After a brief postponement from the fall — to edit a violent sequence in a movie theater — Gangster Squad, the 1940s and ’50s crime thriller from Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland and 30 Minutes or Less)
seeks a hostile takeover of the weekend box office.
The Bush administration picked the wrong family of Northern Californian atheists to paint with its pro-war brush of "hero" propaganda. The administration's attempted cover-up of the April 22, 2004, "friendly fire" murder of former pro football player Pat Tillman in Afghanistan is dissected in damning detail in Amir Bar-Lev's revealing documentary, narrated by Josh Brolin. Grade: A-.
Jonah Hex (Josh Brolin), the hero of this DC comic book adaptation, is a dark and wounded Civil War soldier turned bounty hunter with supernatural inclinations. Unfortunately, it lacks a dark unifying vision to set it apart and ends up quickly ignored and forgotten. Grade: D.
There's no way one can view the new film 'Milk' without thinking about Proposition 8, the recently passed ballot initiative that bans same-sex marriages in California. In a strange and ironic parallel, Harvey Milk's crowning achievement, well documented in the film, was his battle against Proposition 6, which would have barred gay teachers from jobs in California public schools.
It seems director Gus Van Sant stands more than foursquare with the strays of the world. His career highlights include 'Drugstore Cowboy,' 'My Own Private Idaho' and 'Good Will Hunting.' So it should come as no surprise that the tragic story of Harvey Milk (Sean Penn), San Francisco's and the nation's first openly gay public official voted into office, might stir a sense of kinship in him.
Oliver Stone's unpolished but finely tuned biopic of Western Civilization's most controversial leader is a straight-ahead dramatized biographical film that pedals between George W. Bush's misspent youth and his days in public office. Josh Brolin is exceptional as Bush in a deeply personal portrayal of an ultimately tragic figure.