Fight and Flight

Fight and Flight

Tower wobbles, Detroit burns and Kidnap is on the run

(August 10, 2017) Reviews THE DARK TOWER. It's never surprising when a Stephen King novel series is adapted for film, but an eight-book series? In 95 minutes? The Dark Tower turns out to...

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Trailer vs. Movie

And the real Atomic Blonde

(August 3, 2017) Reviews ATOMIC BLONDE. So we return to the conundrum of The Good Trailer. On one hand, good trailers can surprise us like beautiful gifts. Because so many movies register as...

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All at Sea

Dunkirk triumphs, Valerian spaces out

(July 27, 2017) Reviews DUNKIRK. Christopher Nolan is something of a professional dinosaur. He broke out with Memento (2000), a challenging, compelling and unlikely low-budget surprise, just as the era of the Big...

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Hero Immerses, Big Sick Shines

Two very different films lend hope

(July 20, 2017) The Hero It seems I've written fairly frequently of late — probably too frequently — about the bright possibility of hope dispelling the corrosive recent mists of cinematic mediocrity and...

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Spidey Sense Tingling

Homecoming gets it right, Bad Batch not so much

(July 13, 2017) Spider-Man: Homecoming A chorus, sweetened by the voices of multitudes, echoes brightly through the halls of mediadom; even the nerds have lent their breath. And they are not wrong: new...

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Turning Wheels

Car chases and machinations

(July 6, 2017) Reviews BABY DRIVER. Writer/director Edgar Wright — like Tarantino before him and Scorsese before him — has managed to make a successful career of being a tremendous movie nerd. Unashamed...

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Boom

Movies to watch on Fourth of July weekend

(June 29, 2017) Reviews What makes a movie "American"? Is it patriotic or critical? Is it about identity, individualism, team spirit or oppression? Is it set in the Wild West or a modern...

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Girl Trouble

Female bonding goes to hell

(June 22, 2017) Reviews 47 METERS DOWN. I may have let out an audible groan when the title screen appeared: Johannes Roberts' 47 Meters Down. If you've heard of Johannes Roberts, then you...

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House of Horrors

A dark horse and a classic blunder

(June 15, 2017) Reviews IT COMES AT NIGHT. As the recent tidal wave of smaller, independent horror movies seems to have receded a bit, we have the opportunity to consider their merits and...

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Who Run the World?

Wonder Woman shows how it's done

(June 8, 2017) Reviews WONDER WOMAN. As much as we shouldn't have to be talking about gender or gender inequality anymore, recent events support the notion that we do. Plodding progress continues to...

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Swim at Your Own Risk

Baywatch and Pirates hit seabed

(June 1, 2017) Reviews BAYWATCH. Who, really, is to blame when something terrible like this happens? And I say "to blame" rather than "responsible" because there are a great number of responsible parties,...

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I'm With Her

Alien Covenant keeps its promises

(May 25, 2017) Reviews ALIEN: COVENANT. I saw Ridley Scott's ground-breaking Alien (1979) too young and imprinted on its visceral sci-fi horror like a duckling. Artist H.R. Giger, whose work calls to mind...

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Throwaway Throwbacks

Snatched and King Arthur

(May 18, 2017) Reviews SNATCHED. When Amy Schumer, building on the success both of her stand-up comedy and subversive, hilarious TV show Inside Amy Schumer, made her first foray into the Hollywood mainstream,...

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Family Messes

The Dinner and Guardians of the Galaxy

(May 11, 2017) Reviews THE DINNER. Elliptical awkwardness isn't everybody's thing and that's understandable. In real life, it's almost nobody's thing, and those who enjoy it are challenging to be around, to say...

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Big Girls, Big Brothers

The Circle and Colossal

(May 4, 2017) THE CIRCLE. Where have all the techno-thrillers gone? I began to wonder this after my disappointing afternoon with The Circle. I claim to be no expert in the subgenre, but...

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Running for Cover

The Promise and Free Fire

(April 27, 2017) Reviews THE PROMISE. And so we revisit the conundrum of the historical drama, tangled with as recently as last week regarding The Zookeeper's Wife. Again, a movie takes as its...

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