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Enjoying an international film festival

Portrait of a film critic as a mere spectator in the crowd By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Mathieu Amalric and Lea Drucker in “The Blue Room” After four years of attending the festival screening orgy that is the Toronto International Film Festival – which I’m eagerly anticipating returning to once again in September (for you … remember, […]

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A lesson in animal liberation

‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes’ puts humanity to the test By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Jason Clarke as Malcolm in “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” Peter Singer, a modern philosopher who engages moral tenets head-on in practical living, penned a classic tome, “Animal Liberation” that has become a challenging examination of the ways […]

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Is Jo Nebsø Scandinavian fiction’s Elmore Leonard?

Adaptation of ‘Jackpot’ hangs out among the riff raff By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Henrik Mestad as Solør and Arthur Berning as Billy Utomjordet in “Jackpot”; Rating: R, Grade: B- I’ve spent the last few years investigating a specific niche subset of the criminal underworld: the seedy realm of Scandinavian crime fiction. It is much more distinct […]

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Re-staging ‘Jersey Boys’ for the screen

Clint Eastwood favors words and motion without sacrificing the music By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: John Lloyd Young, Vincent Piazza, Erich Bergen and Michael Lomenda in “Jersey Boys”: Rating: PG-13; Grade: B Clint Eastwood, as both an actor and a director, has a no-nonsense approach that has served him well over the course of his career. He […]

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No ‘fault’ for a pair of doomed star-crossed lovers

New ‘love story’ update gambles by doubling down on the terminal illness angle By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Ansel Elgort as Gus and Shailene Woodley as Hazel in “The Fault in Our Stars”; Rating: PG-13, Grade: B- “The Fault in Our Stars” by young adult fiction author and Indianapolis, Ind. native John Green gets adapted here […]

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To be black, gay and proud in mainstream cinema

How long before we see characters who happen to be black and gay on the regular? By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Chiwetel Ejiofor as Lola in “Kinky Boots” The world needs more ensemble dramas or dramatic comedies like “The Family Stone” or bold cinematic kaleidoscopes like Baz Luhrmann’s adaptation of “Romeo + Juliet” to showcase the […]

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A re-invigorated ‘Chef’ concocts an inspired treat

Multi-hyphenate Jon Favreau flees the Hollywood test kitchen By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Emjay Anthony, Jon Favreau and Sofia Vergara in “Chef”; Rating: R, Grade: A It doesn’t take long for a talented upstart to settle into a comfortable groove, right? Not many of us know about this from experience, but the stories abound across disciplines. […]

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The never-ending scandal of race in society

Comparing “Belle” to the black athletes of today By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Dido Elizabeth Belle in “Belle” When is a story about slavery not a slave story? And how is it current media still finds itself mired in coverage of stories about slavery, the same old black and white dynamic, that everyone […]

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Living in ‘God’s Pocket’ isn’t easy

The story of a neighborhood where everybody knows more than your name By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: John Turturro as “Bird” and Philip Seymour Hoffman as Mickey in “God’s Pocket”; Rating: R, Grade: B+ The first “read” of “God’s Pocket,” the feature-film directing debut of actor John Slattery (best known for his Emmy-nominated work on the television […]

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‘Under the Skin’ of Jonathan Glazer

 How his short-film efforts offer insight into his new feature film By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Scarlett Johansson as Laura in “Under the Skin”; Rating: R, Grade: B There are a number of feature film directors who got their starts working on commercials and music videos. Jonathan Glazer, one such practitioner of the craft, exhibits a far […]

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News of the weird: 11/18

With Chuck Shepherd The other world series In October, another premier world sports event reached its climax, with one team […]

Advice Goddess 11/18/14

Along came polygraph by Amy Alkon   I’m an aspiring comedian – seriously aspiring – so I’m out most nights […]

The Docket: 11/18

Strange, but true: Dayton’s police blotter, reported verbatim Researched and reported by Charles Grove A new trend? A 36-year-old woman […]

Advice Goddess: 11/11

By Amy Alkon Scold rush  I try to be direct, but my girlfriend often sees this as meanness. For example, […]

The Docket 11/11/14

Strange, but true: Dayton’s police blotter, reported verbatim Researched and reported by Charles Grove Hail seizure! Officers responded to a […]

news of the weird 11/11

by Chuck Shepherd Lead Story – Baby beauty Amanda Collins, 28, took “beauty pageant mom” to the next level (down) […]