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Exit: Music

Nazis plundering art has been a subject of much consideration and curiosity ever since the objects began to be recovered.  Plenty of focus has been placed on paintings that were lost and found in this way, and the reasons for it are plain to be seen: the paintings have famous, long-deceased names attached and, due to their singular status, they can only be experienced by a limited number of people and can be valued at…

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Francofonia

Aleksandr Sokurov’s Francofonia is a spiritual successor to his innovative 2002 film Russian Ark, more so thematically than aesthetically.  Russian Ark was a narrativized tour of The Hermitage that doubly served as a re-enactment of parts of Russian history.  The most important fact about Russian Ark, however, is that it was shot entirely in one take – a formal element missing from Sokurov’s new film.

Reviews

1971

By: Addison Wylie Johanna Hamilton’s documentary has intrigue and suspicion.  It makes you question the legitimacy behind our privacy. 1971 is about the shocking true story of intrepid activists obtaining and distributing confidential FBI documents.  The files were finely searched through, and then sent to major news publications.  This act of defiance led to an unraveling case that had America looking at the FBI under an uncomfortably naked light.  A particular program titled Cointelpro had…

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Last Days in Vietnam

By: Gesilayefa Azorbo Last Days in Vietnam, directed by Rory Kennedy, is a gripping look back at the massive, often unsanctioned evacuations of South Vietnamese citizens and Americans in Vietnam that were undertaken in the chaotic final days of the Vietnam War.  This is a story told through meticulously researched archival footage and interviews with key players in the US and Vietnamese military and state departments – including Henry Kissinger himself – as well as…

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Ida

By: Addison Wylie The concept of a devout character finding out their secret past is always going to be an intriguing premise – especially when the unexplored involves religion. That’s what happens to Anna in Pawel Pawlikowski’s Ida.  Before she takes her vows of being a nun, Anna’s urged to meet with her only living family member.  She sets out to meet her estranged Aunt Wanda, and fortunately does.  She’s informed by her agitated Aunt…

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Cinco de Mayo: The Battle

By: Addison Wylie Audiences were given Pompeii earlier this year, a sweeping epic that had Paul W.S. Anderson bumbling his way through a history lesson and throwing every type of  overused trope he could think of towards the paying public.  It was a boneheaded film that was calculated by people solely thinking of what mainstream audiences eat up, yet had no respected consideration towards those who endured Anderson’s mess. What Cinco de Mayo: The Battle…

Reviews

A Field in England

By: Addison Wylie A Field in England is a shock to the system.  However, the film’s fine print entails a different definition of that phrase to movie goers.  I certainly am not using that description to be complimentary. Some are going to find Ben Wheatley’s trippy drama an enigmatic experience that has them coming back for more.  It’s a film that seems as if its been tailor-made for the patient arthouse crowd. Others – like…

Reviews

Nicky’s Family

By: Addison Wylie Nicky’s Family is an elementarily formatted documentary using a cluster of different stock footage from the 1930’s, with interviews helping navigate the viewer through a touching real life tale.  It’s a structure that’s very simple and we’ve all seen it before. The documentary also appears to have been shot on substandard video, which leads to a dated image that’s generally murky with visible blemishes.  Furthermore, the overall feeling of Nicky’s Family is…

Reviews

Parkland

By: Addison Wylie Is Parkland respectful towards its source material and depiction of the assassination of John F. Kennedy?  Yes.  Is it accurate to its time period?  Sure is.  Are the performances worthwhile?  You betcha. However, even though Peter Landesman’s film has plenty of good things going for it, I felt detached from the movie most of time.  I couldn’t fully invest my feelings into it, which is troublesome seeing as the film is an…