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Art & Copy (2009)
Creativity can solve anything
Director: Doug Pray
Documentary

The personal odysseys of some of the most influential advertising visionaries of all time and the stories behind their campaigns.

Capture I love it when the matter and the form align. This is a documentary about the top creative folks in (US) advertising. It traces an explosion of influence from either putting creatives in charge or allowing the graphic/cinema guys to be up front — depending on...


Published May 16, 2023
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Are We There Yet? (2005)
24 hours. 350 miles. His girlfriend's kids. What could possibly go wrong?
Director: Brian Levant
Family
Adventure
Comedy
Romance

The fledgling romance between Nick, a playboy bachelor, and Suzanne, a divorced mother of two, is threatened by a particularly harrowing New Years Eve. When Suzanne's work keeps her in Vancouver for the holiday, Nick offers to bring her kids to the city from Portland, Oregon. The kids, who have never liked any of the men their mom dates, are determined to turn the trip into a nightmare for Nick.

Away from Home Alone The more I study film ideas, the more I’m amazed at how some ideas continue to live. Take the notion of humorous cruelty. Were the Stooges the first to build a franchise around this. In modern times, it is the “Home Alone” franchise...


Published May 16, 2023
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Assault on Precinct 13 (2005)
Unite and fight.
Director: Jean-François Richet
Thriller
Action
Adventure
Crime
Drama

On New Year's Eve, inside a police station that's about to be closed for good, officer Jake Roenick must cobble together a force made up cops and criminals to save themselves from a mob looking to kill mobster Marion Bishop.

Acting by Surrounding This movie is easy to describe. It is a zombie movie. Carpenter’s world is one in which everyone is besieged by demons. It is only a matter of what shape the refuge takes. So he seamlessly maps strong movie situations to this form....


Published May 16, 2023
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As You Like It (2006)
Director: Kenneth Branagh
Comedy
Drama
Romance

Witty, playful and utterly magical, the story is a compelling romantic adventure in which Rosalind and Orlando's celebrated courtship is played out against a backdrop of political rivalry, banishment and exile in the Forest of Arden - set in 19th-century Japan.

Katachi Words Here’s one of the most intriguing challenges in all the lands of imagination. Shakespeare invented much of what it means to be a modern human. But he did so in a very constrained way of communicating. The plays were all about language and geometry on...


Published May 16, 2023
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Australia (2008)
Welcome to Australia!
Director: Baz Luhrmann
Adventure
Romance
Drama

Set in northern Australia before World War II, an English aristocrat who inherits a sprawling ranch reluctantly pacts with a stock-man in order to protect her new property from a takeover plot. As the pair drive 2,000 head of cattle over unforgiving landscape, they experience the bombing of Darwin by Japanese forces firsthand.

The Story There’s plenty of space for others to comment on how wrong the shape of this is, and whether Nichole is too wooden. Talk like that is boring to me. I enjoyed it in spite of it working hard against success. One reason is that I...


Published May 16, 2023
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Assault Girls (2009)
Let the game begin.
Director: Mamoru Oshii
Science Fiction
Action
Horror

Three women and one man - with an assortment of weaponry - wage war against giant mutant sandwhales in a barren digital landscape, all to achieve points within the virtual reality video game called Avalon.

Long Form Loop I study long form film to see how it works. Some times what I end up seeing doesn't work. That is the case here; only the costumes matter, and one episode has resonance. Does that one episode qualify this as long form? Maybe....


Published May 16, 2023
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Assassination of a High School President (2008)
Politics, popularity, paranoia, pharmaceuticals. Are you in?
Director: Brett Simon
Comedy
Crime

After the theft of copies of SAT exams from a principal's office, teenage reporter Bobby Funke sets out to unmask the thief. Bobby prints an article fingering Class President Paul Moore as the thief, shredding the youth's reputation. But as Bobby gets to know Paul's girlfriend, Francesca, he comes to realize he was wrong about Paul, so he sets out to unmask the true culprit.

Mortarboards I fell into “Brick” quite by accident. It was an accident that I discovered it, and knowing nothing about it, I found myself swirling in the story without defenses. That is why I am open to similar experiences. This actually tries much the same thing: conventional...


Published May 16, 2023
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Assassination Tango (2002)
Director: Robert Duvall
Drama
Romance
Thriller

John J. is a seasoned hit man sent on a job to Argentina. When the General he's sent to kill delays his return to the country, John passes the time with Manuela, a beautiful dancer who becomes his teacher and guide into Argentina's sensual world of the tango.

Love Dances Hesitatingly What things men do for the women they love! I’ve been collecting films where men direct their lovers. Its an odd phenomenon. Some are good pictures, some not. Taken together they are one of the richest film experiences I have. Just the notion of...


Published May 16, 2023
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Around the World in 80 Days (2004)
Let your imagination soar.
Director: Frank Coraci
Action
Adventure
Comedy

A bet pits a British inventor, a Chinese thief and a French artist on a worldwide adventure that they can circle the globe in 80 days.

Production Design They took an absolutely ordinary film — even dreary in places — and wrapped it in two things that are lovely. The first is a lovely production design. Pastel watercolours that are evocative of Verne’s abstract nature. I have idea who to credit for...


Published May 1, 2023
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Ararat (2002)
Director: Atom Egoyan
Drama
War
History

Interrogated by a customs officer, a young man recounts how his life was changed during the making of a film about the Armenian genocide.

Denied I think Egoyan is one of our best living filmmakers. He layers his stories in ways that some layers generate or reinterpret others. Usually, this is apparent to the viewer. In this case, the viewer is fooled into thinking that this is film reminding of...


Published May 1, 2023
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