January 22, 2010
"Legion," an R-rated action thriller, opens today in wide release. The movie did not screen for critics. Its review will appear online as soon as it is available and in the newspaper Monday.
March 19, 2010
The ZIP Code for Sidney, Ohio, a city of 20,000 northwest of Columbus, becomes the title of Turner Ross and Bill Ross' "45365," a graceful, affectionate yet clear-eyed portrait of daily Middle America small-town life in which no individuals are interviewed but instead are observed with detachment as they go about their lives. In many ways, Sidney suggests that Norman Rockwell's America still exists. The town center is still dominated by a grand Second Empire-style courthouse, and many well-maintained vintage structures, strung along tree-lined streets, survive.
March 14, 2012 |
Marilyn Hagerty's review of the Olive Garden in Grand Forks, N.D., is hardly about the restaurant's “warm and comforting” chicken Alfredo or the “attractive” bar area -- it's the purest gauge of all that is America. That's if you believe the snarky legions who bashed the 85-year-old reviewer's piece last week and turned it viral, the diners who then defended it and the pundits who have since spun it into a touchstone for a feisty debate about the country's culture. Much has been made of Hagerty's March 7 evaluation of the chain restaurant for the Grand Forks Herald.
September 3, 2010
The warm and charming "White Wedding" is like "The Hangover" off steroids. It's another get-me-to-the-church-on-time obstacle course but filled with smart social commentary, romantic wisdom, credible complications and memorable characters. Along the way, director Jann Turner (who co-wrote the script with the film's co-leads Kenneth Nkosi and Rapulana Seiphemo) provides an absorbing physical and cultural snapshot of contemporary South Africa that deepens but never burdens this buoyant, energetic effort.
February 19, 2010 |
In "Shutter Island," director Martin Scorsese has created a divinely dark and devious brain tease of a movie in the best noir tradition with its smarter than you'd think cops, their tougher than you'd imagine cases to crack and enough nods to the classic genre for an all-night parlor game. It's 1954, the heart of the Cold War, with a conspiracy theory around every corner, when Leonardo DiCaprio's U.S. Marshal Teddy Daniels and his new partner, played by Mark Ruffalo, are dispatched to an asylum for the criminally insane to investigate a dicey disappearance.
July 19, 2011 |
Of all the "Friends" alumni, Lisa Kudrow has certainly had the most interesting career. In the seven years since the show ended, Kudrow had done film roles, a star turn in the fabulous and tragically short-lived series "The Comeback," and executive produced the American version of the popular British show "Who Do You Think You Are?" Three years ago, she even ventured into the brave new world of webisodes, with" Web Therapy," a semi-improvised series in which Fiona Wallice (Kudrow), Wharton grad turned "therapist," sees her patients via three-minute video chats.
February 5, 2010 |
Dear Reader, I'm so sorry, gulp, but "Dear John" is like a very bad relationship with a very beautiful someone: You want it to work, you truly do, but the pain, the guilt, the boredom, the CW soundtrack . . . . And I wish I could say it's not them, it's me, but I really think it's them. The film's very beautiful someones are the ab-riffic Channing Tatum as John, whom director Lasse Hallström wisely keeps either shirtless or in tight tees for most of the film, and that golden girl Amanda Seyfried (" Big Love," "Mamma Mia!"
November 26, 2010
"Break Ke Baad," an unrated romantic comedy from Reliance Big Pictures also opens Friday in limited release. Its review will appear in Saturday's paper and online as soon as it is available at latimes.com/moviereviews.
November 24, 2010 |
Think of "Burlesque" as one ginormous music video theme party thrown by Christina Aguilera, with Cher in the house, plus boas, bustiers and dancing girls and about a thousand humongous Broadway-style showstoppers. Which is a far better way to consider "Burlesque" than thinking of it as a movie ? there, words fail. (Their words, not mine. I'm a long way from finished here.) But should you find yourself in the mood for Big Musical Numbers by the score rather than a film, there's a lot to like about "Burlesque.