Reviews

 

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Burning (South Korea)

The foreign film that very much feels alive is Burning (South Korea, in English subtitles), even though its about a young man named Jong-su (Ah-in Yoo) who doesn’t behave all that alive – it burns of real life authenticity. He is mopey, inward, and somewhat indolent. He runs into a childhood friend named Haemi […]

 
 

Bohemian Rhapsody

Even as a casual fan of the momentous band Queen which rocked the ’70’s and ’80’s, I can tell when the music biopic Bohemian Rhapsody is filtered or watered-down, or just plain lying to me. Rami Malek is at times electric as Freddie Mercury […]

 
 

The Hate U Give

It’s a welcome footnote, and antidote to these politically ugly times, that we get a compassionate youth novel turned big screen movie in the name of The Hate You Give and that it becomes a minor breakout hit and talking point on racism […]

 
 

First Man

First Man has a stunning, auspicious opening – the kind that leads you to believe this is going to be a very good movie! – as Armstrong is seen breaking the atmosphere with a rocket plane, with a few moments of him losing control, being short on fuel, and possibly getting drifted into outer space […]

 
 

A Star is Born

It’s the showbiz melodrama that is injected with such pitch-perfect delivery and wide-eyed perception that it blows away comparisons. A Star is Born features practically perfect performances by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper (who also directed), who both time and time again miraculously find the essence of the moment […]

 
 

The Predator

Whenever I look at an item like The Predator which is a long-gestated sequel, I wonder what is the point of making it if it cannot live up to the quality of the original, or give us a bigger terrain to work with than the original, or give us a hero as larger than life than the original […]

 
 

Searching

It’s with reluctance to approach a thriller, or any movie, that adopts the gimmick of being told through computer web cameras and smartphones. I think, A Computer Jockey Thriller! When does the curtain go down so I can take a nap!?! Yet Searching, with John Cho as a widowed father […]

 
 

A Simple Favor

Paul Feig has proved to be one of the better slapstick/farce directors in today’s Hollywood (“Bridesmaids,” “The Heat,” “Spy”). A Simple Favor shows that he can direct good old fashioned suspense. Not that he has stopped his actors from experimenting with […]

 
 

Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Melissa McCarthy and Richard E. Grant are the center of an offbeat docudrama Can You Ever Forgive Me? that’s about two accomplices in forgery. It’s not often a film about a couple of shaggy, desperate New Yorker lives

 
 

Papillon

The new 2018 Pappilon creates very little else to what was already done in the 1973 version that featured the unimprovable duo of Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman. When that one came out, you felt as if you were really peeking in at the most inhumane prison system of the last two centuries […]

 
 

The Wife

This really is the finest performance of Glenn Close’s career, and it’s likely one of the top three performances by an actress last year. The Wife is adult fare that rings of familiarity – the highly glorified writer who is something of a louse and the wife who surrenders everything […]

 
 

Crazy Rich Asians

Swank, elegant, gutsy, funny, glamorous, snobby, flashy, flaunt, chic, mod, remarkable. Crazy Rich Asians is all that and has the right modern mood and luxurious settings to qualify as a Cinderella fable, one that would be a dream come true […]