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items tagged with Anthony Hopkins

The Needle in the Haystack: "Zero Dark Thirty," "Gangster Squad," "A Haunted House," and "Hitchcock"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2013-01-14 18:45:03

Jessica Chastain in Zero Dark ThirtyZERO DARK THIRTY

As an orchestrator of cinematic suspense, Kathryn Bigelow might currently be without peer in American movies. The sequences of Jeremy Renner dismantling explosives in the director’s Oscar-winning The Hurt Locker were miniature masterpieces of sustained excitement; despite our knowing, through much of the film, that it was too early for Renner’s Sergeant William James to be killed off, each masterfully shot and edited act of bomb disposal vibrated with legitimate threat. In Zero Dark Thirty – Bigelow’s and screenwriter Mark Boal’s fictionalized docu-drama about the decade-long search for Osama bin Laden – nearly every scene feels like a ticking time bomb. There is, of course, never any doubt about the narrative’s outcome, yet Bigelow’s gifts for composition and pacing ensure that you still watch the picture with rapt attention and dread. And blessedly, she’s also a spectacular entertainer. The movie is tough-minded and sometimes tough to watch, but even when Bigelow is fraying your nerves, she’s tickling your senses.


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... And "Jack & Jill" Came Tumbling After: 150 Movies Not on 2011's 10-Favorites List
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Feature Stories

2012-01-01 12:00:00

The MuppetsEvery January, I share my numerical rankings of the 10 most enjoyable movies I saw during the previous year. I do not, however, share my numerical rankings of all the other titles I caught during those 12 months, as such a list would, I think, be hopelessly arbitrary, terribly self-indulgent, and something that only a person with too much time on his hands would attempt.

Let’s get cracking, shall we?


Read More About ... And "Jack & Jill" Came Tumbling After: 150 Movies Not On 2011's 10-Favorites List...


If He Had a Hammer ... : "Thor" and "Something Borrowed"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2011-05-08 22:53:36

Chris Hemsworth and Natalie Portman in ThorTHOR

Prior to the film’s release, I wouldn’t have thought any director a worse candidate for helming the hugely budgeted comic-book adaptation Thor than Kenneth Branagh, that frequent interpreter of Shakespeare whose one foray into Hollywood-blockbuster(-wannabe) terrain was 1994’s monstrously terrible Frankenstein. In retrospect, I’m not sure any director would have proved a better choice. Two days after seeing Branagh’s grandly produced yet subtly frisky entertainment, I’m still a bit shocked at how strong the results are; against all logic, Thor’s director has successfully melded his movie’s wildly disparate elements into an action-packed thrill ride (in 3D!) that, incredibly, also manages to be emotionally satisfying, and oftentimes funny as hell.


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Out on a Limb: "127 Hours" and "The Rite"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2011-01-30 22:23:03

James Franco in 127 Hours127 HOURS

At my first screening of Danny Boyle’s 127 Hours (which I initially caught in Chicagoland over Thanksgiving weekend), I was immediately knocked out by how vibrantly entertaining it was – hardly a fait accompli when a movie climaxes with a bloody act of self-amputation.


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Sparks, and No Sparks: "Dear John," "Valentine's Day," and "The Wolfman"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2010-02-15 15:32:07

Channing Tatum and Amanda Seyfried in Dear JohnDEAR JOHN

Since no one's been pressing a gun to my head, I haven't read Nicholas Sparks' Dear John, which concerns a pair of star-crossed lovers whose romance is derailed by the young man's Army tenure. I have, however, seen director Lasse Hallström's screen version, which apparently follows the novel's blueprint faithfully (albeit with an altered ending), so permit me a question: Does Sparks have absolutely no shame?


Read More About Sparks, And No Sparks: "Dear John," "Valentine's Day," And "The Wolfman"...





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