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items tagged with Bruce McGill

Secret Agent Woman: "Fair Game" and "The Warrior's Way"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2010-12-05 19:03:54

Naomi Watts and Sean Penn in Fair GameFAIR GAME

Presuming that it might not open locally, I caught director Doug Liman’s Fair Game – in which Naomi Watts plays outed CIA operative Valerie Plame, and Sean Penn plays Plame’s husband, former ambassador Joe Wilson – in Chicagoland on Thanksgiving night. I thought the movie was intelligent and intensely well acted, but still didn’t feel much toward it, and with so many of the film’s characters arguing over events that, by 2010, have become old (if still infuriating) news, my eyelids grew droopy during a few scenes too many.


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Pilot Lite: “Amelia,” “Saw VI,” “Law-Abiding Citizen,” and “Good Hair”
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2009-10-25 21:39:21

Hilary Swank and Richard Gere in AmeliaAMELIA

As barrier-breaking aviatrix Amelia Earhart in director Mira Nair's Amelia, Hilary Swank is stylized yet approachable - exactly the kind of down-to-earth, pre-feminist spitfire that a squarely reverential bio-pic calls for. Her Katharine Hepburn cadences take some getting used to, but Swank charges through her scenes with natural authority and winning gumption, and when she smiles, the whole of Earhart's glorious aerial experiences seems to shine through her toothy grin. It's a lovely, sincere Earhart impression, and might've really been something if the actress wasn't being continually undermined by the direction, the script, the score, and most of her co-stars.


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She Is... Sasha Fierce: "Obsessed," "The Soloist," and "Earth"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2009-04-27 12:44:20

Idris Elba and Ali Larter in ObsessedOBSESSED

A Fatal Attraction without the slow-cooking rabbit - and, strangely, without the adultery - the Steve Shill thriller Obsessed reaches its raison d'être in the final reel, when Beyoncé Knowles' wronged wife stands off against Ali Larter's vixen from hell, and the pop star hisses, "I knew it would come to this." So did we all, Beyoncé. But did it have to come so late?


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Meet the Prez: “W.”, “The Express,” and “Max Payne”
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2008-10-22 08:17:04

Josh Brolin in W.W.

I'm not exactly sure what kind of movie Oliver Stone's W. is trying to be, but that just makes it easier to appreciate it for what it is: A terrifically entertaining political comedy (with tragic undertones) that plays a bit like a sequel to Hal Ashby's 1979 Being There, in which a series of borderline-ludicrous circumstances find a friendly, well-meaning simpleton elected commander-in-chief. Now what?


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Affleck Drags Down Latest Clancy Thriller: "The Sum of All Fears" and "Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2002-06-05 00:00:00

Ben Affleck, Morgan Freeman, and Lev Prygounov in The Sum of All FearsTHE SUM OF ALL FEARS

In The Sum of All Fears, the latest film adaptation of one of Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan thrillers – the other movies being The Hunt for Red October, Patriot Games, and Clear & Present Danger – America and Russia are headed for war. In a horrifying scene that, given our national consciousness, might deeply unsettle audiences, a nuclear device has detonated at a football stadium in Baltimore, and all indicators point to the Russians and their new president (Ciaran Hinds) masterminding the attack. Our government, and our mildly befuddled president (James Cromwell), are readying a counter-assault that will inevitably lead to World War III, but Jack Ryan, our one-man CIA, knows that something’s just not right about our leaders’ assumptions, and tries to ... hey, wait a minute, is that Ben Affleck playing Ryan?


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