MOVIES

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REVIEW | THE DROP

James Gandolfini, Tom Hardy and Noomi Rapace
Directed by Martin R. Roskam

Italian filmmakers created the genre of the Spaghetti Western. That makes “The Drop” an Amstel Eastern. The cast and crew of this New Jersey mob movie hail from the mean streets of Belgium, the land of waffles, chocolate and blonde beer (director Martin R. Roskam, cinematographer Nicolas Karakatsanis and co-star Matthias Schoenaerts). To fill other roles, they reached out to North Sea ... more >

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The November Man

Pierce Brosnan and Olga Kurylenko
Directed by Roger Donaldson

Who got the band back together? Spy thriller "The November Man" stars Pierce Brosnan, the former James Bond, as a lethal CIA agent. The Damsel in Distress is Olga Kurylenko, the Bond Girl from Daniel Craig’s "Quantum of Solace." We are about one step away from having a villain with a third nipple. The "November Man" answers one evergreen debate among Bond fans: could Brosnan have played a ... more >

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BIRDPEOPLE

Anaïs Demoustier and Josh Charles
Directed by Pascale Ferran

IMDB's one-sentence description of Pascale Ferran's new film is a nearly-apt one: "an American arrives in Paris, checks into a hotel, turns off his cell phone and starts his life anew." French filmmaker Ferran, known for her "Lady Chatterley" and "Petits arrangements entre les morts" (2010) for which she won the Caméra D'Or in Cannes, took "Birdpeople" to Cannes again this year but earned some ... more >

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If I stay

Chloe Grace Moretz, Jamie Blakley and Mireille Enos
Directed by R.J. Cutler

When starlet Anne Baxter preyed on aging stage legend Bette Davis in “All About Eve,” did anyone figure that paradigm would eventually shift to middle school? Every two years we chop down the last teen star so that a new one can rise in the sunlight. You know Stewart and Lindsay and Fanning and Fanning, Knightley and Woodley and Ronan and Breslin. But do you recall, the greatest teen-actress of ... more >

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What now? Remind me

Joaquim Pinto and Nuno Leonel
Directed by Joaquim Pinto

What can you do when you know that death is approaching? Joaquim Pinto contracted HIV and hepatitis C twenty years ago. In this film-diary which he directed he reveals his innermost thoughts as he lines up one difficult day with another, powerless to do anything about his debilitating afflictions. And yet, his documentary is less about the philosophical implications of life and death as it is, ... more >

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BOOM KAPOW | IT’S GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY

Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana and Bradley Cooper
Directed by James Gunn

As a critic it’s important to remember that there have always been bad movies. While Godard was at his peak and Arthur Penn and Warren Beatty were making "Bonnie and Clyde," Hollywood was unrolling horrible Cold War spoofs and beach blanket movies. The bad fade. The good last. It gets really hard sometimes. I tried to keep that in mind while suffering through "Guardians of the Galaxy," the ... more >

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A MOST WANTED MAN

Philip Seymour Hoffman and Nina Hoss
Directed by Anton Corbijn

In "An Unwanted Man" Philip Seymour Hoffman is Gunther Bachmann, the leader of a secret team working for the German government fighting the war against terror from Hamburg. The film follows a plan to bring down a doctor (Homayoun Ershadi, who was seen notably in Abbas Kiarostami's "Taste of Cherry" in 1987) suspected of financing terrorism and Al-Qaeda. Bachmann works with a tight-knit posse ... more >