Movie Reviews - Page 4

‘Little Men’ Review: Ira Sachs’ Touching Drama on Boyhood, Friendship and Gentrification

by Erin Whitney January 28, 2016 @ 3:33 PM
Sundance Film Festival
Few filmmakers capture male relationships with as much compassion and New Yorkers with as much authenticity as Ira Sachs does. In ‘Little Men,’ the follow-up to 2014's ‘Love Is Strange,’ the filmmaker once again looks at two lives pulled apart by financial woes and the New York housing system. In the 2014 drama his leads were a newlywed gay couple forced to move out of their Manhattan apartment, and in his latest Sachs shifts his focus to two teenage boys caught in the middle of a lease dispute.

‘The Finest Hours’ Review: Solid Historical Drama Amidst Stormy Seas

by Matt Singer January 26, 2016 @ 10:59 AM
For decades, there’s been a clear delineation of roles in the Affleck clan: Ben’s the leading man, Casey’s the character actor. Ben has the perfect chin and lustrous hair, not to mention the major height advantage. (He’s almost half a foot taller than Casey, according to IMDb.) Even when Casey Affleck takes a central role in a film, it’s almost always in material that explores the unlikelihood of a guy like him becoming a hero (think The Assassination of Jesse James By the Coward Robert Ford or Gone Baby Gone). But that’s not the case with the new historical adventure The Finest Hours. There’s nothing quirky or unconventional about Affleck’s charisma here. Even with a more traditional leading man co-anchoring the story and serving as its de facto protagonist, Affleck commands the screen with quiet, steely resolve and intense eyes. At 40 years old, he’s blossomed into a full-fledged movie star.

‘Sing Street’ Review: The Next Great Musical From the Director of ‘Once’

by Mike Sampson January 25, 2016 @ 10:09 AM
The Weinstein Co.
Is it OK to jump out of your seat and the end of the movie and pump your fist with excitement like it’s the end of an epic, transcendent rock concert? Because that’s what I wanted to do at the end of Sing Street, the latest romance musical film from...

‘Captain Fantastic’ Review: Viggo Mortensen Raises A Family in the Wilderness

by Erin Whitney January 25, 2016 @ 9:22 AM
Sundance Film Festival
The beginning of writer, director Matt Ross’ ‘Captain Fantastic’ feels like both a naturalistic utopia and a cult of dangerous ideas. Bodevan (George McKay), the eldest of Ben Cash’s (Viggo Mortensen) six children, hides in the woods in camouflage as he waits to attack a deer. After the slaughter, Ben smears the animal’s blood across his son’s face and offers him the heart consume. This is the Cash family’s version of a Bar Mitzvah, Bodevan’s rite of passage into manhood.

‘White Girl’ Review: An Unflinching Look at Young White Privilege in Gentrified NYC

by Erin Whitney January 24, 2016 @ 4:12 PM
Sundance Film Festival
As soon as I left the theater, still shaken from Elizabeth Wood’s ‘White Girl,’ I Googled the title of the film see what else the filmmaker has done. My finger must have slipped on the Google Search recommendations, as the results for “white girl wasted” popped up. I looked down at the Urban Dictionary definition highlighted at the top, a description that only just begins to capture the perilous, infantile destruction frequently found among, and willingly created by, a demographic often found at New York City bars and clubs.

‘Manchester by the Sea’ Review: Casey Affleck Shines in This Powerful Tearjerker

by Mike Sampson January 24, 2016 @ 3:12 PM
If you tried to describe Manchester by the Sea to someone else it would sound an awful lot like many other indie dramas. Trouble white guy returns to his hometown to care for a relative. But that does not do justice to Kenneth Lonergan’s third...

‘Swiss Army Man’ Review: Paul Dano and Daniel Radcliffe Go On a Bizarre Fart-Fueled Adventure

by Erin Whitney January 23, 2016 @ 2:20 PM
Joyce Kim
If you’ve heard anything about ‘Swiss Army Man’ then you already know one very important detail: Daniel Radcliffe is a farting corpse. That may be enough to make you stop reading and decide this film isn’t for you. After all, there were walkouts during the premiere on Friday night (though when aren’t there walkouts?). But wait, there is more to this completely nutty adventure of hypnotic imagery and childlike fantasy. If you’re intrigued by the idea of how such an obscene and immature level of humor can give way to one of the most enjoyably bizarre, confounding and visually inspired movie-watching experiences, then bear with me.

‘Wiener-Dog’ Review: Love Dogs? Don’t See This Movie

by Mike Sampson January 23, 2016 @ 1:06 PM
Annapurna Pictures
Looking at that photo above, one might think that Wiener-Dog is a charming, little movie about a dachshund. Even the synopsis of the film provided on Sundance’s official site provides this description: Wiener-Dog tells several stories featuring...

‘Other People’ Review: A Clichéd Cancer Dramedy Starring Jesse Plemons

by Erin Whitney January 22, 2016 @ 3:30 PM
In ‘Other People,’ the opening night film at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival, Jesse Plemons (‘Fargo,’ ‘Breaking Bad’) plays a struggling gay comedy writer who travels home to care for his terminally ill mother. If that synopsis doesn’t shout Sundance, nothing