Jarmusch’s vampire film is lifeless

“Only Lovers Left Alive” is set in the modern day, but everything seems a little darker than the world we inhabit. The protagonists are vampires, but not the usual kind — they get their food from hospital blood banks and spend most of their time brooding about, making indie rock music. At least, Adam (Tom […]


Transcendence’ reaches farther than it can grasp

In its first few minutes, “Transcendence” announces that somewhere in the near future, all of our technology will fail. In the opening of this sci-fi film, cell phones lie strewn across the street and keyboards are used to prop up doors, as people gather around barrel fires. It doesn’t seem entirely bleak — people seem […]


‘The Lego Movie’ refreshing, whimsical

Movies have been used to sell toys since “Star Wars: Episode IV” (1977) hit movie theatres. Making movies about toys in order to sell more toys has been increasingly popular with the releases of “Toy Story” (1995) and “Transformers” (2007). The result of this trend has been corporate, forgettable and bland summer blockbusters, and “The […]


‘The Lego Movie’ refreshing, whimsical

Movies have been used to sell toys since “Star Wars: Episode IV” (1977) hit movie theatres. Making movies about toys in order to sell more toys has been increasingly popular with the releases of “Toy Story” (1995) and “Transformers” (2007). The result of this trend has been corporate, forgettable and bland summer blockbusters, and “The […]


‘Catching Fire’ is compelling, entertaining

When we last left Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence), she had just won her dystopian state’s Hunger Games, where she defied the rule of the totalitarian Capitol by saving her fellow contestant Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson). In “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire,” the forces of the Capitol – led by President Snow (Donald Sutherland) – are […]


‘Catching Fire’ is compelling, entertaining

When we last left Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence), she had just won her dystopian state’s Hunger Games, where she defied the rule of the totalitarian Capitol by saving her fellow contestant Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson). In “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire,” the forces of the Capitol — led by President Snow (Donald Sutherland) — are […]


‘Ender’s Game’ succeeds as compelling sci-fi film

Classic novels have a long tradition of resisting successful film adaptations, and science-fiction stories are all the more challenging to remodel for the screen. In particular, Orson Scott Card’s 1985 bestselling novel “Ender’s Game” has a history of being called “unfilmable” due to its violence, heavy plot and author, whose bigoted politics have often overshadowed […]


‘Ender’s Game’ succeeds as compelling sci-fi film

Classic novels have a long tradition of resisting successful film adaptations, and science-fiction stories are all the more challenging to remodel for the screen. In particular, Orson Scott Card’s 1985 bestselling novel “Ender’s Game” has a history of being called “unfilmable” due to its violence, heavy plot and author, whose bigoted politics have often overshadowed […]


‘Kill Your Darlings’ shines with captivating performances

The lives of the Beat Generation have been visited time and time again — not least by the Beats themselves — but “Kill Your Darlings” sets itself apart as a lively look at the Beats’ collegiate days and the violence and romance that defined their earlier years together. Propelled by captivating performances, director John Krokidas’ […]


Liberal Arts’ is nostalgic, yet fresh

“No one ever feels like an adult,” an old professor quips halfway through “Liberal Arts,” writer?director?actor Josh Radnor’s sophomore effort. This sentiment reflects the film’s central worry: that growing up is a sham and we are eternally trapped in the roller coaster of youth. An introspective and charming film, “Liberal Arts” captures the emotional experience […]


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