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Jason Reitman's Tabloid Journalism Film About Gary Hart, 'The Front Runner' Is Altman Lite

Funny and thoughtful but not sharp enough, Jason Reitman's satire about Gary Hart's tabloid downfall aims for controlled chaos but settles for conventional finger-wagging.

Recent
Reviews

I Love You, Man

I Love You, Man is a buddy flick worked out as a chick flick, complete with makeovers, bonding montages, a break-up and make-up.

Reviews

New in Town

New in Town subjects Lucy (Renée Zellweger) to a series of life-changing revelations, most stemming from a reductive big city/small town dichotomy.

Renee Scolaro Mora
Reviews

The Closer: Season Four Return

The fourth season return of The Closer finds fresh ways to mine the tensions between work and private life endured by LAPD Deputy Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson (Kyra Sedgwick).

Leigh H. Edwards
Film

The New Classics - The 30 Best Films of 2008

Unlike previous years, where classics came crawling out of the celluloid woodwork with regular reckless abandon, 2008 was more calm… and considered. That's not to say that choosing 30 top titles was hard. The difficulty in placing them in some manner of rank order suggests the actual depth of quality involved.

Film

Iconic - The Top 20 Male Performances of 2008

Like the gladiators of old, 2008 resembles a battle of formidable acting gods, especially when looking over the 20 choices presented below. Indeed, if anything, choosing a winner requires more of a leap of faith than any amount of critical skill - they all were that good.

Reviews

Burn After Reading

Ozzie (John Malkovich) embodies the problem of the CIA, of the "intelligence community," which is that it reacts to data, then fashions a story about it to comport with the reaction.

Film

Talk, Talk, Talk: September 2008

From wars both past and present to a number of nail-biting thrillers, September is sizing up as a potentially profitable one.

Television

The Closer

In The Closer, Kyra Sedgwick's Brenda Johnson often walks a fine line between complex and irritating.

Leigh H. Edwards
Reviews

The Closer: The Complete Third Season

Johnson is a new breed of television heroine: smart, driven, successful and about three-eighths of an inch away from unlikeable.

Jennifer Kelly
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The Return of the Popcorn Circus: May 2008

In the first act of this four-part production, Tinsel Town decides to do some unbelievable front loading. Will there be room for independent offerings, or former HBO carnal comedy divas? Who knows? Without a doubt, it's an interesting way to start the season.

Reviews

Juno

Teens have their precious catchphrases and secret languages, but they're nervous, fumbling creatures. They don’t come equipped with Chaucer-like witticisms, or razor-sharp retorts.

Jarrett Berman
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A Gallery of Good Works: The Best Films of 2007

From Julian Schnabel's artsy The Diving Bell and the Butterfly to the legendary Coen Brothers splendid adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's No Country for Old Men, PopMatters counts down the 30 best films of 2007.

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Performance Art: The Best Acting of 2007 - Female

From the most sweetly nuanced performance of Jennifer Jason Leigh's career to Cate Blanchett's revelatory portrayal of Bob Dylan in I'm Not There, the women of 2007 were stellar.

Reviews

Juno

A movie about a 16-year-old girl's unplanned pregnancy, Juno manages to avoid any significant emotional depths, despite its plainly complex subject.

Daynah Burnett
Film

It Felt Fluid and Rhythmic: An Interview with Diablo Cody and Ellen Page

The story in Juno is unpredictable and touching. But Cody's dialogue is exceptional, a flurry of hip, witty words that snap and dissipate before you can accuse them of being too stylized.

Tricia Olszewski
Reviews

The Closer - The Complete Second Season

Deputy Police Chief Brenda Lee Johnson cracks cases because she knows what makes cracked people tick.

Leigh H. Edwards
Television

The Closer

At the office this season, Brenda faces ongoing budget issues that threaten to break up the team she spent two TNT seasons convincing they were a team.

Reviews

oFirst Snow (2006)

Any movie that finds a place for the remarkable Jackie Burroughs begins with bonus points.

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Net-Works: The Best TV of 2006

You won't have to look far along your television dial to discover the Top TV picks from PopMatters staff. From 20 upward, each entry represents the boob tube at its best.

Reviews

Thank You for Smoking (2005)

Naylor doesn't need a "human" face; we love him the minute he offers us a light.

Tiffany White
Film

Thank You for Smoking (2005)

The ironies of Thank You for Smoking are not subtle.

Cynthia Fuchs
Reviews

The Closer

The premiere of The Closer was a very good moment for women who watch women on the small screen.

Lesley Smith
Film

Off the Map (2003)

The fact that they're sharing such tragedies while Richard Nixon is resigning suggests a certain harmony of the universe.

Cynthia Fuchs
Reviews

Spider-Man 2 (2004)

Uncomfortable with his abilities (they have come on him like a virus), Peter repeatedly returns to his central question: Who am I?"

Cynthia Fuchs
Reviews

The Ladykillers (2004)

Pious, earnest, and broadly drawn, Marva is the first black character in a Coen brothers movie to occupy center stage.

Cynthia Fuchs
Reviews

Hidalgo (2004)

'Being out in the middle of the Arabian desert,' says Mortensen, 'you could easily imagine what it must have been like.'"

Cynthia Fuchs
Reviews

Spider-Man 2 (2004)

Though Spider-Man plainly enjoys saving kids from danger and even instructing them ('Hey you guys! No playing in the street'), he also longs for a more regular, selfish life.

Cynthia Fuchs
Reviews

Spider-Man: Deluxe Edition (2003)

On screen, Spider-Man necessarily becomes more literal, less imaginative.

Cynthia Fuchs
Film

The Ladykillers (2004)

Pious, earnest, and broadly drawn, Marva is the first black character in a Coen brothers movie to occupy center stage. For a minute, anyway.

Cynthia Fuchs
Film

Hidalgo (2004)

Hidalgo is the story of this horse and his man.

Cynthia Fuchs
Reviews

Oz

No other fiction show has offered such a frighteningly realistic look inside our nation's prisons or so openly debated their moral and social obligations.

Michael Abernethy
Reviews

Spider-Man (2002)

Spider-Man doesn't get caught up in its own snazzy special effects.

Todd R. Ramlow

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