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“Blondes make the best victims,” Alfred Hitchcock once said. “They’re like virgin snow that shows up the bloody footprints.” So begins The Girl, HBO’s deeply (and rightly) gnarly exploration of the fraught relationship between Hitchcock and arguably the most legendary of his blonde ingénues, Tippi Hedren (Sienna Miller).Having happened upon the lovely Hedren in a TV commercial, “Hitch” (Toby Jones, best known ... Read More
Hunted, starring Melissa George’s gigantic, pouting upper lip, premiers on Cinemax on October 19. If you’re into spy flicks, but tired of all that messy, fast-paced action and drama, this is the show for you. There are lots of plot twists throughout this eight-part miniseries about a badass female spy named Sam Hunter (George), who, after an attempt on her life in the first episode, spends the rest of the series unsure who she can trust. There’s ... Read More
Do you love American Beauty, but wish it had a lighter touch and a happier ending — and starred Hugh "Dr. House" Laurie? Okay, me neither really. Just checking.  But in case you do fit this particular niche, The Oranges is the suburban dysfunction film for you.Like a certain rose-petal-covered movie we know, The Oranges is a meditation on American life and American happiness directed by a British dude.  It also uses voice-over to explain its ... Read More
Like many other people, I took English in high school, and like many other high school English students, I was moody, brooding, and really into canon "romance" novels. So it should come as no surprise that Wuthering Heights holds a dear, dear place in my heart. I was fully prepared to love Andrea Arnold's new film adaptation of the Emily Brontë masterpiece, especially given that Arnold directed 2009's instant classic Fish Tank and had cast Skins' Kaya ... Read More
 Daniel Barnz directs this narrative sister to the school-reform doc Waiting for Superman, starring Maggie Gyllenhaal and Viola Davis as two Pittsburgh mothers who want to fix their kids’ failing elementary school. Gyllenhaal plays an Erin Brockovich-like character with tattoos, heels, and an “I’m not an activist, I’m just a mom working two jobs” mentality. Her daughter is dyslexic, but neither her child’s tenured ... Read More
You're familiar with the stereotype of the crazy middle-aged lady with fourteen cats or the hoarder who keeps more pets than she can count. Academy Award-winning actress Melissa Leo plays just such a woman, sans stereotypes, in the new movie Francine, opening September 12. Award-winning documentary filmmakers Brian Cassidy and Melanie Shatzky (The Patron Saints, Fish Kill Flea) make their fiction debut with Francine. After serving time in prison, Francine ... Read More
Crickets. They’re all that can be heard above the swish of bathwater as Little Birds opens, and the sound is an apt introduction to the sleepy Salton Sea, CA, town where the film begins. For a couple of restless 15-year-old locals, Lily (Juno Temple) and Alison (Kay Panabaker), the depressing surroundings are just too much to bear. So when a chance encounter with some street kids en route to L.A. offers them a way out, they take it.Despite the sweeping ... Read More
 Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud overwhelmed film lovers with the 2007 animated film Persepolis, based on Satrapi’s autobiographical graphic novel about growing up in Iran. Chicken with Plums, their second collaboration, is also based on a graphic novel by Satrapi. But Plums is primarily a live-action feature with a robust international cast and the lush aesthetics of a grand old studio film. The directors also employ magical illustrated ... Read More
 Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud overwhelmed film lovers with the 2007 animated film Persepolis, based on Satrapi’s autobiographical graphic novel about growing up in Iran. Chicken with Plums, their second collaboration, is also based on a graphic novel by Satrapi. But Plums is primarily a live-action feature with a robust international cast and the lush aesthetics of a grand old studio film. The directors also employ magical illustrated ... Read More
Thought you were over things that go bump in the night? Think again. Director Nick Murphy’s film, The Awakening, had me clutching my poor, unsuspecting friend’s shoulder and involuntarily (but loudly) exclaiming obscenities in the movie theatre. Set in 1921 England after the loss and grief of WWI, the film follows ghost hunter and skeptic Florence Cathcart (Rebecca Hall) as she takes on her most difficult case yet. Author of the popular book ... Read More
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