Film Reviews

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  • Liberals get a romance for the ages in Michelle and Barack with Richard Tanne's directorial debut, Southside With You, which recounts the First Couple's first date in the manner of a Before Sunset that's been cleaned up and sent to Sunday...

  • The attempt to reconcile the personal with the political has been the great theme of Nanni Moretti's cinema, as it was for many of the legendary Italian directors before him. In Mia Madre, it finds one of its more vivid examinations. The...

  • Barbara Kopple's Miss Sharon Jones! tells the kind of true story that makes you want to kick creation itself square in the crotch. Here's that firecracker soul singer, nearing her 60s, her boogie still majestic, her band still a tight retro...

  • In contemporary film, it’s typical for an African-American character to be the sole person of color in the story, only existing to reveal hidden racism or make white people uncomfortable with themselves. Black characters rarely get to talk to...

  • Natalie Portman proves herself a filmmaker of intelligence, ambition and inventiveness in her debut as a director and writer — just not one who is always certain as a storyteller. A Tale of Love and Darkness adapts, with a passionate somberness,...

  • Don’t let the uptick in big-cast movies fool you: Ensemble films are difficult to make. When a script gets a projected budget in creative development, “ensemble” adds dollar signs and story challenges. Each actor needs to get a moment in the star...

  • The breakthrough with studio horror films in recent years, since the found-footage boom, is a welcome environmental immersiveness. It's a testament to the craft of production designers and camera operators that the movies now so persuasively show...

  • Robert De Niro -- the Raging Bull himself, now aged from boxer to trainer -- is introduced in Hands of Stone bathed in Madison Square Garden's overhead spotlights, more the image of a reigning champ than the promising fighter whose...

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