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Tuesday, May 20 2014

‘Vampire Academy’: It’s Just About High School

Some of the seams of the vampire / teenager connection are starting to show.


Monday, May 19 2014

‘Veronica Mars’, Just Out of Law School, Takes Us Back to Neptune

Series creator Rob Thomas fashioned Veronica Mars as a reunion movie, for both the audience and the characters.


The Fall of The Clash Minus the Rise

For a telling of "the only band that mattered", there's something of a lack of yeast in the brew, here.


Friday, May 16 2014

We’re Back on the Horse Again with ‘Blazing Saddles: 40th Anniversary Edition’

The Blu-ray extras here are quite good, but of course, the film is an enduring, hilarious classic for those with that Mel Brooks and Monty Python-like sensibility.


Thursday, May 15 2014

‘Riot in Cell Block 11’ Has the Courage to Ask Important Questions

Will America's prison system ever change? Or is meant to keep America’s caste system in place?


Wednesday, May 14 2014

‘Breaking the Waves’ Has the Touch of the Divine

If only for its artistic value, Breaking the Waves will always be a reminder that we can come in touch with the divine even when we’re unsure of its existence.


‘The Strange Woman’ Makes Clear, You Can’t Always Want What You Get

For this strange woman, every selfish action is balanced by a selfless one.


Tuesday, May 13 2014

Exploring the Depths of the ‘Hill Street Blues’

Hill Street Blues is a near perfect beast that never replicates, but builds upon its predecessors in its own quirky, occasionally surreal way.


‘Shelter Island’ Makes Harald Olsen’s Art a Living, Breathing, Organic Experience

Shelter Island is the sort of film that can take audiences who know nothing about art or care nothing for it and make them feel something.


Monday, May 12 2014

‘Orange is the New Black’ Eases Us All Into Prison Life

These are women who are rarely given a voice in television, so when a series like Orange is the New Black comes along, it’s striking in its depiction.


‘The Best Offer’ Leaves the Gears of One’s Mind Turning

Nothing is ever quite as it seems in this dramatic tale of art, love, fear and deceit.


Friday, May 9 2014

Living the Nightmare of ‘An Unreal Dream’

An Unreal Dream explores the personal journey of one man in devastating circumstances, and proves itself to be more enlightening than one might imagine.


Thursday, May 8 2014

‘I Love Lucy: Ultimate Season One’ Is Really Smokin’

I Love Lucy has been treasured for years, but this is the first time that it has been presented in a manner so thoroughly studied and examined within its historical context.


Otto Preminger’s Disorientation in ‘Danger—Love at Work’ and ‘Margin for Error’

The very unevenness of these early projects bespeaks a filmmaker who sets about very precisely to be ambiguous.


Wednesday, May 7 2014

‘Generation War’ Isn’t Afraid to Present Ambivalence and Ambiguity

This might make some viewers uncomfortable. It might offend. It might challenge preconceptions. That’s fine. Much of the time, that’s what good art does.


‘City That Never Sleeps’ and ‘Hell’s Half Acre’ Try Unusual Methods in Their Storytelling

These crime thrillers tell their stories via a talking city, a mechanical man, a bilious little rodent of a man, and even a soundtrack with Hawaiian guitars.


Tuesday, May 6 2014

What Changed for Our Protagonist in ‘The Pawnbroker’?

The Pawnbroker remains an important work, especially as one of the first major studio films to explore the Holocaust.


The King and Queen of Postwar Pop

Doris Day and Frank Sinatra's creamy Hollywood dreams simmer with tension and uncertainty in Young at Heart.


Monday, May 5 2014

‘Bastards’ Makes Despair Bleed from the Walls

Claire Denis' jagged filmmaking is matched by the nihilistic darkness of her latest assault on the senses.


‘Lizzie Borden Took an Axe’ and That’s About It

Too shallow to be informative and too dry to be campy, Lizzie Borden Took an Axe is unsatisfying on every level.


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