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08.23.2013 | | Posted at 10:20 AM
By David Luhrssen
  When the major studios refused to fund his Liberace picture, Oscar-winning director Steven Soderbergh went instead to HBO. His production, Behind the Candelabra, drew a huge audience on cable earlier this summer. It will be out in September on Blu-ray. Behind the Candelabra is exactly the sort of character driven, intelligent screenplay that once was Hollywood’s bread and b...
08.08.2013 | | Posted at 03:17 PM
By David Luhrssen
  In movies, the future is often an arena for acting out the anxieties of the present. Elysium presents a stark contrast between the haves, comfortably ensconced in a space station wheeling like a giant donut around the world, and the have-nots, struggling to live on an Earth where every acre is Third World. For the terrestrial scenes, director Neill Blomkamp (District 9) used th...
Wednesday, Aug. 7, 2013
 In the year 2154, Max (Matt Damon) is one of many workers toiling on a ruined planet Earth while the privileged look down upon them from Elysium, an enormous, futuristic space station equipped with every imaginable
10.08.2012 | | Posted at 08:44 AM
By David Luhrssen
  The Friday, Oct. 12 release of Argo will mark a new peak for Ben Affleck, a celebrity-cum-reviled Hollywood figure. Affleck became a joke as half of the tabloid couple Bennifer, especially after his sinkhole movie with JLo, Gigli (2003). Of course, his resume was also studded with wretched nonsense like Armageddon (1998) and disappointments such as Pearl Harbor (2001). With A...
Tuesday, Aug. 14, 2012

Film series misses its main star, director

Bourne without Jason Bourne? It sounds like a Bond movie without James Bond or a Sherlock Holmes...
Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Matt Damon, Emily Blunt star in Philip K. Dick adaptation

Philip K. Dick was a prolific author who saw the shadowy hands behind the...
10.31.2010 | | Posted at 10:19 AM
By David Luhrssen
The tsunami that rushes through a Third World resort in the opening sequence of Hereafter is one of the best uses of CGI ever. Vividly real (and all the more impressive on a big screen), the cascading ocean wave is enough to make you duck your head as the flow carries Marie (Cecile de France), a French anchorwoman, through buildings collapsing from the weight of the water. The opening is cinem...
02.15.2010 | | Posted at 11:39 AM

A Howard Zinn Film

By David Luhrssen
Asked again and again by students for a book that was critical of American history, rather than repeating the same old platitudes, Howard Zinn despaired and wrote his own. A People�s History of the United States (1980) became one of the best selling books ever on America�s past. Not long before his death earlier this year, Zinn co-directed The People Speak, which presents aspects of A People�s H...
Sunday, Dec. 13, 2009

Morgan Freeman as Nelson Mandela

The teams were separated by a cyclone fence, a road and a world of difference. On one side of the street in South Africa, a white rugby team in neat uniforms kicked the ball around a manicured field; on the other, a ragtag black team played in the dirt. And suddenly, rushing down the road, came a motorcade with the man who would bring both sides together, Nelson Mandela.

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