“I Want to Shock Myself” – Actress Rebecca Ferguson’s Mission, Chosen and Accepted, as Movie Star and Mom
International Star Omar Sy on Immigrant Tale Samba, the Call of Hollywood and Finding Humor in Tough Times
Straight Outta Compton
Greta Gerwig and Lola Kirke Illuminate Friendship Between Women in Screwball Mistress America
John Erick and Drew Dowdle Explore Everyman as Family Hero in Survival Allegory No Escape
Paul Weitz and Sam Elliott Deliver American Movie Scene of the Year in Grandma

Paul Weitz and Sam Elliott Deliver American Movie Scene of the Year in Grandma

Paul Weitz and Sam Elliott Deliver American Movie Scene of the Year in Grandma 

Of the many pleasures writer/director Paul Weitz delivers in his terrific new movie, Grandma, starring a Lily Tomlin in a performance for the ages as a broke, lesbian poetess reconciling her past after her eighteen-year-old granddaughter shows up seeking help with an abortion, is a stunning centerpiece scene between Tomlin’s irascible matriarch and her jilted […]

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John Erick and Drew Dowdle Explore Everyman as Family Hero in Survival Allegory No Escape

John Erick and Drew Dowdle Explore Everyman as Family Hero in Survival Allegory No Escape 

What does it mean to be truly tested?  Perhaps what scares you may be the only way to find out, a familiar theme for filmmakers John Erick and Drew Dowdle, the successful brother act who have delivered an impressive slate of horror pictures including 2010’s M. Night Shyamalan-produced Devil and last year’s high-bar, stylishly creepy […]

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Greta Gerwig and Lola Kirke Illuminate Friendship Between Women in Screwball Mistress America

Greta Gerwig and Lola Kirke Illuminate Friendship Between Women in Screwball Mistress America 

The pleasure of meeting Greta Gerwig is all about energy. Her energy, that is. Just sitting casually across from you on a sofa, as she is today with me during a chat at Chicago’s Park Hyatt hotel, the screenwriter and actress radiates a sort of eccentric endearment. There’s a quicksilver wit to everything she says, […]

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Straight Outta Compton

Straight Outta Compton 

* * * * The exhilaration of Straight Outta Compton, one of the year’s best movies, is that of a good story, well-told with vivid performances and a stirring, contemporary sociopolitical context. Charting the rise, fall and rise of seminal hip hop forerunners N.W.A., director F. Gary Gray has fashioned the most involving biopic in […]

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International Star Omar Sy on Immigrant Tale Samba, the Call of Hollywood and Finding Humor in Tough Times

International Star Omar Sy on Immigrant Tale Samba, the Call of Hollywood and Finding Humor in Tough Times 

The lost art of screen presence has not been lost on France’s biggest star, Omar Sy, the charismatic movie star who won the Cesar for his moving work in 2011’s The Intouchables and returns this month as Samba, a down-on-his-luck, undocumented Senegalese immigrant living in Paris and facing deportation. Like his award-winning earlier turn, Samba‘s […]

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“I Want to Shock Myself” – Actress Rebecca Ferguson’s Movie Star Mission, Chosen and Accepted

“I Want to Shock Myself” – Actress Rebecca Ferguson’s Movie Star Mission, Chosen and Accepted 

The first thing you notice upon meeting Rebecca Ferguson, the Golden Globe-nominated actress currently starring with Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation,  is how exquisitely poised she is—perfect hair, eyes, skin, posture and near-melodious greeting. But as soon as I inform her that I am her last interview of the day, she’s suddenly almost […]

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Samba

Samba 

* * 1/2 Samba, the good-hearted story of a Senegalese immigrant in Paris fighting deportation, is a sum of its parts picture. Written and directed by the French duo Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano from the novel Samba pour la France by Delphine Coulin, it’s a movie that means so well you feel half-bad for […]

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Teriminator: Genisys

Teriminator: Genisys 

* If any remaining proof of Hollywood’s creative bankruptcy should be required, the more-is-less Terminator: Genisys should put the issue to bed once and for all. An all-out assault on both the senses and storytelling, this overblown mess of a movie appropriates entire chunks of James Cameron’s 1984 classic before collapsing on itself with Escher-esque […]

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The Overnight

The Overnight 

* * * A  good-natured sex farce about the insecure male ego and flirting with marital experimentation, The Overnight is a cheerfully raunchy ode to ennui and swinging that is revolutionary in its own small ways.  Light as a feather but no less enjoyable—actually quite enjoyable—this broad roundelay is the smartest crude comedy in a […]

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Great (Adam) Scott: The Overnight Star Takes on Male Ego and Marital Identity in Uproarious Sex Comedy

Great (Adam) Scott: The Overnight Star Takes on Male Ego and Marital Identity in Uproarious Sex Comedy 

Adam Scott, the affably winning charmer of the hit series Parks and Recreation, has spent over twenty years in the movie business etching sharp funnymen in pictures like Knocked Up and Step Brothers and compelling everymen in more serious outings like The Secret Life of Walter Mitty and Friends with Kids, among others. With fifty-five […]

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