Comparisons to All the President’s Men aren’t just about subject matter; they’re about directness of style, and the room this director gives a film to breathe. …Read More
This is usually the part of the column where I do my best to situate this month’s indies into the calendar year, or against what’s happening in the multiplex, or what have you. But I’ll just keep it simple: the three best movies I’ve seen in 2015 all open in November. And there’s plenty more to see besides them.
Michael Keaton and an All-Star Cast Investigate the Catholic Church in the First ‘Spotlight’ Trailer
With an ensemble cast that includes Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams , Mark Ruffalo, Liev Schreiber, John Slattery, Stanley Tucci, Billy Crudup, and Brian d’Arcy James, this one just shot to the top of our fall movie must-see …Read More
“We’re so far in talks we’re not talking anymore. It’s done!” Tilda Swinton said in an interview with Screen Crush regarding negotiations for her to play The Ancient One in Marvel’s Doctor Strange. And yes, that means exactly what it sounds like: Tilda Swinton will play Earth’s Sorcerer Supreme. Tilda Swinton will be near-immortal. Tilda Swinton will roam the globe, collecting knowledge of its many secrets. Tilda Swinton will be able to levitate and perform astral projection. Given that the pop-cultural tendency is to assume that Swinton already is/does all of these things, it’s doubtful anyone will have to suspend their disbelief for a second come the release of Dr. Strange.
We’ve seen some grim weeks for new releases in the half-year or so that this column has run, but never one quite like this — I mean, seriously, try to find a movie you’ve even heard of in this sad bunch. Luckily, the week’s not a total washout, thanks (as usual) to Netflix and Criterion; the former is debuting a gripping documentary, an earnest love story, and one of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s final films, while the latter gives us a Terry Gilliam classic and a German antiwar film that you probably haven’t seen, but should.
It seems like there is an unspoken rule that before we consider the second season of True Detective, we have to reevaluate the first, a tour de force that caught everyone off guard, and that either stuck or blew the landing, depending on who you ask. The bleak buddy cop show brought forth a (sigh) McConaissance, united the Internet in some of our favorite TV-related activities — predicting, theorizing over, and arguing about how it would end, and then continuing that argument long after we knew how it did end — and eventually even crashed HBOGo. So it’s only natural that this second season is one of the most highly anticipated follow-ups in recent memory. This means, of course, that it is also nearly impossible to live up to the hype — but the show does try.
Public service announcement: Cameron Crowe’s new film Aloha features a party scene where Emma Stone and Bill Murray dance to Hall & Oates’ “I Can’t Go For That,” and if you (like me) are the kind of person who finds the promise of such a scene utterly delightful, let me assure you that it lives up to that promise. It’s a scene of sheer movie-star pleasure that pretty much stops the film for about three minutes; it doesn’t really move the plot (or even, in retrospect, make much narrative sense), but it feels like something Crowe had to put in, for the simple reason that he couldn’t not put it in. Maybe a more disciplined filmmaker would’ve resisted that temptation, but if we’ve learned anything about Cameron Crowe, it’s that he’s not terribly disciplined, which can be both a blessing and a curse. It seems your correspondent likes Aloha more than much of the critical community (to say nothing of the studio releasing it), but your enjoyment will hinge greatly on your level of tolerance for Mr. Crowe’s indulgences.