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The certainty of life’s quiet moments

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Kelly Reichardt turns her gaze to profundity of the mundane By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Michelle Williams as Gina Lewis in ‘Certain Women’ Rating: R; Grade: A Over 20 years ago in the film “Short Cuts,” Robert Altman provided a visual roadmap through a messy suburban landscape from the pen of writer Raymond Carver. As a […]

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Experiencing the eternal dream of ‘American Honey’

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Andrea Arnold shines a spotlight on the new American teen dream By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Shia LaBeouf as Jake (left) and Sasha Lane as Star in ‘American Honey’ Rating: R; Grade: A “American” is such a loaded word in contemporary society. Type it into a search engine and it appears as a tag, a descriptive […]

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Revenge of ‘The Dressmaker’

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Australian tale stitches together offbeat humor and quirky comeuppance By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Kate Winslet as Myrtle ‘Tilly’ Dunnage in ‘The Dressmaker’ Rating: R; Grade: B+ Is there a more classic, dare I say “iconic,” figure in film today than Kate Winslet? If you need proof, look no further than the opening scene of “The […]

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Celebration, continued

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Dayton LGBT Film Festival kicks off a second decade By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Kiki Layne as Olivia (right) falls for Imani in Janaya Greene’s short film ‘Veracity,’ directed by Seith Mann Based on the advance word found on the festival website, the vibe at the 11th annual Dayton LGBT Film Festival will be raucous. With […]

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Sinking into the mire of ‘Deepwater Horizon’

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Explosive action alone cannot tell the tale of historic catastrophe by T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Mark Wahlberg as Mike Williams in ‘Deepwater Horizon’ Rating: PG-13; Grade: D+   The story is true, and should be fairly well-known to most, because it made headlines and dominated the news cycle back in April of 2010, when an explosion […]

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Focus on ‘Snowden’ grounds the mercurial Stone

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A measured and damned near mild-mannered Oliver Stone pic By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Edward Snowden in ‘Snowden’ Rating: R; Grade: B- With the arrival of the third day of the Toronto International Film Festival, I prepared myself for a trio of films tackling crucial periods in American history. Added to the daunting […]

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The mad genius of Jean-Marc Vallee

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A true international indie filmmaker cracks the Hollywood code By T.T. Stern-Enzi It seems I have something in common with the producers of “Demolition,” the new film from Jean-Marc Vallee, which opens April 8 (finally). I say finally because I caught “Demolition” in September when it kicked off the Toronto International Film Festival’s 40th anniversary. […]

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Everybody wants ‘Kung Fu Panda 3’

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The third time is definitely the real rock ’em, sock ’em charm By T.T. Stern-Enzi What’s an awesome kung fu warrior to do once he has fended off the greatest threats to his crown and kingdom? Settle in for a little rest and relaxation, right? Well, maybe not. Especially if we’re talking about the adorable […]

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‘Anomalisa’ finds life in ordinary clay

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Filmmakers use stop-motion animation to reveal hidden reservoirs of emotion By T.T. Stern-Enzi Michael Stone, voiced by David Thewlis, arrives in Cincinnati to take part in a conference. He is the author of a bestselling book on successful customer service practices, techniques that work based on their ability to help practitioners focus on establishing strong […]

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Understanding ‘Suffragette’ better through song

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Appreciating messages in other times and beats By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Carey Mulligan as Maud Watts in “Suffragette”; Rating: PG-13 Grade: B Following the preview audience screening of “Suffragette” I attended, I found myself driving around town, between appointments with an iTunes playlist cued to shuffle, and two songs that on the surface would seem […]

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Not much to miss from ‘Miss You Already’

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Drama bludgeons audiences with the C-word By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Drew Barrymore as Jess and Toni Collette as Milly in “Miss You Already” Rating: PG-13 Grade: D+ Lifelong best friends, Milly (Toni Collette) and Jess (Drew Barrymore), have been co-stars in a long-running saga—The Milly Affair—which has been a Sex and the City inspired account […]

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‘Steve Jobs’ in three tough acts

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There is genius in front of the cameras, behind the scenes of Danny Boyle’s latest By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Michael Fassbender as Steve Jobs in “Steve Jobs”; Rating: R Grade: A Just two years ago, director Joshua Michael Stern (“Swing Vote”) and newbie screenwriter Matt Whiteley dove headlong into a rather conventional biopic on Apple […]

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‘Coming Home’ is a somber affair

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Zhang Yimou looks at the personal impact of cultural revolutions By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Daoming Chen as Lu Yanshi and Li Gong as Feng Wanyu in “Coming Home”; Rating: PG-13 Grade: C Zhang Yimou’s name and reputation have been well established in his graceful epics (“Hero” and “House of Flying Daggers”) that blend sweeping yet […]

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The intimacy of the Big Lens Film Festival

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Student film festival showcases polished gems By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Nathan Robert Pecchia and Kate Mueller at the Drake Motel in Springfield, Ohio—a still from the film “Noia” Each year Wright State University’s Motion Picture program, an award-winning department and a crown jewel in Midwest film industry, shines a spotlight on a set of new […]

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Bridging the gap: Adriana Trigiani writes for adults

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Long-time writer adapts her own work for the big screen By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Adriana Trigiani, the storyteller behind “Big Stone Gap”; Rating: PG-13 Grade: B+ You can always tell when you, as a viewer or reader, are in the company of a great storyteller. It starts immediately, with the warmth of the voice, the […]

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‘The Martian’ keeps hope alive miles from home

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Ridley Scott uses science as a lifeline in the service of inspiring fiction By T.T. Stern-Enzi Photo: Matt Damon as Mark Watney in “The Martian”; Rating: PG-13 Grade: A Watching Ridley Scott’s new film, “The Martian,” I found my thoughts straying, oddly enough, to the late great Yogi Berra and one of his treasured witticisms—“it’s […]

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Law & Disorder: The Docket 9/19

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Major key Last weekend a local couple was watching TV in their living room, having a relaxing evening, when suddenly […]

Law & Disorder: The Docket 9/12

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Jesus take the wheel A local couple recently decided to visit their church on a particularly warm and muggy Sunday […]

Law & Disorder: The Docket 9/5

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Flightless In a local park, police were dispatched to the crime scene. A woman called the police when she realized […]

The Docket: 8/29

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Stolen in a nanosecond Just last week a woman visited her local sheriff’s office to place a tip on a […]

Law & Disorder: The Docket 8/22

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Totally secure knot …not In a local home a garage door was broken into. This garage door was perfectly secured […]