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Now and Then: 'Looper' and the Future of Sci Fi

Deep into "Looper" we meet Sara (Emily Blunt), a young mother and cane farmer in the year 2044. The moment, for science fiction, is riskily quiet — in the first blush of dusk she mimes lighting a cigarette, taking a slow drag on imagined bliss. It's also, for all the film's nodding at the genre's past, a glimpse of where sci fi is going.
  • By Matt Brennan
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  • October 2, 2012 11:59 AM
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  • 0 Comments

Review Roundup: 3-D 'Life of Pi' Dazzles Critics, NYFF Rothman Panel [VIDEO]

Critics are eating up Ang Lee's "Life of Pi" following its NYFF debut on Friday. Raves praising the film's immersive, spectacular use of 3-D, its inspirational pantheistic message and strong performances from the three actors playing Pi are in the majority, with a few outliers wishing for heftier substance over CG smoke and mirrors. Review roundup below.
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • October 1, 2012 1:16 PM
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  • 3 Comments

Watch: Reel Geezers Return with Review of PT Anderson's 'The Master' [Video]

Video reviewers Reel Geezers, the self-described "dynamic octogenarian duo," are back on YouTube after a hiatus. What brought them back? "Yeah they didn't die!!!" wrote one commenter. Not to mention Paul Thomas Anderson's "The Master."
  • By Anne Thompson and Maggie Lange
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  • October 1, 2012 6:17 AM
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  • 1 Comment

Hollywood Memoirs Past and Present: from Juicy Langella and Schwarzenegger to Keaton and Marshall

Hollywood memoirs have been movie industry currency for decades. Recently there has been a flurry of books by aging actresses and actors. The newest is “My Mother Was Nuts” by Penny Marshall, which was published by Amazon on September 18th. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s “Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story,” which will be for sale in October, promises the whole truth about his affair with his housekeeper and the birth of their [now 14-year-old] son a week after his wife, Maria Shriver, gave birth to their fourth legitimate child.
  • By Aljean Harmetz
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  • September 29, 2012 4:29 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Weekend Preview: 'Looper' & 'Pitch Perfect' Deliver

There could be two home runs at the box office this weekend, as both "Looper" and "Pitch Perfect" score highly with critics. "Looper" delivers the sci-fi thrills and "Pitch Perfect" is both ridiculous and thoroughly enjoyable. There's also a handful of documentaries, plus "Won't Back Down," "Headshot" and "Hotel Transylvania" arriving in theaters. Check out details, reviews and trailers below:
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • September 27, 2012 6:35 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Now and Then: 'The Master' and Paul Thomas Anderson's American Quadrilogy

"The Master" is challenging, gorgeous, and forcefully weird, a critical darling and early Oscar contender, but you already knew that. It's also the fourth film in a great, daring, ambitious project to depict the shadow side of our national life over the course of a century — what might be called Paul Thomas Anderson's "American Quadrilogy."
  • By Matt Brennan
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  • September 25, 2012 1:14 PM
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  • 5 Comments

TV's 'Revolution' Reminds Why Networks Aren't Earning Emmy Drama Love

When the lights – and all computers, telephones, car engines, and batteries – go off permanently and seemingly forever during the pilot of “Revolution,” the audience is left in the dark for only one or two minutes. Then, 15 years later, sunlight shines on a rural village, its good guy leader is killed by one of the militias that roam a dystopian America, and a fascinating idea becomes trapped in a mixture of stereotyped characters and stereotyped plot.
  • By Aljean Harmetz
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  • September 23, 2012 12:26 PM
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  • 15 Comments

Director John Hillcoat and Screenwriter Nick Cave Talk 'Lawless'

At Cannes, I sat down with the director and screenwriter of "Lawless," John Hillcoat and Nick Cave, who also wrote "The Proposition." This gorgeously mounted period adaptation of "The Wettest County in the World," which is palying out around the country, about the real-life Virginia rum-runner Bondurants, is more family relationship drama than actioner. Tom Hardy is the standout as a sensitive but violent head of the family who is more protective mother hen than father; the rest of the strong ensemble includes Shia LaBeouf, Guy Pearce, Gary Oldman and actresses Jessica Chastain and Mia Wasikowska, who shine in underwritten roles.  (Here's more background on how the indie movie got made.) Hillcoat and Cave explain why.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • September 21, 2012 3:17 PM
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Weekend Preview: Eastwood's 'Trouble,' Gyllenhaal's 'Watch' & 'The Perks of Being A Wallflower'

Among the many new releases arriving this weekend, David Ayer's visceral, you-are-there LA cop drama "End of Watch" boasts outstanding performances from Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Pena, which may or may not support Open Road's ultra-wide (2800) theater break. The film did gain some buzz in Toronto, as did Lionsgate/Summit's boy-centric coming-of-age tale "The Perks of Being a Wallflower," which favors Leo Lerman and Ezra Miller over post-"Harry Potter" Emma Watson.
  • By Anne Thompson and Sophia Savage
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  • September 21, 2012 2:24 PM
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Fantastic Fest Review: With ‘Frankenweenie,' Tim Burton Revives Pet Project, Returns to Form

"Frankenweenie" is probably Tim Burton’s best film in almost a decade, but that’s not much of a compliment. With his last five films, the filmmaker responsible for some of the most fun, mischievous and magical cinema of the past 25 years has settled into a disappointing routine of utterly safe “weirdness.”
  • By Todd Gilchrist
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  • September 20, 2012 10:18 PM
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  • 2 Comments

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