‘Side Effects’ Review: The Pills Won’t Help You Now

After 24 years in the movie business, indie film maverick and occasional Hollywood heavyweight Steven Soderbergh is calling it quits. Rising to prominence with sex, lies, and videotape—the film that helped launch the American independent film renaissance of the early 90s—at the ripe age of 26, Soderbergh’s career quickly fell back … Continue reading

Oscar Snubs Throughout History, Part 1

Oscar season is that time of year that excites any movie buff. Each year we see the Academy recognize the best films, performers, directors, and cinematographers for their craft. Among the excitement of the nominations and winners, inevitably the Academy Awards snub some worthy film, actor, or director. Any cinephile … Continue reading

‘Gangster Squad’ Review: A Classic Gangster Film With Modern Flair

Gangster Squad is Zombieland director Ruben Fleischer’s first full drama film and only his third feature, but it’s his best yet and ends up being one of the best gangster movies since L.A. Confidential, it’s thematic cousin. The film will go down with a lingering footnote in relation to the … Continue reading

‘Zero Dark Thirty’ Review: Bin Laden—Dead or Alive—by Any Means Necessary?

Like Django Unchained, the reception of Zero Dark Thirty has been clouded by a question of whether or not the film endorses torture by depicting it as a viable tool in the decade long search for terrorist Osama bin Laden. According to Senators Dianne Feinstein, John McCain, and Carl Levin—who sent a letter … Continue reading

‘Django Unchained’ Review: Confronting the Taboo of Slavery

Spike Lee has long been one of Quentin Tarantino’s detractors. When Jackie Brown was released, the African-American film director attacked Tarantino for including the N-Word roughly 40 times. Now, in the wake of the release of Django Unchained (Tarantino’s Spaghetti Western riff on slavery; think Inglourious Basterds set in the antebellum south), … Continue reading

‘The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey’ HFR 3D Review: A Beautiful Start to an Adventure

The Hobbit has been on the minds of fans ever since we heard The Lord of the Rings would be made into films first. It’s actually a very ambitious story to translate to film when you consider the book’s intended demographic of children; whereas The Lord of the Rings was … Continue reading

‘Deadfall’ Review: A Mediocre Thriller At Best

Deadfall is a mixed bag. Directed by Stefan Ruzowitzky, the story begins with Addison (Eric Bana) and Liza (Olivia Wilde) having just robbed a casino when they get into a car accident while trying to get to the Canadian border in a blizzard. A police officer discovers the wreck and … Continue reading

Playing Catch Up: ‘Wreck-It Ralph’, ‘Room 237’, and ‘The Perks of Being a Wallflower’

The transition from Los Angeles to Texarkana has robbed me of my enviable position to see platform releases early in their run. Thus, when I went to Austin in early November for an academic conference, I spent much of my time at the local cinema. I needed to catch up … Continue reading

Brilliant Theatrics: ‘Anna Karenina’ Review

Anna Karenina, one of many film adaptations of the Leo Tolstoy novel of the same name, tells the story of an affair that tears the lives of those involved apart. In late 19th century Russia, Anna Karenina (Keira Knightley) is a content aristocrat married to the stuffy, yet kind statesman … Continue reading

Mass Murdering Vampire Children: ‘Breaking Dawn: Part II’

Note: This article contains spoilers.  I have a love-hate relationship with The Twilight Saga. Aside from having horrible dialogue and egregiously melodramatic story lines, sometimes it’s just offensive if you’re remotely liberal, because Meyer’s conservative, Mormon ideology is potent. So why do I feel compelled to watch every Twilight movie? … Continue reading