Gay panic: The motion picture

People laughed during the preview screening of Get Hard. This is what bothered me most about the comedy featuring Will Ferrell as a clueless finance executive who hires a much more clueful Kevin Hart to prepare him for 10 years in prison. More than how terribly made it is, how pathetic and offensive its humor [...]

Insurgent

Also playing The second in the Divergent series, a sub-Hunger Games dystopian trilogy about a young woman who is the key to her oppressed society’s freedom, Insurgent is disappointingly worse than its predecessor. Considering the cast – the remarkable Shailene Woodley as our heroine Tris, studly Theo James as her boyfriend Four, Kate Winslet as [...]

An instant classic is born

Sometimes, you have to do it straight. I don’t mean that you need to be heterosexual – perish the thought – but rather that you sometimes need to resist the temptation to change a classic. You don’t have to set Hamlet in 21st century Manhattan, sing “Billie Jean” as a guitar ballad, turn Hansel and [...]

Movie review — ‘Chappie:’ This robot works!

When Neill Blomkamp arrived with District 9 in 2009, he was heralded as the next great science fiction filmmaker. The film about apartheid policies against deceptively scary looking aliens in a slightly futuristic South Africa was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture, most deservedly. Because of how good District 9 was, his not [...]

A wonderfully acted romantic comedy

Will Smith and Margot Robbie in Focus

I heard someone on the radio refer to Focus as “that Will Smith movie the studio is dumping in February.” I was surprised partly because Will Smith movies, even atrocious ones, don’t ever get dumped during the late summer or early winter dump zones, and partly because Focus is written and directed by John Requa [...]

Movie review: ‘The Last Five Years’

Emily Blunt and Meryl Streep overshadowed her in this Christmas’s Into the Woods, and Neil Patrick Harris and Jack Black did it to her in the opening number on the Academy Awards last week, but in the barely released but wonderful musical The Last Five Years, Anna Kendrick reminded me just how amazing she can [...]

‘Fifty Shades’ falls short in so many ways

By now, I cannot imagine how anyone with an Internet connection or who has access to a television or knows any women who own books could not know about Fifty Shades of Grey, the poorly written soft-core S&M novel by E.L. James that, along with its two sequels, has sold 100 million copies worldwide and [...]

Movie review: ‘Jupiter Ascending’ serves up action and romance

My biggest fear before I saw Jupiter Ascending was that the Wachowskis would take themselves too seriously, yet again, and try to drench the audience with wishy-washy New Age philosophy, a la “everything is a facsimile!” in The Matrix Trilogy and “we’re all connected!” in Cloud Atlas. But they restrained themselves, thematically anyway, and instead [...]

Few bright moments in this sad tale

It’s likely that both the Best Actor and Best Actress winners at this year’s Academy Awards will go to portrayals of people suffering from chronic neurodegenerative diseases. The films couldn’t be more different, however. In The Theory of Everything, Eddie Redmayne plays Stephen Hawking, who was struck with Lou Gehrig’s disease (or ALS) more than [...]

‘American Sniper’ hits box-office high

In its first weekend in wide release, American Sniper earned more money than all of the other eight nominees for Best Picture at this year’s Academy Awards. It made $107 million through the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend, a record for a movie in January. By the time the Oscars are given out, it’s [...]

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