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Movie Review: The House (2016)

Reinert Kiil is the Norwegian director responsible for the sort-of-okay slasher “Christmas Blood” (“Juleblod”). If that film was a brooding modernization of “Silent Night, Deadly Night” then The House (“Huset”) must be his re-imagining of “The Conjuring.” On the surface it’s an interesting new twist on the familiar, demon-possessed madhouse setup. Two Nazi soldiers are…

Movie Review: Stray (2019)

In Stray, an orphaned young woman struggles to discover the reasons behind her mother’s death, aided by an indefatigable detective with child-care issues of her own. The plot is also tinged with a bit of the supernatural, which typically would raise this movie a few cuts above your standard police procedural. Instead, the film left…

Movie Review: People’s Republic of Desire (2018)

In comparison, the western world’s absurd fascination with social media, online celebrity/fandom, and socioeconomic gain in virtual reality seems to take a noticeable backseat to the immense obsession that is China’s ultra-live streaming epidemic. Filmmaker Hao Wu’s tellingly spry and insightful documentary People’s Republic of Desire is an involving expose of this technological addiction gone…

Movie Review: High Flying Bird (2019)

Arena lights are off, locker rooms are empty and primetime TV slots are dotted with holes. We don’t have to be told that explicitly in Steven Soderbergh’s (“Unsane”) confidently insightful new film High Flying Bird. Curiously empty New York City sidewalks and forlorn attitudes tell us what we need to know: Professional basketball games are…

Movie Review: The Amityville Murders (2018)

1974. Amityville, Long Island. The DeFeo family lives in a house called “High Hopes,” although their situation is looking pretty hopeless. Twenty-somethings “Butch” (John Robinson, “Transformers”) and Dawn (Chelsea Ricketts, “More Than Enough”) live under the shadow of an abusive patriarch, Ronnie (Paul Ben-Victor, “Get Hard”), who’s apparently embroiled with some Mafia types. As the…

Movie Review: Dead Ant (2017)

B-movies are a dime a dozen nowadays, thanks to the increasingly strengthening stream of easier distribution paths and the prolificacy of cut-rate digital effects solutions, so it’s tough to sift through the rubble of bargain bin trash to find any gems anymore. The label simply isn’t what it used to be, now sullied by the…

Movie Review: Under the Eiffel Tower (2018)

For a film ostensibly about people in the throes of existential crises, the characters in Under the Eiffel Tower still make a show of enjoying life’s simple pleasures. But not even classic romantic comedy clichés, the beautiful French landscape, market day montages, plates of good food, glasses of better wine, parties al fresco, acoustic guitar…

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