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Woody Allen’s “Cafe Society”

A great Allen vintage
Kristen Stewart and Jesse Eisenberg
Directed by Woody Allen

2016 is starting to shape up as the year of the love letter to Hollywood’s Golden Age. We started the year with the Coen Brothers's "Hail Caesar!," a kidnapping comedy set in a fictional fifties studio with million-dollar mermaids, crooning cowboys and blacklisted commie screenwriters. Still to come is Damien Chazelle’s musical "La La Land" with Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone. Stuck in the middle is ... more >

cafe-society-screencomment

Buoyant “Cafe Society” opens Cannes Festival

Film was shown this morning
Blake Lively, Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart
Directed by Woody Allen

The Cannes Festival opened today with the best possible film it could open with: the buoyant and lighthearted “Cafe Society,” directed by Woody Allen. I walked out of this morning’s screening with my spirits raised. But, then became quickly hungry for lunch. In Allen’s perfectly-told, jaunty tale a young man, played by Jesse Eisenberg, moves to L.A. from New York to find work. He meets the ... more >

The end of the tour

The end of the tour

Imagine the greatest conversation you've ever had
Jason Segel, Jesse Eisenberg and Joan Cusack
Directed by James Ponsoldt

David Foster Wallace is the much-celebrated author of the one thousand-page plus novel “Infinite Jest.” Not an easy read. But then, neither is “Ulysses,” or “Gravity’s Rainbow,” George Perec’s “Life: a User’s Manual” nor any number of boundary-blowing, epoch-making masterpieces that we crack open from time to time and know we will read some day. “Infinite Jest” I’d already given up on and picked ... more >

Night Moves

Dakota Fanning like you've never seen her before
Jesse Eisenberg and Dakota Fanning
Directed by Kelly Reichardt

Kelly Reichardt likes uncomplicated. As early as when “Wendy and Lucy” came out her films have testified to her ultra-sharp minimalism and efficiency. “Night Moves,” a genre film in which three environmentalists (they're David Koresh league, but for the tree-hugger set) conspire together to blow up a dam follows the same ethos of subtlety. In lieu and place of a psychological drama about ... more >

To rome with love (Penelope Cruz)

To Rome with love

Four stories intersecting in la bella città
Roberto Benigni, Alison Pill and Penelope Cruz
Directed by Woody Allen

Woody Allen continues his European wandering, this time taking on four stories centered around love, infidelity and fame and set in beautiful Rome, la bella città. Only the narrative is so slight and the comedy so unfunny that "To Rome with love" quickly grows tiresome. This is the first time that Allen has gone in front of the camera in a while and it helps because he gives himself all the ... more >

30 minutes or less

Loosely based on real events
Jesse Eisenberg, Danny McBride and Nick Swardson
Directed by Ruben Fleischer

Like any good pizza delivery driver with a bomb vest strapped to his body, 30 Minutes or Less knows how to get there, get the job done and get it over with with a second to spare. When it comes to explosives, every second counts, and there aren't many films with such a clear-eyed grasp of its premise's lifespan. Like a good pizza, it goes down with a smile before you can taste too much of it, ... more >

The Social Network

The wow factor
Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield and Justin Timberlake
Directed by David Fincher

I know I’m supposed to get out and help push. The fight for great cinema is on, and I’m expected to throw it into neutral, hop out, and chug-chug-chug with my hands on the door. We all have to get behind “The Social Network” and push the crowds to every mall across the country to see this, The Movie of a Generation. Can I tap the brakes just a little, just a little, without people saying ... more >