Category Archives: Movies

THEIR FINEST: the appealing side of propaganda

Rosie the Riveter meets Nora Ephron in Their Finest, where Gemma Arterton plays a wannabe secretary summoned to write the female dialogue in a British propaganda movie aimed at easing America into WW II.  Of course, she discovers that she … Continue reading

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FREE FIRE: a witty and fun shoot ’em up

The clever and fun action thriller Free Fire begins when Oscar-winning actress Brie Larson introduces both sides of an illegal gun transaction.    It’s 1978, and the hoods, played by Armie Hammer, Cillian Murphy and a bunch of less recognizable … Continue reading

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THE LOST CITY OF Z: the historical adventure epic revived

In auteur James Gray’s sweeping turn of the 20th Century epic The Lost City of Z, a stiff-upper-lip type British military officer becomes the first European to probe into the deepest heart of unmapped Amazonia. Finding his way through the … Continue reading

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THE PROMISE: predictable and somnolent

In a predictable trudge through the Armenian Genocide, The Promise delivers nothing that we haven’t seen before. Oscar Isaac plays an impoverished Armenian from the Anatolian outback who dreams of becoming a doctor. To afford medical school in Constantinople, he … Continue reading

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SONG TO SONG: empty eye candy

After sitting through what seemed like three hours of the 129-minute movie Song to Song, I have identified why I am done with auteur Terence Malick – Malick has essentially become a visual-only filmmaker.   But I think of cinema as … Continue reading

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SFFILM: YOURSELF AND YOURS

The absurdism of Luis Buñuel meets the social awkwardness of Seinfeld in Hong Sang-soo’s Koran comedy Yourself and Yours. I just saw Yourself and Yours (Dangsinjasingwa dangsinui geot) at the San Francisco International Film Festival (SFFILMFestival).  In an Only-At-SFFILM moment, … Continue reading

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SFFILM: A DATE FOR MAD MARY

The San Francisco International Film Festival (SFFILMFestival) features the Irish dramedy A Date for Mad Mary.  Mary (Seána Kerslake) has just been released from incarceration and faces this challenge: she’s going to be the Maid of Honor at her childhood BFF’s … Continue reading

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SFFILM: THE STOPOVER

The San Francisco International Film Festival (SFFILMFestival) presents the topical French drama The Stopover, which explores the after-effects of combat in contemporary warfare.  We also get a female lens on the acceptance of women in combat roles and on sexual … Continue reading

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SFFILM: interview with DISCREET director Travis Mathews

Here’s an interview with San Francisco filmmaker Travis Mathews, the writer-director of Discreet.  Mathews has also directed Do I Look Fat?, I Want Your Love, Interior. Leather Bar. and the In Their Room documentary series.  The San Francisco International Film … Continue reading

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SFFILMFestival: DISCREET

The San Francisco International Film Festival (SFFILMFestival) presents the U.S. premiere of the psychological drama Discreet tomorrow, April 8 – and it should be the indie highlight of the festival. Within a revenge tale, writer-director Travis Mathews has braided threads of … Continue reading

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