Review: The Future

For some reason it’s difficult to believe that The Future is only Miranda July’s second feature, and that it’s been six years since her previous one, Me and You and Everyone We Know. That film gathered huge success on the festival circuit and among indie film audiences with its particular brand of twee quirkiness – a quirkiness that fits...

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LAFF 2011: Short Takes Vol. 2

I must confess that as soon as a festival ends, I lose roughtly 75% of my motivation to write about it, even though there are plenty of films I really enjoyed but didn’t have time to cover during the fest. But I don’t want these to get away without any mention, so here’s one last post of LA Film Festival capsule reviews. This pretty well...

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Review: The Guard

[The Guard opens in limited release in the US today, so we're bumping our LA Film Festival Review. It's definitely one of the best comedies I've seen so far this year.] If you’ve seen the dark-comedy-with-a-streak-of-philosophy In Bruges, the name “McDonagh” may not be wholly unfamiliar to you, as that film brought Irish playwright and...

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LAFF 2011: Winnie the Pooh

With Winnie the Pooh opening in theatres this week, we’re bumping our review from the LA Film Festival. Harry Potter isn’t the only film to see this weekend; if you’re over the Harry-hype or your kids aren’t old enough for Potter yet, please check out Winnie the Pooh. When it was first announced that Disney was going to do a hand-drawn...

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LAFF 2011: Short Takes Vol. 1

Look for longer reviews of some stuff soon (including The Guard and Another Earth), but in the meantime, here’s a few capsules for some more LAFF screenings, before I get too far behind. After three 4.5 star reviews in a row, it’s going to look like I just like everything and have no critical acumen anymore, but I’ve just been saving up all...

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LAFF 2011: The Dynamiter

Every festival I look for one little indie feature to fall in love with; it’s kind of a crapshoot choosing low-budget indies with no distribution, no known actors (or non-actors), first-time directors. You can get some real duds, or things that have promise but end up disappointing. But you can also find some gems, and playing the scheduling dice at...

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LAFF 2011: The Innkeepers

After his great retro horror film House of the Devil a couple of years ago, Ti West had a lot of expectations to live up to with his new horror film. Would he be able to recapture the sense of freshness that House of the Devil breathed into an extremely overpopulated genre? And would he be able to do it without repeating himself, especially since The Innkeepers...

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LAFF Trailer: The Bad Intentions

One of the films I picked out of the LA Film Fest Guide is The Bad Intentions, a Peruvian film the festival guide describes like this: “Growing up in Lima during the ’80s, Cayetana is an only child who spends her days taunting the housekeepers who look after her and communing with her imaginary friends – a host of long-dead Peruvian heroes....

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LAFF 2011: The Pruitt-Igoe Myth

The famous image above represents the myth of Pruitt-Igoe, a low-cost housing project in St. Louis from the 1950s and ’60s that has attained legendary status as a failure of modernism, of modern architecture, of public housing, and of government funded programs in general. But is that the whole story, documentarian Chris Freidrichs wondered, and are there...

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LAFF 2011: Please Do Not Disturb

A woman fights with her husband over abuse and his job. A clergyman has his wallet stolen and deals with the thief as well as his marriage clients. An older couple fears a TV repairman may be a potential intruder. These three stories, related only by the slenderest of narrative threads, make up this light-hearted and quite entertaining film set around the city...

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