The film is at once devoted to corroborating and casting an exaggerated light on Soviet paranoia and the state's rhetoric of unmasking its enemies.
When the genre-film spectacle arrives, it's in full force, and the strictures of the framing device manage to amplify, rather than suppress, the impact of the shocks and scares.
If the film's copycat visual artistry illuminates nothing, at least its script is sincerely devoted to probing Finkel and Longo's odd partnership.
For all of the potential, historically specific revelations regarding nation and religion, the film elects to become bathetic hokum.
Chris Messina is a little too indifferent to the machinations of the plot, but the film, however inescapably sentimental, is a romantic daydream that casts a lovely spell.
The cumulative effect is cheerily life-affirming, a bracing infusion of macaque-style joie de vivre.
A phony collection of storytelling clichés held under the banner of archetype and lent a modicum of weight by the splendor of the landscape.
If all a movie needed was a boy with abs and a gun (or slingshot), then Beyond the Reach would be a masterpiece.
Maxime Giroux's sharp filmmaking instincts aren't always supported by similarly acute dramatic instincts.
The film's tired sentimentality aside, its general lack of empathy is most damning.
The filmmakers oddly forgoe the abundant elegiac aspects of his film's factual material for a tone approaching the ebullient.
It appears afraid of alienating viewers by overloading on scientific jargon, and in the process becomes too attracted to ultimately superfluous anecdotes from her subjects.
Alex Garland replaces Never Let Me Go's airless metaphor for capitalism with a nebulous treatise on patriarchy.
The pleasure in watching the film becomes a linguistic one as Binoche and Stewart masterfully sharpen their words and hurl them at each other like projectiles out of a blowpipe.
There's little doubt where Cormac McCarthy-bashing Nicholas Sparks's allegiances lie. The Longest Ride is truly no country for old ambiguity.
Asghar Farhadi's sensibility embodies a combination of empathy and paranoia that's striking considering that the latter is normally driven by self-absorption.
Ryan Gosling's film is a tangle of violent, symbolic gestures, regarding economic exploitation with fetishistic, impossibly overdetermined abandon.
Tsai Ming-liang's debut makes one yearn for an alternative reality where it, not Pulp Fiction, became the beacon of '90s independent filmmaking.
The film is so unusually moving and penetrating because it refuses to cloud its emotions in distancing irony, anger, or nihilism.
Director John McNaughton, once an agile orchestrator of seemingly incompatible tones, has retained his talent for teasing insinuation.
The film's relentless turning of its characters' experience into platitudes and homilies is served for our too-easy consumption.
It proves an increasingly superficial affair, especially given that the director's attempts at suspense are largely facile and Raf Simons's creative process is barely investigated.
Our preview section is your best, most complete guide for all the films, big and small, coming your way soon. >>
Enter to win Blu-rays of Goodbye to Language 3D, Hustler White, Big Eyes, The Boy Next Door, and DVDs of Manny and Love Hunter! >>