10 Cloverfield Lane (Review)
Mar15

10 Cloverfield Lane (Review)

There’s an old formula for making cost effective independent films. What you do is, limit your actors to no more than a handful and set everything in one location. It seems that lately Hollywood has caught onto this formula, or at least the higher level indie filmmakers are putting it to use as we’ve seen with recent films like Ex Machina, Everly and Room. Yet this formula is merely a cost cutting one as there’s less people to feed...

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2013 Fearless Oscar Nomination Predictions
Jan09

2013 Fearless Oscar Nomination Predictions

And away we go. I waited until the last possible second this year, mainly because I hadn’t seen everything – and still haven’t. But the great thing about the Oscars lately is that you don’t have to have seen everything to accurately predict them. Granted, 2012 was a stronger year than expected. But it doesn’t change the fact that once a film garners enough momentum to become one of the “anointed...

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A Walk in the Woods (Review)
Sep10

A Walk in the Woods (Review)

While A Walk in the Woods could have been an overly earnest weepie or an embarrassing slapstick farce, it settles somewhere comfortably in-between. It’s inconsequential, but it should please fans of codger comedies. After living all over the world, travel writer Bill Bryson (Robert Redford) finds himself back in the U.S.A., semi-retired, giving inane TV interviews and attending one funeral too many. He decides to hike the 2000+...

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A-Team, The (Review)
Jun10

A-Team, The (Review)

A-TEAM, THE (6/10/10; Action) Liam Neeson, Bradley Cooper, Quinton Jackson, Sharlto Copley, Jessica Biel, Patrick Wilson, Brian Bloom SCR: Joe Carnahan, Brian Bloom, Skip Woods; based on the television series created by Stephen J. Canell and Frank Lupo DIR: Joe Carnahan MPAA: PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, disturbing images and sexual content. 1 hour 57 mins BOX: $77,222,099 Big-screen version of the...

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Adjustment Bureau, The (Review)
Mar04

Adjustment Bureau, The (Review)

ADJUSTMENT BUREAU, THE (3/04/11; Sci-Fi, Romance) Matt Damon, Emily Blunt, Anthony Mackie, Shohreh Aghdashloo, Michael Kelly, John Slattery, Anthony Ruivivar, Terence Stamp SCR/DIR: George Nolfi MPAA: PG-13 for brief strong language, some sexuality and a violent image. 2 hours 4 mins BOX: $60,735,145 David Norris (Damon) is a politician derailed on Election Day by some old college photos. On the verge of delivering a concession...

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Albert Nobbs (Review)
Jan24

Albert Nobbs (Review)

ALBERT NOBBS (12/23/11; Period Drama) Glenn Close, Mia Wasikowska, Aaron Johnson, Janet McTeer, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Brendan Gleeson, Maria Doyle Kenned SCR: Glenn Close, John Banville; based on “The Singular Life of Albert Nobbs” by George Moore DIR: Rodrigo García MPAA: Rated R for some sexuality, brief nudity and language. 1 hour 53 mins In 19th century Dublin, Albert Nobbs (Close) is a woman comfortably living and...

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Alice in Wonderland (Review)
Mar05

Alice in Wonderland (Review)

ALICE IN WONDERLAND (3/05/10; Fantasy, 3D) Mia Wasikowska, Johnny Depp, Michael Sheen, Helena Bonham Carter, Stephen Fry, Anne Hathaway, Alan Rickman, Crispin Glover SCR: Linda Woolverton; based on the books by Lewis Carroll DIR: Tim Burton MPAA: PG for fantasy action/violence involving scary images and situations, and for a smoking caterpillar. 1 hour 48 mins BOX: $331,093,518 Tim Burton. Alice in Wonderland. Johnny Depp as the Mad...

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All Good Things (Review)
Dec03

All Good Things (Review)

ALL GOOD THINGS (12/03/10; Thriller) Ryan Gosling, Kirsten Dunst, Frank Langella, Kristen Wiig, Philip Baker Hall, Diane Venora SCR: Marcus Hinchey, Marc Smerling DIR: Andrew Jarecki MPAA: R for drug use, violence, language and some sexuality. 1 hour 41 mins BOX: $557,115 In the 70s, David Marks (Gosling), an heir to a New York real estate fortune, begrudgingly takes a job with the firm to appease his arrogant father (Langella) and...

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Amazing Spider-Man, The (Radio Review)
Jul03

Amazing Spider-Man, The (Radio Review)

Dennis Willis reviews the risky big-budget Marvel reboot The Amazing Spider-man, with Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone. CLICK TO DOWNLOAD...

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American Ultra (Review)
Aug19

American Ultra (Review)

American Ultra is the latest in a line of stoner movies, which have a not-so-long and not-so-grand tradition. Back in the 1930s, Reefer Madness attempted to warn viewers away from the “dangers” of smoking pot (you’ll turn into a crazed demon!) but in the 1960s, that movie became a hilarious cult classic for smokers to watch and enjoy while partaking. Cheech (Marin) and (Tommy) Chong had a huge hit with Up in Smoke...

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American, The (Review)
Sep03

American, The (Review)

AMERICAN, THE (9/03/10; Drama, Thriller) George Clooney, Thekla Reuten, Irina Björklund, Violante Placido, Paolo Bonacelli SCR: Martin Booth, Rowan Joffe; based on the Martin Booth novel A Very Private Gentleman DIR: Anton Corbijn MPAA: R for violence, sexual content and nudity. 1 hour 45 mins BOX: $35,596,227 Moody European-flavored thriller finds hardened assassin Clooney hiding out in Italy and taking on a benign job to assemble a...

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Animal Kingdom (Review)
Aug08

Animal Kingdom (Review)

ANIMAL KINGDOM (8/13/10; Drama, Crime, Thriller) Ben Mendelsohn, Joel Edgerton, Guy Pearce, Luke Ford, Jacki Weaver, Sullivan Stapleton, James Frecheville SCR/DIR: David Michôd MPAA: R for violence, drug content and pervasive language. 1 hour 52 mins BOX: $5,775,563 Australian crime drama follows the Codys, a notorious family of criminals as seen through the eyes of recently-orphaned teenager “J” (Frecheville), who goes to live with...

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Another Happy Day (Review)
Nov04

Another Happy Day (Review)

ANOTHER HAPPY DAY (11/04/11; Comedy, Drama) Ellen Barkin, Kate Bosworth, Ellen Burstyn, Thomas Haden Church, George Kennedy, Ezra Miller, Demi Moore, Siobhan Fallon Hogan, Michael Nardelli, Daniel Yelsky, Eamon O’Rourke, Jeffrey DeMunn, Diana Scarwid SCR/DIR: Sam Levinson 1 hour 59 mins (Phase 4 Films) At least Another Happy Day is aptly named. The debut film from the son of Oscar-winner Barry Levinson is a handsome mess:...

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Ant-Man (Review)
Jul24

Ant-Man (Review)

Let’s just get this first order of business out of the way; Ant-Man is kind of a lame superhero. I feel safe saying that not only because it’s true but also because unlike some comic book properties, I don’t see a huge swarm of Ant-Man aficionados coming after me for that negative comment because really, there’s not many. Yes, I know he is a classic Marvel character. Yes, I know he was a leading figure in terms of comics becoming more...

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Arthur [2011] (Review)
Apr08

Arthur [2011] (Review)

ARTHUR (4/08/11; Comedy) Russell Brand, Helen Mirren, Jennifer Garner, Greta Gerwig, Luis Guzmán, Geraldine James, Nick Nolte SCR: Jared Stern, Peter Baynham; based on the 1981 movie written by Steve Gordon DIR: Jason Winer MPAA: PG-13 for alcohol use throughout, sexual content and some drug references. 1 hour 50 mins BOX: $39,219,065 Why remake the classic 1981 Dudley Moore comedy? Well, because Russell Brand was looking for a...

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Artist, The (Review)
Nov23

Artist, The (Review)

ARTIST, THE (11/23/11; Silent, B&W, Drama) Jean Dujardin, Bérénice Bejo, John Goodman, James Cromwell, Missi Pyle, Penelope Ann Miller, Malcolm McDowell, Uggie SCR/DIR: Michel Hazanavicius 1 hour 40 mins In 1927, George Valentin (Dujardin) is on top of the world: he’s a beloved icon and a major silent movie star attending the premiere of his latest film, A Russian Affair. Outside the theater, Valentin is posing for pictures...

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Avatar (Review)
Dec19

Avatar (Review)

AVATAR (12/18/09; Sci-Fi, Action, 3D) Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Sigourney Weaver, Michelle Rodriguez, Giovanni Ribisi, Joel David Moore, CCH Pounder, Peter Mensah, Wes Studi, Stephen Lang SCR/DIR: James Cameron MPAA: PG-13 for intense epic battle sequences and warfare, sensuality, language and some smoking. 2 hours 41 mins BOX: $760,507,298 Worthington plays paralyzed ex-Marine Jake Sully, a genetic match for a deceased brother...

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Babies (Review)
May05

Babies (Review)

BABIES (5/07/10; Documentary) Ponijao, Bayar, Mari, Hattie DIR: Thomas Balmès MPAA: PG for cultural and maternal nudity throughout. 1 hour 19 mins BOX: $7,320,323 The title says it all. We follow four babies through the first year of their lives. The hook is that the babies live in four wildly different environments: Namibia, Mongolia, Tokyo and San Francisco (Oakland, really). The scenes are intercut without the baggage of a forced...

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Back to Space-Con (Review)
Apr14

Back to Space-Con (Review)

BACK TO SPACE-CON (4/14/11; Documentary) Joe Ferrara II, Ernie Fosselius, Robert Napton, John Stanley, Gary Tomsic, Bob Wilkins SCR/DIR: Tom Wyrsch 1 hour 14 mins Affectionate doc caters to a very specialized audience: anyone who might have fond memories of attending any of the Space-Cons between 1975 and 1981, the Star Trek and Star Wars-themed conventions that were the precursor to mammoth pop culture gatherings Comic-Con and...

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Back-Up Plan, The (Review)
Apr23

Back-Up Plan, The (Review)

BACK-UP PLAN, THE (4/23/10; Comedy, Romance) Jennifer Lopez, Alex O’Loughlin, Danneel Harris, Eric Christian Olsen, Anthony Anderson, Noureen DeWulf, Tom Bosley, Linda Lavin SCR: Kate Angelo DIR: Alan Poul MPAA: PG-13 for sexual content including references, some crude material and language. 1 hour 46 mins BOX: $33,737,302 Cliché-ridden comeback-of-sorts for Lopez is a fluffy and relatively safe vehicle about a Zoe, a woman who...

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