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Movie Reviews

  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Weekend Preview: 'War Witch' Bewitches, 'Stoker' a Mixed Bag, 'Jack the Giant' Not Slaying Critics

    It's a good weekend for limited release films. Canada's Oscar-nominated foreign entry "War Witch," a harrowing yet poignant tale of a young Congolese girl's survival and first love, is scoring top marks with critics. Meanwhile, documentaries "Leviathan" and "A Place at the Table"...

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: ‘The Last Exorcism Part II’ Is A Cruddy, Boring & Exhausting Horror

    2010’s “The Last Exorcism” was a mildly successful found-footage horror movie about a huckster exorcist (played memorably by hey-it’s-that-guy character actor Patrick Fabian) who accidentally stumbles upon an actual possession while being followed around by an amateur documentary film crew. It was a...

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  • Shadow and Act
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  • The Playlist
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    Review: 'The Brass Teapot' Is More Modest Trinket Than Rare Find

    Ramma Mosley's “The Brass Teapot," based on a screenplay by Tim Macy, who wrote the short story and the 2007 short film that served as a jumping-off point for this feature, tries hard to be a moral fable, a reflection of today's challenging economic tides and the college graduates weathering them wi...

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: 'Leviathan' An Otherworldly Peek At A Life At Sea

    Every sound in “Leviathan” is a shuddering staccato. Every visual wears darkness like a cloak. With absolutely no context, there’s no awareness of what’s up or down. When it is promoted, the ads will suggest “Leviathan” is a documentary, and a scan of the press notes will reveal exactly where the fi...

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  • The Playlist
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    Recap: 'Parade's End' Brings Dense Miniseries To A Quiet Close In Finale

    As my colleagues have written in their recaps of the first four episodes of "Parade's End," there is much to admire in the five-part miniseries. From the dense, multi-threaded and layered script from Tom Stoppard, to the sumptuous direction from Susanna White and a cluster of great performances from...

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  • The Playlist
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    Review: 'Oz The Great And Powerful' Dresses Up Dull Prequel Story With Special Effects Wizardry

    We’re coming up on 75 years since MGM’s Technicolor wonder “The Wizard Of Oz” first enchanted audiences on screen, and at the time it was already the fourth movie based on the works of L. Frank Baum. Of course, it has become not only the best known version, but an American cinema classic and icon, a...

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  • Leonard Maltin
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    JACK THE GIANT SLAYER

    Some fairy tales and fables are dark, while others invite a range of interpretations. This rendering of “Jack and the Beanstalk” is pretty full-blooded, especially for a family-oriented film, but this gives it some backbone to match its elaborate visual effects.

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  • Leonard Maltin
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    PHANTOM

    It’s refreshing to encounter a movie that doesn’t try to reinvent the wheel, but simply sets out to tell a good story and fulfill the expectations of a genre piece.

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  • Leonard Maltin
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    STOKER

    When a visual stylist like Korean director Park Chan-Wook (of "Oldboy" fame) is handed a screenplay that demands an atmosphere of portent and dread, it’s likely that the filmmaker will make the most of the opportunity

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