Cyrus (2010) -vs- City Island (2009)

July 25, 2010 Sherry Coben

Summertime and the movie theaters fill with audiences seeking relief from all that heat and sun. Who needs 3D, tired franchises, vampires and werewolves, chases, aliens, explosions, and CGI? Not me. Gimme an indie film with a half-decent script, a well-chosen cast, a fresh point of view, recognizable human behavior and I’m there. I’ll always opt to bypass the long lines and head for the arthouse to spend a couple of hours watching a dysfunctional family as long as it’s not my own.
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Round 2: Inception

July 18, 2010 Beau DeMayo

Having seen Inception twice now, I feel the need to clarify a few points in my earlier review, as I said that my review — in all fairness — was half incomplete as Inception demands a second viewing. After having now seen it twice, I would definitely say this is a movie that must be seen twice. […]

Inception (2010) -vs- The Dark Knight (2008)

July 16, 2010 Beau DeMayo

Christopher Nolan. The Dark Knight. That’s all about you need to know when it comes to how Inception has been marketed, a film whose title could easily be mistaken as “From The Director of The Dark Knight” as its actual title.

Inception and The Dark Knight are two movies that are so radically different, yet so fundamentally the same. Both films strive to do something radically different with their genres, turning the typical tropes on their heads and challenging audiences to keep up.

Now we put what many consider to already be Nolan’s masterpiece up against his newest film. Another masterpiece or just another movie? […]

Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work (2010) -vs- The September Issue (2009)

July 14, 2010 Sherry Coben

Joan Rivers has lived a long life full of public peaks and valleys characterized by a seemingly indomitable spirit that is more than matched with an undimmed, keen intelligence and canny rebound. This documentary follows this remarkable septuagenarian through a year of huge risks. It doesn’t even touch on her breakthrough QVC savvy or her single-handed revolutionizing of the celebrity fashion world; we see her stand-up, still remarkably raw and fearless and funny. We travel onstage with her; her non-stop schedule takes her to the most unfortunate dives in the remotest of towns and to huge venues more suitable to her stature. Through it all, she tells us everything and nothing; we learn much about her, but ultimately, the mystery of another person remains there just within and just beyond our grasp. We get hints as to what exactly makes this particular human dynamo tick so long and so loud, but like her very familiar and forever-morphing face, the secrets of her undeniable pain and struggle, while glaringly right there in front of us, remain hers. We want to reach out to her and thank her, to hug her, to provide her a moment’s peace, but alas…this life force goes it (unstoppably and perhaps unreachably) alone.
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Predators (2010) -vs- Predator (1987)

July 9, 2010 Mark Sanchez

“Predators” spreads the interest around. As a group, the cast outperforms their counterparts in the earlier movie. Adrien Brody (bulked up for the role) as the team leader easily shows depth and dramatic complexity that is beyond Arnold. The same is true of every member of this kidnapped and ill-fated cast. Alice Braga, Topher Grace and Laurence Fishburne especially stand out. The all have something interesting to do. Especially since it involves steering clear of the creatures and different predators inhabiting this outer space game preserve.
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