Larson, Tremblay illuminate the darkness of ‘Room’

  Arresting and heartbreaking, wrought with extremes of tension and love, "Room" is as evocative and unforgettable on screen as in the bestselling novel that inspired it. This is the kind of

Del Toro’s ‘Crimson Peak’ casts a gothic spell

The most pressing threat in Guillermo del Toro's gothic horror "Crimson Peak" isn't the ooze-filled cauldrons of dead souls in the basement of the old Victorian mansion, nor the plotting,

Authentic, moving performances elevate ‘Freeheld’

Few actresses bring the simple authenticity to the screen that Julianne Moore does; it's virtually impossible to imagine this actress sounding a false note. And so it's hardly a surprise

Damon charms as stranded astronaut in ‘The Martian’

Without Matt Damon, the solitary fight for survival on Mars would be lonely indeed. Alone on screen for most of his scenes as an astronaut stranded on the red planet,

The bearable niceness of ‘The Intern’

The world of Nancy Meyers sure is beautiful. But her studied production design and dreamy interiors have become such a focal point, that they’ve almost eclipsed her storytelling. It marginalizes what

Gere, quiet and moving in portrait of a homeless man

Spare change? Any spare change?" The man holding the cup in the street looks, from a distance, like just some guy in a wool cap, formless parka and rumpled pants. Only

Gibney presents Steve Jobs’ darker side in new documentary

Was Steve Jobs a brilliant visionary whose singular mind, capable of blending art, technology and commerce as never before, inspired the world to “think different” and changed the way we

Redford and Nolte in Bryson’s ‘A Walk in the Woods’

The lure of the wild has recently attracted an interesting batch of solitude seekers: Reese Witherspoon (“Wild”), Mia Wasikowska (“Tracks”) and Robert Redford, twice. Two years after “All Is Lost,” Redford

In ‘American Ultra,’ Eisenberg plays a stoner who can smoke ’em down

The likably awkward chemistry of Kristen Stewart and Jesse Eisenberg remains intact in "American Ultra," a violent stoner action-comedy that's half "Pineapple Express," half "The Bourne Identity," and not as

Nothing remotely fantastic about ‘Fantastic Four’

I'll admit it. About an hour into "Fantastic Four," the inexplicably plodding and dreary new attempt to adapt the beloved Marvel story, I started thinking about Ethan Hunt from "Mission:

‘Vacation’ is a funny homage to its predecessor

The great American family road trip seems, in the 32 years since we first met the Griswolds, as antiquated a concept as ever. Middle class families fly now — device

Mission accomplished for Cruise in new ‘MI’ flick

There’s some interesting talk in the cleverly satisfying script of “Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation” about the element of luck. As in: How much is luck a factor in the

“Tour” a worthy look at artist as reluctant subject

Many journalists who have written feature profiles of public figures will have experienced that light-bulb moment, once the cautious mutual-assessment phase is concluded and you start digging for the meat,

A pugilist parable of transformation in ‘Southpaw’

If you've ever wondered what might have happened to Job if had a strong left hook, "Southpaw" may be the film for you. The rapid descent of light heavyweight champ Billy

Allen’s latest is a meditation on meaning and murder

Woody Allen has always been interested in man’s search for meaning in life — a search he clearly sees as futile. Who can forget the young woman in “Play it

‘Tangerine’ a vital peek into unseen LA street lives

Caitlyn Jenner and her glamorous Vanity Fair cover brought unprecedented visibility to transgender women. Laverne Cox, the first transgender actress to win an Emmy Award, fronted Time magazine, an image

Arnold (but little else) is back in ‘Terminator’

Thirty-one years and counting, and the Terminators keep rolling off the assembly line like new iPhones, upgraded with shape-shifting abilities, rebooted Sarah Conner assassination levels and, one presumes, better selfie

‘Jurassic World’ bites into the modern blockbuster

Along the scaly spine of the Tyrannosaurus Rex runs the evolution of Hollywood blockbustering. Twenty-two years ago, Steven Spielberg’s “Jurassic Park” set the standard for the kind of movie the

‘Infinitely Polar Bear’ a love letter to sick dad

In 1978, when writer-director Maya Forbes was 10 years old, her mother went away to graduate school, leaving Forbes and her little sister in the care of their mentally ill

Emma Bovary proves elusive on screen, once again

What is it about Emma Bovary? She is, of course, one of literature’s most famous and tragic heroines, and so it’s no surprise that directors from Jean Renoir (1934) to

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