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  • Malcolm & Marie

    Malcolm & Marie

    ★★★½

    “Look at me. I’m the last person standing. Hold on to me for dear life.“

    Artists benefit creatively from restrictions. In the coming months, that axiom will be put to the test as we start to get a look at some of the feature films made in the latter part of 2020 with strict social distancing measures in place. The first meaningful entry in the COVID cinematic sweepstakes is Sam Levinson’s ‘Malcolm & Marie,’ a black-and-white two-hander taking place in a…

  • News of the World

    News of the World

    ★★★

    “It’s hard finding your way.”

    Leave it to Tom Hanks to enliven a dusty Western-like ‘News of the World.’ Without him, Paul Greengrass’s latest would be as empty and decrepit as a West Texas ghost town. With him, humanity and energy pour forth from an actor who’s cornered the market on genial characters with unbending resolve. 

    Folks like Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd, a sixty-year-old Civil War vet, visited far too often by the aftermath of death, both in his capacity…

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  • Falling

    Falling

    “Don’t be a coward son, speak your mind.”

    In 1985, Viggo Mortensen debuted as an Amish farmer in Peter Weir’s ‘Witness.’ Since then, he’s played a once and future king in the Tolkein universe, a father navigating the apocalypse, a Russian hitman, a prejudiced personal driver, and picked up three Academy Award nominations along the way. However, until now, he’s never directed, and though an accomplished author, ‘Falling’ marks Moretensen’s first screenplay to successfully enter into production as well. The…

  • The Mauritanian

    The Mauritanian

    ★★

    “He’s not a suspect. He’s a witness.”

    Kevin Macdonald’s ‘The Mauritanian’ is another film that weds the doomy stylistics of ‘70s-era conspiracy thrillers to a story about the CIA’s post-9/11 torture program. While it’s based on Guantanamo Diary, the 2015 memoir written by Mohamedou Ould Slahi while he was imprisoned at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp in Cuba for fourteen years with no formal charges leveled against him and no trial, ‘The Mauritanian’ mostly hopscotches between American crusaders as they…

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  • The White Tiger

    The White Tiger

    ★½

    “You were looking for the key for years, but the door was always open.”

    Economic crisis. Sweeping statements about a country and its culture, polarized by income inequality. An unreliable, bootstrapping narrator. Mercifully, this isn’t ‘Hillbilly Elegy.’ “The White Tiger,” Aravind Adiga’s bestseller, was a riveting satire when it dropped towards the tail end of the 2008 financial crisis and a modern look at India with far more bite than the Dickensian ‘Slumdog Millionaire,’ which came out a mere month…

  • My Psychedelic Love Story

    My Psychedelic Love Story

    ★★½

    “It’s true, my story. It’s true. It’s very strange. It’s absolutely true.”

    So says Joanna Harcourt-Smith, the focus (and only interview subject) of Errol Morris’ latest, ‘My Psychedelic Love Story.’ And boy does she have a wild tale to tell: of how she became, for a short time in the early ‘70s, the inseparable lover and public champion of LSD guru Timothy Leary. Morris keeps the pace rapid, and the visual motifs imaginative (the use of LSD drawings as illustrative device is…