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Friday, November 28 2014

‘Horrible Bosses 2’ Goes for the Laughs, Not the Anger

The sequel skips the original’s workers' fury and lets its comedy all-star trio play to their strengths, with mixed results.


Wednesday, November 26 2014

The Demonic Force in ‘The Whale: Revenge From the Deep’

As in its previous literary and screen incarnations, the whale here is a demonic force, producing fear in the whalers (and the audience) even when it is not visible.


‘The Imitation Game’ Doesn’t Pretend to Solve the Enigma That Is Alan Turing, or His Machine

As visible as the Turing machine may be on screen -- and it is gorgeous, strange, and haunting, as well as sublimely mechanical and daunting -- it remains unfathomable.


David Bowie’s Affective Relationship With the Remarkable, Schizophrenic City of Berlin

Tobias Rüther’s exploration of Bowie’s artistic and personal development in mid-'70s Berlin offers few cogent insights and a confusing timeline of an artist in a city.


‘Mystery Science Theater 3000: Turkey Day Collection (XXXI)’ Is Comedy Worth Being Thankful For

Featuring episodes from both Comedy Central and the Sci-Fi Channel, this Turkey Day Collection is a feast for comedy fans.


The Velvet Underground: The Velvet Underground - 45th Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition

Few bands ever had a year like the Velvet Underground did in 1969. Even fewer have a set that documents a year like that as beautifully as this one.


Alex Capus’ Latest Book Is a Wild Ride Through the Wild West

Filled with six charming tales about the American West in the 19th Century, Skidoo is an off-the-wall history lesson about the American Frontier most of us were never taught in school.


Pink Floyd: The Endless River

On The Endless River, Pink Floyd sounds as strong as it did during some of its best years. On this almost entirely instrumental album, however, the lyrics are sorely missed.


Foreigner: The Complete Atlantic Studio Albums 1977-1991

No more head games: there are some true pop gems worth uncovering on Foreigner's first few albums, but a single-disc best-of would just as well satisfy anyone else.


Swans: Oxygen EP

Revealing the true horsepower behind the Swans’ "Oxygen", this four-song collection should be handled by a professional driver on a closed course.


Locust: After the Rain

Mark Van Hoen is not one-offing his Locust resurrection. Not by a long shot.


Game Theory: Blaze of Glory

Game Theory's nervy debut album gets to baffle another generation of listeners with this bulky reissue.


Tuesday, November 25 2014

It’s Hard to Love the Pieces: “The Multiversity: Pax Americana #1”

This is a complex and, perhaps, technically perfect comicbook. So why is it, I wonder, that I am unmoved?


The ‘Penguins of Madagascar’ Is Terminally Cute and Cuddly

It seems right that Werner Herzog narrates the start of Penguins of Madagascar, concerning the overwhelming cuddly cuteness of penguins and the absurd value humans attribute to them.


In an Underground Bar With America’s First Bohemians

Rebel Souls tells how Walt Whitman and a cast of colorful characters helped define American culture from a dark, 19th century basement bar in Manhattan.


‘The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth’: More Grotesque, More Fun

Grotesque, strange, and difficult, Rebirth offers a fantastic vision of what might be the ideal roguelike.


The Postal Service: Everything Will Change

Surprisingly, a bunch of sentimental laptop pop songs from ten years ago (Give Up) make for a dynamic and engaging live show.


Andy Stott: Faith in Strangers

With an astonishing lead single and an enveloping album besides, the Manchester producer offers the most vivid expression of his ghostly, brooding vision yet.


The Bug vs Earth: Boa / Cold

This collaboration between legendary producer the Bug (Kevin Martin) and legendary metal band Earth promises, fulfills, and then promises so much more.


Is ‘Gimme Indie Rock’ Another One of Those Essential Guidebooks?

At its best, Gimme Indie Rock shows enough joy to remind its readers why books like these are made in the first place.


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