Queen Of Katwe

BBB.5 (out of 5) A soccer coach (David Oyelowo) struggling to make ends meet is told by two boys in his class that their mother does not want them playing soccer because there’s no money for the doctor if they get injured.  Wanting to keep them active, the coach instead teaches them to play chess, which…

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Cutie And The Boxer

BBBB (out of 5) Ushio Shinohara has enjoyed decades as a well respected painter and sculptor in New York, his pursuits gaining him fame though not much fortune. His wife Noriko, twenty years his junior, has been married to him for forty years ever since coming to New York as an art student and falling under…

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Chinese Box

BBB.5 (out of 5) Touching romantic triangle set against the backdrop of an ever-changing Hong Kong preparing for the Communist takeover. Jeremy Irons gives a brilliantly understated performance as a dying journalist who hasn’t gotten over his love for the beautiful Li Gong.  Maggie Cheung is also marvelous as a street hustler with whom Irons finds himself…

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Cradle Will Rock

BBBB (out of 5) Excellent ensemble comedy about the real life Red Scare events surrounding the birth and quick disappearance of the Federal Theatre Program in the 1930s, a program designed to bring the great plays of the theatrical stage to Depression-era audiences at affordable prices. The latest production staged by the group and written…

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The Perez Family

BB.5 (out of 5) A Cuban family is trying to adjust to a new life in Miami in this so-so film featuring an excellent cast. Alfred Molina has finally managed to make it over to America from Cuba to join his already established wife (Anjelica Huston), but are they still the happy couple they once…

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The Namesake

BBB.5 (out of 5) Pulitzer Prize-winning author Jhumpa Lahiri’s novel is brought to the big screen by director Mira Nair with wonderfully sentimental results. A Bengali man who has been living abroad goes back to India to find a wife, brings her to New York and they raise two children. The first of them, a son,…

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Amelia

BBBB (out of 5) Absorbing biopic of famed aviation legend Amelia Earhart (Hilary Swank) that improves greatly on the TV movie The Final Flight starring Diane Keaton. Director Mira Nair wisely touches on aspects of Earhart’s biography without going into unnecessary detail as she covers the period from the relationship between her subject and George…

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Kama Sutra: A Tale Of Love

BB.5 (out of 5) Sumptuously photographed but emotionally flat love story based in Indian folklore. A servant girl named Maya is brought up in the house of princess Tara until she is rejected by her mistress (Sarita Choudhury) when Tara’s new prince husband (Naveen Andrews) has sex with Maya on their wedding night. Having to…

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Vanity Fair

BBB (out of 5) Becky Sharp (Reese Witherspoon), the orphan child of artists who has no name or fortune, leaves the boarding school where she has worked for her education and enters the world armed with nothing but charm and ambition. Her best friend Amelia (Romola Garai) has position and is engaged since childhood to…

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The Darjeeling Limited (2007)

WES ANDERSON Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB.  USA, 2007.  Fox Searchlight Pictures, Collage Cinemagraphique, American Empirical Pictures, Dune Entertainment.  Screenplay by Wes Anderson, Roman Coppola, Jason Schwartzman.  Cinematography by Robert D. Yeoman.  Produced by Wes Anderson, Roman Coppola, Lydia Dean Pilcher, Scott Rudin.  Production Design by Mark Friedberg.  Costume Design by Milena Canonero.  Film Editing by Andrew Weisblum.   There’s a moment of pure beauty somewhere…

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