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Review: 'The Sparks Brothers' - Is This One-of-a-Kind Band's Long Wait Finally Over?

Entertainment / Kurt Loder /

Alone among cult bands, Sparks have never for a moment thought of calling it quits. Even during the six parched years at the end of the 1980s, when the group -- deadpan keyboardist/composer Ron Mael and his hyperkinetic younger brother, Russell Mael -- couldn't find a label, they continued writing and recording music at their Los Angeles studio ...Read more

Review: 'Censor' and 'Flashback' - Blood and Confusion

Entertainment / Kurt Loder /

Welsh director Prano Bailey-Bond probably didn't have a lot of money to make her first feature, but that could have worked in her favor. "Censor" tells a story set in the trash-horror film world of the 1980s -- in Britain, the era of gut-ripping "video nasty": pictures like "Cannibal Holocaust," "The Driller Killer" and "Gestapo's Last Orgy." As...Read more

Review: 'David Crosby: Remember My Name' is a Portrait of a Man Running Out of Road

Entertainment / Kurt Loder /

David Crosby has been many interesting things over the course of his 77 years: a founding member of the Byrds -- the band that created folk-rock -- and of the subsequent super-duper group variously known as Crosby, Stills & Nash or Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. He has also been a junkie, a fugitive, a convict and a world-class asshole. The new ...Read more

Review: 'A Quiet Place Part II' - Come on, Feel the Noise

Entertainment / Kurt Loder /

The 2018 "A Quiet Place" was a movie about family values -- chief among them don't die a painful and horrifying death . It was also a film with a title that was fully warranted: The first 38 minutes of its 90-minute runtime were entirely wordless.

"A Quiet Place Part II," the new sequel (or continuation of the story, as writer-director-...Read more

Review: 'Army of the Dead' is a Monster Mashup

Entertainment / Kurt Loder /

Zombie movies, which have been shambling across movie screens since at least the 1930s, have an undying appeal. But their enduring popularity is a little odd, when you think about it, since a zombie, by definition, is generally slow in pursuit of its victims and has to rely on the frequent inclination of fleeing humans to trip over something or ...Read more

Review: In 'Riders of Justice' Mads Mikkelsen stars in a Blood-Flecked, Philosophical Action Comedy

Entertainment / Kurt Loder /

"Riders of Justice" is a sharp, funny inquiry into the proposition that nobody ever really knows where they stand in this world, no matter how certain they may be that they do.

Mads Mikkelsen is Markus, a Danish soldier deployed in some hot, dusty war zone when he receives news that his wife, Emma, has died in a subway crash back home. He ...Read more

Reviews: 'Wrath of Man' and 'The Columnist' - Guy Ritchie Returns (With Jason Statham, Wisely), and a Dutch Woman Discovers the Ultimate Cure for Online Menacing

Entertainment / Kurt Loder /

Guy Ritchie movies, especially those of the gangster variety with which he started out 23 years ago, make life simple. You know what you're going to get walking in: a lot of shouting, a lot of skull-crushing music, a lot more shouting, and a boatload of blunt, brutal action. Not to say there's anything wrong with wall-to-wall uproar -- who doesn...Read more

Review: 'Together Together' and 'Sisters with Transistors' - Modern Love and Future Sounds

Entertainment / Kurt Loder /

"Together Together" is a rom-com without the rom. It's an offbeat inquiry into the possibility of platonic love between a man and a woman. Ed Helms and Patti Harrison are just about perfect as Matt, a lonely 45-year-old app designer, and Anna, a 26-year-old barista whom Matt has hired as a surrogate mother for the baby he wants to ground his ...Read more

Review: 'Gunda' Is A Wondrous and Heartbreaking Excursion Into the World of Animals

Entertainment / Kurt Loder /

In 1995, the Australian film "Babe" took animal-fantasy to a new level. Advanced animatronic technology brought the picture's many creatures -- the dogs, the sheep, the singing mice, the freaked-out duck, the duplicitous cat and, of course, the lovable porcine protagonist -- into a realm of almost-real beings and lent their emotions a new weight...Read more

Review: In 'Voyagers' Space, No One Can Hear You Snooze

Entertainment / Kurt Loder /

Writer-director Neil Burger has salted his new sci-fi movie, "Voyagers," with provocative social issues, but they're hardly new. "Who are we?" "Where are we going?" "Who cares?"

Colin Farrell plays Jim, a science guy involved in a project creating government-engineered embryos. The resulting babies are raised in isolation -- they never see ...Read more

Review: 'Shiva Baby'- Rachel Sennott Kills in This Hilarious Comedy of Errors

Entertainment / Kurt Loder /

Somebody died. Danielle (Rachel Sennott) isn't sure who -- somebody in her extended family, a second-wife's sister or something -- but her parents, Debbie and Joel (Polly Draper and Fred Melamed), are all upset, and she's promised them she'll make it to the funeral. Or at least to the post-funeral shiva, for the traditional Jewish ritual of ...Read more

Review: 'Êxtase' (Ecstasy) Holds The Weight of the World

Entertainment / Kurt Loder /

In her dreamlike first feature, Brazilian director Moara Passoni uses action -- especially the noisy street demos of her country's recent political past -- as background. The movie's unswerving focus is a quiet young girl named Clara, who, on the cusp of puberty, is sinking into extreme anorexia. "This week, Manu got her period, and she cried ...Read more

Review: In 'Beauty and the Beast' Emma Watson Helps Bring Another Animated Disney Classic to Life

Entertainment / Kurt Loder /

Experiencing Disney's live-action "Beauty and the Beast" is like being held down and force-fed candy for two hours. Candy fans can take this as a recommendation, and lovers of blazingly well-made fantasy films and full-belt Broadway musicals will surely have a good time. I had a good time myself, up to a point. But the movie is possibly ...Read more

 

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