Vertical Entertainment

Movie Review: Under the Shadow (2016)

Oppression and fear stalk the environs of Babak Anvari’s superb Under the Shadow. Based on Anvari’s childhood experiences in Tehran during the Iran-Iraq War, Under the Shadow brings subjugation, menace and a palatable sense of dread to the screen, with a political element that is constant but never overbearing. The film’s focus is domestic, portraying…

Movie Review: Predestination (2014)

Whether or not space-time is an actual reality or simply an illusion, a convenient concept of the mind to get us through the day, is not relevant here. The Spierig Brothers (“Daybreakers”) mesmerizing film Predestination postulates that it is real, but that is only the starting point of a film that challenges us at every…

Movie Review: He Never Died (2015)

He Never Died was recently shown as part of the Spooky Movie International Film Festival, currently ongoing at the AFI Silver theater in Silver Spring, Maryland. In it, Henry Rollins plays a solitary grump who’s trying to escape from his past. That grump, Jack (Rollins, “Wrong Turn 2: Dead End”), lives in a beat-up apartment…

Movie Review: The Final Girls (2015)

Opening night at the Spooky Movie International Horror Film Festival, held annually in Silver Spring, Maryland, is always a treat. This year, the opener was The Final Girls, a thriller/comedy that subverts many horror-film conventions — indeed, the very notion of movies themselves. Teenager Max (Taissa Farmiga, “Anna”) happens to be the daughter of the…

Movie Review: Anna (2013)

Jorge Dorado knows a thing or two about memory and time. The Spanish director worked with the legendary Pedro Almodóvar on such films as “Talk To Her” in 2002 and “Bad Education” in 2004, and now on his own addresses the power of the mind in his feature debut with the sensual thriller Anna. The…

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