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Movie Reviews

Movie Review: McFarland USA -- On the Right Track

Marshall Fine | Posted 04.21.2015 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Sports movies starring Kevin Costner: It could be a category on Jeopardy. But that's not really a bad thing. While the Costner oeuvre has its share of titles devoted to athletic themes, he hasn't made many bad ones.

It's Okay If You Didn't Like 'Boyhood', And Here Are Many Reasons Why

Bob Cesca | Posted 04.18.2015 | Entertainment
Bob Cesca

For several days now, I've been struggling to understand why I'm so out of the loop on this one. It's not because I don't like experimental films or Richard Linklater. I didn't like Boyhood because it wasted my time with mostly unlikable characters, generally bad storytelling, and a whole lot of nothing.

A Guide to Using Facebook on Valentine's Day... and Beyond

David Fagin | Posted 04.16.2015 | Comedy
David Fagin

So as a Valentine's Day present, here are three fun examples of how Facebook is adding to the already impossible to solve problem of Love...

ReThink Review: Fifty Shades of Grey -- Why Now?

Jonathan Kim | Posted 04.15.2015 | Entertainment
Jonathan Kim

Timing and technology may have conspired to make a story like Fifty Shades of Grey a runaway success, but its poor grasp of bondage and dominant/submissive power dynamics may send a dangerous message farther and faster than we would ever want.

Da Sweet Blood of Jesus

Dwight Brown | Posted 04.14.2015 | Black Voices
Dwight Brown

Spike Lee, the old guard of black indie filmmaking, gets his mojo back with this classy, urbane, bloodsucking art film that is a beauty to behold. Sophisticated, demented, eerie, erotic -- prepare to be shocked and flabbergasted.

Movie Review: Kingsman: The Secret Service -- Bloody Entertaining

Marshall Fine | Posted 04.14.2015 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

When James Bond rebooted with Daniel Craig in Casino Royale, the blend of old-school spy tale and modern-action sensibility seemed right -- if still a little restrained. Imagine now what would happen if James Bond were put in the hands of someone who was willing to not just rethink the secret-agent film but blow it up all together.

Oscar and Me

Tricia McCallum | Posted 04.12.2015 | Entertainment
Tricia McCallum

Some years were quieter celebrations, but just as ceremonial. Even watching them on my own, I bowed to the sense of occasion. I lined up my time-honored snacks, burrowed under my favorite quilt and glued myself to the proceedings, shouting at the screen the entire time.

Zaki's Review: Jupiter Ascending

Zaki Hasan | Posted 04.12.2015 | Entertainment
Zaki Hasan

Unfortunately for the filmmakers, the audience, and (given the $175 mil price tag) the studio, Jupiter Ascending isn't exactly the second coming they were hoping for. Instead, it's a melange of misplaced ambition that's asphyxiated by tangled plot threads that are at once overcooked and undernourished.

Movie Review: Jupiter Ascending -- Not Terrible, Not Great

Marshall Fine | Posted 04.06.2015 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

There aren't many films from the past 15 years that bowled me over the way The Matrix did. Unfortunately, the Wachowskis -- Andy and Lana -- haven't come close since then.

Can Ewan McGregor Pull Off A Convincing Jesus?

Religion News Service | Dick Staub | Posted 02.01.2015 | Religion

PARK CITY, Utah (RNS) Publishers discovered a long time ago that Jesus sells magazines, so it should be no surprise that one of the hottest tickets he...

New to Netflix: February 2015

PureWow | Posted 04.01.2015 | Entertainment
PureWow

Now that you've sufficiently binged your way through Friends, your schedule is free and clear for one recent SAG winner -- Mr. Kevin Spacey.

Zaki's Review: Black or White

Zaki Hasan | Posted 03.31.2015 | Entertainment
Zaki Hasan

While it attempts some measure of high-minded resolution to the many complicated issues it raises, it's simply casting too wide a net to feel truly satisfying. In trying to be color blind, it just comes off as tone deaf.

'Black or White' Tackles a Touchy Subject

Dwight Brown | Posted 03.30.2015 | Black Voices
Dwight Brown

Only a very perceptive filmmaker could tackle the topic of race relations and be remotely successful. It would require a writer/director to be smart, balanced, sensitive and able to see both sides of the issue.

Timbuktu

Dwight Brown | Posted 03.25.2015 | Black Voices
Dwight Brown

As Islamic fundamentalists encroach on the basic liberties of people in Africa and the Arab world, we hear about it, but it's hard to put it into context and understand the magnitude of the situation. Leave it to veteran, Mauritanian filmmaker Abderrahmane Sissako to boil a complicated social phenomena down to a simple allegorical tale.

ReThink Review: American Sniper -- Can There Be Heroes on the Wrong Side of History?

Jonathan Kim | Posted 03.25.2015 | Entertainment
Jonathan Kim

I see soldier worship as harmful because it so easily morphs into support for wars, no matter how unjust, by letting our affection for our fellow citizens in uniform and our desire to see them come home alive obscure the truth behind what they're supposedly fighting and dying for, which is rarely as black and white as we are told or wish it to be.

Movie Review: The Boy Next Door -- Get a Fence

Marshall Fine | Posted 03.24.2015 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

How can J-Lo ignore The Boy Next Door? She can't, obviously, because he's a blazing wackjob with an erotic obsession for his new neighbor.

Zaki's Review: American Sniper

Zaki Hasan | Posted 03.23.2015 | Entertainment
Zaki Hasan

The very fact that American Sniper asks to be accepted as an artifact that will stand for time immemorial virtually necessitates a higher degree of investigation then the film is able or willing to offer.

Movie Review: Black Sea -- In Deep Water

Marshall Fine | Posted 03.23.2015 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Black Sea, a crisply tense film from Kevin MacDonald, is always compelling and even, occasionally, surprising. While submarine films inspire the guessing game of who will be the next to die horribly and who might survive, Black Sea never quite goes where you expect it, thanks to the script by British playwright Dennis Kelly.

The Wedding Ringer

Dwight Brown | Posted 03.18.2015 | Entertainment
Dwight Brown

The Wedding Ringer isn't innovative, but ultimately it's a crowd-pleasing movie. Hart, with his command of social media, will get fans in theater seats. Garelick's writing/direction coupled with the cast's high jinks will keep audiences laughing.

Classic Movies and Books Released for the Over 50 Female!

Stephanie D. Lewis | Posted 03.18.2015 | Fifty
Stephanie D. Lewis

Frocky Horror Picture Show: Terrifying tale about a female looking for the perfect dress for her 30th high school reunion. Close your eyes during the special effects Spanx scene... shudder!

Zaki's Review: Blackhat

Zaki Hasan | Posted 03.17.2015 | Entertainment
Zaki Hasan

Honestly, this was a rough one. Whether we're talking about the overly-complicated story, the overly-simplistic dialogue, or the clunky pacing, Blackhat is such a smorgasbord of missteps that it's genuinely hard to divine what the filmmakers' actual intent even was.

A Review of 'American Sniper'

Dwight Brown | Posted 03.16.2015 | Black Voices
Dwight Brown

His steely, icy demeanor gave Chris Kyle a steady aim, but didn't protect him from the fragile aftermath of war, particularly Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The film fluctuates between his achievements in battle and his ordeal back at home.

Movie Review: Blackhat -- System failure

Marshall Fine | Posted 03.16.2015 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Here's my first problem with Michael Mann's Blackhat: Chris Hemsworth doesn't have the talent to make me believe he's smart enough to be an MIT-educated, world-class computer hacker.

Best of 2015 Palm Springs International Film Festival

Brad Schreiber | Posted 03.15.2015 | Entertainment
Brad Schreiber

The 26th annual Palm Springs International Film Festival, Jan. 2-12, included fifty of the Academy Award-nominated foreign films. Here's the best of a fest that includes American studio, independent and overseas cinema.

Movie Review: Match -- Who's Your Daddy?

Marshall Fine | Posted 03.15.2015 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Stephen Belber's Match is a slight but affecting film built around a stirring central performance by Patrick Stewart.