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Movie Review: The Greatest Showman (2017)

The Greatest Showman is a confusing animal. Its opening frames begin the movie by displaying the familiar and orchestral 20th Century Fox logo used from the 50s through the 80s, implying the audience is in for a reverent throwback to the classic Hollywood musicals of yore. Then — literally six seconds later — the studio’s…

Movie Review: Holy Air (2017)

Adam is a man (although not the first) living with his wife in the congested holy city of Nazareth. He is a member of the Christian Arab community, which is a population in decline in these parts. As the Angel Gabriel descended on Nazareth to announce the coming of the Messiah, Holy Air opens with…

Movie Review: Okja (2017)

That will do, super pig. That will do. Animals never have it easy in Bong Joon-ho’s world: “Barking Dogs Never Bite” paints those that yap as vermin that need terminating, “The Host” mutates a fish into a rampaging abomination and now Okja follows a hybrid fated for the abattoir. Yet, rather than rage at or…

Movie Review: The Shepherd (2016)

In The Shepherd, we meet Anselmo (Miguel Martín, “Cell 211”) on a day much like any other in his modest, repetitive life. He wakes up in his one-room farmhouse. He feeds his precious dog Pillo, he has breakfast, he showers. He spends the day with his sheep, reading and skimming stones when time permits. He…

Movie Review: Salt and Fire (2016)

The synopsis of acclaimed German director Werner Herzog’s 2016 thriller Salt and Fire, at first, seems to present a truly intriguing, unique and captivating story — “A renowned scientist is sent to Bolivia on an urgent mission to analyze a looming environmental catastrophe she along with her colleagues are deceived by a man claiming to…

Movie Review: Elle (2016)

Paul Verhoeven is back with more scratchy sexual politics, darkly comic innuendos, and harshly nasty violence. First things first, the most joyous part of that sentence is the beginning. Paul Verhoeven is back. Not back to Hollywood, of course, which he left nearly 17 years ago after the dismal response to his schlocky invisibility thriller…

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