“Superman Returns” fails to take off the ground in Warner Brother’s attempt to revive the legendary franchise. Although Brandon Routh believably portrays the Man of Steel, unmistakably similar in his bold facial features and baritone voice to the man (Christopher Reeve) who made the role famous, the predictable plot and too much one-dimensional acting by […]
Tomorrowland Seen Today
Through DVDs, I recently revisited some vividly remembered TV episodes of “Walt Disney Presents” with the “Tomorrowland” theme.
Lake House Delivers Soft Ripples of Romance
The new movie, “The Lake House,” which is inspired by the South Korean sci-fi romance “Siworae,” reunites “Speed” co-stars Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reeves in considerably more mellow and mature roles.
Maggie Cheung Is Superb in “Clean”
A prickly woman’s survival depends on her ability to soften her edges in this riveting drama by Olivier Assayas, for which Maggie Cheung won the Best Actress award at the Cannes Film Festival in 2004. Assayas began his career by making incisive and unsentimental character studies. His technique became freer in his first collaboration with […]
Film Review: A Pleasant “Mrs Palfrey at the Claremont”
By Betsy Sherman As a film about a brief, cross-generational friendship, Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont (now playing at the Kendall Square Cinema) doesn’t have the pop-culture cachet of Lost in Translation or Harold and Maude. It’s content to nestle into an ambiguously etched contemporary London in which people quote Wordsworth and make a fuss […]
Film Review: “Stolen” Beauty
A gorgeous documentary examines the 1990 heist of priceless art from Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. By Betsy Sherman It must be hard to decide at what point to undertake a documentary about an ongoing investigation. What if events conspire to make the film you’ve shot seem half-baked, or even irrelevant? Rebecca Dreyfus’ “Stolen,” about […]
Film Review: Confederate America: What If the South had Won?
By Adrienne LaFrance Picture an alternate 2006 in which the internet slave trade in America is an integral part of the economy, only white men have the right to vote, and culture is devoid of jazz, rock ‘n’ roll and countless other things. Head to Fenway and you’ll hear the national anthem, “Dixie,” played before […]
Thank You for Lying About Smoking
Full disclosure: my mother died of lung cancer, brought on by a decades-long addiction to the product satirized in the new film “Thank You for Smoking,” directed by Jason Reitman (son of Ivan Reitman) from a novel by Christopher Buckley (son of William F. Buckley). So maybe I’m not the right person to be reviewing […]
Film Review: Still in Bondage — Movies About Slavery, post Civil War
Two new films explore the provocative premise that slavery in America didn’t end after the Civil War.
Film Review: The Hidden Michael Haneke
By Thomas Garvey Michael Haneke may be the only living director who really matters, but you might not guess that from “Cache” (“Hidden”), the new film that has finally brought the brilliant Austrian auteur some serious media attention. It’s far easier, actually, to guess from “Cache” why he’s suddenly a press darling: the film treats […]