Tag: drama

Film Review

The Imitation Game (2014)

“Now the reason the enlightened prince and the wise general conquer the enemy whenever they move and their achievements surpass those of ordinary men is foreknowledge” – Sun Tzu, The Art of War One day shortly after World War II, Winston Churchill was asked, “If we had broken the Nazis’ […]

Film Review

Unbroken (2014)

Hit me over the head again, please Again the fledgling director Angelina Jolie has made a film that’s powerful, unflinching, and hard to watch, like her 2011 feature debut, In the Land of Blood and Honey. Few saw that one. Many more will come out to see this. It’s a wide […]

Film Review

Whiplash (2014)

My theory is that Terrence Fletcher, the band class dictator in Whiplash, is an imaginary character, a metaphor for the artist’s inner voice, the wicked voice, the one that whispers, “You’re a fraud.”  The sadistic music teacher, played with an unreal yet riveting intensity by J.K. Simmons, is a ghost […]

Feature, Film Review

Testament of Youth (2014)

Similar to last year’s The Railway Man, the awards season wouldn’t be complete without a war epic.  Originally slated to be released as part of the UK’s World War I celebrations, the adaptation of the first installment of Vera Brittain’s celebrated memoir was shown as part of the 2014 London […]

Feature, Film Review

Whiplash (2014)

It starts not with a whimper, but a bang. And a crash. And Andrew Neiman demonstrating his rudiments to Shaffer Conservatory maestro Terence Fletcher. Whiplash isn’t for wasting time. Damien Chazelle’s second feature makes a point of jettisoning anything that might get in the way of the pursuit of excellence. Gone […]

Film Review

The Theory of Everything (2014)

The Theory of Everything is certainly not an art film. If one blinks through one’s tears and awe, it’s probably not even one of the best movies of the year. But it is surely destined to be one of the best remembered, and most loved. It’s popular, but with class. It […]

DVD Review, Feature

God’s Pocket (2014)

The compulsion to experience life the other side of the camera is clearly a strong one for actors. John Slattery of Mad Men fame (where he also tested his skills directing a few episodes) is the latest in a long line to try with his debut feature, God’s Pocket. Steeped […]

Feature, Film Review

The Drop (2014)

There is no shortage of gangsters in film, but it is hard to find one that stands out from the rest of the crowd.  However, when people think of gangsters on television, Tony Soprano is one of the most memorable gangsters in recent years.  With his final film performance, James […]

Film Review

Gone Girl (2014)

Gone Girl isn’t the movie you’ll be told it is. It’s better. It isn’t a thriller “torn from today’s headlines” or from obsessive media coverage of this or that true crime scandal, though at first it pretends to be. It’s more original. It isn’t a masterful maze of twists and […]

Feature, Film Review

Phoenix (2014)

Reorienting the themes of Hitchcock’s binary women-in-peril pictures, Vertigo (1958) and Marnie (1964), Christian Petzold’s Phoenix is a fraught, horror-tinged marital drama which builds Sirkian malaise into the construct of a perverted Pygmalion thriller. Nelly (Nina Hoss) is a death camp survivor searching for her husband in postwar Berlin, unaware […]