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Down To The Bare Bones

Director Debra Granik Unearths ‘Winter’s Bone’ By T.T. Stern-Enzi Winter’s Bone transports audiences to a stark unexplored territory in terms of contemporary film, far away from the bustling urban centers on either coast or even the stereotypically quaint “dirty” South that never strays too deep into the murk and the muck of our dark history. […]

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Dinner For Schmucks

This Fancy Feast Satisfies Thanks To Main Ingredient Steve Carell By T.T. Stern-Enzi In the French original, The Dinner Game, there apparently was no dinner. The whole premise was based on the set-up, the train wreck effect of watching idiots come together and the havoc created on the way to the unseen event. Jay Roach, […]

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Salt

An excerpt about Salt

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The Kids Are All Right

Film Review An unconventional family grows up. By T.T. Stern-Enzi For a film about family, The Kids Are All Right, Lisa Cholodenko’s new indie drama, twists the dynamics in ways both obvious and subtle to great effect. As a long-together lesbian couple, Nic (Annette Bening) and Jules (Julianne Moore) have achieved a degree of domestic […]

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Splice

Indie melds sci-fi horror and family dynamics to great effect Forget cloning; that’s what Splice, the new film from Vincenzo Natali, wants because cloning is so five years ago. The new genetic horizon is gene splicing. What happens when scientists merge various animal DNA strands and create new breeds, which is far more intriguing to […]

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The Secret In 
Their Eyes

Argentina’s Oscar winner no longer a secret in the U.S. At first glance, Juan Jose Campanella’s Academy Award winner (Best Foreign Language) looks like a television procedural, Law & Order: Buenos Aires. Writer-director Campanella certainly has the background for the procedural elements here. In fact, he has directed episodes of The Guardian and House as […]

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Critic’s Pick – Patrik, Age 1.5

Patrik, Age 1.5 screened at last year’s Toronto International Film Festival and attracted attention for its smart, funny take on gay adoption and homophobia. Goran (Gustaf Skarsgard) and Sven (Torkel Petersson), a Swedish couple, anxiously await the arrival of their 15-month old adoptee, but are shocked to find Patrik (Thomas Ljungman), a 15-year old homophobic […]

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The Runaways – Translating the Female Punk Spirit from Music to Film

With The Runaways, music video director Floria Sigismondi trains her eye on the early days of punkish girl rockers as Cherie Currie (Dakota Fanning) and Joan Jett (Kristen Stewart) hook up with producer impresario Kim Fowley (Michael Shannon) to set the stage for what would become the runaway success of women in the game of […]

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A Prophet

Gritty French prison drama keeps it real Malik (Tahar Rahim), 19 and facing a six-year stint in prison for assaulting police officers and a string of other crimes, is illiterate and without any family or friends on the outside. He has the feral intensity of a kid who has been living by his wits, staying […]

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Iron Man 2

Marvel sequel scraps the human drama for gearheaded action When it comes to sequels, the sins of the fathers (or the first films) tend to become the sins of the sons (the successive progeny). Nowhere is that more evident than in Jon Favreau’s follow-up to his comic book actioner seeking to introduce the Marvel crossover […]

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News of the weird: 09/16/14

By Chuck Shepherd Lead Story – A nerd’s rhapsody Nicholas Felton’s latest annual recap of his personal communications data is […]

Their exits and their entrances

Celebrating 20 years of Yellow Springs Kids Playhouse By Jennifer Hanauer Lumpkin Photo: Artistic director John Fleming addresses the audience during […]

In living color

Color: Impressions and Innovations at Glen Helen By Joyell Nevins Photo: Joe Barrish, “McLain Street View”; oil Our visual spectrum has […]

Advice Goddess

By Amy Alkon Whoa is me Last year, after I split up with my girlfriend, the law firm I worked […]

Law & Disorder

The last word, Not the last laugh by A.J. Wagner In 1994, Justice Harry Blackmun, in the case of Callins […]

News of the Weird

by Chuck Shepherd Lead Story – They didn’t see this coming? (1) German Rolf Buchholz, who owns the Guinness Book […]