Film Reviews

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  • "Ireland is the old sow that eats her farrow," declared Stephen Dedalus in A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. In the case of Jimmy Gralton, she took bites and spat him out a couple times. It's tempting to say some people never...

  • Torch-wielding villagers had appeared in film before 1931, but the mob in James Whale's Frankenstein is the one that became the template. The throngs that gather in Closer to God have cast aside pitchforks in favor of bullhorns and...

  • Ami Canaan Mann's Jackie & Ryan is a sort of low-rent Nicholas Sparks romance that, for want of a better way to put it, never generates any sparks of its own. Jackie (Katherine Heigl) is a country singer who's moved back to her family home in...

  • Since there are giraffes in Parisian zoos, there necessarily had to be a first one, and Rémi Bezançon and Jean-Christophe Lie's Zarafa is a beautifully animated and often moving telling of how it arrived there in the early...

  • Terminator: Genisys feels like a VHS cassette that's been rewound and recorded over for 21 years. Director Alan Taylor gives us images -- a thumbs-up, an abandoned factory, a liquid-metal cop smashing through the windshield of a car --...

  • Mel Rodriguez III's debut picture, In Stereo follows struggling New Yorkers Brenda (Beau Garrett) and David (Micah Hauptman), whose personal and professional lives take a serious downturn after they break up. Though the film splits its channels...

  • "The word 'vigilante' has been given a bad name by the media," grouses volunteer border guard Tim Foley, a recovered meth addict now leading a militia in the Arizona brush. And so Matthew Heineman's astonishing documentary Cartel Land...

  • The death of Amy Winehouse, in July 2011, at age 27, was one of the first great tragedies of 21st-century pop music, an event that emphasized the jarring contrast between the fragility of human lives and the half-comforting, half-haunting...

  • One of the most important tests a film must pass is also among the hardest to quantify: Does it actually believe in what it's doing? In the case of Stung, a low-rent creature feature pitting high-society WASPs against a swarm of literal wasps,...

  • Magic Mike XXL begins with a fake-out. Stripper Mike (Channing Tatum) has managed to quit the business, buy an engagement ring for his girl, and launch a business designing rustic headboards for Tampa bohemians. But Mike's dreams haven't...