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LATEST REVIEWS
TO THE ENDS OF THE EARTH
"Stranger to herself in a strange land."
4 stars
Jay Seaver says... "Movies and other pieces of art made to commemorate things the way "To the Ends of the Earth" apparently was (the 70th anniversary of an Uzbek landmark built by Japanese prisoners of war and 25 years of diplomatic relationships between the countries) are odd ducks, trying to serve more masters than usual, and one wonders both if that was on Kiyoshi Kurosawa's mind as he took the job and what the two countries involved thought as they watched it get made and saw the finished product. It's far from gauchely celebratory and often as unsteady as its protagonist, somehow direct and earnest but also seemingly uncertain what it's even doing there." (more)
WOOD JOB!
"He's a lumberjack and he's okay!"
3 stars
Jay Seaver says... "I would have found "Wood Job!" to be a fairly enjoyable film if it didn't get a little screwy in the end, but maybe a forgettable one. It works from a standard fish-out-of-water template that the filmmakers really aren't interested in subverting at all, but the filmmakers are aware of that, letting the movie argue for pride in unglamorous work done well and against detached irony without making too big a thing about it. That it finishes kind of weird just helps it stick." (more)
NEWS OF THE WORLD
"Good ol' Hanks scores again."
4 stars
Rob Gonsalves says... "“We’re all hurting. These are difficult times,” says Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd (Tom Hanks) to a packed crowd in 'News of the World.' The year is 1870, not 2020, but the words ring accidentally true for us." (more)
PROMISING YOUNG WOMAN
"Promising movie, too."
5 stars
Rob Gonsalves says... "The gut tension starts early in Emerald Fennell’s debut feature 'Promising Young Woman.'" (more)
WONDER WOMAN 1984
"Overstuffed, ambitious, a lot of fun."
4 stars
Rob Gonsalves says... "Kristen Wiig is raring to give a classic large-scale performance in 'Wonder Woman 1984.'" (more)
GODFATHER, CODA: THE DEATH OF MICHAEL CORLEONE
"It still isn't as bad as all that, though still not perfect."
4 stars
Rob Gonsalves says... "The movie formerly known as 'The Godfather Part III' (1990) has always been substantially different from its two classic predecessors. Unlike them, it is informed by the deepest pain; it asks what you do after your child dies. And it has no answer, then and now, under its new title 'The Godfather, Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone.'" (more)
MANK
"Bleh."
2 stars
Rob Gonsalves says... "David Fincher’s 'Mank' is a real Christmas-tree ball — shiny as hell and just as empty." (more)
WANDER DARKLY
"A dark and intriguing trip."
5 stars
Rob Gonsalves says... "The drifting, emotionally allusive 'Wander Darkly' is for sure the work of a woman (writer/director Tara Miele)." (more)
STAND IN, THE
"Better and deeper than it looks."
4 stars
Rob Gonsalves says... "For about an hour, I was mystified by my response to 'The Stand In.' Was this not supposed to be a wacky identity-swap comedy?" (more)
MLK/FBI
"Keeping tabs on a good man"
4 stars
alejandroariera says... "If you still find it hard to believe that a significant number of Americans approve of the storming of the Capitol building by supporters of President Trump as the Congress began the process of certifying the votes from the Electoral Colleges, then consider the following: at the height of the Civil War movement more Americans trusted and believed J. Edgar Hoover, even considered him a hero, than Martin Luther King, Jr. Hoover, like Trump after him, was a master media manipulator. He presented himself as “the guardian of the American way of life,” and the entertainment industry was his willing accomplices, pumping out such propagandistic malarkey as “G-Men” (1935) and “I Was a Communist for the F.B.I.” (1951), and the TV series “The FBI” which ran for nine seasons (1965-74). And what was that American way of life Mr. Hoover wanted to safeguard? Why, a mostly white American way of life where minorities “knew their place.” Nothing scared him more than the arrival of a Black Messiah. Nothing scared him more than Martin Luther King, Jr." (more)

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