Tag Archives: film

Story matters as much as kink

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“Fifty Shades Freed” learned nothing from “Damage” Anastasia (Dakota Johnson) steels herself for yet another punishment in “Fifty Shades Freed.” By T.T. Stern-Enzi In the beginning, it was easy to drop comparisons between the emerging “Fifty Shades” franchise and movies like Adrian Lyne’s steamy romantic drama “9-1/2 Weeks.” I was a huge fan of the […]

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Academy Awards spotlight: animated shorts

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The world of animation is not simply for children, thank goodness Animated short “Revolting Rhymes” offers a fresh take on “Little Red Riding Hood.” By T.T. Stern-Enzi Did you know that, within the Motion Picture Academy of Arts and Sciences, the same branch determines the nominees for Best Animated Short and Best Animated Feature (as […]

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Hostility lives in hearts on both sides

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Scott Cooper shoots a Western with its eye on the modern world Actors Wes Studi and Christian Bale in a scene from the film “Hostiles” By T.T. Stern-Enzi Turn on the news and you immediately encounter the ongoing friction between social discourse and cultural activism. We have been told that the best way to handle […]

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Does the ‘Last Key’ close the door in the ‘Insidious’ franchise?

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The fight against the paranormal gets personal By T.T. Stern-Enzi Creators of hit franchises never know, at the very beginning, what elements will work, so decisions are made that sometimes can’t be altered without complex tinkering that defies the internal logic and mythology they are attempting to bake into their narrative worlds.  When working in […]

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The high stakes of “Molly’s Game”

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When gambling on talent isn’t that much of a gamble at all Jessica Chastain (left) plays Molly Bloom in her new drama with Idris Elba (right) By T.T. Sterns-Enzi We’ve never seen a protagonist quite like Molly Bloom (Jessica Chastain), because screenwriter-director, Aaron Sorkin has never written for a female character like this. Of course, […]

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The 2017 rules of accountability in Hollywood

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Has the industry’s handling of inappropriate behavior changed (for the better)? Kevin Spacey (left) in his most recent film ‘Baby Driver’ with Jamie Foxx (right) By T.T. Sterns-Enzi For whom does the bell of accountability toll in the film industry? For the agents, managers, producers, directors, and actors, it would seem, and possibly beyond the […]

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“Downsizing” white male privilege

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I’m not sure this was the intention Matt Damon (left) and Jason Sudeikis (right) in new comedy ‘Downsizing’ By T.T. Stern-Enzi   This year’s Toronto International Film Festival was likely a bit of a slog for Matt Damon. At the very least, I can say it was difficult for me to watch his pair of […]

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Finding brilliance in ‘The Disaster Artist’

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Brothers James and Dave Franco form a creative partnership onscreen Photo: Dave Franco (left) and brother James Franco (right) in their new movie ‘The Disaster Artist’ By T.T. Stern-Enzi How do you tell the story of the “best worst film of all time” without getting lost in the meta aspects of the production? Things can go […]

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Relating the story behind ‘The Man Who Invented Christmas’

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How do you play the writer who rebranded the holiday spirit? Photo: Dan Stevens (left) as Charles Dickens and Christopher Plummer (right) as Ebenezer Scrooge in new holiday movie ‘The Man Who Invented Christmas” By T.T. Stern-Enzi A search on the Internet Movie Database, not surprisingly, reveals a plethora of adaptations of the Charles Dickens […]

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Multi-hyphenate rings her own bell

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Lake Bell pushes the ceiling like a natural wonder Photo:  Actress, director, and screenwriter Lake Bell By T.T. Stern-Enzi As soon as she appears onscreen, Lake Bell inspires people to ask, “Who’s that girl?” The dark-haired actor with the biggest smile this side of Julia Roberts has been that other girl in mainstream movies like […]

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Communication breaks down in ‘Landline’

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Gillian Robespierre and Jenny Slate share the tale of a family in crisis Photo: (l-r) Abby Quinn as Ali, Edie Falco as Pat, and Jenny Slate as Dana in ‘Landline’  Rating: R; Grade: B+ By T.T. Stern-Enzi In today’s technology-dominated age, access to a phone feels like a right guaranteed at the moment of one’s […]

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The mad passions of Eric Mahoney

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Filmmaker sets sights on revealing a forgotten musical link Photo: Natasha Kahn in ‘Madly,’ screening at The Neon July 6 By T.T. Stern-Enzi For one night only on July 6, The Neon will host a benefit screening of “Madly,” an anthology collection comprising six international shorts from an eclectic group of directors (including actress Mia […]

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Human nature hides under the cover of night

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Filmmaker Trey Edward Shults explores the dark side of the soul Photo: Kelvin Harrison Jr. as Travis in ‘It Comes Out At Night’ By T.T. Stern-Enzi To paraphrase the Prince song “The Future” from the “Batman” soundtrack, I’ve seen the future of my 2017 top 10 list and the new Trey Edward Shults release, “It […]

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The curious mystery of Rachel Weisz

Rachel Weisz as "Rachel Ashley" in MY COUSIN RACHEL. Photo by Nicola Dove. © 2016 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation All Rights Reserved

The perfectly cast thespian owns the screen in ‘My Cousin Rachel’ Photo: Rachel Weisz as Rachel Ashley in ‘My Cousin Rachel’  Rating: PG-13; Grade: B By T.T. Stern-Enzi Daphne Du Maurier, the noted and quite popular British novelist, wrote genre fiction that has been translated to the screen several times over the years. Alfred Hitchcock adapted […]

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Taking pride in a few reflective poses

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Seeing and being seen is what it’s all about Photo: Laura Spencer as Carrie (left) and Velinda Godfrey as Lauren in ‘Heartland’ By T.T. Stern-Enzi Sometimes, breaking news turns out to be a cheap and exploitative tease to garner attention. Often, what is hyped as breaking and up-to-the-minute is a glaringly obvious fact to anyone […]

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The teasing discovery of ‘Handsome Devil’

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When will boys finally allowed to be boys? Photo: Fionn O’Shea as Ned (left) and Nicholas Galitzine as Conor in ‘Handsome Devil,’ screening at The Neon May 31 By T.T. Stern-Enzi Every school—public or private, in the U.S. or comparable settings abroad—has students like Ned (Fionn O’Shea) and Conor (Nicholas Galitzine). Ned is the awkwardly […]

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Irish Homecoming

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Celtic Woman at Clark State gala The four women of Celtic Woman (L-R) Tara McNeill, Mairead Carlin, Éabha McMahon, and […]

BOOM goes your twenties!

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Dare to deny the passage of time at the Mathile Theatre (L-R) Jonathan (Bobby Mitchum) seeks help through his first […]

The woes of legal weed

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Getting your “pot card” In addition to federal and state law, local ordinances may limit growers, dispensaries, and individuals. By […]

The graying of green

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Ambiguity and contradictions still plague marijuana laws Despite the new law going into effect, much remains to be done for […]

Girl, we couldn’t get much higher

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Evil Eye Gypsy brings psychedelic rock to South Park Tavern Evil Eye Gypsy (L-R) Cat Shift, Sherree Emmons, Aaron Snyder, […]