Christian Petzold has done something extraordinary with TRANSIT. Using the novel of the same name by Anna Seghers, he has taken the story of a young German fleeing the Nazis during World War II and transmuted it into a universal story of refugees. By removing the specifics and setting it in the first-world present, the… Read More »
Amid the stale jokes and flat direction to be found in THE WAR WITH GRANDPA, one is subjected to cartoonish takes on elder abuse, child abuse, and I’m pretty sure that the bass didn’t enjoy its time during the fishing sequence. Based on the book of the same name by Robert Kimmel Smith, the film… Read More »
Armando Iannucci, a man possessing a preternatural gift for telling serious stories with a puckish twist, has taken on the classic Dickens tale of David Copperfield, and infused it with sparkling new life while remaining true to the original’s spirit. After all, despite his sometimes cloying sentimentality, Dickens spared his readers nothing when describing the… Read More »
Based on the novel by Maria Semple, WHERE’D YOU GO BERNADETTE is a tale of artistic vision quashed by its run-ins with the crasser elements of reality, and the consequences of living the resulting inauthentic life with Cate Blanchett perfection as Bernadette, the eccentric anti-social wife of a Seattle Microsoft bigwig. Her skirmishes with her… Read More »
Ah, the timeless tale of a boy and his dragon. As recounted in HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON I and II, it was magical. Even more magical is that the final part of the trilogy, HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON: THE HIDDEN WORLD is the equal of the first two without being a repeat of either installment.
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.
Click here to listen to the interview. I started my conversation with Paul Dano with the obvious question, what was it about Richard Ford’s book of the same name that made him want WILDLIFE to be his feature film debut. As with all his answers, Dano replied thoughtfully. Even moreso when we moved on to… 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 »
Click here to listen to the interview. Swedish director Björn Runge took many risks with THE WIFE, based on the novel by Meg Wolitzer. The story of an older couple coming to a long-simmering crossroad in their 40-year-old marriage when the husband wins a Nobel Prize is not designed for the demographic studios usually seek.… Read More »