moonlight

NYFF Film Review: ‘Moonlight’ Captures Urban Truth in a Masterful Manner

NEW YORK FILM FESTIVAL 2016: A magnificent portrait of urban life, Barry Jenkins‘ astounding “Moonlight” captures the essence of a generation. Acting as urban cinema’s “Brokeback Mountain” and “Boyhood,” it’s as if we got to see “Ennis” and “Mason” grow up in a different culture and era. In this case, it’s even more powerful and profound. […]

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NYFF Film Review: ‘I, Daniel Blake’ Soars on Wit, Humor and Heart

NEW YORK FILM FESTIVAL 2016: What a joyous, funny and moving portrait of man. “I, Daniel Blake” from director Ken Loach ravishes and lives in the mind and hearts of its characters, holding tightly the raw and emotional power that they bestow upon their world. The centerpiece is that of the two invigorating performances from its stars […]

Queen of Katwe

Film Review: ‘Queen of Katwe’ Is Charming but Imperfect

One wouldn’t expect to find a chess prodigy hidden in the slums of Katwe, Uganda. Yet that’s exactly what happened when Phiona Mutesi happened upon Robert Katende’s Pioneers on an afternoon that would ultimately change her life. There is a lot to enjoy about Mira Nair‘s new film “Queen of Katwe.” From the inspirational story […]

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Film Review: ‘Other People’ Offers a Sensitive and Beautiful Tale With Molly Shannon Shining

First-time director Chris Kelly‘s sensitive and thoughtful “Other People” is one of the year’s most joyous surprises. Smart, subtle, and utterly heart-wrenching, Kelly constructs an exceptional dramedy that touches all the senses. Boasting two sensational performances from stars Jesse Plemons and Molly Shannon, it’s one of the best independent features to hit screens this year. […]

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Film Review: Joseph Gordon-Levitt Mesmerizes in Oliver Stone’s Gripping Biopic ‘Snowden’

Folks, Oliver Stone is back. “Snowden” is not only the filmmaker’s best work in some time, it manages to do something fairly difficult. It maintains Stone’s righteous indignation and love of conspiracy while still focusing solely on telling a compelling story. Stone isn’t preaching to the choir or yelling on a soapbox, but merely delivering […]

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Film Review: ‘Florence Foster Jenkins’ Sings Despite Wonky Notes

How do you solve a problem like Florence? The easy answer, add Meryl Streep. The more complex answer, surround her with interesting co-stars and filmmakers. For as great as Meryl is, “Florence Foster Jenkins” once again illustrates how Streep’s game is raised when she is with the right people. On paper, the film sounds almost […]

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TIFF Review: ‘Vaya’ and ‘We Are Never Alone’ Bring Harrowing Tales of Two Cities

When it comes to international film festivals, it’s almost a given that there will be at least one dark multi-narrative film among the lineup. This year’s Toronto International Film Festival was no exception. Hailing from two countries as vastly different as South Africa and the Czech Republic, respectively, directors Akin Omotoso and Petr Václav brought a […]

birthofanation

TIFF Review: Nate Parker’s ‘The Birth of a Nation’ Is a Promising, Passionate Debut

When Nate Parker‘s directorial debut “The Birth of a Nation” was announced as a Sundance selection, the knee-jerk reaction was to be expected. Many groaned that we didn’t need another “slavery film.” The concern was understandable, especially in a year that included “Underground” and “Roots” on TV. But as its Sundance reception showed, this passionate […]

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TIFF Review: ‘Joe Cinque’s Consolation’ Is an Unsettling True Crime Story

Disturbing, unsettling, infuriating. These are the adjectives that will likely come to mind in response to “Joe Cinque’s Consolation,” the debut feature from director Sotiris Dounoukos. A misanthropist’s delight, this unflattering portrait of Australian society truly gets under the skin. Based on a true story which was later adapted into a book, “Joe Cinque’s Consolation” retraces […]