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Marshall Fine Movie Review

Movie Review: Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.25.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Given how much history this film has to cover, it tends to jump around. But Idris Elba is its anchor, physically and emotionally, just as Mandela himself held the movement that was the African National Congress together, even as he moldered in a jail cell on Robben Island.

Movie Review: Frozen

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.25.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Disney has had such a long winning streak with its animated comedies and musicals that it's almost possible to forgive the problems with Frozen, which opens in Los Angeles today and in wide release on Nov. 27.

Movie Review: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.25.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

There's not much to say about The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, because it does what it's supposed to.

Commentary: Are the '70s Movies Overrated?

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.25.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Lists of the greatest this or the best that are provocations and nothing more. Whether it's a critic offering his 10-best list of films (or books ...

Movie Review: Charlie Countryman

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Fredrik Bond's Charlie Countryman is an intriguing directorial debut: a blend of the madcap and the maniacal, a movie that mixes tones in ways that shouldn't work but do.

Movie Review: 12-12-12

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Amir Bar-Lev and Charlie Lightening's new film, 12-12-12 would be worth seeing if only for the moment where James Dolan loses his temper because of a technical glitch.

Movie Review: Nebraska

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

It's interesting to see the way filmmakers stake out certain emotional territory as their own over the course of a career. Over the course of six films, Alexander Payne has created a body of work that focuses on the effects of and rebellion against disappointment.

Movie Review: Thor: The Dark World

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Kenneth Branagh's Thor had a certain playfulness that pitted the ultra-serious world of Asgard, land of the Norse gods, against 21st-century USA. Now director Alan Taylor has taken the reins of the franchise and, with Thor: The Dark World, drains the fun from it.

Movie Review: Man of Tai Chi

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

The story is the time-honored trope of the martial artist who must decide between selling his abilities for money or using them to pursue spiritual goals. Can he find his way back to his own values once he's gone over to the dark side of raw capitalism?

Movie Review: About Time

Marshall Fine | Posted 12.31.2013 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

I heard a lot of critics sniff at the inclusion of Richard Curtis' About Time in this year's New York Film Festival. The same cadre, no doubt, uses Curtis' Love, Actually as an example of what's wrong with romantic comedy.

Movie Review: Dallas Buyers Club

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Having squandered most of this century's first decade being a movie star, Matthew McConaughey has approached its second stanza as an actor. The results have been salutary.

Movie Review: Jackass Presents Bad Grandpa

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

I plead guilty to an abashed fondness for the Jackass movies, which revealed new depth to the kind of childishness hinted at by the Jackass TV show.

Movie Review: Aftermath

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

You could think of Aftermath as a Polish version of 12 Years a Slave: a film that exhumes a shameful chapter in its nation's history which some people would just as soon leave buried, rather than confront.

Movie Review: The Counselor

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Ridley Scott is one of those overrated directors who, every once in a while, puts together a hard-edged, lean little film that just delivers the goods. The Counselor, unfortunately, isn't one of those efforts.

Movie Review: The Fifth Estate

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

In The Fifth Estate, Condon and writer Josh Singer, working from a couple of books by participants in the Wikileaks story, retell the tale of Julian Assange (Benedict Cumberbatch).

Movie Review: Enzo Avitabile Music Life

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Oscar-winner Jonathan Demme has built a whole side business making films that most other filmmakers would be happy to have as a career: documentaries about music and musicians.

Movie Review: 12 Years a Slave

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Steve McQueen's 12 Years a Slave is the year's most powerful film, an arthouse masterpiece which demands to be seen -- and which will punch mainstream audiences in the gut.

Movie Review: All Is Lost

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Like bookends - or perhaps a double-feature for adrenaline junkies - All Is Lost comes on the heels of Gravity with the distaff and earthbound version of a similar story.

Movie Review: Escape from Tomorrow

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Randy Moore's Escape from Tomorrow may be the year's most subversive film: a horrifying satire of the manufactured fun we've come to associate with the Disney assembly line.

Movie Review: Machete Kills

Marshall Fine | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Machete, which turned veteran character actor Danny Trejo into a leading man, was a wild and wildly violent action-comedy, a spoof of exploitation films of the 1970s. So, obviously, is Machete Kills. How much of a spoof?

Movie Review: Captain Phillips

Marshall Fine | Posted 10.08.2013 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Based on the title character's book recalling the 2009 incident -- in which an American cargo vessel in the Indian Ocean was captured by four Somali pirates -- Captain Phillips puts you right in the middle of the action and never lets you go.

Movie Review: Linsanity

Marshall Fine | Posted 12.07.2013 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

When it happened in the spring of 2012, the Jeremy Lin phenomenon -- commonly referred to as Linsanity, from which the new documentary takes its name -- was startling for its prevalence.

Movie Review: Parkland

Marshall Fine | Posted 12.03.2013 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Fifty years after the assassination of John F. Kennedy, Parkland still has the power to hit you like a fast-moving bus.

Movie Review: All Is Bright

Marshall Fine | Posted 12.02.2013 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Paul Giamatti is one of our great screen actors, an absolute poet of frustration and regret with the range to play a wide variety of roles. Watch hi...

Movie Review: Gravity

Marshall Fine | Posted 12.01.2013 | Entertainment
Marshall Fine

Not since 127 Hours have I run into a movie that provoked that mixture of excitement and trepidation in people I know who have seen the trailer as Gravity.