Wildlife (2018)

PAUL DANO Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.  USA, 2018.  June Pictures, Nine Stories Productions, Sight Unseen Pictures.  Screenplay by Paul Dano, Zoe Kazan, based on the book by Richard Ford.  Cinematography by Diego García.  Produced by Paul Dano, Andrew Duncan, Jake Gyllenhaal, Riva Marker, Oren Moverman, Ann Ruark, Alex Saks.  Music by David Lang.  Production Design by Akin McKenzie.  Costume Design by…

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Mudbound (2017)

DEE REES Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBB.5.  USA, 2017.  Armory Films, ArtImage Entertainment, Black Bear Pictures, Elevated Films, MACRO, MMC Joule Films, Zeal Media.  Screenplay by Virgil Williams, Dee Rees, based on the novel by Hillary Jordan.  Cinematography by Rachel Morrison.  Produced by Carl Effenson, Sally Jo Effenson, Cassian Elwes, Christopher Lemole, Charles D. King, Kim Roth, Tim Zajaros.  Music by…

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Far From The Madding Crowd (2015)

BBB (out of 5) Carey Mulligan is perfectly cast as Thomas Hardy’s modern-minded heroine, a woman who refuses to be held back by marriage and prefers her own run of her property.  After rejecting the suit of handsome neighbouring farmer Matthias Schoenaerts, she inherits the estate of a wealthy uncle and becomes owner of a massive…

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Pride & Prejudice (2005)

JOE WRIGHT Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB.5.  United Kingdom, 2005.  Focus Features, Universal Pictures, StudioCanal, Working Title Films, Scion Films.  Screenplay by Deborah Moggach, based on the novel by Jane Austen.  Cinematography by Roman Osin.  Produced by Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner,Paul Webster.  Music by Dario Marianelli.  Production Design by Sarah Greenwood.  Costume Design by Jacqueline Durran.  Film Editing by Paul Tothill.  Academy Awards 2005.  Golden Globe Awards 2005.  Toronto International Film…

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Drive

BBBB (out of 5) Ryan Gosling plays a stunt driver for the movies who sidelines as a driver for robbers during their getaways; he is also that cinematic favourite, the sexy loner. There’s always exceptions to the lone rider’s route, however, and Gosling cannot help but get sucked in when he meets a sweet waitress…

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Brothers

BB (out of 5) Remake of the Danish film by Susanne Bier is hampered by a dull script and painfully inappropriate casting. Siblings Jake Gyllenhaal and Tobey Maguire are complete opposites in ways that do not harm their relationship but seem to be a problem for those around them. Soldier Maguire is studious and responsible while local…

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Inside Llewyn Davis

BBBB.5 (out of 5) Another terrific example of how magical the Coen Brothers can be when they let go their desire to be cute about their favourite movie genres.  This indelibly perfect tribute to the folk music scene in 1960s Greenwich Village has a superb Oscar Isaac as the title character, struggling and failing to…

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Never Let Me Go

BBB (out of 5) A medical breakthrough mid-twentieth century has allowed scientists to clone human beings and raise them as bodies with organs available for harvesting. Growing up in special schools, these children are given a hollow education and a false sense of social construct before one of their teachers (Sally Hawkins) has an emotional…

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Shame

BB (out of 5) Pedestrian effort at examining sexual addiction is Steve McQueen’s follow-up to his much more impressive debut, Hunger.  Michael Fassbender stars as a New York City corporate drone who spends his every waking moment chasing an orgasm, either by randomly following girls off the subway, masturbating in the office bathroom, watching porn on…

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An Education (2009)

LONE SCHERFIG Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB.  United Kingdom, 2009.  BBC Films, Finola Dwyer Productions, Wildgaze Films, Endgame Entertainment, An Education Distribution.  Screenplay by Nick Hornby, based on the memoir by Lynn Barber.  Cinematography by John de Borman.  Produced by Finola Dwyer, Amanda Posey.  Music by Paul Englishby.  Production Design by Andrew McAlpine.  Costume Design by Odile Dicks-Mireaux.  Film Editing by Barney Pilling.  Academy Awards 2009.  Golden…

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The Great Gatsby (2013)

BB.5 (out of 5) Baz Luhrmann trains his circus-frenzy eye on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic novel and comes up with an adaptation that is not in the least bit inspiring, but thankfully does not sink like dead weight the way the 1974 version did either.  Tobey Maguire plays the observant Nick Carroway, in this version…

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