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Beanpole makes Cries and Whispers look like Blazing Saddles

Long on misery

If you thought Russian interference with the last election was reprehensible, wait until you see what Putin’s putas are doing to the movies. When was the last time a picture scraped the humor right out ...

The Traitor: Family unfriendly

What’s it going to take to get Tommaso Bruscetta to testify?

Family. It’s why Charlie lent a helping hand to his hair-triggered cousin Johnny Boy in Mean Streets. But go against Mr. French in The Departed and he’ll soon forget how once upon a time your ...

Created Equal: an unduly sympathetic portrait of Clarence Thomas

My sworn duty is to review the film, not the man

Spectacles, or no spectacles? That is the question that opens Created Equal: Clarence Thomas in His Own Words. (Thomas settled upon two eyes instead of four.) The next voice you hear is that of writer ...

Quezon’s Game: A Filipino Schindler’s List?

“Could I have done more?”

For a month, the link languished in my mailbox — I put off playing Quezon’s Game until the latest possible moment. Frankly, the thought of a Filipino Schindler’s List held about as much interest as ...

Dolittle: Robert Downey, Jr. goes down

Does a dragon even qualify as an animal?

It is with deep and abiding regret that we report the passing of Robert Downey, Jr. — one of the last of his generation of trailblazers — over to the dark side. Admittedly, the transition ...

The best and worst films of 2019

Scott Marks’ picks

Of the nearly 250 films I viewed in 2019, here are the front-runners and slopsuckers. For more on this year in film, visit the Big Screen. Favorites: 10.) Last Letter A romantic drama void of ...

The reign of Dag Hammarskjöld

Documentarian Mads Brügger is in it to monitor “the evil that white men do”

Where were you when you first learned of the death of Dag Hammarskjöld? For some, it will be wherever they’re reading this review. But at the time, his mere existence was viewed by some as ...

Uncut Gems: Adam Sandler plays a bad man with a plan

His day consumed with robbing Peter to pawn to Paul

Who says television isn’t educational? Ever hear of African Jews? Diamond man (14 carat, not baseball) Howard Ratner (Adam Sandler) hadn’t, not until the night a documentary introduced him to a tribe of landlocked nomads ...

Richard Jewell: American hero

Bronson was a popcorn salesman. Eastwood is an artist.

Were cash and prizes all that motivated Clint Eastwood, he’d have had himself de-aged, made another Dirty Harry sequel for Netflix, and been done with it. But there’ll be none of that small screen hoo-hah ...

63 Up: Grow old along with me

The world’s first and longest-running reality television show

The late ’50s-early ‘60s proved to be a wellspring of worldwide experimentation in documentary realism. Banking on unscripted reactions to outrageous situations as his key to success, American television personality Allen Funt tucked his Candid ...

The Wolf Hour: Prisoner of the past

Locked away on a mysterious journey with a brooding agoraphobic

A shade of wet newsprint grey smudges the facade of the still-standing South Bronx apartment. From the opposite side of the street, the only visible sign of life in the tenement is a faint glow ...

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