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25th Hour
Criticism

25th Hour

Director Spike Lee’s preoccupation with the events of 9/11 first becomes evident during the opening credits of 25th Hour, which spotlight the infamous “Towers of Light” that emanated from Ground Zero at the end of last year. From there, 9/11 is everywhere; not simply alluded to, but prominently highlighted in numerous moments of hats-off, hands-over-heart … Continue reading

A Mighty Wind
Criticism

A Mighty Wind

After brilliantly satirizing community theater in Waiting for Guffman and dog shows in Best in Show, director Christopher Guest now takes a loving shot at folk music with his latest “mockumentary,” A Mighty Wind. The hysterically deadpan action follows three legendary folk acts as they prepare to reunite for a tribute concert in New York … Continue reading

About a Boy
Criticism

About a Boy

Although probably intended to break the hearts of straight women and men, About a Boy will undoubtedly have plenty of gays reaching for tissues, thanks to its near-perfect depiction of life as an outcast. A scene of a sissy-ish boy, Marcus (Nicholas Hoult), being chased home from school by a trio of bullies did it … Continue reading

About Schmidt
Criticism

About Schmidt

Allow me to make a prediction: Jack Nicholson will receive an Oscar nomination – and very likely the award itself – for his performance in About Schmidt. Not because he’s particularly good in it, or because the movie is all that great, but because the film stinks. It reeks throughout with a carefully formulated aroma … Continue reading

Adaptation
Criticism

Adaptation

Finally, the wait is over: the year’s best film has arrived. An incredible semi-quasi-autobiography that defies both explanation and categorization, the newest from director Spike Jonze and screenwriter Charlie Kaufman is even more inventive and perplexing than their pleasingly peculiar Being John Malkovich. In 1999, Kaufman was commissioned to adapt “The Orchid Thief,” a nonfiction … Continue reading

Adaptation (Q Syndicate)
Criticism

Adaptation (Q Syndicate)

Hired to adapt a plotless, nonfiction book by real-life author Susan Orleans (Meryl Streep) about a fanatic horticulturist (Chris Cooper), neurotic screenwriter Charlie Kaufman (Nicolas Cage) struggles to craft a story out of its deeply layered, esoteric musings without relying on overused Hollywood conventions. Meanwhile, after attending a screenwriting seminar, his jocular twin brother Douglas … Continue reading