Bookstores are dying, reading scores are plummeting and the quality of entertainment sinks like a stone, weighed down by the receding interest of Gen-X and millennial audiences in any form of entertainment that takes too long to watch or too much attention to absorb.
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?
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.
Either the title of the documentary Muscle Shoals resonates with you -- in which case it resonates hard -- or you have no idea what it means. But you should -- or you should find out by watching the movie, one of the year's most entertaining and enriching nonfiction films.
Ron Howard's Rush is winning all sorts of praise as being daring (for taking on subject matter that apparently isn't an automatic audience magnet), a throwback to the 1970s (when filmmakers took more risks) and just plain sexy and exciting.
Mazet-Delpeuch, in her early 70s, is in town to talk about Haute Cuisine, a film loosely based on her experiences as personal chef for French president Francois Mitterand and her year-long-plus tenure as cook for a research lab on an island off Antarctica.
In A Single Shot, opening in limited release Friday and available on VOD, actor Sam Rockwell looks as though he's right at home as a veteran outdoorsman who keeps meat on the table with his rifle. Nothing, Rockwell says, could be further from the truth.
Nicole Holofcener brings a wonderfully humane approach to the subject with Enough Said, a bittersweet romantic comedy made all the sadder by the fact that it represents one of James Gandolfini's final performances onscreen.
If you were able to watch a new movie every two hours all day from 8 a.m. through midnight for the entire 10-day run of the festival, you would still only be able to see a little more than half of the movies the festival has to offer.