Movie Review: The Ritual (2017)

Those dastardly backwoods are calling again. Based on the well-received 2011 novel by Adam Nevill, David Bruckner’s film, The Ritual, is a competent British-made horror which, after a so-so opening act, gradually mutates into something quite watchable and intense. It starts as a group of old college buddies meet up to plan a reunion trip…

Movie Review: Icarus (2017)

In Icarus, documentarian and amateur cyclist Bryan Fogel sets about a steep undertaking. He is curious to learn whether he can follow a blood-doping program capable of clearing the controls clean and thus placing him in awards contention at France’s Haute Route race, the world’s most prestigious multi-day event for amateur riders. Eager to prove…

Movie Review: Winchester (2018)

In 1906, in San Jose, California, an impressive, intimidating, and haunting construction project is underway — in fact, this never-ending project is worked on 24 hours a day. After the deaths of her husband and infant daughter, Sarah Winchester (Helen Mirren, “Eye in the Sky”) began ordering renovations on the family home. Heiress to the…

Movie Review: Inoperable (2017)

Christopher Lawrence Chapman’s debut feature, Inoperable, is a horror film about a 30-year-old woman struggling to escape from a half-deserted hospital while “the T-rex of hurricanes” sweeps overhead. The opening titles are like a scratchy throwback to David Fincher’s “Se7en,” and the end credits splash the screen with comic book text. Neither bookend is relevant…

Movie Review: Father Figures (2017)

The topic of “Papa Was A Rolling Stone” is more than a classic tune from the legendary Motown musical act The Temptations — it also happens to be the breezy theme behind the clunky comedy, Father Figures. The “who’s your daddy” premise is a woefully tired one, but it did not prevent director Lawrence Sher…

Movie Review: Bilal: A New Breed of Hero (2015)

Inspired by true events, Bilal: A New Breed of Hero tells the story of a real hero who earned his place in history after liberating himself and inspiring others to do likewise. This Arabic animated feature is intoxicating and beautifully drawn. The animation is textured and multidimensional, almost reminiscent of cutting-edge video game graphics. There…

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