Film Reviews

Latest Reviews

  • Director Ruby Yang doesn't even try to upend the clichés that practically define the kind of inspirational documentary she's made about art transforming the lives of at-risk and disabled students. She embraces them while pushing the film...

  • South Korean martial arts period fantasy Memories of the Sword thrills viewers by externalizing the inner thoughts of three swordsmen and -women obsessed with revenge: a cocky teenager, her blind mother, and her mother's ex-lover....

  • Screenwriters are famously unappreciated in the film industry, often the scapegoats for underperformance or subpar product. But sometimes the whole problem is a terrible script. In the unimaginatively titled A Reason, the Hilgrim family...

  • There's this old Lifetime movie called Kate's Secret, which stars Meredith Baxter Birney as a housewife with bulimia. It includes a ridiculously long take of Birney standing in a grocery aisle eating an entire box of Oreo cookies against...

  • Sometimes a face is enough to anchor a movie. In writer-director Alex Ross Perry's Queen of Earth, Elisabeth Moss plays Catherine, a young city-dweller who, after recently suffering both her father's death by suicide and a crushing...

  • Craig Zobel's adaptation of Robert C. O'Brien's Z for Zachariah veers so drastically from the source material that people who love the book may feel betrayed. In the novel, Ann, a fifteen-year-old farm girl whose valley has been...

  • A comedy too listless to bother crafting jokes or comic incidents, a character study centered on a sweet-natured prick it's hard to believe could actually exist tumbleweeding into a job at a lube shop, 7 Chinese Brothers is a go-nowhere...

  • Abbie Evans is a dynamo. In Cary Bell's affecting documentary, Butterfly Girl, she faintly buzzes with life: Her blond hair glows in the neon light of the bars and clubs where she sells her father's band merch; her eyes sparkle as she...

  • Christopher Kirk, the subject of Maíra Bühler and Matias Mariani's documentary, is as captivating and elusive as the film's various titles. The São Paulo–based filmmakers call it A Vida Privada dos Hipopótamos...

  • Lycanthropy has rarely been more lethargic than in When Animals Dream, a dreamy Danish import about a young girl who responds to the discovery that she's a werewolf by pouting and brooding a lot. A weird chest-spot is the first indication...

  • Blood Punch is billed as a "supernatural noir," but Madellaine Paxson's debut feature is a black comedy at heart, more Groundhog Day than The Grifters. Milton (Milo Cawthorne), a young chemist in court-mandated drug rehab, is...

  • An empathetic, richly detailed epic, Diego Quemada-Diez's road/train/tunnel movie follows four Guatemalan teens' journey from their hometowns to the U.S. border -- and, presumably, a better life. Quemada-Diez gets right to it, spending no time on...

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