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The Favourite: Pretty ugly people

At the outset of The Favourite, director Yorgos Lanthimos’ scabrous and nihilistic romp amid the English royals, Emma Stone — playing Abigail, a clever girl from a fallen family — faces an unpleasant choice: either ...

Arrivederci, Roma

Shouldn’t cinematography and direction go hand in hand?

A bucketful of soap suds splashes across a row of tiles, transforming a square of garage floor into a mirror awash with the reflection of an airplane hovering in the sky above. The long take ...

Green Book: Share more, wag less

A feel-good charmer poised to rake in greenbacks and Oscar gold

Directed by one half of the Farrelly Brothers, Green Book isn’t content to simply smell like a Driving Miss Daisy. Yes, it’s a feel-good charmer poised to rake in greenbacks and Oscar gold. No, that ...

Local boy makes good

An interview with Character Designer Jeff Merghart

Ralph Breaks the Internet, Disney’s sequel to Wreck-It Ralph, is superior to its predecessor in several ways. Character Designer Jeff Merghart, a La Mesa native who attended Helix High and Grossmont College before heading to ...

Last Letter: Iwai delivers

A romantic drama void of romance

Lovers of unrequited love, rejoice. There is enough handwritten romantic communication exchanged in Shunji Iwai’s deceptively uncomplicated romance Last Letter to fill a small post office branch. And no junk mail! Given that he has ...

Asian Film Festival opens this weekend

Three to see

At age 19, the Asian Film Festival shows no sign of slowing down. If anything, this could be the strongest lineup artistic director Brian Hu has assembled in many a year. What follows are a ...

Bogdanovich boosts Buster

“I decided to show the work for which he was being celebrated. Always leave them laughing!”

Is it me, or has Landmark’s Ken Cinema become San Diego’s big screen answer to the A&E Biography channel? Truth be told, my adulation over Pick of the Litter was guided more by a love ...

Beautiful Boy: Oh, boy

Who is this movie’s target audience?

Daddy Dave (Steve Carell) spends the first quarter of the picture scratching his head while even accidental moviegoers — those who stumble across Beautiful Boy as a fluke, without the benefit of having seen the ...

Bad Times at the El Royale is good

Director Drew Goddard is clearly a man who views his setting as a character

In 2012, writer-director Drew Goddard took a bunch of teens to a Cabin in the Woods for a rollicking nightmare subversion of the horror genre. Here, he takes a bunch of strangers — Jeff Bridges’ ...

The shteegan on Fred Saxon

The ringer was still in movie theatre mode when I awoke last Friday to find four messages. To paraphrase comedian Richard Lewis, that many calls so early in the day means one thing: death in ...

I Am Not a Witch: craft and care

A remarkably assured debut, one that knows its strengths and plays to them

I Am Not a Witch: craft and care

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