Erik Oliver discusses the strengths and weaknesses of Luc Besson’s comic book adaptation, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, and concludes that Besson’s cool sci-fi canvas outclasses his uncool approach to storytelling.
James Kreul suggests that Operation Avalanche does not live up to its festival circuit buzz, but it provides enough invention and moxie to remain entertaining and endearing.
Edwanike Harbour argues that despite material that could turn off some viewers, Paul Verhoeven (Basic Instinct) delivers a perfect viewing experience with his new film starring Golden Globe winner Isabelle Huppert.
James Kreul argues that Dear Zindagi is the most broadly appealing Bollywood film to play Madison in 2016, despite its use of bland music montages instead of dance sequences. After a year of particularly shallow female characters, writer/director Gauri Shinde and star Alia Bhatt play with Bollywood conventions about romance, family, sexuality, and gender roles to deliver an intriguing character study of a young professional woman.
Erik Oliver argues that Kubo and the Two Strings provides an opportunity for animation studio Leika to flex its muscles, resulting in a visually impressive and emotionally compelling cinematic experience.
The Mandarin-language popular cinema arriving with greater frequency at AMC Fitchburg 18 continues to be generally ignored in local reviews, so James Kreul decided to take a look. Operation Mekong is an efficient and energetic, if unoriginal, action film with a healthy dose of Chinese nationalism.
James Kreul suggests that while Ism is not a great film, it delivers a good balance of action, romance, and music as well as the star power of Nandamuri Kalyan Ram.
The latest drama from Anne Fontaine (Gemma Bovary) is a subtle and moving tribute to women who have harnessed the power of their shared experience to face adversity.
James Kreul suggests that reviewing Life, Animated presents a common dilemma: How to discuss an inspiring true-life story told in an uninspired documentary.
A much needed microcinema-style series for local and international video art has debuted at the Arts + Literature Laboratory. James Kreul explains why this matters, and surveys some of the titles curated by programmers Simone Doing and Max Puchalsky, a.k.a. Simone and Max.