'The Rise of Skywalker' Is a Lightsaber Duel between Good and Evil, Past and Present, Authenticity and Greed
The Rise of Skywalker has been trumpeted as the last in the Skywalker saga. But with Disney's and this trilogy's annoying tendency to resurrect, it may never end.
Fans have pledged $11M to a Dungeons & Dragons group because they champion safety and inclusion. Does this have larger, real-world implications?
Ta-Nehisi Coates' debut novel about slavery in America, The Water Dancer, dares us to dance -- and remember.
In Robert Eggers' brutal but lyrical 19th century horror show, The Lighthouse, there is a lot of David Lynch in the looming soundtrack and the steam-powered, proto-industrial feel in the scenes of tending the lighthouse machinery.
Amazon's eight-episode animation, Undone is a poignant reflection on grief, loss, mental illness, and heritage.
Jean-Luc Godard's cinematic oddities First Name: Carmen, Détective, and Hélas pour moi, newly released on Blu-ray from Kino Lorber, embody the vast landscape of possibilities open to the director during the '80s and '90s.
Heaven Can Wait is Lubitsch's most successful film due to his ability to turn a period-piece into an enchanting story about the human condition.
As Empress of the Fantasists, if you will, Jane Goldman's prequel to Game of Thrones promises to be far less straightforward, way messier, and much more fun -- even without the dragons.
With The Dead Don't Die, Jim Jarmusch deliberately deprives his latest film of the propulsive terrors innate to most zombie films, instead using the genre to matter-of-factly rhapsodize about consumer culture and the inevitability of the apocalypse.
In both The Avengers: Endgame and Game of Thrones, the key conflicts are not between good and evil, as one might think, but between the beginnings and endings of their stories.
With his second collection of short stories, Exhalation, master of existential science fiction Ted Chiang explores AI, time travel, and alternate realities with the studious eye of an anthropologist.
The title suggests that this would be a schlocky B movie with a '70s-style grindhouse aesthetic, but The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then The Bigfoot is, in fact, a finely crafted and emotionally charged drama about ageing, loneliness, and lost love.
Made in Abyss: Journey's Dawn compresses the first eight episodes of the series into a two-hour film.
Kingdoms of Amalur takes all of the principles of videogames – agency, choice, exploration, conflict – and turns them into an expansive experience of testing the conventions, and even the technical framework, of videogame fiction itself.
Starring Rebel Wilson, the half rom-com, half satire Isn't It Romantic has a hypocritical message, but its self-mocking charms work well.
Disturbing pedophilia and time-consuming repetition drag down Haruki Murakami's Killing Commendatore.
Flashy directors Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor attempted to make Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance more exciting than its predecessor, but their style sapped the energy that fueled the flame.
For Heidegger, "challenge" is a pejorative verb. But for Terrence Malick, "challenge" is a progressive verb. Malick's cinema is challenging, and we need that challenge.
Takashi Doscher reflects on Still's emergence from a personal lifetime commitment and whether time transforms the meaning of our social constructs and relationships.
Arwen Curry's documentary, Worlds of Ursula K. Le Guin, shows how, in Le Guin's writings, fantasy can be viewed as both a different way of seeing and understanding the past, and a new way of seeing the present -- and what the future could be.
Sergey and Marina Dyachenko's Vita Nostra is a mysterious Ukrainian sci-fi / fantasy / fairy tale whose unsettling questions will linger.
Even with few truly catchy numbers and a cumbersome plot, Mary Poppins Returns has enough bright-eyed optimism to almost escape the shadow of the toe-tapping original.
Neoliberalism offers the illusion of choice. The triumph of geek culture is an illusion of triumph; it's just another way to be bought—and to like it. A critique of A.D. Jameson's I Find Your Lack of Faith Disturbing.
There's a rotten core at the center of Lubitsch's Heaven Can Wait. No matter how engaging I find Haskell and Sariss's enchantment with the film, I cannot accede to their critical adulation of it and of Henry.
Kenneth Branagh's Thor (2011) took the largely Earth-based, sci-fi genre into the realm of supernatural space fantasy, leading the way for a wider array of comic book superhero films.
Director Gareth Evans reflects on wanting to once again flex the muscle of making a horror film after his unintentional hiatus from making a film.
Powell and Pressburger's witty wartime classic about a British airman who goes to court in heaven to appeal his death is a celebration of the human spirit that separates romanticism from sentimentality.
Gender is fluid, children are murdered, mothers are monsters, and nobody is safe on the distant planet of Caritas, where humans have settled and the governing female AI system is insane.
It's not enough to describe Dead Man as simply an anti-western; it's an iconoclastic deconstruction of late 19th Century American values and mores, many of which remain unabated more than a century later.
Kill the clichés. Rebel artfully. Writer-director-musician Boots Riley talks with Cynthia Fuchs about empowering the power of Art.
We got our ticket to see a zany free-for-all of monster hunting and fascist assassinating. Set aside your expectations aside, however, for a pleasant surprise.
Dreams tell stories, but movies are so much more than just dreams. Brühlmann discusses her coming-of-age feature debut, Blue My Mind.