• conjuring201

    REVIEW: The Conjuring 2 [2016]

    “This is the closest to Hell I ever want to go” When a formula succeeds as well as that of James Wan‘s The Conjuring and its real life subjects have as extensive a Rolodex of haunting investigations as Ed and Lorraine Warren, the prospect of a sequel arrives as both inevitability and an initial pause. […]

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    REVIEW: Holy Hell [2016]

    “Maybe it’s worth it” Every story containing religious or spiritual content inherently brings with it supporters and detractors beholden to personal agendas either from experience or unwavering positions of faith. It’s difficult subject matter to truly expose objectively because religion and spirituality are by definition subjective when compared against an infinite number of other similar […]

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    REVIEW: Midnight Special [2016]

    “Where do you belong?” Is young Alton Meyer (Jaeden Lieberher) the savior of the human race, born to unsuspecting parents inside a cult known as The Ranch in order to bring them salvation? Is he somehow an expert hacker infiltrating the NSA’s foolproof satellite transmissions courtesy of an uncanny technokinetic power no one can explain? […]

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    REVIEW: Der Himmel über Berlin [Wings of Desire] [1987]

    “Why am I me, and why not you?” What does it mean to be human? This is the question the Angel Damiel (Bruno Ganz) wonders from his eternal perch on high surveying, subtly steering, and always listening. He sees humanity’s joy and laughter, jealous of their ability to live, feel, and touch. Even amongst the […]

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    REVIEW: Paris, Texas [1984]

    “Don’t go yet” The first word my mind conjured after watching Wim Wenders‘ Paris, Texas was honesty. It’s delivered from lead Harry Dean Stanton all the way down to Robby Müller‘s gorgeous cinematography of untouched Mojave Desert isolation and graffiti-filled urban concrete. Nothing appears inauthentic and that’s not an easy accomplishment when you think about […]



film reviews

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BNFF12 REVIEW: Caught [2011]

“I don’t cheat” Using baseball as the metaphor to an underdog life of disrespect, the short film Caught utilizes a recreation league’s championship game as the release of starting catcher Hannah’s (Lori Martini) naïve reliance on her family for a love they’ll never share. Trash-talking her brother Robbie (Daniel Braver)—stuck in a leg brace and […]

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BNFF12 REVIEW: Fractured Minds [2011]

“Sometimes I want to smash your face into a window” The horror genre has been used to speak on political matters, mask psychological traumas, signify an internal struggle through manifested pain, and to just plain scare audiences with a healthy portion of blood and guts. Frank Battiston‘s Fractured Minds wants to feed into the more […]

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REVIEW: Clash of the Titans [2010]

“They declared war. War on the Gods.” Going from Luc Besson‘s go-to director to becoming a Hollywood action regular, you can’t blame Louis Leterrier for wanting to tackle the big budget remake of Clash of the Titans. With a predecessor remembered more for its Ray Harryhausen creatures than any lasting artistic quality—I still can’t believe […]

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BNFF12 REVIEW: Beware Pickpocket [2010]

“How did you get it?” We all strive to be pure, to be worthy of those we love. Oftentimes, however, such illusions of grandeur are nothing more than a façade to hide who we really are. Even in dream the titular petty thief (David Amito) of Beware Pickpocket sees himself as the bloodied punching bag […]

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REVIEW: The Hunger Games [2012]

“Thank you for your consideration” Underdogs thrive on the ability to retain hope in a world forever shoving them into a corner without the reality of upward mobility or a true chance at overall social change. When they start to believe their numbers can actually overcome that adversity, however, the ruling class must take notice […]

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BNFF12 REVIEW: Kaziah the Goat Woman [2010]

“Maybe because I picked up the brush I can leave a little love behind” Up in Manti, Utah lives a woman for which the word eccentric doesn’t quite do justice. Emotional, spiritual, joyful, and without regret, Kaziah Hancock has overcome a hard life to become an American treasure cherished by those unfortunate families dealt the […]

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BNFF12 REVIEW: Aloneliness [2011]

“I’m at the front door” It’s hard to believe that Sid Bodalia‘s Aloneliness is a student film. After living in New Jersey and eventually attending the Maryland Institute College of Art for degrees in design and painting, the young artist moved all the way to Mumbai, India in order to pursue a career in filmmaking […]

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BNFF12 REVIEW: Dot Got Shot [2011]

“Stop walking me home” Making its rounds through underground film festivals, Honey Lauren‘s Dot Got Shot brings a relevant psychological punch with its ultra low-budget aesthetic. The acting is not the greatest and the cinematography choices may be a bit too artsy at times, but the story of Dot—a decorated policewoman haunted by the nightmares […]

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BNFF12 REVIEW: Tarantula Moonrocket [2011]

“Break a paparazzo’s camera; smash up a hotel room” Before he moved to Los Angeles to live the dream, I had the pleasure of seeing Jack Hunter perform the Richard Burton role in a local Buffalo production of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? His turn contained a perfect amount of gravitas while the intimate setting […]

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BNFF12 REVIEW: Departures [2011]

“Ne’ wick?” It’s the kind of story you hear about often—spouses separated by continents in order to work towards making a better life for their family. A breadwinner wins the opportunity for immigration to the United States while his/her second half must remain home for years before the chance for reunion presents itself. But whether […]

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BNFF12 REVIEW: YERT: Your Environmental Road Trip [2011]

“We’re driving the bed, right?” With a goofy acronym for a name—YERT: Your Environmental Road Trip—and a tagline promising to be ‘An Environmental Documentary That’s NOT Depressing!’, you can imagine a lot of eye-rolling and trepidation when sitting down to see just how true a statement that marketing line could be. But then you meet […]

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BNFF12 REVIEW: Dan Zimmerman: Musician, Painter, Cosmic Patriot [2009]

“The phrase that each of us is unique and irreplaceable is so powerful” A man caught between the spiritual world of his faith and the material one of his craft, Dan Zimmerman has lofty ideals to support his work and life. In Thomas Florek‘s short documentary Dan Zimmerman: Musician, Painter, Cosmic Patriot, we experience the […]

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BNFF12 REVIEW: The Pact [2011]

“You officially have a stalker—ME!” It’s the kind of gentlemen’s agreement you can see yourself making in the heat of a drunken bout with self-pity: swear off the opposite sex for a year in order to cleanse your soul of the one who left. For brothers Grant (Neil Brookshire) and Ancel Fox (Aaron Toronto) it’s […]

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BNFF12 REVIEW: 2 Kings [2011]

“You Left Me” After reading the letter that came with my screener for Jon Alex‘s 2 Kings, I was excited to see what magic was wrought by this young creative who wrote, directed, starred, and did everything but write the song. The praise was high and the name-dropping intriguing—both Norman Mailer and James Cromwell made […]

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REVIEW: My Week with Marilyn [2011]

“Let’s say I sleep in nothing but Yardley’s Lavender” After the all awards season hoopla, I guess I expected more from My Week with Marilyn. My favorite kind of bio pic—depicting a finite amount of time in a famous person’s life rather then the full duration—it’s interesting that I find it closest in alignment to […]