Destroyer (2018)

KARYN KUSAMA Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.  USA, 2018.  30West, Automatik.  Screenplay by Phil Hay, Matt Manfredi.  Cinematography by Julie Kirkwood.  Produced by Fred Berger, Phil Hay, Matt Manfredi.   Music by Theodore Shapiro.  Production Design by Kay Lee.  Costume Design by Audrey Fisher.  Film Editing by Plummy Tucker.  Golden Globe Awards 2018.  Toronto International Film Festival 2018. A grizzled, self-destructive Los Angeles cop (Nicole…

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Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice (2016)

ZACK SNYDER Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB.5.  USA, 2016.  Warner Bros., Atlas Entertainment, Cruel & Unusual Films, DC Comics, DC Entertainment, RatPac-Dune Entertainment.  Screenplay by Chris Terrio, David S. Goyer, based on Batman created by Bob Kane, Bill Finger, and Superman created by Jerry Siegel, Joe Shuster.  Cinematography by Larry Fong.  Produced by Charles Roven, Deborah Snyder.  Music by Junkie XL, Hans…

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Our Brand Is Crisis

BB.5 (out of 5) Sandra Bullock plays a political consultant who is hired to go to Bolivia and help presidential candidate Joaquim de Almeida get elected, learning once she arrives that her fierce nemesis (Billy Bob Thornton) has been hired by her boss’s rival. Bullock shows up in a bad mood and is immediately beset by altitude…

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Gone Girl

BBBB (out of 5) Ben Affleck comes home to find his wife missing and his furniture destroyed, immediately assuming she has been kidnapped and/or murdered.  He brings in the police and they start to investigate, but it is not long before local gossip and media frenzy hikes up the case to a nationwide bonanza of opportunism:…

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Frank

BB.5 (out of 5) Domhnall Gleeson works a day job and tries to compose songs at night, struggling for inspiration but keeping up the pretense on social media that he is “living the dream”. A random encounter with a touring band gets him much closer to his ambition when the group’s keyboard player is taken to…

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Monsters

B (out of 5) The lengthy scenes of actors bandying dialogue between them while a monster movie happens in the background reveals a director who sees far more charisma in his own ability to create characters and situations than is actually there.  It begins with a clever conceit, that a probe returned to Earth years…

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Art School Confidential

BB (out of 5) Terry Zwigoff returns to the world of conflicted teenagers that he exposed so well in Ghost World but with inferior results. Max Minghella plays an aspiring artist who finds himself among a quirky collection of highly expressive students at the art college he has been dreaming about for years. Unfortunately, Zwigoff only…

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12 Years A Slave

BBBB (out of 5) A rarely told tale is that of Solomon Northup, a free musician from Saratoga who was hired by two men for a performance gig and then drugged and sold into captivity in the American south, his name changed and his identity wiped out to prevent him getting back to his own…

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Bobby

BBB.5 (out of 5) It’s June 6, 1968 at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles, the entire building abuzz with anticipation as guests await the arrival of America’s possible next president, Robert Kennedy. Throughout the day, this highly engrossing ensemble piece follows the lives of various characters, including two retired employees (Anthony Hopkins, Harry Belafonte),…

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Killing Them Softly

BB (out of 5) An action film that subverts expectations by focusing on the inability to commit actions is a tempting prospect; when it comes from the filmmaker who inverted the myth of violent heroes, as Andrew Dominik did in The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford by pointing out that a…

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Wonderland (2003)

BBBB (out of 5) “Long” John Holmes, aka Johnny Wad, starred in over a thousand adult films and, according to legend, applied his 14-inch penis to over 14,000 women (and a handful of men when he needed the cash).  Did you know that he was also once at the centre of a murder investigation? This…

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Argo

BBBB (out of 5) Following the terminally ill Shah’s escape to America and Ayatollah Khomeini’s rise to power over a newly conservative Iran, Americans at the U.S. embassy in 1979 Tehran find themselves in grave danger. Crowds storm the streets, furiously demanding that the Shah be sent back to Iran to be tried, the mob…

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