There is a distinct strain of melancholy nihilism throughout Stephen Burke’s MAZE. Based on the 1983 prison break by 38 inmates of the eponymous maximum security prison in Norther Ireland, it mixes the suspense of plotting an escape dependant upon split-second timing from an inescapable prison with the psychological games the prisoners play with the… Read More »
GIANT LITTLE ONES is a perceptive, intelligent examination of what happens when unexpected feelings and actions don’t have neat labels. In a time when acceptance of teenage sexuality, at least straight sexuality, has become the norm for most concerned, both parents and their sexually active kids, the question of sexual fluidity can still flummox.
Full of unexpected compassion and humanity, HOTEL MUMBAI is also a harrowing retelling of the 2008 takeover of the fabled Taj Hotel in Mumbai by terrorists whose zeal for religion had been twisted into something horrifying. The standard meet-and-greet of the people whose lives will shortly be forever changed is the only part of the… Read More »
There is little that tugs more insistently at my heartstrings, cinematically at least, than a film that genuinely means well and falls short. And so it is with WELCOME TO MARWEN, a showcase of CGI and of Steve Carrell’s dramatic chops, but of little else. The story is based on the life of Mark Hogencamp,… Read More »
a thoughtful, anarchically lively, film about the obligations of the candidate and the responsibilities of the press that force us to question both
Based on Lee Israel’s memoir of the same name, it is not just an intriguing character study of a talented but difficult writer of one New York Time bestseller now on the skids, but also a perceptive consideration of writing as both an art and as a business.
Rami Malek, star of television’s Mr. Robot and the (mostly) overlooked Indie gem, BUSTER’S MAL HEART, may just have found the vehicle to assure him of the A-list stardom he so richly deserves in BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY. Like the character Malek essays, Queen lead singer Freddie Mercury, the film is flawed but Malek, through the sheer… Read More »
The devastation of drug addiction is passionately acted and masterfully told in BEAUTIFUL BOY, a film that is savagely tender in mood and execution. Based on the memoir of the same name by Bay Area journalist David Sheff (played by Steve Carrell), and Tweaked, the companion memoir by Sheff’s son, Nic ( played by Timothée… Read More »
Drew Goddard crafts tales that are multi-layered and philosophically challenging. From his days in the Whedon-verse to the deliciously exercise in meta-text, CABIN IN THE WOODS, there is always much more going on than the surface narrative. And so it is with BAD TIMES AT THE EL ROYALE, which may not be the flawless wonder… Read More »
Florence Green, the widowed heroine of THE BOOKSHOP, is a woman of patience, determination, and kindness. Qualities that would stand anyone in good stead, they are enough to get her dream of opening the eponymous entity in this evocative adaptation of the Penelope Fitzgerald’s novel. Whether they will be enough to keep it going in… Read More »