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Sunday, February 15 2009

Biggie Gives Us One More Chance

Biggie Smalls' mythology hasn't afforded him a dreamy endgame à la Tupac or Elvis. Nobody imagines Biggie pulling the ultimate Machiavellian coup by making the world believe he's dead while he's secretly chillin' in Jamaica.


Thursday, February 12 2009

Love Rated XOXO

Could the lighthearted, seemingly innocuous genre of the romantic comedy actually be as psychologically damaging as onscreen violence and sex?


Two Lovers: All Your Choices Are Bad Ones

What James Gray bravely does in Two Lovers is return the idea of pain, and the threat of bad decisions, to the American film romance.


Sunday, February 8 2009

Working in the Coal Mine and Singing About It, Too

The majority of us aren't coal miners, we don't know coal miners, and we wouldn't last a week in a coal mine. Are coal mining songs, then, still relevant?


Thursday, February 5 2009

Conversing with Rudy Wurlitzer: ‘A Beaten-up Old Scribbler’

My conversations with Rudy Wurlitzer were not unlike a road journey itself with plenty of unplanned side trips along the way.


Taken: Daddy Tortures Best

Mill's towering righteousness is just too much for this weak little film, whose only interest is in affirming the white patriarchal prerogative.


Thursday, January 29 2009

A Perverted Perception of Movies

The success or failure of The Pervert’s Guide to Cinema hinges greatly on what one thinks of Slavoj Zizek's free-range associations on desire, blood, human waste, castration, and social control in films.


Sunday, January 25 2009

No Girl So Sweet and ‘Happy-Go-Lucky’

At first fearing a British Amelie, Mike Leigh’s Happy-Go-Lucky surprisingly became Mazur’s favorite film of 2008.


Thursday, January 22 2009

On the End of Every Fork

Our Daily Bread is a 21st century naked lunch in the true sense of what Burroughs meant, not a scattershot impressionistic sensory assault, but an eye-opener that can actually change the way one views the world.


Wednesday, January 21 2009

Ken Russell at the BBC

Everything here is in achingly beautiful and sharply restored black and white, everything is intelligent and witty, everything is deeply felt -- everything is Russell.


Thursday, January 15 2009

Slumdog Millionaire: All Eyes East

Slumdog Millionaire's Golden Globe win for Best Motion Picture/Drama is like a flare warning Hollywood about its future in cinema.


Wednesday, January 14 2009

Convergence Culture: the Many Faces of Hellboy

Different media means different Hellboys. Mike Mignola's versus Guillermo del Toro's.


Thursday, January 8 2009

Guerrilla Patton

Soderbergh's supersized retelling of the Che Guevara legend is an uncomfortable mix of war procedural and unabashed hero worship; ingenious but flawed.


Wednesday, January 7 2009

Twilight Takeover

The film is a successful adaptation of the book not only because Pattinson is so talented and dreamy, but also because Hardwicke knows a thing or two about filming adolescents.


Monday, January 5 2009

Something to Do with Death

By manipulating mankind’s fear of death, organized religion clearly emerges as the most ruthless and totalitarian authority institution in the history of the world.


Thursday, December 18 2008

Exquisite Agony

This holiday season, Mickey Rourke (in The Wrestler) and Will Smith (Seven Pounds) suffer for all us sinners.


Thursday, December 11 2008

Shameful Exposure

A fiery Kate Winslet saves morality tale in 'The Reader' while a similarly powerful Meryl Streep can't do the same for the overly certain 'Doubt'.


Sunday, December 7 2008

The Annihilating Feminine: Kate Winslet Gets Nasty in The Reader

In Winslet’s clever, low-key performance, all of the character’s ambiguousness remains intact, making Hanna her most complicated, mature creation to date.


Thursday, December 4 2008

Frost/Nixon: An Interview with a Vampire

Frank Langella seethes and pulsates with cunning as the deposed president in 'Frost/Nixon', a far cry from the grinning cowboy executive Josh Brolin presented in 'W'.


Wednesday, December 3 2008

Nary a Word: ‘The Last Laugh’ and ‘The General’

The sound era added nothing thematically or tonally that wasn't already perfected in silent films.


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