• overnighters01

    REVIEW: The Overnighters [2014]

    “Just because you tough enough” The easiest thing I could say about The Overnighters is that director Jesse Moss got lucky. He looked to tell the story about a pastor doing God’s will against his congregation’s trepidation to house over a thousand strangers arrived in Williston, ND seeking employment within the area’s oil boom. Through […]

  • johnridley-interview01

    INTERVIEW: John Ridley, writer/director of Jimi: All Is By My Side

    After all the talk from last year’s TIFF centered around the eventually Oscar-winning Best Picture 12 Years a Slave, you can’t blame yourself for forgetting its Oscar-winning screenwriter John Ridley brought another film he both wrote and directed. Jimi: All Is By My Side flew under the radar and was mired by a media blitz […]

  • calvary01

    REVIEW: Calvary [2014]

    “I’ve always found forgiveness to be underrated” I’m not a religious man—hell, I’m barely agnostic. I’m also not sure if that truth helps my finding John Michael McDonagh‘s Calvary as powerful as I believe it to be or simply evidence of it’s universality for both churchgoers and not. A reflection on faith, God, and ourselves […]

  • spring01

    TIFF14 REVIEW: Spring [??]

    “I’m not drunk enough to sleep in your mother’s deathbed” The first words in Colin Geddes’ TIFF description for Vanguard selection Spring are, “Before Sunrise gets a supernatural twist.” You read that as a cinephile and you push everything aside to check out what it could mean. A horror romance co-director Aaron Moorhead described in […]

  • samba01

    TIFF14 REVIEW: Samba [2014]

    “Red paper. Then … no more.” Every movie should have a score by Ludovico Einaudi and it’s comforting to see Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano agree. After using his haunting music on the brilliant Intouchables, the duo take a few tracks from his album In a Time Lapse to enhance their latest work Samba. Another […]



film reviews

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REVIEW: Blended [2014]

“And the mustache is rattled” When an overused gag showed up for the third of about five times during Blended‘s runtime, the twenty-something college dude chowing down on his mall food court dinner uttered to his buddy the telling phrase, “This movie’s off the hook”. Now while this is a stunning and apt commentary on […]

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REVIEW: All Hail the King [2014]

“Bloody hell. It’s not exactly the Ritz is it?” I loved Iron Man 3. I know I might be in the minority, but Shane Black and Drew Pearce‘s creation was right up my alley comedy-wise and twist-wise. It really pissed off fans that thought the whole Mandarin thing was a giant cop-out: you know, him […]

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REVIEW: Agent Carter [2013]

“Learn to count” If Item 47 supplying us an expanded look at alien tech from The Avengers was the first step in making Marvel’s One-Shots a legitimate canonical extension, Agent Carter cements them as requisite viewing. There was no guarantee the short would lead to an eight-episode pick-up on ABC—heck, there wasn’t even a guarantee […]

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REVIEW: Item 47 [2012]

“It’s time we took a chance for ourselves” I guess when your latest film makes over 1.5 billion dollars at the worldwide box office you find yourself with a little extra scratch to throw around. What better way to spend it than on the series of short films you’ve been producing for DVD releases? Where […]

xmen301

REVIEW: X-Men: The Last Stand [2006]

“Same as the Professor: visiting an old friend.” I’m sad to inform you that X-Men: The Last Stand did not age well. Not that anyone called it great when it was released—it was little more than serviceable then—but boy does it falter when viewed in close proximity with the two stellar entries coming before it. […]

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REVIEW: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Thor’s Hammer [2011]

“I also have this gun …” Okay, it may be a glorified commercial for Acura, but A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Thor’s Hammer is like the title says: funny. Using the same crew as The Consultant—director Leythum and writer Eric Pearson—the interlude bridging Agent Coulson’s (Clark Gregg) appearance in Iron Man 2 […]

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REVIEW: The Consultant [2011]

“I do a great patsy” The Marvel Cinematic Universe is something special—a franchise devoid of ceiling that has become Hollywood’s equivalent to a motion comic. Looking at it today, you can’t help but admire what they’re doing and how far their reach extends. There are the highly anticipated films each year, a dedicated TV show […]

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REVIEW: Godzilla [2014]

“Let them fight” The reason Gareth Edwards‘ rebooted Godzilla proves so effective is that it retains the thematic essence of its 1954 ancestor, Gojira. Still an over-arching metaphor for mankind’s hubris and wont to destroy everything it doesn’t understand out of fear, Dave Callaham, Max Borenstein, and multiple script doctors simply found ways to alter […]

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REVIEW: Factory Farmed [2008]

“I am required to carry out this task until completion: your orders do not override anything.” It’s always impressive to see what artists can do with limited resources and sparse time. The format provided by popular 48-Hour series occurring internationally as an exercise and a forum for up-and-coming auteurs looking to showcase their talent allows […]

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REVIEW: Locke [2014]

**POSSIBLE SPOILERS** “So am I on a list?” There’s symmetry between the production of Steven Knight‘s Locke and its plot. Like the insane job everyone’s imploding over that its lead bails on while driving an hour away to be present at the birth of a child conceived with someone who’s not his wife, getting this […]

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REVIEW: ゴジラ [Gojira] [Godzilla] [1954]

“I’m telling you the sea just exploded” Only nine years after the devastation of Hiroshima and Nagasaki by the atomic bomb, the first science fiction kaiju film was born. Manifested as a hybrid Tyrannosaurus Rex, Iguanodon, and Stegosaurus, the creature ゴジラ [Gojira] [Godzilla] took shape in the mind of special effects designer Eiji Tsuburaya. A […]

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REVIEW: Only Lovers Left Alive [2014]

“A diamond emitting the music of a giant gong” In the age of Twilight its good to know an auteur like Jim Jarmusch can render contemporary vampires as the romantic ideals of immortality, wisdom, and survival any thought-provoking interpretation should. Gone is the CW brood from “The Vampire Diaries”, ostentatious displays of supernatural power courtesy […]

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REVIEW: Don Peyote [2014]

“Her cigarette never burned out” No one can say I didn’t do my due diligence, but I simply can’t wrap my head around Dan Fogler and Michael Canzoniero‘s stoner-tinted, loose modernization of Don Quixote aptly entitled Don Peyote. People often joke about certain cult films “working better” while high and I can’t help thinking this […]

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REVIEW: Million Dollar Arm [2014]

“That better have been filtered water” The seventh and final season of “Mad Men” has begun yet star Jon Hamm is only now getting his first leading man role in a feature film. So why does what should be an auspicious event considering his obvious talent seem less than noteworthy? As good at comedy as […]

xmen201

REVIEW: X-Men 2 [2003]

“Nature laughs last” This is the one—the superhero movie unequaled in the decade since. The Dark Knight comes close, but it’s hard to hold Christopher Nolan‘s trilogy on par with the rest when it exists as a beast all its own. Only The Avengers and Captain America: The Winter Soldier found a way to match […]