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by Jason Gargano 06.24.2011
at 11:04 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Friday Movie Roundup: 'Tree of Life' Edition

Terrence Malick's The Tree of Lifeis finally here.

Like everything the acclaimed 68-year-old filmmaker does, Malick's latest — just his fifth film in 38 years — has gone through a mysterious gestation, changing release dates and distributors numerous times (it was originally slated for a Dec. 25, 2009, release), all the while simultaneously revealing little about its contents. The film finally surfaced last month at the Cannes Film Festival, where it earned cheers, boos and the coveted Palme d'Or.

Now it finds its way into U.S. theaters.

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by Jason Gargano 06.22.2011
at 11:30 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

'Bicycle Dreams' Screens Tonight

Just wanted to give a heads up to those bicycling enthusiasts out there: Stephen Auerbach's Bicycle Dreams, a documentary about some badasses who bike across the U.S. in 10 days — essentially 300 miles a day — has its one-time local screening tonight at the Esquire Theatre in Clifton.

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by Jason Gargano 06.17.2011
at 05:04 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Friday Movie Roundup: Midterm Report Card

It's hard to believe that 2011 is already halfway over. Looking back over the last six months is not exactly a heartwarming or nostalgic endeavor — at least when it comes to the movies that have been released in local theaters.

As is the case every year, the big studios use the first quarter as a dumping ground for its duds, movies that for one reason or another they think are unlikely to generate much interest in an audience whose expectations are already diminished. Still, this year's list of dumpster dwellers seems even more robust than usual. On the other end of the spectrum, I can think of only two studio films to this point that have transcended the mediocre: Paul Feig's Bridesmaids and Duncan Jones' Source Code, both of which tweak genre conventions in slightly unexpected ways.

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by Jason Gargano 06.10.2011
at 10:46 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Friday Movie Roundup: Woody Allen Returns to Form

Who knew it would take a 75-year-old to make the best movie of the summer (so far)?

Woody Allen's 41st feature is his most engaging effort in years,a whimsical comedy that seamlessly melds moments of dreamy, nostalgic delight —its protagonist, played by Allen surrogate Owen Wilson, is somehow, each midnight, transported back to Paris' 1920s bohemian heyday where he hangs out with Ernest Hemingway, Pablo Picasso and F. Scott Fitzgerald, among others — with the filmmaker's longstanding themes of acute self-loathing, romantic longing and the role of the artist in society.

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by Jason Gargano 06.10.2011
at 07:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

'Girl with the Dragon Tattoo' Trailer Unveiled

David Fincher is a busy man. After giving us only one film (2002's Panic Room) in the eight years following 1999's gleefully subversive, zeitgeist-capturing Fight Club, the notoriously meticulous filmmaker delivered one of 2010’s best films, The Social Network, which was his third effort in four years following 2007's excellent Zodiac and 2008's out-of-character — it's essentially a straight-up love story — The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.

And he's not done yet: Fincher's American version of Stieg Larsson’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is currently in production and has a release date of Dec. 20. How’s that for an early Christmas present?

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by Jason Gargano 05.27.2011
at 03:28 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Friday Movie Roundup: Long Live Kelly Reichardt

Kelly Reichardt's Meek's Cutoff is the opposite of a summer blockbuster: stylistically spare, elliptical, emotionally nuanced and told from a distinctly female perspective. It's the antithesis of the garish big-budget behemoths currently crowding the multiplex, a film that has zero interest in delivering a typical audience-pandering moviegoing experience.

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by Jason Gargano 05.20.2011
at 05:37 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Friday Movie Roundup: Cannes Controversy

Cincinnati is a long way from Cannes. And, barring a merger with Conde Nast or a hefty donation from George Soros, CityBeat will not be sending me to cover the Cannes Film Festival anytime soon. Lucky for us, our fellow AAN peeps at Village Voice Media still take film criticism seriously enough to send its lead film critics, The Village Voice's J. Hoberman and LA Weekly's Karina Longworth, to the grandaddy of all film festivals, which wraps up this weekend.

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by Jason Gargano 05.18.2011
at 04:24 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Film Schooled Debuts Thursday

Film Schooled, a Cincinnati-based reality TV show that follows two teens through the filmmaking process, screens its pilot episode 7 p.m. tomorrow. Think of it as a head-to-head, meta version of the 48 Hour Film Project.

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by Jason Gargano 05.13.2011
at 04:41 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Friday Movie Roundup: Serious Will Ferrell Edition

Will Ferrell takes a break from his usual comic shenanigans this week to star writer/director Dan Rush's feature debut, Everything Must Go, an adaptation of a Raymond Carver short story. Ferrell in a Carver story, a story in which Ferrell's character is a listless, downtrodden “functioning alcoholic” with straying loins? Apparently. And, according to tt stern-enzi's positive review, apparently he does it well.

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by Jason Gargano 05.11.2011
at 03:47 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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The National Documentary Part of MusicNOW

The annual MusicNOW festival, which runs Friday-Sunday at Memorial and Music halls in Over-the-Rhine, will also have a film component this year. Summer Lovin' Torture Party, a documentary about Brooklyn-based Cincinnati natives and MusicNOW headliners The National, directed by singer Matt Berninger's bother Tom, will have a pair of free “work-in-progress” screenings 1 and 3 p.m. Sunday at the Contemporary Arts Center.

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