Category: New Releases

Just Mercy: Truth in the final hours

A star-studded, politically relevant courtroom drama based on a true story released right in the middle of awards season is typically the kind of film Oscar voters and general audiences eat up. So why is no one going to see “Just Mercy,” the latest film from indie darling director Destin Daniel Cretton starring a pair of Academy Award winners and led by “Black Panther” … Read More Just Mercy: Truth in the final hours

1917: War close at hand

You’ll never see Roger Deakins on screen, but he’s in every frame of director Sam Mendes’ new war epic “1917,” from the opening frames bathed across a sea of endless green grass until the final cut to black before the credits. World-renowned as a master craftsman in his art, the British-born Deakins achieves his magnum opus with “1917” – a visual spectacle combining his … Read More 1917: War close at hand

Uncut Gems: Loving the uncomfortable

Tense situations often provide for the best drama and leave bystanders watching things unfolding on the sidelines captivated in awe. It’s a compulsion that pulls us to slow down and gawk at accidents and train-wrecks; the very thing that allows a television program like “The Jerry Springer Show” to exist. Cinematically, that uncomfortable draw that keeps audiences on the edge of their seats can … Read More Uncut Gems: Loving the uncomfortable

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Little Women: Frantic urgency in domestic life

Another period drama remake of an oft-told story isn’t what cinema needs these days. There’s far too little originality in filmmaking to warrant updated versions of a book that already has six feature film adaptations. “Little Women” is the exception. From the opening moments where writer/director Greta Gerwig begins at the end, it’s readily apparent that Louisa May Alcott’s classic coming-of-age novel about four … Read More Little Women: Frantic urgency in domestic life

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The Rise of Skywalker: No real end to never-ending saga

Millions upon millions of dollars have been poured into a series of Flash Gordon-esque movies about the unseen “Force” around us for the better part of a half-century. Many millions more have been poured into the bank accounts of Disney execs by casual and ardent fans of the acclaimed “Star Wars” franchise that reached its summation this weekend with director JJ Abrams’ second turn … Read More The Rise of Skywalker: No real end to never-ending saga

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Richard Jewell: The measure of a man

The parallels are far too clear and distinct, so it’s best to just get them out of the way. “Richard Jewell,” the latest docudrama from director Clint Eastwood, is a striking indictment of law enforcement officials too quick to judge and trigger-happy media outlets trying to scoop each other before confirming all the facts. In very unsubtle terms, “Jewell” is a microcosm defense of … Read More Richard Jewell: The measure of a man

Marriage Story: Finding the beginning in the end

We’ve been told there’s two sides to every story. Often it feels as if it’s as simple as the truth and then anything other than the truth. But what happens when both sides of the story are true but conflict, or worse yet, outright contradict one another? Writer/director Noah Baumbach explores this complex duality through the structure of a fractured relationship in his latest … Read More Marriage Story: Finding the beginning in the end

A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood: The measure of a man

What is the impact that one person can have on another? How is that one life can intensely, irreversibly be altered by coming into contact with someone? It’s a common theme in modern cinema, but rarely told as simply and unapologetically in a PG-rated film as director Marielle Heller’s latest film. “A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood” is not a biopic. It’s a wonderfully … Read More A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood: The measure of a man

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The Report: Setting the record straight

There’s a brief moment in “The Report,” a new docudrama about the U.S. Senate investigation into prisoner torture, that name drops its cinematic cousin, the Oscar-nominated 2012 drama about the manhunt for Osama Bin Laden, “Zero Dark Thirty.” “The Report” goes out of its way to make this reference, accusing that film of furthering the idea that a tortured prisoner gave up actionable intelligence … Read More The Report: Setting the record straight

The Irishman: Legacy of a cinematic Don

At the end of the day, what’s it all about? It’s a question that continuously lingers under the surface of celebrated auteur Martin Scorsese’s latest feature, a melancholy retrospective that acts almost like a career summation filled with riddles of bullets and dynamically vulgar dialogue. For the premier filmmaker in the gangster genre, Scorsese’s “The Irishman” definitively closes the book on how crime dramas … Read More The Irishman: Legacy of a cinematic Don

Jojo Rabbit: A funny thing about Adolf Hitler

Comedy is the ultimate playground for escapism, for letting the worries and cares of daily life fade away in order to decompress and unwind. The best comedies, though, usually have unexpectedly a little bit more to say on their minds than first glance might suggest. There’s a hysterical new comedy hitting theaters this fall that combines a stellar, side-splitting screenplay and award-worthy performances. It’s … Read More Jojo Rabbit: A funny thing about Adolf Hitler

Parasite: South Korean masterpiece one of decade’s best films

Spoiler alert: The best film of 2019 doesn’t star Leonardo DiCaprio and isn’t directed by Martin Scorsese. Average American audiences probably haven’t heard of filmmaker Bong Joon Ho or his frequent collaborator Kang-ho Song, but their latest feature together is the best South Korean film of all time and a top five movie of the last decade by any measure. “Parasite,” a haunting and … Read More Parasite: South Korean masterpiece one of decade’s best films