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items tagged with Ethan Hawke

Deputy Dogged: "Sinister 2," "Hitman: Agent 47," and "American Ultra"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2015-08-23 04:00:52

James Ransone in Sinister 2SINISTER 2

You know the feeling you get when you go to summer camp and make a great new friend, but he/she isn’t there the next summer, or the summer after that, and you end up forgetting about that friend until the next summer, when, all of a sudden, there he/she is? I don’t, because I never went to summer camp. But I’m betting that sensation is similar to what I felt in the first minutes of Sinister 2 once I recognized James Ransone, who played Ethan Hawke’s adorably dippy deputy pal in 2012’s Sinister. Although the actor has amassed a bunch of film and TV credits since then (albeit not in anything I’ve seen), I can’t say I’ve thought of him even once since the release of that low-budget horror hit. Yet the second Ransone’s character showed up in director Cirián Foy’s follow-up, with his chronic awkwardness and puppy-dog eyes and intense likability, it was like being reunited with a long-lost buddy whom you’re ashamed to have let slip away. Ransone’s presence here – as our romantic lead, no less! – was a hugely welcome surprise. That Sinister 2 didn’t at all suck might’ve been a bigger one.
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Time Flies: "Boyhood"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2014-08-11 19:29:50

Ellar Coltrane in BoyhoodBOYHOOD

Late in writer/director Richard Linklater’s Boyhood – the finest movie yet by the creator of Dazed & Confused and the Before Sunrise/Sunset/Midnight trilogy – there’s a simple scene between a mother and her son. The son, who is either nearing or has just turned 18, is heading to college and is packing a bag in his room; he and his mom talk while she pays bills in the kitchen. Then, seemingly out of nowhere, the mother starts weeping. Her son enters the room and nonchalantly asks what’s wrong (this is hardly the first time he’s seen her cry), and she replies with a litany of romantic, professional, locational, and maternal decisions that we’ve watched her make over the course of the film. She asks where all that time went. Her son, offering a slight smile of empathy, goes back to his room and continues packing. The mother buries her face in her hands, and says, “I just thought there would be more.”


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Labored Day Weekend: "Closed Circuit," "Instructions Not Included," "The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones," "One Direction: This Is Us," and "Getaway"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2013-09-02 05:01:17

Eric Bana and Ciaran Hinds in Closed CircuitIt’s a commonly held belief, mostly because it’s generally true, that no worthwhile movies open on either the last weekend of August or Labor Day weekend. So I hope I wasn’t alone, among reviewers, in feeling trepidation about my most recent cineplex duties, given that this year, in a calendar rarity, those weekends were one and the same. (Would the films be twice as bad as usual? Would there be twice as many bad films to contend with?) But I’m pleased, and somewhat shocked, to report that my latest movie-going experiences weren’t relentlessly grim. They were just relentlessly weird, especially considering I had the best time at the weekend’s worst picture, and the lineup’s most professionally rendered offering made me fall dead asleep.


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Walking the Walk, Talking the Talk: "Before Midnight"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2013-06-17 11:11:18

Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke in Before MidnightBEFORE MIDNIGHT

Richard Linklater’s Before Midnight – the third and possibly final installment in the director’s ongoing screen romance that began with 1995’s Before Sunrise and continued with 2004’s Before Sunset – climaxes with a half-hour-long fight. You could, of course, say the same about most every superhero or Transformers picture released nowadays. The big difference, however, is that this particular battle royale takes place in the confines of one room and involves all of two characters. The bigger difference, speaking personally, is that this is one 30-minute screen fight that I actually wished would go on forever – though an eternal loop of the movie’s first 70 minutes wouldn’t have been unwelcome, either.


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Lawless Execution: "The Purge" and "The Internship"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2013-06-09 18:40:19

Ethan Hawke in The PurgeTHE PURGE

If you blended The Hunger Games, David Fincher’s Panic Room, and Shirley Jackson’s classic short story “The Lottery” with generous helpings of ice, you’d wind up with the scare-flick smoothie that is The Purge. An eventually underwhelming yet bluntly effective chiller by writer/director James DeMonaco, the movie, admittedly, does lose its way before its 90 minutes are up. But considering how few modern releases in its genre find their way at all, it’s hard to deny the primal pleasures of DeMonaco’s outing, even if the film remains more thought-provoking in concept than it proves to be on-screen.


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