Movie Reviews 443 results

Jay Stone and Katherine Monk. Definitive reviews. Trusted critics.

Ai WeiWei: the unapologetic revolutionary

Vancouver Biennale Ai WeiWei Film Retrospective Never Sorry, The Fake Case April 13,  20, 26, Rio Theatre, 6 p.m.     By Katherine Monk In the wake of the Charlie Hebdo massacre and subsequent mass rallies in the name of free expression, it would seem the artist’s role in society has never been more at risk. Then again, none of us lived through The Spanish Inquisition. Or, for that matter, has any real recollection of the black suit soap opera called the House Un-American Activities Committee. Artists have a habit of winding up in the crosshairs of history because if they’re any good, they make us question the world we take for granted and see anew. “A revolution in form is a revolution in essences,” said Jose Marti, the Cuban poet, novelist and political activist immortalized in Guantanamera, a song made popular by famed protest singer Pete Seeger. Marti’s words apply just as readily to art as it does to politics, and society as a ...
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Al Pacino stands tall in Danny Collins

The old pro lets it rip in role of aging, casino-circuit rock star, writes Jay Stone
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Getting all for KIimt: Woman in Gold

Movie Review: Woman in Gold Helen Mirren and Ryan Reynolds bring emotional purity to paint-by-numbers script      
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Rihanna and Jim Parsons conjure sugar-coated chemistry in Home

Movie review: Home If you can get past the silly names and the fact everyone looks like a vinyl squeeze toy, this Tim Johnson movie proves a decent place to hang your hat  
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Low-brow low blows bring pleasant punch to Get Hard

Movie review: Get Hard Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart successfully skewer racist stereotype in a surprisingly edgy story of a banker looking to survive a stint in prison
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Olive Kitteridge: HBO miniseries showcases McDormand’s killer sardonic skills

OLIVE KITTERIDGE (2014, HBO Miniseries) Starring: Frances McDormand, Richard Jenkins, Bill Murray. Directed by: Lisa Cholodenko. Three and a half stars out of five Watching Frances McDormand’s face is a bit like reading a great Victorian novel. She may be giving us a straightforward chunk of dialogue, but beneath the surface, an entirely different narrative is taking place. Beneath every wrinkle lies a wealth of understated passions, existential awareness and razor-sharp wit that brings emotional currency to every role, including her turn as Olive Kitteridge, the central character in Elizabeth Strout’s 2008 novel. Reunited with her Laurel Canyon director Lisa Cholodenko, McDormand takes this story of a smart, but calloused schoolteacher to the very edge of melodrama without losing her balance, which is probably the miniseries’ biggest victory because its very structure screams soap opera. With Richard Jenkins and Bill Murray sharing the frames, we get a little breathing ...
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I Wake Up Screaming: An eggs and break-your-legs film noir feast

I Wake Up Screaming (1941 FOX) Starring: Betty Grable, Victor Mature, Carole Landis, Laird Cregar Directed by: H. Bruce Humberstone Four stars out of five Whether it’s the spontaneous eruptions of Over the Rainbow steaming through the score, the bizarre screen presence of Laird Cregar as a creepy cop with perfect elocution, or the architectural angles of Victor Mature’s eyebrows, there’s more than one reason why this seminal piece of film noir is nothing short of a wacky masterpiece. Shot just before the attack on Pearl Harbor, and riddled with allusions to mounting political tensions, this adaptation of Steve Fisher’s novel ‘Hot Spot’ still feels contemporary thanks to its thematic obsession with celebrity. Carole Landis plays Vicky, a diner waitress who becomes the Eliza Doolittle of a sports promoter played by Mature. At first, her success is welcomed as part of a game, but when she announces she’s bailing on New York for a movie career in Los Angeles, ...
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Sean Penn locks, loads and loses it in The Gunman

It's some fast times for a weary CIA spy in Pierre Morel's schlocky thriller featuring Penn as a feisty character named Jim Terrier   -30-