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Movie Reviews

'Independence Day: Resurgence': Oh No, Not Again
In one scene of director/co-writer Roland Emmerich's "Independence Day: Resurgence," brainy scientist Julius Levinson, played by Judd Hirsch, berates his equally brainy scientist son, David Levinson (Jeff Goldblum), thusly: "So, it takes the end of the world for a son to visit his father?" It is but one of a long list of
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'Finding Dory': It'll Find You
Watching "Finding Dory," the sequel to the 2003 megahit "Finding Nemo," it occurs that perhaps even children of John Birchers and Ku Klux Klan members exposed to the high-minded sentiments of this sugary tutorial in liberalism will leave the theater a bit more tolerant. However, while colorful, intelligent and starring
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'Maggie's Plan': Has a Comic Twist
Because it is very New York, sophisticated, intelligent, witty, provocative and well written, I think Woody Allen would like director Rebecca Miller's "Maggie's Plan," just in case he's reading. It is of course about love among the scholarly and introspective, the whys and wherefores therein, with a smart meditation
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'Love & Friendship': A Comedy of Manners & Manors
I think it was because I was a sleepy little kid in grammar school who didn't appreciate the advantage of a good education that I didn't fully enjoy writer-director Whit Stillman's "Love & Friendship." I also blame that era, wherein I spent most of my classroom time drawing sketches of cars and baseball stadiums, for
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'The Nice Guys': The Case of the Dueling Detectives
First of all, you should know that most of the people who meet their untimely and often gruesome demise in director Shane Black's wacky combination of comedy and murder are bad. Still, it takes a little getting used to the seesaw temperament in this throwback buddy movie dialed up to today's cynicism. But thanks to Black's
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'The Meddler': Mommy Nosiest
If you believe that contemporary movies are too full of gratuitous violence, non-stop action and inundating special effects, then you might call director-writer Lorene Scafaria's "The Meddler" the exception that proves the rule. Starring Susan Sarandon as Marnie Minervini, the loving helicopter mom who just can't keep out
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'Captain America: Civil War': This Isn't Your Father's Superhero
It wasn't just because "Captain America: Civil War" was unnecessarily convoluted that I grew despondent as I sat through its 147 minutes of confusion. Later I would also be miffed by the lack of clues leading to the surprise conclusion. But I am beside the point. With nary a Smartphone a-texting, the kids around me seemed to love
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'A Hologram for the King': Angst of a Salesman
Director Tom Tykwer's "A Hologram for the King," about a down-on-his-luck American businessman seeking to rectify his life through one big deal in Saudi Arabia, is the sort of film you enjoy while you're watching it, think about a little, and dismiss. The fleeting, two-pronged appeal comes thanks to the everyman charm Tom
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'Barbershop: The Next Cut': Seriously Styled
A tragic dilemma confronts director Malcolm D. Lee's "Barbershop: The Next Cut," the fourth in the "Barbershop" film series if you count the spin-off, "Beauty Shop" (2005). While it is a heartfelt and generally successful attempt to lay bare and ponder solutions to the rampant murder rate in urban America (in
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'The Boss': Corners the Funny Business
It has been suggested that Melissa McCarthy's scurrilous business tycoon in director-husband Ben Falcone's "The Boss" is a female Donald Trump. Indeed, there are similarities, the main difference being that McCarthy's robber baron is likeable. While equally egocentric, delusional and selfish to a fault, we sense
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