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Film: Sleep to Dream

Michel Gondry's imaginative The Science of Sleep casts a unique spell

0 Comments · Wednesday, September 27, 2006
I still remember learning about the science of dreams in my high school Advanced Placement Biology course. My instructor offered an explanation of the near slumbering mind as a canvas on which our  

Film: Serious Films for a Serious Time

Toronto International Film Festival was awash in political statements

0 Comments · Wednesday, September 20, 2006
TORONTO -- From fictional dramas like Babel and The Wind That Shakes the Barley to documentaries like The U.S. vs. John Lennon and Dixie Chicks: Shut Up and Sing, the 2006 Toronto International   

Film: Comparing Borats to Lennons

Trying to take in all the Toronto Film Festival's offerings

0 Comments · Wednesday, September 13, 2006
TORONTO -- The Toronto International Film Festival is a whirlwind of film screenings, interviews, more screenings and coffee. Lots of coffee. The experience can be overwhelming, especially for   

Film: Warning Shot

Why We Fight arrives on DVD at a time when its contents have never been more vital

0 Comments · Wednesday, September 6, 2006
Eugene Jarecki's Why We Fight is a fascinating look at today's America. Recently released on DVD after a brief, criminally overlooked theatrical run, the incisive, dot-connecting documentary in  

Film: Hollywood Whodunit

Hollywoodland is a compelling look at the life and mysterious death of George Reeves

0 Comments · Wednesday, September 6, 2006
Ben Affleck takes a significant stride toward correcting his frat-boy actor image with an engrossing portrayal of George Reeves, the actor popular for playing the Man of Steel on television's Adv  

Film: Tower of a Man

A new documentary celebrates the career of poet/novelist/singer Leonard Cohen

0 Comments · Wednesday, August 30, 2006
When Paste magazine did its recent list of the 100 Greatest Living Songwriters, Leonard Cohen finished sixth. He was ahead of such far more established and famous chart-toppers as Brian Wilson, P  

Film: Man of Mystery

Neil Burger's sumptuous The Illusionist casts a mesmerizing spell

0 Comments · Wednesday, August 30, 2006
The Illusionist sets an eerie, mood-altering tone right out of the gate. A man, head bowed, sits in a wooden chair on an empty theater stage as a rapt audience awaits his next move. A voice cuts t  

Film: Urban Ritual

Quinceanera is an intriguing look at a Los Angeles neighborhood's Mexican-American community

0 Comments · Wednesday, August 23, 2006
Quinceañera uses naturalistic acting, realistic characters and actual urban settings to present a schematically developed story that reveals itself through too much talk and not enough palpa  

Film: Valley Boy

Director David Jacobson's Down in the Valley works for a while, then doesn't

0 Comments · Wednesday, August 23, 2006
Down in the Valley is a cowboy movie where all the sodbusting occurs inside a 16-year-old girl's bathing suit. But this film accomplishes way more than just a little mismatched hubba-hubba -- it   

Film: Family Bonding

A talented ensemble of actors powers Little Miss Sunshine

0 Comments · Wednesday, August 16, 2006
Little Miss Sunshine, a charming yet edgy road comedy about an argumentative family traveling from Albuquerque to a child beauty pageant in Southern California, is overflowing with fine performan  

Film: Short-lived Phenomenon

Once in a Lifetime traces the rise and fall of a soccer team

0 Comments · Wednesday, August 16, 2006
Fronted in the mid-'70s by ultra-charismatic Brazilian superstar Pelé, the New York Cosmos were the heroic ideal for Yanqui kids like myself, who were only just then learning the joys of a s  

Film: Requiem for a Day

Oliver Stone's World Trade Center delivers a respectful look at 9/11

0 Comments · Wednesday, August 9, 2006
There's a perfectly good reason why disaster movies focus on just a handful of characters. It's a way of injecting intimate personal drama into a tragedy whose enormity is so great and whose ci  

Film: The Professional

Consummate character actor John C. Reilly relishes his first high-profile comedy, Talladega Nights

0 Comments · Wednesday, August 9, 2006
John C. Reilly has a familiar face, and not just because he's been in 39 movies over the last 17 years. He looks like the guy at the corner pub, an everyman with brown curly hair, a well-worn fac  

Film: Bad, Bad Girls

The Descent succeeds via strong women, while The Night Listener is an unaffecting mystery

0 Comments · Wednesday, August 2, 2006
"The notorious one ... I'm lightbeam, no stopping me ... I am a live wildness left behind." -- Maxine Hong Kingston, My Wicked Wicked Ways There have been memorable bad girls on screen. J  

Film: Young Wolves

The Heart of the Game is a rousing basketball documentary

0 Comments · Wednesday, August 2, 2006
Sports films are generally disgusting celebrations of insufferable clichés. But this one took me completely by surprise: I found myself actually caring about a bunch of kids playing basketbal