Category Archives: Movies

Review: Laurel Canyon: A Place in Time

There will be two documentaries released in Tokyo theaters this month about Laurel Canyon, the leafy residential adjunct to Los Angeles that acted as an incubator for the storied Southern California Sound of the late 60s and early 70s. This … Continue reading

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Review: Marry Me

It strikes me as odd that Marry Me is based on a graphic novel, since I tend to associate the form with science fiction, young adult themes, or horror/suspense stories. Marry Me is about as generic a rom-com as you’re … Continue reading

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Review: Paris, 13th District

There’s much to like about Jacques Audiard’s breezy feature, adapted by Audiard, Lea Mysius, and Celine Sciamma from a series of stories by Adrian Tomine, and even more to admire in the way it downplays the kind of desperation that … Continue reading

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Review: C’mon C’mon

Though I have mixed feelings about Mike Mills’ quasi-autobiographical family dramedies, I really liked 20th Century Women because it didn’t make a big deal of the central character’s iconoclasm. His latest film, which is not based on Mills’ own life … Continue reading

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Review: Hatching

Horror films that double as allegories have their work cut out for them. Most horror aficionados just want a good jolt or two and having to navigate the symbols and metaphors can be tiresome. Swedish filmmaker Hanna Bergholm’s debut feature … Continue reading

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Review: Dear Comrades!

Given what’s going on in Ukraine right now, many people may feel disinclined to take in a Russian movie, but the release in Japan of Dear Comrades!, a 2020 film by Andrei Konchalovsky, is timely in a chilling way. Based … Continue reading

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Review: The Sparks Brothers

Nice bit of timing on the part of the involved local distributors to arrange for Edgar Wright’s documentary about the veteran pop group Sparks to open one week after the Japan release of Leos Carax’s musical (operetta?) Annette, for which … Continue reading

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Review: Valentina

This award-winning film, the debut feature of Cassio Pereira dos Santos, addresses the predicament of trans teens in a country like Brazil, which has certain built-in cultural mores that are at once accepting of sexual minorities and mistrustful of them. … Continue reading

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Review: Shadow in the Cloud

Though she’s done some nominally serious movies, Chloe Grace Moretz seems to be gunning for Milla Jovovich’s position as the premier female sci-fi-action hero of our age. Though Shadow in the Cloud has all the trappings of a project whipped … Continue reading

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Review: Casting By

As everyone knows, movies are a collaborative art form, and while critics tend to judge their quality based on reductionist criteria concerning direction, writing, and acting, more often than not our opinions are shaped by more prosaic choices. As Martin … Continue reading

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