I’ve been impressed with the filmmaking team of Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck since I saw their bold, original debut feature Half-Nelson, with Ryan Gosling, which was adapted from a short subject they made two years earlier. Their followup film, Sugar, about a baseball player from the Dominican Republic, revealed that they weren’t one-hit wonders, and didn’t intend to fall prey to formulaic storytelling. Their new film seemed equally promising; while I usually try to avoid trailers I happened to see this one, and it—
Let Me In offers an unusual twist on the usual vampire tale. It’s gripping and unusual—unless you happen to have seen the Swedish film that inspired it, Let the Right One In, based on the novel by John Ajvide Lindqvist. If you did catch that striking Swedish import two years ago, there isn’t much point to seeing the remake. Writer-director Matt Reeves, who made his reputation with Cloverfield, has wisely followed the original and made only a handful of (mostly inventive) deviations. I admire both his fidelity and his restraint.
If you haven’t seen Let the Right One In, or don’t tend to watch foreign-language films with subtitles, then I wholeheartedly recommend the remake. I usually shy away from—
I’m not a fan of sequels, by and large, but I suppose events of the past few years made it inevitable that someone would devise a followup to Oliver Stone’s Wall Street, which became a touchstone of its era. The new movie isn’t likely to have the same effect, as so many documentaries are covering the financial debacle, with more to come…but it certainly is entertaining.
Michael Douglas steps back into the role of onetime Wall Street lion Gordon Gekko as he’s released from an eight-year stretch in prison. This time around, he’s—
This is, quite simply, the best movie I’ve seen all year. The Town has everything one could ask for: a solid story, a superb cast playing interesting and well-drawn characters, pulse-pounding action, and the element of surprise. It’s violent, visceral, and completely captivating.
I came to this film knowing nothing about it, except that it was based on the highly-acclaimed novel by Kazuo Ishiguru. I had no foreknowledge of its story or premise—and I’m glad.
The story begins in the present and then segues to a lengthy flashback at a traditional British boarding school, filled with seemingly ordinary boys and girls. We soon learn that these children are not leading “normal” lives at all; they have a particular destiny and are apparently helpless to change it. A new teacher (Sally Hawkins) who tries to warn them is quickly dismissed.
At this point we focus on three characters: a girl who—
If nothing else, Catfish may win awards for the most effective advertising and promotional campaign of the year. The buzz on this movie has been exceptionally loud, which is all the more unusual because no one seem to know what it’s about. Several people who have seen the trailer (HERE) have told me it’s reminiscent of The Blair Witch Project, which in fact it isn’t.
My admiration for George Clooney is boundless. He has taken his clout as a box-office star and used it to make films he wants to make, including Syriana and Good Night and Good Luck, fully aware that most of his Oceans 11 fans may not care for that kind of picture. I’m sure he wishes more people would come to see Michael Clayton, or even Up in the Air, but I salute him for not pandering to the lowest common denominator as long as he can.
Get the latest headlines from Leonard Maltin delivered to your inbox every day.