Insomnia (2002)

CHRISTOPHER NOLAN Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB.  USA/Canada, 2002.  Alcon Entertainment, Witt/Thomas Productions, Section Eight, Insomnia Productions, Summit Entertainment.  Screenplay by Hillary Seitz, based on the 1997 screenplay by Nikolaj Frobenius, Erik Skjoldbjaerg.  Cinematography by Wally Pfister.  Produced by Broderick Johnson, Paul Junger Witt, Andrew A. Kosove, Edward McDonnell.  Music by David Julyan.  Production Design by Nathan Crowley.  Costume Design by Tish Monaghan.  Film Editing…

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A Scanner Darkly

B.5 (out of 5) Richard Linklater adapts Philip K. Dick’s story in a style that recalls his Waking Life, filming live actors and overlaying stunningly beautiful animation atop the images to incredibly powerful effect. Unfortunately, the faithful adaptation of the story leaves a film that is nothing more than motor-mouthed junkies spinning well-written but ineffective…

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Rumor Has It…

BBB.5 (out of 5) Jennifer Aniston is perfectly cast as a young woman who has commitment issues with her boyfriend (Mark Ruffalo) that go into a tailspin when she finds out a shocking secret about her family: her late mother had an affair with a man before marrying Aniston’s father, and as it turns out, her…

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Full Frontal (2002)

STEVEN SODERBERGH Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB.  USA, 2002.  Miramax, Monophonic Inc., Populist Pictures, Propaganda Films, Section Eight.  Screenplay by Coleman Hough.  Cinematography by Steven Soderbergh.  Produced by Gregory Jacobs, Scott Kramer.  Music by Jacques Davidovici.  Costume Design by Shosahan Rubin.  Film Editing by Sarah Flack.   A group of characters spend their day in various complications until they are all (or most of…

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The Informant! (2009)

STEVEN SODERBERGH Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB.5.  USA, 2009.  Warner Bros., Participant Media, Groundswell Productions, Section Eight, Jaffe / Braunstein Enterprise.  Screenplay by Scott Z. Burns, based on the book by Kurt Eichenwald.  Cinematography by Steven Soderbergh.  Produced by Howard Braunstein, Kurt Eichenwald, Jennifer Fox, Gregory Jacobs, Michael Jaffe.  Music by Marvin Hamlisch.  Production Design by Doug J. Meerdink.  Costume Design by Shoshana Rubin.  Film Editing…

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Far From Heaven (2002)

TODD HAYNES Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBBB.  USA/France, 2002.  Focus Features, Vulcan Productions, Killer Films, John Wells Productions, Section Eight, TF1 International.  Screenplay by Todd Haynes.  Cinematography by Edward Lachman.  Produced by Jody Allen, Christine Vachon.  Music by Elmer Bernstein.  Production Design by Mark Friedberg.  Costume Design by Sandy Powell.  Film Editing by James Lyons.  Academy Awards 2002.  Golden Globe Awards 2002.  Toronto International Film Festival 2002.   Todd…

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Michael Clayton

BBBB.5 (out of 5) George Clooney gives a masterful performance as a dirt-busting lawyer who is asked to reign in a top member of his firm’s legal council (Tom Wilkinson) who has been embarrassing the organization. While working on defending a multibillion dollar agricultural corporation from an ecological scandal, Wilkinson has been overwhelmed by his…

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Ocean’s Thirteen (2007)

STEVEN SODERBERGH Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBB.  USA, 2007.  Warner Bros., Village Roadshow Pictures, Jerry Weintraub Productions, Section Eight.  Screenplay by Brian Koppelman, David Levien, based on characters created by George Clayton Johnson, Jack Golden Russell.  Cinematography by Steven Soderbergh.  Produced by Jerry Weintraub.  Music by David Holmes.  Production Design by Philip Messina.  Costume Design by Louise Frogley.  Film Editing by Stephen Mirrione.  Cannes Film Festival 2007.  …

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The Good German (2006)

STEVEN SODERBERGH Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB.5.  USA, 2006.  Sunset Gower Studios, Warner Bros., Section Eight, Virtual Studios.  Screenplay by Paul Attanasio, based on the novel by Joseph Kanon.  Cinematography by Steven Soderbergh.  Produced by Ben Cosgrove, Gregory Jacobs.  Music by Thomas Newman.  Production Design by Philip Messina.  Costume Design by Louise Frogley.  Film Editing by Steven Soderbergh.  Academy Awards 2006.   Underwhelming exercise in style…

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Syriana

BB.5 (out of 5) Stephen Gaghan, Academy Award-winning screenwriter of Traffic, wants so much to make a film worthy of Steven Soderbergh’s drug-trade classic that he simply photocopies its cinematography and editing and hopes that the audience won’t notice the similarities. No one would notice, actually, if his screenplay were worthy of his earlier work,…

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Good Night, And Good Luck.

BBB (out of 5) The now-forgotten, televised showdown between reporter Edward R. Murrow (David Strathairn) and radically conservative senator Joseph McCarthy, who was making headlines for his Communist witch hunt in the early 1950s, makes up the story of this excellent docudrama. Murrow and his producer Fred Friendly (George Clooney, who also co-wrote and directed)…

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Ocean’s Twelve (2004)

STEVEN SODERBERGH Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBB.5.  USA, 2004.  Warner Bros., Village Roadshow Pictures, Jerry Weintraub Productions, Section Eight, WV Films III.  Screenplay by George Nolfi, based on characters created by George Clayton Johnson, Jack Golden Russell.  Cinematography by Steven Soderbergh.  Produced by Jerry Weintraub.  Music by David Holmes.  Production Design by Philip Messina.  Costume Design by Milena Canonero.  Film Editing by Stephen Mirrione.   After…

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