The Meyerowitz Stories (New And Selected) (2017)

NOAH BAUMBACH Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBB.  USA, 2017.  Gilded Halfwing, IAC Films, Netflix.   Screenplay by Noah Baumbach.   Cinematography by Robbie Ryan.  Produced by Noah Baumbach, Eli Bush, Scott Rudin, Lila Yacoub.  Music by Randy Newman.  Production Design by Gerald Sullivan.  Costume Design by Joseph G. Aulisi.  Film Editing by Jennifer Lame.  Cannes Film Festival 2017.  Gotham Awards 2017 Comedic drama that provides something of…

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The Children Act (2017)

RICHARD EYRE Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBB.  United Kingdom, 2017.  Toledo Productions, BBC Films, FilmNation Entertainment.  Screenplay by Ian McEwan, based on his novel.  Cinematography by Andrew Dunn.  Produced by Duncan Kenworthy.  Music by Stephen Warbeck.  Production Design by Peter Francis.  Costume Design by Tessa Phillips.  Film Editing by Dan Farrell.  Toronto International Film Festival 2017.   Emma Thompson plays a judge whose cases mostly involve minors…

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Beauty And The Beast (2017)

BB.5 (out of 5) There’s a moment in the 1991 animated Beauty And The Beast that surpasses all others, an interaction of exceptional subtlety and tension that most live-action features can rarely hope to achieve, let alone animated ones:  the Beast has saved Belle from being eaten by wolves, she is tending to the wounds that he suffered in…

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Alone In Berlin

BB (out of 5) After losing their son in battle, a Berlin couple decide that Nazi ideology is not worth believing in if the cost is to be so high.  He (Brendan Gleeson) continues his work as a carpenter and she (Emma Thompson) maintains her position with her league of women, spreading the good word about the Fuhrer around…

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Bridget Jones’s Baby

BBBB (out of 5) Fifteen years after she first charmed us, and twelve years after she disappointed us with a sequel, the adorable London singleton is back and, despite not having been in a major film in a while, Renee Zellweger still has all the breezy, perfectly timed appeal that she brought to the role the first time…

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Barney Thomson (The Legend of Barney Thomson)

B.5 (out of 5) Robert Carlyle‘s directorial debut stars him as a barber who can’t get any respect at work. His frequent outbursts of temper have turned off both his fellow employees and his customers, forcing his boss to move him to a chair at the back of the shop away from the main action….

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Beautiful Creatures (2013)

B (out of 5) Alice Englert shows up in a tiny South Carolina town and, as if being the new girl isn’t hard enough, has to face the legacy of her family, magically powered citizens who are thought Satanists by everyone else around them.  Falling in love with her kindness and mystery, charming mortal Alden…

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Effie Gray

BB (out of 5) Euphemia Gray (Dakota Fanning) first met art critic John Ruskin (Greg Wise) when she was twelve, when he penned the fantasy story The King Of the Golden River for her and won her heart (the slight creepiness of her winning his is glossed over very quietly).  They were married seven years…

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The Love Punch

BBBB (out of 5) A delight from start to finish, this refreshing throwback to classic comedies of remarriage isn’t as smart as Preston Sturges but is definitely as fun.  Emma Thompson, at the zenith of her fresh and funny appeal, and Pierce Brosnan, taking a wonderful jab at his own action man image, play a…

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Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix

BBB.5 (out of 5) Year five and counting. Following the tete-a-tete between Harry Potter and Voldemort (a noseless Ralph Fiennes) and the unfortunate demise of Harry’s friend Cedric in the last installment, the magical world of witches and wizards is steeped into a frenzy of paranoid conservatism: the leader of the Ministry of Magic refuses…

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Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part 2

BB.5 (out of 5) Seven books, eight movies and a whole heck of a lot of merchandising finally come down to a final adventure featuring the plucky young wizard and his best friends going head to head with a noseless evil who looks like a tapeworm. After mooning about without doing anything interesting for three…

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Nanny McPhee Returns (Nanny McPhee And The Big Bang)

BBB.5 (out of 5) The fashion-challenged, frizzy-haired, homely nanny with the magical powers returns to set another group of children straight in this sweet sequel to the surprise 2005 hit.  Emma Thompson is once again marvelous as the childcare expert with the powerful walking stick who comes into the life of an overworked, overstressed English countryside…

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