THE REVOLUTION IS ABOUT ALL OF US. Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and her allies prepare to liberate the people of Panem and defeat President Snow (Donald Sutherland) and his troops once and for all. The fourth and final chapter in this franchise is largely an overblown war movie, with scenes that might remind audiences of … Continue reading The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2
FIRE BURNS BRIGHTER IN THE DARKNESS. After surviving another Hunger Game, Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) is in District 13 where the rebel leader, President Coin (Julianne Moore), wants to turn her into the Mockingjay, a symbol of the resistance. The third and fourth films in the franchise cut the last novel into two. A pointless … Continue reading The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1
COL. FRANK SLADE HAS A VERY SPECIAL PLAN FOR THE WEEKEND. IT INVOLVES TRAVEL, WOMEN, GOOD FOOD, FINE WINE, THE TANGO, CHAUFFEURED LIMOUSINES AND A LOADED FORTY-FIVE. AND HE’S BRINGING CHARLIE ALONG FOR THE RIDE. Charlie Simms (Chris O’Donnell), a New England prep school student, is hired by a blind, retired army officer (Al Pacino) … Continue reading Scent of a Woman
THEY FIGURED HE WAS A LAZY TIME WASTING SLACKER. THEY WERE RIGHT. L.A. slacker Jeffrey Lebowski (Jeff Bridges) goes to see a millionaire who has the same name as him to get compensation after an unfortunate encounter with two thugs, but is drawn into a kidnapping case… The Coen Brothers’ attempt to have a little … Continue reading The Big Lebowski
A Chechen refugee arrives in Hamburg illegally; he’s believed to be a terrorist, but intelligence agent Günther Bachmann (Philip Seymour Hoffman) sees a chance to catch bigger fish. Anton Corbijn delivers another spy thriller after The American (2010) and he’s well-suited to portray the stylishly gray world of John le Carré. This adaptation depicts the … Continue reading A Most Wanted Man
EVERY REVOLUTION BEGINS WITH A SPARK. After winning the Hunger Games, tributes Katniss and Peeta (Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson) inspire rebellions in several districts, and President Snow (Donald Sutherland) comes up with a new version of the games. The sequel has a new director and a somewhat darker shade of colors, but it is also … Continue reading The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
NO ARRANGEMENT IS MORE BEAUTIFUL… OR MORE COMPLICATED. Approaching its 25th anniversary, a string quartet is shaken when the cellist, Peter Mitchell (Christopher Walken), announces that he’s retiring because of a debilitating illness. Documentary filmmaker Yaron Zilberman brings a sense of honesty and carefulness to his first dramatic feature, which is obvious in the … Continue reading A Late Quartet
Shortly after World War II, alcoholic veteran Freddie Quell (Joaquin Phoenix) joins a “family” dominated by a colorful philosopher (Philip Seymour Hoffman) who has plans for a wider movement. Inspired by the rise of L. Ron Hubbard and Scientology, this grand epic portrays an America trying to find its feet after the horrors of … Continue reading The Master
Ever since Philip Seymour Hoffman was found dead two days ago at the age of 46, the Internet and newspapers have been full of appreciations and lists of the great actor’s accomplishments. Already it feels like there’s nothing left to be said, but still we all have our own relationship with him and I need … Continue reading My Five Favorite Moments With Philip Seymour Hoffman
Coming on the heels of polls showing that Mitt Romney did not get much of a boost after the Republican National Convention and Barack Obama getting a substantial push forward after the Democratic equivalent, conservative pundits like Rush Limbaugh and Laura Ingraham are starting to look scared and confused on TV. In the Fox News … Continue reading The HBO Bitter Republicans Project?
What are you really worth? In 2001, Oakland Athletics general manager Billy Beane (Brad Pitt) tries to overcome his team’s financial limits by devising a new strategy for creating a competitive team, together with a young economics graduate (Jonah Hill) who has radical ideas. A compelling drama about how math changed baseball from the … Continue reading Moneyball
AMBITION SEDUCES. POWER CORRUPTS. Shortly ahead of a Democratic presidential primary in Ohio, Pennsylvania Governor Mike Morris’s (George Clooney) junior campaign manager (Ryan Gosling) learns a few lessons about the difference between ideology and politics. Clooney and his crew expanded Beau Willimon’s play (which was based on the 2004 Howard Dean campaign) and turns it … Continue reading The Ides of March
THERE IS NO EVIDENCE. THERE ARE NO WITNESSES. BUT FOR ONE, THERE IS NO DOUBT. John Patrick Shanley reportedly told the actors who would play Father Brendan Flynn (Brían F. O’Byrne in the play, Philip Seymour Hoffman in the movie) the truth about the character. Only they were supposed to know whether or not … Continue reading Doubt: What If I’m Wrong?