REVIEW: The Nightmare Before Christmas [1993]

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“Curiosity killed the cat, you know” Born from a poem written in the early 80s while Tim Burton was still working as a Disney animator, The Nightmare Before Christmas was a project the auteur wasn’t going to let lay dormant anymore. After finding success with his signature style in the likes of Beetlejuice and Batman, [...]

REVIEW: What’s Up Lovely [2010]

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“I don’t deal in fairy tales” We are all running from something. Love, work, life—our hopes and aspirations lie forever outside our reach while we push forward without going anywhere. For Luci (Jenn Dees), her escape from the clutches of her innermost fears and memories lies in the malaise of an insomniac’s evening sleepwalks through [...]

Curiosity is a moral virtue … Babel’s Amos Oz

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To Amos Oz—the first speaker of the 2011/12 season of Just Buffalo Literary Center’s Babel—he is just a postman scrawling notes onto the letters of the dead. The Israeli novelist has written many books, but it is his personal history in A Tale of Love and Darkness that has won over hearts and minds the [...]

REVIEW: Ghostbusters II [1989]

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“Death is but a door. Time is but a window. I’ll be back.” After its release in 1984, Ghostbusters became a national phenomenon. Giving the world a witty comedy inside a science fiction narrative was unique and the finished film found a way to transcend age by appealing to all. As a result, the studio [...]

Posterized Propaganda November 2011: Too Many Characters!

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“Don’t Judge a Book by Its Cover” is a proverb whose simple existence proves the fact impressionable souls will do so without fail. This monthly column focuses on the film industry’s willingness to capitalize on this truth, releasing one-sheets to serve as not representations of what audiences are to expect, but as propaganda to fill [...]

REVIEW: The Ides of March [2011]

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“My name is Molly” To someone with limited interest and knowledge in politics like me, it seems an intriguing choice for a self-described political liberal who backed Barack Obama on his presidential campaign like George Clooney to tackle the subject matter of Beau Willimon’s play Farragut North. Based in part on the 2004 Democratic primary [...]

REVIEW: Puss in Boots [2011]

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“We don’t have any baby muffins” Before Shrek left his swamp to spawn a four-feature franchise I sadly had no real interest in continuing past the original, a Latino kitty cat roamed the lands of Far Far Away. Without a home once San Ricardo turned its back after the public bank was robbed with him [...]

REVIEW: Ghostbusters [1984]

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“Back off man. I’m a scientist.” With all the recent talk about a third installment/reboot of the franchise, it’s not hard to forget how timeless the original Ghostbusters actually is. Rumors swirl and Bill Murray’s soundbytes mislead almost monthly now, but all you need to revisit the comical science fiction stylings of a paranormal-infused New [...]

REVIEW: Essential Killing [2010]

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“Wrong way. Turn left for main route, then turn right.” Being from Buffalo generally has a way of making people forgive Renaissance man Vincent Gallo’s abrasive nature and constant ability to put his foot firmly in mouth. His feature length works—Buffalo ‘66 and The Brown Bunny—are generally seen as love it/hate it types and his [...]

VIFF11 REVIEW: Like Crazy [2011]

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“To you who make me see things I could never see alone” How much is one summer of euphoric love worth? To Jacob (Anton Yelchin) and Anna (Felicity Jones)—the world. Courted through a shy, sweet process of stolen looks and a mix of intellectual and sexual longing, these two college students begin a whirlwind affair [...]

VIFF11 REVIEW: Inni [2011]

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“We’re a very serious heavy metal band—and we worship the devil” If you go into Inni thinking you’ll receive Heima Part 2, you either be sadly disappointed or extremely grateful because it is anything but. Rather than show us Sigur Rós’ atmospherically sumptuous music against the gorgeous expanse of their Icelandic homeland, director Vincent Moriset [...]