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THE FABELMANS: STEVEN  SPIELBERG’S ULTIMATE HOME MOVIE

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A handful of directors have given us movies about their youth, but none of their origin stories are as well-known as Steven Spielberg’s. In The Fabelmans the most famous and successful filmmaker of our time offers his version of the events…

THE RETURN OF TANYA TUCKER: FEATURING BRANDI CARLILE

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Everyone loves a good comeback story, as witness the current buzz surrounding actor Brendan Fraser, who’s been out of the limelight for a while. Embracing an underdog can seem like a cliché but rekindling a show-business career is no…

TILL: TRANSCENDING THE OBVIOUS

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I wasn’t looking forward to seeing Till and being reminded of the horrific fate that befell a 14-year-old black boy in Mississippi back in 1964. I hadn’t reckoned with the worldview of director and co-writer Chinonye Chukyu, who chose not to…

‘ARMAGEDDON TIME’ IS BEAUTIFUL

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The ability to remember details and summon emotions from one’s childhood is a gift, especially in the hands of a filmmaker as talented as James Gray. In Armageddon Time he fearlessly lays bare a crucial incident from his adolescence that haunts…

AMSTERDAM: AN ALMOST-GOOD MOVIE

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Look, I get it. It isn’t easy to craft an original screenplay, introducing an audience to newly-minted characters worth caring about, then building a three-act structure that makes perfect sense. David O. Russell has had more success than many…

THE GOOD BOSS: GOOD GOING

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Javier Bardem essays the title role in The Good Boss, and that is how his character would describe himself. He inherited from his father a factory that makes scales—all sizes and kinds—and presides over a hundred or so workers that he…

BACK TO THE DRIVE-IN

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April Wright has made several good documentaries, includingGoing Attractions: The Definitive Story of the Movie Palace(in which I appear)and Going Attractions: The Definitive Story of the American Drive-in Movie. The latter film is bathed in an understandable nostalgia for the kind…

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