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by Jason Gargano 05.06.2010
at 11:26 AM | Permalink | Comments (1)
 
 

Getting Past 'The Very Worst Thing'

On the morning of Feb. 28, 1958, a school bus carrying 48 elementary and high school students ran over an embankment and plunged into the Big Sandy River in Prestonsburg, Ky. Twenty-six kids and the bus’ driver lost their lives in the crash, forever altering the small, close-knit Floyd County town’s inhabitants.

Michael Crisp’s appropriately somber documentary, The Very Worst Thing, meticulously re-creates the events surrounding the accident via vintage radio recordings and photos and modern-day interviews with people — from a survivor of the accident to those who want to keep the victims’ legacy alive — connected to that day more than 50 years ago.

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by Jason Gargano 01.16.2009
at 11:38 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Friday Movie Round-up: Rourke's Redemption

Remember when Mickey Rourke was one of the most compelling actors on the planet? Sure, one must go back more than two decades, but there was a time when his wry smile, knowing eyes and playful, sexually charged persona made Rourke both a cult figure — the French still adore him — and an actor of rare emotional depth and unpredictability.

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by Jason Gargano 10.07.2011
at 11:42 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Friday Movie Roundup: 'Ides of March' edition

George Clooney's The Ides of March opens today. Given the avalanche of local press its already received (mostly by the endlessly smitten Enquirer, but also via hordes of social-media geeks), need much more be said about the behind-the-scenes aspects of Clooney's political thriller? (If you answered “yes” to that question, read my interview with Ides of March actor Max Minghella here.)

The burning question now is whether The Ides of March is any good.

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by Jason Gargano 12.04.2009
at 11:05 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Friday Movie Roundup: The Dilemma of Being Robert DeNiro

Many people have complained in recent years (including Scott Renshaw in his review of Everybody’s Fine below) that Robert DeNiro is not the actor he used to be. Maybe, maybe not.

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by Jason Gargano 02.02.2011
at 12:26 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Couch Comforts: New DVD Releases

It’s been an especially shitty winter around here. And the calendar has only just now turned to February. On the bright side, that means you've likely spent more time on the couch, bundled up in blankets with a hot cup of tea or a bottle of wine, taking in a bunch of movies via Netflix.

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by Jason Gargano 03.06.2009
at 11:38 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Friday Movie Roundup: Zoo Crews, Watchmen and Vampires

While I recognize and appreciate the undeniable creative juice expended in their creation, I admit to a blind spot when it comes to comic books (aka graphic novels to the genre’s serious devotees). I outgrew the form shortly after the death of Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew, which went out of print after a 20-issue run in the early 1980s. (Don’t ask how much I spent on a recent, eBay-procured mint copy of the first issue.)

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Which brings me to Watchmen, probably the most anticipated movie our young, quality-deprived year to date.

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by Jason Gargano 07.08.2011
at 05:32 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Friday Movie Roundup: Mixed-Bag Summer

It's been a mixed-bag summer at the movie house.

Nowhere has that sentiment been more obvious than at the multiplex, where a smattering of offerings have been pretty solid (Bridesmaids, Fast Five, Kung Fu Panda 2, Super 8, X-Men: First Class) and a smorgasbord have been solidly (if not heinously) flawed (Bad Teacher, Cars 2, Green Lantern, The Hangover Part II, Larry Crowne, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Thor and Transformers: Dark of the Moon, to the pinpoint the most obvious culprits).

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by Jason Gargano 02.11.2011
at 04:59 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Friday Movie Roundup: Javier Bardem Edition

Alejandro González Iñárritu's Biutiful, the only film featuring a 2011 acting Oscar nominee (Javier Bardem for Actor in a Leading Role) that has yet to open in Cincinnati, drops at the Esquire today. If tt stern-enzi's review is any indication, expect Bardem's latest performance — as a deeply troubled guy named Uxtal traversing the underworld of modern Barcelona — to be among his best, which is saying something.

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by Jason Gargano 08.05.2011
at 02:18 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)
 
 
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Friday Movie Roundup: The Perils of Technology

Jaws was on TV the other day. Though too young to have caught its initial 1975 theatrical release, I've since watched it at least a half-dozen times, each exposure inevitably sucking me back into its simple but exhilarating story all over again.

This time I was struck by how different Jaws is compared to the sleek, sequel-laden, CGI-driven summer fare of today. Watching a drunken Quint (a thoroughly convincing Robert Shaw) stomp aroundJaws' grimy, pathetic boat — which is a character unto itself — is welcome aesthetic shift from the alienating pixelated mayhem of Thor, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Captain America and the like.

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by Jason Gargano 12.10.2010
at 01:13 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 

Friday Movie Roundup: 'The Tourist' Sucks Edition

We've got another thin week for new movie releases — unless you're excited about the latest Narnia film, which I'm not. Even the new Johnny Depp/Angelina Jolie thriller — which I was initially eager to check out despite the warning sign its studio raised by not screening it in advance for critics — is getting thoroughly trashed by those unlucky enough to have seen it. That leaves Wild Target, another film its distributor (the indie outfit Freestyle) didn't screen in advance, as the lone possible saving grace. No pressure.

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