• The-Coronation-650x400

    Review: Legend of Korra “The Coronation”

    Wednesday, October 22, 2014

    “The Coronation” sets up a lot of conflicts and plot devices that will likely pay off big time later in the season.  First and foremost, the ruthless Kuvira has been pushed firmly into “main antagonist” territory.  She has the makings of a great villain. She’s savagely intimidating and always gets what she wants; a potentially […]

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  • two-days-one-night-cannes-2014-5

    PFF23 Review: Two Days One Night

    Tuesday, October 21, 2014

    In the haunting Two Days, One Night, directors Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne add a profound level of morality drama to their customarily brilliant trove of social reality themes explored since their outstanding first film, Le Promesse (1997). What is unique this time is they are working with an actress who is emerging as one of […]

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  • the-last-five-years-toronto-film-festival

    PFF23 Review: The Last Five Years

    Tuesday, October 21, 2014

    The intermittently uplifting yet often pretentious The Last Five Years contains hardly any dialogue that is not sung. Pleasantly containing several songs of depth and wit, the film struggles with the thinnest of story lines and its pleased-with-itself structure. Anna Kendrick, who is very good, presents her character, Cathy’s story backwards from the end, while […]

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  • large_Human-Capital_web_3

    PFF23 Review: Human Capital

    Tuesday, October 21, 2014

    Human Capital blends a razor-sharp depiction of Italian class tension with an engrossing mystery. Based on a novel by American author Stephen Amidon, the film unfolds in separate chapters, each of which repeats the same events from the different perspectives of various characters. The film, deriving its title from the world of insurance, boasts powerful […]

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  • girlhood-karidja-toure-assa-sylla-lindsay-karamoh-marietou-toure

    PFF23 Review: Girlhood

    Tuesday, October 21, 2014

    When Marieme establishes footing in a girl gang outside of Paris, she seems content to gain an identity she never was able to get from her traditional, broken family. A brother who treats her terribly eventually forces her to abandon her three girlfriends in the gang because she violates what he perceives as a cultural […]

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Oct
10

Review: The Judge

Hank, a slick, iconoclastic Chicago defense lawyer (Robert Downey Jr.) asks prospective jurors what message is on their bumper sticker. In the very first scene, he also pees on his opposing prosecutor while they both visit a men’s room. The wildly uneven yet ultimately successful The Judge constantly veers between a deep, estranged father/son tale […]

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Oct
9

Global Perspectives: Jean-Claude Djereke on Françafrique and Film

  Last semester I took a French course, and on the last day of class my professor gave an impassioned speech on the state of his country. He informed us of the injustice that French-colonized African countries still face. A few days later I got the chance to talk to him to learn more. We […]

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Oct
3

Review: Gone Girl

The less said about the plot of Gone Girl the better. Suffice it to say it is a biting, grisly crime film equally concerned with the nature of secrets in marriage, public media image, and the criminal mind than with the nuts and bolts of linear narration. Yet the story is so mind-blowing it would […]

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Oct
3

Review: Annabelle

Despite the constant opportunity to fall short Annabelle, the spinoff of James Wan’s The Conjuring, manages to be a genuinely scary and satisfying addition to the franchise. By its nature, Annabelle presents a lot challenges that could be damning for a less skilled filmmaker.  Not only is it a horror film about a haunted doll, […]

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Sep
30

Contest: “Dracula Untold” Screening Passes

Dracula Untold looks like a bad-ass remake of Nosferatu. Unlike that black and white boring classic, Dracula Untold is full of action, badassery, and more action. If you’d like to see this movie EARLY and for FREE!!! then email us at the info below for a chance to win screening passes in Philadelphia. Where: UA […]

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Sep
29

Trailer: Inherent Vice

The hotly anticipated new film from Paul Thomas Anderson has finally released its first trailer and it’s dazzling. Like the director’s breakout film Boogie Nights, his new project Inherent Vice recreates 1970s Los Angeles for its take on the Thomas Pynchon detective novel of the same name. With a star studded cast featuring Joaquin Phoenix, […]

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Sep
26

Review: The Skeleton Twins

Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader, playing estranged twins with depression issues, discordantly slip into Saturday Night Live mode once too often during The Skeleton Twins. At the film’s outset Maggie (Wiig) shows up in the hospital room of Milo (Hader) after he unsuccessfully tried to kill himself. The call to inform her of this event, […]

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Sep
20

Review: The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Them

The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Them is a distillation of two separate movies subtitled “Him” and “Her.” Viewers will get a chance to see the original two films in October. After watching “Them” a disturbing paradox presents itself. Admittedly, what seems like a half-baked, occasionally dull synthesis might have been caused by too harsh a […]

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Sep
20

Review: A Walk Among the Tombstones

Veteran screenwriter Scott Frank (Get Shorty, the underrated Out of Sight) directs revenge movie honcho Liam Neeson in this at once ugly and grim suspense-cum-horror tale. Based on the novel by Lawrence Block, Neeson portrays Matthew Scudder, an unlicensed private investigator and former NYPD cop. The film contains plenty of familiar crime movie fodder: Scudder’s […]

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Sep
12

Review: The Drop

A viewing of The Drop prompted a repeat examination of Tom Hardy’s “one man” film from earlier this year: the unique and compelling Locke. Taken in tandem, it’s hard to think of two recent performances that have displayed such a stunning array of acting chops. In The Drop, Hardy plays Bob Saginowski, a skittish, deliberate, […]

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Sep
7

Review: Starred Up

When it comes to an intensely raw portrayal of prison life, it would seem hard for any film to top Steven McQueen’s Hunger (2008). Startlingly, Starred Up submerges itself into even deeper territory. Weaving a father/son (they’re new prison mates) plot with starkly observed, uncanny realism, David Mackenzie’s film also includes three of the year’s […]

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Aug
29

Review: Trip to Italy

British comics Rob Brydon and Steve Coogan share an amusing penchant for performing incessant spot-on impressions in The Trip To Italy. In Michael Winterbottom’s sequel to 2011′s The Trip, the semi-fictional pair have the enviable task to take an all-expenses-paid excursion along Italy’s Liguria and Amalfi coast. Their mission: write a few reviews of high-end […]

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