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'Labor Day,' as mushy as a warm peach pie

If you've seen the trailer for “Labor Day,” Jason Reitman's film based on the novel by Joyce Maynard, then you've caught a glimpse of a new breakout star, who threatens to upstage even the estimable Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin.
2014/3/21
Elba anchors 'Mandela' with dignity, charm

If there were ever a season to learn, via the movies, about crucial periods of history, it's this one. Last month we were introduced to “12 Years a Slave,” Steve McQueen's unforgettable look at American slavery, through one man with an incredible story.
2014/3/21
Planning some extended family dinners over the holidays? Worried that folks might not get along, that festering tensions might surface, that people might get tipsy and say too much?
2014/2/28
Streep holds nothing back in brutal 'Osage'
Conditional 'Endless Love'

A remake of the classic drama film of the '80s starring Brooke Shields and Tom Cruise in one of his first roles, “Endless Love” is adapted from one of the most celebrated novels by Scott Spencer.
2014/2/14
Pomp, amoral 'Wolf of Wall Street' is rich

Digging into deep-pocket gluttony, Martin Scorsese's dark comedy “The Wolf of Wall Street” highlights a world rich in drugs, fast cars and private jets. The American dream is amplified, yet those indulging in it are never satisfied.
2014/2/14
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The magical, lonely love of 'Her'

How essential are physical and emotional connections when falling in love? What would you miss — looking into someone's eyes, caressing them, tasting them?
2014/1/17
'Closed Circuit,' a post-privacy thriller

We're all being watched. All the time. That's a key message of “Closed Circuit,” an entertaining and well-crafted if not overly heart-stopping British conspiracy thriller starring Eric Bana and Rebecca Hall. Security cameras are everywhere, giving us birds-eye glimpses of each character, and reminding us that we, too, are never really alone.
2013/10/25
Diana aims for competence

Tina Brown's witty, gossipy and perceptive “The Diana Chronicles” is one of the best books to consult if you want to make sense of the complicated life and tragic end of the Princess of Wales. German filmmaker Oliver Hirschbiegel's biopic “Diana” takes the basic facts of the British royal's post-divorce years, puts them through the dry-cleaner and then whips them on the washing stone to make sure that no blemishes or stains survive.
2013/10/18
'Gravity,' 90 minutes of terrifying beauty

In an age when we're able to consume content so many different ways let's declare right now that there's only one truly correct way to experience “Gravity,” Alfonso Cuaron's thrilling new space film.
2013/10/4
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The Chinese pursuit of the American Dream

Hong Kong director Peter Ho-Sun Chan's (陳可辛) most Chinese-style film, “American Dreams in China” (海闊天空), centers on the lives of three people; Cheng Dongqing, Meng Xiaojun and Wang Yang, who come from different backgrounds but have one thing in common — the dream of getting a visa to the U.S. and living out their American dreams.
2013/8/2
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