Reviews: Dracula Untold (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 9, 2014

dracula_untoldReviews for this film from our members:

  • José Arce @ LaButaca.net [Spanish]
    • Excerpt: Universal resta un poco más de épica a su propio legado con esta peliculita que no tiene muy bien a qué agarrarse. Historia disparatada, producción irregular, poca permanencia en la memoria.
  • Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
    • Excerpt: While its title will open it up to a countless number of snarky comments, perhaps now that we’ve reached the Untold region we don’t have to march on into the Retold territory.
  • [New - 10/23/14] | Tim Brayton @ Antagony & Ecstasy
  • Kevin Carr @ 7M Pictures
    • Excerpt: Even if “Dracula Untold” isn’t the greatest version of the Dracula legend, I welcome it as a reboot of this shared universe from the 1940s.
  • Bill Clark @ From The Balcony
  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: Director Gary Shore and screenwriters Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless meld history with mythology for an entertainingly cheesy period fantasy adventure cum origin film grounded by a committed performance by Luke Evans as Lord Impaler.
  • Jim Dixon @ Examiner.com
    • Excerpt: It’s tempting, if facile and snarky to say “Dracula sucks.” But…
  • Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: [W]hat we get is an overly familiar Dracula movie that lacks a distinguishing personality.
  • James Jay Edwards @ FilmFracture
    • Excerpt: ‘Dracula Untold’ Shows A Kinder, Gentler Prince Of Darkness
  • Sarah Gopaul @ Digital Journal
    • Excerpt: ‘Dracula: Untold’ entirely reimagines the famed vampire’s origin story, updating the tale for an audience raised on spectacle over subtlety.
  • Susan Granger @ www.susangranger.com
    • Excerpt: Is it damning with faint praise to say that this horror fantasy doesn’t totally suck?
  • Vadym Grygoriev @ kinoblog.com [Ukrainian]
  • MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: A solid action fantasy more elemental and visceral than I expected, thanks to the potent presence of Luke Evans.
  • Jeremy Kibler @ The Artful Critic
    • Excerpt: Dracula Untold isn’t a tale that had to be left untold, but couldn’t someone have told it in a less stiff way? At least Luke Evans is the hunkiest Vlad the Impaler this world has ever seen.
  • Stefan Pape @ HeyUGuys
    • Excerpt: Breathes new life into an otherwise tired stomping ground, taking this story back hundreds of years and delving into the unknown origin story of the innovator himself, Mr. Dracula.
  • Jason Pirodsky @ Expats.cz
    • Excerpt: Bram Stoker’s creation enters the world of George R. R. Martin in Dracula Untold, a supposed vampire movie that features precious little gothic horror, and instead combines Game of Thrones theatrics with epic (but bloodless PG-13) Braveheart-styled battle sequences. Terrific. This is exactly what Dracula fans have been clamoring for.

Reviews: The Judge (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 9, 2014

judgeReviews for this film from our members:

  • José Arce @ LaButaca.net [Spanish]
    • Excerpt: Propuesta que escapa de la mera consideración telefílmica por el trabajo de sus actores principales. Mucho metraje, mucho cliché, poco espacio para la sorpresa. Un descanso para Robert Downey Jr. entre tanto ajetreo Marvel.
  • Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
    • Excerpt: Groaning beneath the weight of its desperate grandstanding for awards consideration, David Dobkins’ The Judge launches a continuous covey of clichés at you as it vacillates between middlebrow familial melodrama, murder mystery, and half-baked courtroom drama.
  • Luke Bonanno @ DVDizzy.com
    • Excerpt: The Judge is severely lacking the intelligence and excitement we expect of courtroom dramas.
  • Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com
    • Excerpt: Drama about the transformation of a smart and slick Chicago defense lawyer during a visit to his small Indiana hometown.
  • Kevin Carr @ 7M Pictures
    • Excerpt: tries too hard with too much to deliver too little
  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: Time and again, the writers attempt sleight of hand – tossing out ideas in order to upend them with a different revelation – but the tactic doesn’t work and Dobkins’ direction of plot is ungainly.
  • Jim Dixon @ Examiner.com
    • Excerpt: A deliberately manufactured, self-conscious class act from beginning to end, this dysfunctional family drama has been cast like a Yankees’ World Series contention team, photographed by Steven Spielberg’s cinematographer and scored by a 12-time Oscar nominee. Director David Dobkin (“Wedding Crashers,” “The Change-Up”) is attempting something more ambitious here, and he keeps his ducks in a row, but “The Judge” relentlessly refuses to pass up any opportunity to remind the audience they’re watching a movie.
  • Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: Screenwriters Nick Schenk and Bill Dubuque are working under the misapprehension that having things happen to a character is the same as developing that character…
  • Susan Granger @ www.susangranger.com
    • Excerpt: Robert Downey Jr. and Robert Duvall team up together for the first time in this sentimental journey, following a prodigal son from sin to redemption.
  • Vadym Grygoriev @ kinoblog.com [Ukrainian]
  • Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: The prodigal son returns is frequently a crowd pleaser and Downey and Duvall will entertain you with their version of it.
  • Ben Kendrick @ Screen Rant
    • Excerpt: ‘The Judge’ is a very familiar tale of a man that finds humility in a return to his hometown – albeit one with a few genuinely powerful moments of drama.
  • Jeremy Kibler @ The Artful Critic
    • Excerpt: A slick, sturdily performed middlebrow melodrama that meanders a bit and overstays its welcome, “The Judge” is just fine. If nothing else, Robert Downey Jr. gives this overlong, schmaltzy material a shot in the arm with his no-bull charisma.
  • Kristin Dreyer Kramer @ NightsAndWeekends.com
  • Pat Mullen @ Cinemablographer
    • Excerpt: ‘The Judge’ plays it safe and pleads ‘no contest’. Nothing risked is nothing gained.
  • Jerry Roberts @ Armchair Cinema
    • Excerpt: The Judge resembles those John Grisham thrillers that were popular in the 90s before the public came to the realization that he was basically telling the same story over and over. This is not a Grisham thriller, it’s actually better because it has more investment in the characters. Yes, it’s about a big criminal trial but that’s only a backdrop. It’s just as effective as a human drama.
  • [New - 10/23/14] | Diego Salgado @ Guía del Ocio [Spanish]
  • Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion
    • Excerpt: Slick but superficial and overloaded with cliches…entertaining enough, but in a shallow, manipulative fashion.

Reviews: Kill the Messenger (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 9, 2014

kill_the_messengerReviews for this film from our members:

  • David Bax @ Battleship Pretension
    • Excerpt: There are ways in which both fictional and documentary films can bring the truth to a life that is bigger than the facts alone. Kill the Messenger is just an adaptation of a Wikipedia entry.
  • Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
    • Excerpt: Avoiding the trap of a procedural, Cuesta’s film feels very much like an intimate character drama spliced with its overarching message concerning easily manipulated media frenzies and the undiscussed corruption going on within our governmental agencies.
  • Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com
    • Excerpt: A drama made memorable by a Jeremy Renner’s mercurial performance as the passionate investigative journalist Gary Webb.
  • Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: What’s missing is some expression of the emotional and psychological toll on Gary beyond the basic acknowledgement that these events are affecting him…
  • Candice Frederick @ Reel Talk
  • [New - 10/23/14] | Cynthia Fuchs @ PopMatters
  • Susan Granger @ www.susangranger.com
    • Excerpt: Suspenseful political thriller, focusing on the fate of yet another truth-seeking whistleblower.
  • Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews
    • Excerpt: What makes this so watchable is Jeremy Renner’s portrayal of newspaper reporter Gary Webb. He is really good at getting the audience to like him.
  • Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: The subject remains strong enough to recommend but Kill the Messenger is too choppy to rank as one of the harder hitting political thrillers.
  • Kristin Dreyer Kramer @ NightsAndWeekends.com
  • Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com
    • Excerpt: “Kill the Messenger” is a frustrating movie. It fails both as a brief biopic and as a political thriller. It works somewhat as a sketch character study, but that’s not enough to satisfy a movie audience.
  • Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion
    • Excerpt: A solid fact-based period piece…anchored by a vivid performance from Jeremy Renner…a welcome throwback to the days of activist Hollywood David-vs.-Goliath films.
  • Andrew Wyatt @ St. Louis Magazine
    • Excerpt: Director Michael Cuesta and screenwriter Peter Landsman have difficulty structuring the story to best exploit its intrinsic drama, leaving Messenger feeling somewhat lumpy.

Reviews: Men, Women & Children (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 9, 2014

men_women_and_childrenReviews for this film from our members:

  • Jason Bailey @ Flavorwire
    • Excerpt: Following last year’s bizarrely tone-deaf adaptation of Joyce Maynard’s ‘Labor Day,’ Reitman’s latest is a peculiarly alarmist ensemble piece about how, in spite of our copious technology, we’re all just so disconnected, man. When Reitman burst on the scene with ‘Thank You for Smoking’ back in 2005, he seemed bent on making another ‘Dr. Strangelove'; based on his new picture, he’s apparently spent those years harboring the desire to make another ‘Crash.’
  • William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline
    • Excerpt: The kids are all right. The internet is all right. It’s this dreary, futile, meandering movie that sucks the life out of everything.
  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: I didn’t like this movie when it was called “Disconnect,” and cowriter/director Jason Reitman’s (“Juno,” “Labor Day”) adaptation of Chad Kultgen’s novel lays on pretension masquerading as deep thought for an even less convincing mix
  • Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: Considering its lack of concern in addressing a solution to the problem it raises, the movie’s fascination with masturbation is appropriate.
  • MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: Jason Reitman is way too young to have produced a work of such fuddy-duddy handwringing over These Kids (And Adults) Today and how we play with our e-toys.
  • Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: Future Reitman analysts will have his early period to begin their dissections and then will move on to his films which feel aimed at his neighborhood Rotary Club, which feels like the only demographic Reitman will end up scaring here.
  • Jeremy Kibler @ The Artful Critic
    • Excerpt: Critically, “Labor Day” was unfairly mocked because it was filmmaker Reitman in a different, more earnest mode, many claiming that he was losing his way and his spiky edge. Correction: “Men, Women & Children” is his first miscalculation.
  • Kristin Dreyer Kramer @ NightsAndWeekends.com
  • [New - 10/23/14] | Dan Lybarger @ KCActive.com
    • Excerpt: What’s missing here is a sense of darkness and unfamiliarity that drove Reitman’s earlier films.
  • Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk
    • Excerpt: Given the fact that Men, Women & Children has a kind of a forest-for-the-trees thing happening, it’s not surprising that some details are lost in the earnest pursuit of so many others. The problem that co-writer and director Jason Reitman has, though, isn’t that he can’t see the forest, it’s that he thinks he does, and he ignores the good trees within it by trying to have it all
  • Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion
    • Excerpt: Banality posing as profundity.

The Grab Bag (Oct. 7, 2014)

Categories: The Grab Bag
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 7, 2014

OFCS members don’t just write film reviews. Here are several articles you might find interesting.

Best of Lists

The 10 Best Faithful Shakespeare Adaptations on Film

Jason Bailey @ Flavorwire

  • Excerpt: Polanski’s ‘Macbeth’ is a terrific movie; and noteworthy as being a Shakespeare adaptation that is mostly done “straight” — i.e., basically as written, rather than relocated to outer space or a high school or the mob underworld or anything crazy like that. In fact, it seems more difficult to just do the play, without all the bells and whistles.

The 10 Creepiest Kids in Movie History

Jason Bailey @ Flavorwire

  • Excerpt: With Halloween sneaking up like a well-dressed child with a knowing smirk, we take a look at some of cinema’s creepiest kids.

The 11 Creepiest Creepy Doll Movies

William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline

  • Excerpt: Creepy dolls are creepy. These creepy doll movies are creepier.

Every Martin Scorsese Movie, Ranked

Jason Bailey @ Flavorwire

  • Excerpt: Flavorwire presents the DEFINITIVE ranking of Martin Scorsese’s narrative and documentary features (stretching feature a bit to include long-ish documentaries and made-for-TV works), stacking up 36 films over nearly 50 years.

Interviews

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Oct. 6, 2014)

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Published on: October 6, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Cabaret

Carlos del Río @ El rincón de Carlos del Río [Spanish]

  • Excerpt: Simplemente genial.

Gone With the Wind

Jim Dixon @ Examiner.com

  • Excerpt: If you haven’t seen “Gone With the Wind,” you don’t know the whole story of the big Hollywood movie, and if you haven’t seen “Gone With the Wind” on the big screen, you haven’t seen “Gone With the Wind.”

Recent Home Video Releases

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This Week at the Movies, Part 2 (Oct. 3-5, 2014)

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Published on: October 4, 2014

Because of embargoes (those happy little restrictions on when critics can post reviews, good or bad), a lot of our critics aren’t able to share links with you until release day. Here are some last-minute reviews for this weekend’s upcoming films. We’ve kept in all the reviews posted yesterday as well so you can have more help in deciding what to see (if you haven’t already).

Our critics have been hard at work reviewing the latest films. Here is a look at what’s coming out this weekend (in select cities, check your local listings) and what else may be in theaters right now.

Opening: October 3-5, 2014

Wide (United States)

Annabelle

[New Reviews Today] For member reviews of this film, follow this link

Gone Girl

[New Reviews Today] For member reviews of this film, follow this link

Left Behind

[New Reviews Today] For member reviews of this film, follow this link

Limited (United States)

Bang Bang

Kathy Gibson @ Access Bollywood

The Blue Room

Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com

  • Excerpt: It’s depiction of an adulterous affair is icy, complicated, isolating, but it’s a thrillingly and strikingly photographed film.

Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com

  • Excerpt: A chilling and creatively structure French murder mystery tale.

Donald Levit @ ReelTalk Movie Reviews

The Good Lie

Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com

  • Excerpt: An emotionally warm and immensely appealing story of the immigrant experience of some survivors of the 1980s genocide in Sudan.

Susan Granger @ www.susangranger.com

  • Excerpt: Sensitive and sincere, it’s an inspiring, redemptive tale of courage and compassion.

Men, Women & Children

[New Today] William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline

  • Excerpt: The kids are all right. The internet is all right. It’s this dreary, futile, meandering movie that sucks the life out of everything.

Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews

  • Excerpt: I didn’t like this movie when it was called “Disconnect,” and cowriter/director Jason Reitman’s (“Juno,” “Labor Day”) adaptation of Chad Kultgen’s novel lays on pretension masquerading as deep thought for an even less convincing mix

[New Today] Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies

  • Excerpt: Considering its lack of concern in addressing a solution to the problem it raises, the movie’s fascination with masturbation is appropriate.

Nas: Time Is Illmatic

Candice Frederick @ Reel Talk
Mike McGranaghan @ The Aisle Seat

  • Excerpt: An engaging document of how – and, more importantly, why – this particular album had such an impact.

Aaron Pinkston @ Battleship Pretension

  • Excerpt: Nas: Time Is Illmatic, a look at the influential album twenty years later, doesn’t feel like the complete account that some may want, but it is a sharp and entertainment profile of an important artist.

2014 Films In Theaters Now In Select Areas

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This Week at the Movies, Part 1 (Oct. 3-5, 2014)

Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 3, 2014

Our critics have been hard at work reviewing the latest films. Here is a look at what’s coming out this weekend (in select cities, check your local listings) and what else may be in theaters right now.

Opening: October 3-5, 2014

Wide (United States)

Annabelle

For member reviews of this film, follow this link

Gone Girl

For member reviews of this film, follow this link

Left Behind

For member reviews of this film, follow this link

Limited (United States)

Bang Bang

Kathy Gibson @ Access Bollywood

The Blue Room

Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com

  • Excerpt: It’s depiction of an adulterous affair is icy, complicated, isolating, but it’s a thrillingly and strikingly photographed film.

Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com

  • Excerpt: A chilling and creatively structure French murder mystery tale.

Donald Levit @ ReelTalk Movie Reviews

The Good Lie

Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com

  • Excerpt: An emotionally warm and immensely appealing story of the immigrant experience of some survivors of the 1980s genocide in Sudan.

Susan Granger @ www.susangranger.com

  • Excerpt: Sensitive and sincere, it’s an inspiring, redemptive tale of courage and compassion.

Men, Women & Children

Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews

  • Excerpt: I didn’t like this movie when it was called “Disconnect,” and cowriter/director Jason Reitman’s (“Juno,” “Labor Day”) adaptation of Chad Kultgen’s novel lays on pretension masquerading as deep thought for an even less convincing mix

Nas: Time Is Illmatic

Candice Frederick @ Reel Talk
Mike McGranaghan @ The Aisle Seat

  • Excerpt: An engaging document of how – and, more importantly, why – this particular album had such an impact.

Aaron Pinkston @ Battleship Pretension

  • Excerpt: Nas: Time Is Illmatic, a look at the influential album twenty years later, doesn’t feel like the complete account that some may want, but it is a sharp and entertainment profile of an important artist.

2014 Films In Theaters Now In Select Areas

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Happy Birthday: Don Simpson

Categories: Birthdays
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 3, 2014

OFCS member Don Simpson celebrates his birthday today, October 3. Please help us congratulate him and wish him well.

You can visit his website: Smells Like Screen Spirit.

Reviews: Annabelle (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

annabelleReviews for this film from our members:

  • José Arce @ LaButaca.net [Spanish]
    • Excerpt: Exploit/spin-off nacido a la sombra del éxito comercial de “Expediente Warren” que ofrece todo lo que uno podía esperar de un proyecto así: nada. Mala desde el guion, mala desde la dirección, mala en general.
  • Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
    • Excerpt: Basically another bargain basement housewife-in-peril horror film
  • William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline
    • Excerpt: Annabelle boasts a couple of effective “boo” scares – there are so many that a few were bound to land by default – but the only “boo” that matters is the one you’ll yell at the screen after this thudding, laughable bore finally cuts to the credits.
  • Kevin Carr @ 7M Pictures
    • Excerpt: I find myself enjoying the slow-burn nature of these movies and the attention to detail in terms of set design, atmosphere, lighting and the sound mix. It’s a huge step up from found footage, which relies on exactly none of these things (and in fact rejects them as a whole in the genre).
  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: It doesn’t help that the doll, conceptualized as it was in “The Conjuring,” starts off looking like Chucky’s demented cousin painted up like a demonic tart before it’s even been made a vessel of the devil…
  • Andy Crump @ Movie Mezzanine
    • Excerpt: …there are a limited number of ways in which a demonic doll can be frightening, particularly when said doll looks like it was made in Evil Co.’s nightmare factory, on an assembly line manned by Satanists.
  • Jim Dixon @ Examiner.com
    • Excerpt: “Annabelle” is a self-styled prequel to last year’s horror hit, “The Conjuring.” It isn’t as smart or well-acted, but it does get the job done. Comedies are about making us laugh and horror movies are about making us jump, and “Annabelle,” if not a wall-to-wall jump fest, does have enough good ones to be a successful spook show.
  • Billy Donnelly @ This Is Infamous
  • Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: [P]erhaps the movie’s biggest surprise is that it isn’t entirely pointless.
  • James Jay Edwards @ FilmFracture
    • Excerpt: James Wan Gives The People What They Want – ‘Annabelle’ Gets Her Own Movie
  • Susan Granger @ www.susangranger.com
    • Excerpt: A tedious, strictly superficial fright-flick…
  • Jeremy Kibler @ The Artful Critic
    • Excerpt: In the end, “Annabelle” cannot be denied the handful of jolts it plants, but one still gets the nagging suspicion that even the rosy-cheeked, pigtailed star will see more than a few missed opportunities in her own vehicle.
  • Brent McKnight @ Beyond Hollywood
    • Excerpt: If you think making a feature length movie of the backstory of a creepy doll might be stretching the concept a bit much, you’re correct.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Ross Miller @ Thoughts On Film
    • Excerpt: Nothing more than a cynical and pointless cash-in on an already successful entity.
  • Stefan Pape @ HeyUGuys
  • Jason Pirodsky @ Expats.cz
    • Excerpt: A spookily effective supernatural tale self-destructs during the final act in Annabelle, a follow-up to last year’s The Conjuring that successfully employs many of that film’s hauntingly understated techniques but devolves into unadulterated silliness by the end.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Diego Salgado @ Guía del Ocio [Spanish]

Reviews: Gone Girl (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

gone_girlReviews for this film from our members:

Reviews: Hector and the Search for Happiness (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

hector_and_the_search_for_happinessReviews for this film from our members:

  • [New - 9/25/14] | Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com
    • Excerpt: A snappy and satisfying adult parable about a therapist’s quest to find the meaning of life.
  • [New - 9/26/14] | Sarah Gopaul @ Digital Journal
    • Excerpt: ‘Hector and the Search for Happiness’ is a yuppie’s humorous escape from life’s responsibilities in the guise of a research trip to investigate an abstract idea.
  • [New - 8/15/14] | MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: A rich white man tours the misery of others to learn about happiness. Yes, it is as offensive as it sounds.
  • [New - 9/26/14] | Ben Kendrick @ Screen Rant
    • Excerpt: ‘Hector and the Search for Happiness’ includes laughs and relatable drama but struggles to find successful balance between engaging journeys and thought-provoking destinations.
  • [New - 9/26/14] | Tom Santilli @ Examiner.com
    • Excerpt: I had little patience for Hector and the Search for Happiness and its manipulations, despite liking Simon Pegg, Rosamund Pike and having been drawn in by the film’s first 20 minutes or so.

Reviews: Jimi: All Is By My Side (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

jimi_all_is_by_my_sideReviews for this film from our members:

Reviews: Left Behind (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

left_behindReviews for this film from our members:

Reviews: Pride (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

prideReviews for this film from our members:

  • Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
  • Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews
    • Excerpt: Pride fashions a narrative much in the way a powerful sports movie works. It creates a David and Goliath story and invites you to cheer for the underdog.
  • MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: One of the rare movies that gets absolutely everything right, bursting with happy-tears emotion about solidarity, friendship, and smashing bigotry.
  • Darren Mooney @ the m0vie blog
    • Excerpt: A great deal of…
  • [New - 10/23/14] | Jonathan Richards @ www.jonrichardsplace.com
    • Excerpt: Pride is sneaky-good. It’s not groundbreaking in any way, but it’s uplifting and packs a pertinent point, all the while wrapped in the garment of an old-fashioned British working-class comedy.
  • Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com
    • Excerpt: All attempts fail at forcing a by-the-numbers narrative template on a fact-based story about unlikely bedfellows uniting against Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s mid ’80s reign of anti-union and anti-gay rhetoric and public policies.
  • [New - 10/23/14] | Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion
    • Excerpt: A film that deals with serious matters, but does so in a way that makes it an irresistible crowd-pleaser.
  • David Upton @ So So Gay
    • Excerpt: One scene, a quiet scene involving the making of the most weakly flavoured sandwiches you may ever see, typifies the film’s wonderfully observed character interactions, putting together two characters we’ve barely seen interact but know have a deep history (it’s hard to avoid in a village this tight-knit) for a gentle revelation that lies at the heart of the film’s understanding of the world.

Reviews: To Be Takei (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

to_be_takeiReviews for this film from our members:

  • [New - 8/22/14] | William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline
    • Excerpt: If you don’t know George Takei, and you will never be asked to come over to his house for tea and a pleasant conversation, then To Be Takei is probably the next best thing.
  • [New - 8/21/14] | Kristy Puchko @ CinemaBlend.com
    • Excerpt: To Be Takei is radiant with the joy of the man has captured the hearts and imaginations of untold fans. It left me smiling ear to ear, and with some serious food for thought.
  • [New - 10/2/14] | Francis Rizzo III @ DVDTalk.com
    • Excerpt: George Takei is more than Sulu and “Oh my”
  • [New - 9/4/14] | Jerry Roberts @ Armchair Cinema
    • Excerpt: For those who only know Takei as Sulu, the documentary To Be Takei comes as sort of a cold water treatment. It is a history lesson, the fascinating story of a man who fought a personal battle on three fronts, as an Asian, as an actor, and as an activist for gay rights.
  • [New - 8/28/14] | Jordan M. Smith @ IONCINEMA.com
    • Excerpt: With To Be Takei, director Jennifer M. Kroot compounds the actor’s life and career into a 94 minute portrait of virtuous celebrity, glorifying the man’s faith in humanity while reluctant to give any real critique of his public or private persona.

Reviews: The Two Faces of January (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

two_faces_of_januaryReviews for this film from our members:

  • [New - 10/23/14] | Dragan Antulov @ FAK [Croatian]
    • Excerpt: Nastojanja da se nostalgicnoj publici previše doslovno izade u susret gotovo u pravilu dovode do razocaranja.
  • José Arce @ LaButaca.net [Spanish]
    • Excerpt: Adaptación bastante sosa de la novela de Patricia Highsmith en la que la emoción brilla por su ausencia. Poca química general en una producción en la que lo más destacado es su catálogo textil y de complementos para lucir bajo el sol europeo.
  • Carlos del Río @ El rincón de Carlos del Río [Spanish]
    • Excerpt: Las dos caras de enero tiene buenas interpretaciones (aunque Mortensen es demasiado joven para el papel, e Isaac demasiado mayor), visualmente es elegante, llena de planos muy bien compuestos y bonitos, pero Dios mío, qué poca tensión tiene y qué aburrida es.
  • Roderick Heath @ This Island Rod
    • Excerpt: This remains too much in thrall to its own classiness and literate poise.
  • Daniel Kelly @ Danland
    • Excerpt: “The Two Faces of January” could be discredited as derivative or slow, but Amini has a knack for timing his pay-offs, cultivating a milieu possessed by maleficence .
  • Stacia Kissick Jones @ She Blogged By Night
  • Simon Miraudo @ Quickflix
  • Betty Jo Tucker @ ReelTalk Movie Reviews
    • Excerpt: An elegant thriller filled with exquisite suspense.

The Grab Bag (Sep. 30, 2014)

Categories: The Grab Bag
Comments: No Comments
Published on: September 30, 2014

OFCS members don’t just write film reviews. Here are several articles you might find interesting.

Best of Lists

11 Great Date Movies on Netflix

William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline

Top 10 Scottish Films

Jennie Kermode @ Eye For Film

Interviews

Anthony Stacchi & Graham Annable on The Boxtrolls

William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline

  • Excerpt: The directors of The Boxtrolls explain the origin of the film’s most terrible pun.

Antoine Fuquar

Stefan Pape @ HeyUGuys

  • Excerpt: Stefan Pape interviews The Equalizer director Antoine Fuquar.

Ben Miller

Stefan Pape @ HeyUGuys

  • Excerpt: Stefan Pape interviews British comedy actor Ben Miller on What We Did On Our Holiday.

Charles Band on Full Moon Features

William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline

  • Excerpt: Join Charles Band, the director of Trancers and producer of the hit Puppet Master franchise, as he gets grilled by hosts William Bibbiani and Witney Seibold in the hallowed halls of the Full Moon offices, right next to Los Angeles’s historic Skid Row. You can really hear the sirens!

Guy Jenkin and Andy Hamilton

Stefan Pape @ HeyUGuys

  • Excerpt: Stefan Pape interviews writers and directors Guy Jenkin and Andy Hamilton on What We Did On Our Holiday.

Isaac Hempstead Wright on The Boxtrolls

William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline

  • Excerpt: The ‘Game of Thrones’ star explains particle physics and says working with Sir Ben Kingsley was terrifying.

Mia Hansen-Løve (Eden)

Jordan M. Smith @ IONCINEMA.com

Mike Cahill

Stefan Pape @ HeyUGuys

  • Excerpt: Stefan Pape interviews director Mike Cahill on his sophomore feature, I Origins.

Rosamund Pike

Stefan Pape @ HeyUGuys

  • Excerpt: Stefan Pape interviews Rosamund Pike on What We Did On Our Holiday, and Gone Girl.

Season of Mists: Markuus Blunder on Autumn Blood

Jennie Kermode @ Eye For Film

Festivals: General Coverage

(There’s still more to this post. Click here to continue reading…)

Happy Birthday: Jesse Hessenger

Categories: Birthdays
Comments: No Comments
Published on: September 30, 2014

OFCS member Jesse Hassenger celebrates his birthday today, September 30. Please help us congratulate him and wish him well.

You can visit his website: The L Magazine and Pop Matters.

Happy Birthday: Jim Dixon

Categories: Birthdays
Comments: No Comments
Published on: September 30, 2014

OFCS member Jim Dixon celebrates his birthday today, September 30. Please help us congratulate him and wish him well.

You can visit his website: Examiner.

Classics and Other Films on DVD (Sep. 29, 2014)

Comments: No Comments
Published on: September 29, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Dragonwyck

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

The Innocents

Tony Dayoub @ Cinema Viewfinder

  • Excerpt: Disquieting, if not necessarily horrifying, THE INNOCENTS is a psychosexual take on THE TURN OF THE SCREW.

Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Werid Movies

  • Excerpt: Wes Anderson’s most interesting and strangest movie.

Macbeth (1971)

Tony Dayoub @ Cinema Viewfinder

  • Excerpt: 1971’s MACBETH is one of Polanski’s most unjustly maligned movies, perhaps because of its unapologetic wallowing in dark themes coming so closely after the murder of Polanski’s wife Sharon Tate by the Manson Family. That it was Playboy founder Hugh Hefner’s first and ultimately only venture into cinema may have been another reason.

Picnic at Hanging Rock

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Werid Movies

  • Excerpt: This gauzy meditation on sexual repression and loss can have a hypnotic effect on those susceptible to its mysterious moods, while others find it an inconclusive bore. Both sides have an argument, but in general, the good here outweighs the bland.

Recent Home Video Releases

(There’s still more to this post. Click here to continue reading…)

Happy Birthday: Stefan Pape

Categories: Birthdays
Comments: No Comments
Published on: September 29, 2014

OFCS member Stefan Pape celebrates his birthday today, September 29. Please help us congratulate him and wish him well.

You can visit his website: Hey U Guys, Cosmopolitan, Cine-Vue and Film Uforia.

Happy Birthday: Matthew McKernan

Categories: Birthdays
Comments: No Comments
Published on: September 29, 2014

OFCS member Matthew McKernan celebrates his birthday today, September 29. Please help us congratulate him and wish him well.

You can visit his website: Film Whinge and Subtitled Online.

Happy Birthday: Maitland McDonagh

Categories: Birthdays
Comments: No Comments
Published on: September 29, 2014

OFCS member Maitland McDonagh celebrates her birthday today, September 29. Please help us congratulate her and wish her well.

You can visit her website: Film Journal and Miss Flick Chick.

Happy Birthday: Josh Spiegel

Categories: Birthdays
Comments: No Comments
Published on: September 28, 2014

OFCS member Josh Spiegel celebrates his birthday today, September 28. Please help us congratulate him and wish him well.

You can visit his website: Sound on Sight.

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