan Minnette from Prisoners) who moves to Madison,...

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'Crimson Peak' Tries To Tell A Gothic Ghost Story Without Any Ghosts
Production: Cinematography: 
Scary Factor: 
Between the action movie Pacific Rim and the superhero flick Hellboy, it's easy to forget that Guillermo del Toro has made horror movies like Cronos and The Devil's Backbone. The filmmaker would like to remind audiences of that fact with his latest movie, the gothic ghost story Crimson Peak. Crimson Peak is the story of a young aspiring author named Edith Cushing (Stoker's Mia Wasikowska) who meets a charming Englishman named Sir Thomas Sharpe (Tom Hiddleston from The Avengers) who is seeking funding...

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