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items tagged with Foreign Films

Biting (Off) the Hand That Feeds You: "The Cabin in the Woods," "The Three Stooges," "The Raid: Redemption," and "Lockout"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2012-04-15 21:33:49

Fran Kranz, Chris Hemsworth, and Anna Hutchison in The Cabin in the WoodsTHE CABIN IN THE WOODS

Hollywood’s been leading toward it for decades, and with the blithely enjoyable, exceedingly clever The Cabin in the Woods, it’s finally happened: A movie has been released in which practically everything about it – its plot, its twists, its performers, its characters, its themes, its jokes – could be considered a spoiler.


Read More About Biting (Off) The Hand That Feeds You: "The Cabin In The Woods," "The Three Stooges," "The Raid: Redemption," And "Lockout"...


Schadenfreude-ian Slips: “Inside Job,” “Dogtooth,” and “The Mechanic”
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2011-01-30 22:16:31

Elliot Spitzer in Inside JobINSIDE JOB

You might not think that director Charles Ferguson’s Inside Job, the newly (and deservedly) Oscar-nominated documentary about 2008’s global economic meltdown, would offer much in the way of participatory, audience-goosing entertainment. After all, this isn’t exactly a Michael Moore doc we’re dealing with here. Employing dozens of lucid, well-reasoned interviews with financial experts and reams of statistics and graphs, Ferguson’s strong, angry, yet level-headed explanation of our current financial crisis is the polar opposite, in temperament and tone, of a Fahrenheit 9/11 or Capitalism: A Love Story. But while the experience of the impeccably photographed, sharply edited Inside Job is a mostly dead-serious one, damn but my audience appeared to have a good time at it – or, perhaps it’s more appropriate to say, a cathartic time.


Read More About Schadenfreude-Ian Slips: “Inside Job,” “Dogtooth,” And “The Mechanic”...


A "Scandal"-ous Waste of Skill: "Notes on a Scandal," "Volver," "Smokin' Aces," and "The Hitcher"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2007-01-31 09:33:08

Cate Blanchett and Judi Dench in Notes on a ScandalNOTES ON A SCANDAL

In Richard Eyre's Notes on a Scandal, Judi Dench appears to be having an amazingly fine time playing an evil harridan. Why does the movie itself have to be such a dud? In the film, Dench portrays prickly history teacher Barbara Covett, who becomes pathologically obsessed with Sheba Hart (Cate Blanchett), a younger colleague in the art department. (As Barbara's last name suggests, Eyre's film, based on the novel by Zoë Heller, won't be much concerned with subtlety.) When Barbara discovers that the married Sheba has been carrying on with a 15-year-old student (Andrew Simpson), she uses the knowledge to surreptitiously gain Sheba's trust, in the hopes of turning their friendship into something more, shall we say, Sapphic. Subsequently, threats are made, careers are jeopardized, relationships are destroyed ... and why oh why isn't the movie more fun?


Read More About A "Scandal"-Ous Waste Of Skill: "Notes On A Scandal," "Volver," "Smokin' Aces," And "The Hitcher"...


No Guts, No Glory: "Letters from Iwo Jima," "The Last King of Scotland," and "Pan's Labyrinth"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2007-01-24 08:16:47

Letters from Iwo JimaFor devoted movie hounds, and those who enjoy getting caught up with potential Academy Award nominees, this past weekend was an embarrassment of riches, as Davenport's Showcase 53 presented the local debuts of Clint Eastwood's Letters from Iwo Jima, Kevin Macdonald's The Last King of Scotland, and Guillermo del Toro's Pan's Labyrinth. Of course, the wide(r) release of these three films makes good business sense - what better time for such specialized works to attract audiences if not the weekend after the Golden Globes and before the announcement of 2006 Oscar nominees? (Showcase 53 and Moline's Great Escape Theatre also, wisely, brought The Queen back to area screens - seriously, folks, it's so much fun! - and Great Escape re-opened Babel.)


Read More About No Guts, No Glory: "Letters From Iwo Jima," "The Last King Of Scotland," And "Pan's Labyrinth"...


Out of Step: "Stomp the Yard," "Alpha Dog," and "Curse of the Golden Flower"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2007-01-17 08:14:20

Columbus Short in Stomp the YardSTOMP THE YARD

Before seeing Stomp the Yard, in which a young hip-hop dancer from Los Angeles adjusts to fraternity life at Atlanta's Truth University, I didn't know much about step dancing. But after watching director Sylvain White's inspirational drama, I discovered that there are apparently two distinct types - there's great step dancing and then there's really great step dancing. Though the movie is ostensibly a coming-of-age story wherein our hero, DJ (Columbus Short), finds respect and love during his first year of school, it's really just 8 Mile or Bring It On for the dance world, as warring frats compete to see whose moves out-step whose. (Step dancing - frequently practiced at African-American universities - is a combination of marching and precise choreography, generally accompanied by chants and, in this movie's case, taunts.) Yet it's pretty easy to guess which groups of dancers will be considered the greatest in Stomp the Yard - it's whichever dancers go next.


Read More About Out Of Step: "Stomp The Yard," "Alpha Dog," And "Curse Of The Golden Flower"...





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