Recent Features
Instantly Familiar: Hollywood’s Great Duopolies

Ever think Hollywood is making the same films over and over? These many sets of twin films that constitute Hollywood’s Great Duopolies show no signs of stopping.

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America, Slavery, and McQueen and Tarantino’s Two Very Different Movies

12 Years a Slave is every bit as intense as one might imagine, though not completely depressing, whereas Django Unchained aestheticizes its extreme violence.

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We’ve Seen This Movie Before: Trying to Make Sense of Philip Seymour Hoffman

The death of Philip Seymour Hoffman hurts more than the typical "gone too soon" tragedy because we are being robbed of an artist performing at the height of his considerable powers.

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Have a Little Faith in People: Woody Allen, ‘Blue Jasmine’, and Returning to Form

Blue Jasmine goes some way towards restoring our faith in Woody Allen's talent. Against the odds, and late in the game, Woody has hit a home run. He actually has returned to form, this time.

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In Defense of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s Legacy

Lost far too soon, Philip Seymour Hoffman was the single most affecting reason I ever decided to watch movies in the first place.

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What Is Not Erased: Kafka and Lynch and Their Gift of Death

Eraserhead is very much of the same ilk as The Metamorphosis, and could be described to be a dark(er) twin of that novella.

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A Langeducation: 10 Essential Jessica Lange Scenes

Furious smokers, farm wives, iconic theater roles, women on the edge of a nervous breakdown, and a small truckload of little gold statues. Obviously, we are counting down Jessica Lange's 10 greatest scenes.

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Freudian Trip: Why We Still Can’t Get ‘The Shining’ Out of Our Heads

Freud theorized that to experience the uncanny was to awaken intellectual uncertainty. Kubrick's The Shining understands this to a masterful degree.

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The Evil That Men Do Lives After Them

Caesar Must Die and The Act of Killing are experiments that mix fiction and reality in distinct ways in order to investigate the relationship between freedom and violence.

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Eastern Dragons Meet Western Tigers: Wu-Tang Clan’s Debut Helped Asian Films Find a New Audience

Quentin Tarantino himself arguably wouldn’t have been so emboldened to make the Kill Bill films without that fire set forth by the Wu’s debut.

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Cinematic Kaiju: A Worm’s Eye look at Filmdom’s Biggest Monsters

In the sagas of film's biggest monsters, what qualifies as a Kaiju? And does the giant monster have to be a Japanese creation to be considered Kaiju?

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‘The Act of Killing’ and How Not to Get Conned by a Charming Madman

Using Joshua Oppenheimer’s belief in the healing power of performance, mass murderer Anwar Congo creates a masterpiece of guilt and repentance that his director buys hook, line and sinker.

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Monty Python vs. the Religious Right

The life of Life of Brian tells us much about a period when disparate cultural values were battled over in a dramatic tug-of-war on the frontlines of society -- and for Monty Python, the threat of prison loomed.

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The Guilty Pleasure Films of 2013

Sometimes, a bad movie inspires a bit of unnatural love. In other instances, films overlooked by the masses make it into our personal preferences. Whatever the case is here, we have several examples of efforts we feel bad for enjoying, but love nonetheless.

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The Best Female Film Performances of 2013

It was a particularly strong year for women in film. These sensational performances remind us that, when all is said and done, it's character and how an actor or actress creates them that matters as much to a movie as a script, a director, or an idea.

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The Best Male Film Performances of 2013

The best male film performances highlight how masculinity, managed within a more considered and complete character overview, can turn even the most rugged rogue into an equally strong if sensitive cinematic center.

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The Worst Films of 2013

For those who love film (as we do), it's often hard to hate the medium you enjoy so much. In the case of the movies listed here, the ability to loathe was quite easy, actually.

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The Best Films of 2013

After a shaky start, 2013 ended up a stellar cinematic year, covering subjects as varied as young love, '70s (and '80s and '90s) con men, our country's horrific history of slavery, and perhaps most importantly, giant robots battling equally elephantine alien monster.

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The Best International & Indie Films of 2013

Sometimes, you have to travel a bit off the beaten path to find salvation from the onslaught that is the mainstream moviemaking machine.

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The Best DVDs and Blu-rays of 2013

As home video spins off into various immediate options -- streaming, simultaneous theatrical and digital release -- there are still many gems to uncover in the increasingly obsolete format.

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'True Detective': Maybe Tomorrow

// Channel Surfing

"True Detective, Season 2, Episode 3: Where does the kitsch end and the surreal begin?

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