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Arts and Culture (Movie Reviews)

There’s a thin line between straightforward and uninteresting

Modern thrillers are typically bogged down with fantastical plots, unnecessary twists and red herrings. Gone avoids most of these pitfalls with a simple thriller plotline that’s easy to follow. In doing so, it becomes a boring potboiler.
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Love means never having to say you’re sorry about illegal surveillance

CIA agents Tuck (Tom Hardy: Warrior) and FDR (Chris Pine: Unstoppable) are top agents assigned to take down German terrorist brothers. The job goes bad, terrorist Heinrich (Til Schweiger: New Year’s Eve) vows revenge and the two agents are grounded in the Los Angeles field office.
    What do bored agents do when they can’t wear suits and shoot up nightclubs?
    They look for love in this crazy modern world.
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The only mystery is who approved this script

Young adventurer Sean Anderson (Josh Hutcherson: The Kids Are Alright) intercepts a mysterious message referencing Jules Verne. Sure he had to break into a satellite station to get the signal, but what’s a little arrest in the quest for adventure?
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A trio of teens get the gift of a lifetime in this fun sci-fi take on superpowers

Spiderman’s beloved Uncle Ben once said With great power comes great responsibility. Sure Voltaire said it first, but the three teens at the center of Chronicle are more likely to be reading philosophy penned by Stan Lee than some old French guy.
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Liam Neeson proves old dogs can learn new tricks

There are movies like The Artist in which every shot is an exquisitely composed tableau. And then there are movies like The Grey, where Liam Neeson (Unknown) bare-knuckle boxes a giant Alaskan timber wolf.
    My job as a reviewer is convincing you that both sorts can be enjoyable and worth your hard-earned money.
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A story this important deserves better than this second rate film

In the times before Martin Luther King put momentum behind his dream, African Americans had to be twice as good to get half as much as their white counterparts. Racism was justified and equality denied by spurious science.
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Meryl Streep is all teeth, no bite, in this boring biopic

What do you do when you’re making a movie about a political figure whose politics you don’t agree with? Avoid the subject, cast Meryl Streep as Margaret Thatcher and give her an immense set of dentures. The formula worked. Streep and her dentures just took home a Golden Globe.
    The teeth are right. But the rest of the film is all wrong.
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There’s more to espionage than car chases, explosions and bikinis

In the cinematic world of James Bond and Jason Bourne, spies are men with hard abs, steel fists and fast cars. Theirs is a world of high-octane excitement: car chases, shoot outs and loads of hand-to-hand combat. Usually there’s a pretty lady or two to dote upon them when the action slows.
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How many dysfunctions can you cram into two hours?

To say that The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is a dark film is like saying Ted Bundy was a bad date.
    Rape. Beatings. Sexual sadism. And that doesn’t even cover the murder mystery at the heart of the film.
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C’est magnifique

In 1927 a new fad was sweeping the film industry: Talking Pictures. You may have seen one or two if you’ve been to a movie in the past 84 years.
    With the advent of the new technology, an entire industry fell to the wayside. Silent film actors and actresses became the cassette tapes of their times, cast into obscurity seemingly overnight.
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