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The Best Way to Watch Movies: Can Home Viewing Really Ruin a Blockbuster?

It started, as so many things do these days, with a tweet. Over the weekend, IndieWire’s own Anne Thompson took to social media to share a recent interaction regarding the consumption of Denis Villeneuve’s sci-fi epic, “Dune,” which finally arrived in both domestic theaters and streaming on HBO Max after a year of pandemic-pushed delays. Thompson tweeted, “A friend of mine admitted he stopped watching Dune on @hbomaxafter 90 minutes and I lost it. That’s only one part of what’s wrong with…

Annie Clark Unzips Her St. Vincent Persona for Meta Mockumentary ‘The Nowhere Inn’

Annie Clark unzipped out of her St. Vincent musical persona more nakedly than ever with the release of the 2017 album “Masseduction,” a chronicle of fame and excess that deals in drugs, sex, and broken relationships. While Clark argues that “you do know me if you listen to my music,” as the former Polyphonic Spree guitarist turned divine solo act explained to IndieWire, that album offered listeners a more raw St. Vincent than they’d heard before, especially in the aftermath of high-profile romances…

Paul Schrader Got ‘So Blatant’ in His Critiques of Tiffany Haddish, and She Loved It: ‘Yes, Give Me More’

Few people in Hollywood work as hard as Tiffany Haddish, who took her 2017 breakout in the raucous “Girls Trip” and ran with it something fierce, starring in everything from “Night School” and “The Kitchen” to “Tuca & Bertie” and “The Last O.G.,” while also performing standup, penning a best-selling memoir, and winning both an Emmy (for hosting “Saturday Night Live”) and a Grammy (for Best Comedy Album). Her jam-packed schedule has slowly given way to more unexpected outings, including her most…

45 Must-See New Movies to Catch This Fall Season

After more than a year of pushed-back release dates, ever-evolving release plans, and a raft of virtual festivals and other in-home viewing pivots, the release date calendar is looking a touch more normal these days. While many things are still in flux, the fall of 2021 is shaping up to offer one of the more stacked seasons in recent memory. From festival favorites to awards contenders, scrappy indies and dark horses, this autumn might still contain its own surprises, but one thing…

The Best Movies of the 2021 Cannes Film Festival, According to 31 Critics

At the end of this year’s Cannes Film Festival, some pundits expressed surprise that “Titane,” the adventurous body-horror riff on gender fluidity from filmmaker Julia Ducournau, won the Palme d’Or over more traditional entries in Competition. However, many critics who covered the festival this year wouldn’t have it any other way. “Titane” topped IndieWire’s annual critics survey of the best films of the festival, with 31 critics participating from around the world, and Ducournau also topped the category for Best Director.

Recent reviews

Review by Kate Erbland

There’s little question that diving deep into the psyches of superheroes can render some dark finds (hell, Batman has turned that into a signature move over the course of numerous film franchises and television series, and that’s just one bat-eared dude), but the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s treatment of the state of young Spider-Man’s (Tom Holland) soul has continually added fresh dimension to an ever-expanding franchise. Spidey has always been an emotional dude — baseline biographical bits…

Review by David Ehrlich

It’s fitting — maybe even fate — that “Spider-Man: No Way Home” should be the biggest and virtually only movie in the world on the week that “The Matrix Resurrections” is released. Both are mega-budget, meta sequels that feed on our collective familiarity with their respective franchises. One is a poison, the other its antidote.

One is a safe plastic monument to the solipsism of today’s studio cinema; an orgiastic celebration of how studio filmmaking has…

Licorice Pizza

Licorice Pizza

★★★★★

Review by David Ehrlich

Gary Valentine is 15 going on 30, Alana Kane is “25” but in air quotes that basically allow her to be whatever it might say on her eventual dream ticket out of Encino, and they first cross paths on a pale 1973 morning in the San Fernando Valley at a strange moment in history when Old Hollywood and New Hollywood have started to overlap. Bing Crosby is still alive even though Jim Morrison is already dead,…

Finch

Finch

★★★½

Review by David Ehrlich

Even now, after surviving for more than 100 years and almost as many supposed deaths, the movies are still full of surprises. I submit to you the following as further proof of that phenomenon: At a time when feature-length sci-fi is dominated by franchise spectacle, someone made a tender, quiet, and terrifically affecting post-apocalyptic drama in which Tom Hanks plays a dying engineer named Finch Weinberg who builds a robot to care for his rescue dog…

Review by Jude Dry

Rarely do music documentaries transcend the conventional biopic form to appeal beyond its subject’s existing fan base, but one hopes a filmmaker would at least attempt to surpass mere hagiography. When the subject is also the executive producer, however, all bets at objectivity are off. The subject in this case is Kid Cudi (neé Scott Miscudi), the risk-taking alternative hiphop artist who upended the music industry with his self-released single “Day ‘N’ Night” in 2009, also…

Eternals

Eternals

★★½

Review by David Ehrlich

Alexander the Great may have wept when he found himself with no more worlds to conquer, but super-producer Kevin Feige — having usurped every screen on Earth and reshaped the global entertainment landscape in his own image — merely straightened his baseball cap and announced that it was time to begin the next phase of his crusade. He knew there were more planets to rule, more parallel dimensions to explore, and more revenue streams for Disney…

Review by David Ehrlich

Jeymes Samuel’s “The Harder They Fall” is a dynamite Black Western that doesn’t waste any time putting its cards on the table. “While the events of this story are fictional…” reads the opening scrawl, “These. People. Existed.” The point couldn’t be clearer: This tense, propulsive, and ultra-glossy Netflix oater might lay a thick new Jay-Z track over the opening credits (of a film that he also produced) and assemble an Avengers-worthy team of obscure Black icons…

Review by Kate Erbland

As the big screen superhero milieu has only expanded over the last two decades, thanks to sequel after sequel, prequel after prequel, one piece has long been lacking: the really wacky spinoff that exists entirely on its own wavelength. What good is it to make dozens upon dozens of films and not allow any of them to get truly zany? Which was perhaps why Ruben Fleischer’s 2018 smash hit “Venom” was such a welcome surprise, an…