James White: Burden, Childishness, Disease, and Love Everlasting

James White. 2015. Directed & Written by Josh Mond. Starring Christopher Abbott, Cynthia Nixon, Scott Mescudi, Ron Livingston, Makenzie Leigh, David Call, David Cale, Benjamin Brass, Lori Burch, Scott Cohen, Adriana DeGirolami, Jeanette Dilone, David Harris, Rosemary Howard, & Sue Jean Kim. BorderLine Films/Relic Pictures. Rated R. 85 minutes. Drama ★★★★ Producer Josh Mond hasContinue reading “James White: Burden, Childishness, Disease, and Love Everlasting”

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The Redemptive Horror of Son of Saul

Son of Saul. 2015. Directed by László Nemes. Screenplay by Nemes & Clara Royer. Starring Géza Röhrig, Levente Molnár, Urs Rechn, Todd Charmont, Sándor Zsótér, Uwe Lauer, Christian Harting, Amitai Kedar, & Kamil Dobrowolski. Laokoon Filmgroup/Hungarian National Film Fund. Rated 14A. 107 minutes. Drama/Thriller/War ★★★★★  Stories of the Holocaust and WWII are a dime a dozen. Some of themContinue reading “The Redemptive Horror of Son of Saul”

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The Limits of Friendship: Raw Realism in NASTY BABY

A gay couple & their close friend decide on having a baby together. All their plans are derailed when a momentary act of frustration boils over into something unimaginably worse.

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Pan’s Labyrinth and the Dark Fantasy of Guillermo del Toro

Pan’s Labyrinth. 2006. Directed & Written by Guillermo del Toro. Starring Ivana Baquero, Sergi López, Maribel Verdú, Doug Jones, Ariadna Gil, Álex Angulo, Manolo Solo, César Vea, and Roger Casamajor. Estudios Picasso/Tequila Gang/Esperanto Filmoj/Sententia Entertainment/Telecinco/OMM. Rated 14A. 118 minutes. Drama/Fantasy/War ★★★★★ Guillermo del Toro has one of the most consistently fascinating minds in film today. Ever since I sawContinue reading “Pan’s Labyrinth and the Dark Fantasy of Guillermo del Toro”

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Cooties: It’s Okay to Kill the Children

Cooties. 2015. Directed by Jonathan Milott & Cary Murnion. Screenplay by Leigh Whannell & Ian Brennan. Starring Elijah Wood, Rainn Wilson, Alison Pill, Jack McBrayer, Leigh Whannell, Nasim Pedrad, Ian Brennan, Jorge Garcia, Cooper Roth, Miles Elliot, Morgan Lily, Sunny May Allison, and Armani Jackson. Glacier Films/SpectreVision. Rated R. 88 minutes. Action/Comedy/Horror ★★★★ Officially outContinue reading “Cooties: It’s Okay to Kill the Children”

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Beauty in the Breakdown: Alex Ross Perry’s Perfectly Uncomfortable Queen of Earth

Queen of Earth. 2015. Directed & Written by Alex Ross Perry. Starring Elisabeth Moss, Katherine Waterston, Patrick Fugit, Kentucker Audley, Keith Poulson, and Kate Lyn Sheil. Washington Square Films. Unrated. 90 minutes. Drama/Thriller ★★★★★ Opening with such a tightly framed shot of Elisabeth Moss’ Catherine, Alex Ross Perry completely submerges us immediately into her world.Continue reading “Beauty in the Breakdown: Alex Ross Perry’s Perfectly Uncomfortable Queen of Earth”

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WHIPLASH: Two Jazz-Hands Up

Whiplash. 2014. Directed & Written by Damien Chazelle. Starring Miles Teller, J.K Simmons, and Paul Reiser. Blumhouse Productions. Rated 14A. 107 minutes. Drama/Music ★★★★★I think one of the most incredible things about Whiplash is the fact it captures the blood, sweat, and tears which go into the making of a true musician so accurately thatContinue reading “WHIPLASH: Two Jazz-Hands Up”

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Cold Prey III is the Birth of Fear

Fritt Vilt III (English title: Cold Prey 3). 2010. Dir. Mikkel Braenne Sandemose. Screenplay by Peder Fuglerud & Lars Gudmestad; story by Martin Sundland. Starring Ida Marie Bakkerud, Kim S. Falck-Jørgensen, Pål Stokka, Arthur Berning, Sturla Rui, Terje Ranes, and Nils Johnson. T2 Entertainment. Not Rated. 95 minutes. Horror ★★★★ I’m in the the tiny little column of peopleContinue reading “Cold Prey III is the Birth of Fear”

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Fury: The Festering Reality of War

Fury. 2014.  Directed & Written by David Ayer. Starring Brad Pitt, Shia LaBeouf, Logan Lerman, Michael Peňa, Jon Bernthal, and Jim Parrack. Columbia Pictures. 134 min. Rated R. Action/Drama/War ★★★★★ David Ayer’s new thriller Fury is by far one of the most brutal and honest films set during the Second World War ever made. Not only doesContinue reading “Fury: The Festering Reality of War”

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The Raid 2: Because Somehow It Gets Better

The Raid 2: Berandal. 2014. Directed & Written by Gareth Evans. Starring Iko Uwais, Arifin Putra, Yayan Ruhian, Oka Antara, Tio Pakusodewo, Alex Abbad, Julie Estelle, Ryuhei Matsuda, Kenichi Endo, and Kazuki Kitamura. Entertainment One Films Canada. Rated 18A. 150 minutes. Action/Crime/Thriller ★★★★★ (Film) ★★★★★ (Blu ray release) Even the trailer just absolutely melts myContinue reading “The Raid 2: Because Somehow It Gets Better”

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13 Sins: Economy & Morality

13 Sins. 2014. Dir. Daniel Stamm. Screenplay by David Birke & Stamm; based on the original source material 13: Game of Death by Chookiat Sakveerakul & Eakasit Thairatana. Starring Mark Webber, Devon Graye, Tom Bower, Rutina Wesley, Ron Perlman, and Pruitt Taylor Vince. Entertainment One. Rated R. 93 minutes. Horror/Thriller ★★★★ The beginning of 13Continue reading “13 Sins: Economy & Morality”

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Psycho: Alfred Hitchcock & the Birth of the Slasher

Psycho. 1960. Dir.  Alfred Hitchcock. Written by Joseph Stefano; based on the novel by Robert Bloch. Starring Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles, John Gavin, Martin Balsam, and John McIntire. Universal Studios Home Entertainment. Rated PG. 109 minutes. Horror/Mystery/Thriller ★★★★★ (Film) ★★★★★ (Blu ray release) For my review of the sequel, Psycho II, click here. ForContinue reading “Psycho: Alfred Hitchcock & the Birth of the Slasher”

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