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NEW THIS WEEK
Last Letter (2018) 5
Overlord (2018) 4.13
Girl in the Spider's Web, The: A New Dragon Tattoo Story 1
Dr. Seuss' The Grinch 1
Postcards from London 1
River Runs Red rate me!
Intimate Strangers (2018) rate me!
Weightless rate me!
Angel, The (2018) rate me!
ALSO IN THEATERS

COMING NEXT WEEK
16-Nov At Eternity's Gate
16-Nov Ballad of Buster Scruggs, The
16-Nov Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
16-Nov Green Book
16-Nov Heart, Baby!
16-Nov Instant Family
16-Nov Jonathan (2018)
16-Nov Last Race, The
16-Nov Team Khan
16-Nov Widows
21-Nov Creed II
21-Nov Ralph Breaks the Internet
21-Nov Robin Hood (2018)
21-Nov World Before Your Feet, The

DVD RELEASES
13-Nov Alpha (2018)  
13-Nov Children Act, The  
13-Nov Juliet, Naked  
13-Nov Meg, The  
13-Nov Mile 22  
13-Nov Puzzle (2018)  
20-Nov Blindspotting  
20-Nov Crazy Rich Asians  
20-Nov Dog Days (2018)  
20-Nov Kin  

TOP 5
MOVIES IN RELEASE
TITLE RATING
Bodied 5
Heavy Trip 5
Border 5
Last Letter (2018) 5
Old Man & the Gun, The 4.86

BOTTOM 5
MOVIES IN RELEASE
TITLE RATING
Life Itself (2018) 1
Nutcracker and the Four Realms, The 1.5
Fat Buddies 2
Venom (2018) 2.11
Bohemian Rhapsody 2.2

2012 Tribeca Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Take this Waltz 3.19
Keep the Lights On 3
Resolution 4
Deadfall (2012) 2
Eddie: The Sleepwalking Cannibal 5
MORE MOVIES

2013 Fantasia International Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Cheap Thrills 3.25
Animals (2013) 4
Uzumasa Jacopetti 3
Vessel (2013) 3.14
Tales From the Dark Part 1 4
MORE MOVIES

2013 Toronto International Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Blind Detective 5
Prisoners 2.32
Parkland 3
Under the Skin (2014) 4.14
Labor Day (2013) 1
MORE MOVIES

2013 New York Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Blue Is the Warmest Color 4.75
Immigrant, The 4.23
Stranger by the Lake 4
Wind Rises, The 4.62
Alan Partridge 4
MORE MOVIES

2013 Chicago International Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Hide Your Smiling Faces 4
Cheap Thrills 3.25
With You, Without You 3
Motel Life, The 2.86
Nordstrand 5
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2016 Sundance Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Birth of a Nation, The (2016) 1.29
31 3
Wiener-Dog 2
Sleight 3
Antibirth 4
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2016 Slamdance Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Embers 4.14
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2016 Boston Sci-Fi Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Survivalist, The 3
Dual City 4
Skyquake 2
Arrowhead (2017) 3
400 Days 1
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2018 Slamdance Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Human Affairs 5
Circus Ecuador 5
MexMan 4
My Name is Myeisha 4
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2018 Sundance Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Three Identical Strangers 3.29
Mandy 5
We the Animals 4
Tully (2018) 4
Piercing 3
MORE MOVIES

2018 SXSW Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Damsel 3
World Before Your Feet, The 4
Relaxer 2
Unfriended: Dark Web 1
Ajin: Demi-Human 4
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2018 Chicago Critics Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Three Identical Strangers 3.29
Damsel 3
Madeline's Madeline 3.5
On Chesil Beach 3
Searching 4
MORE MOVIES

2018 Fantasia International Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Arizona (2018) 2.86
Buy Bust 4
Heavy Trip 5
Scythian, The (aka The Last Warrior) 4
Profile 3
MORE MOVIES

2018 Toronto International Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Predator, The 3.11
Life Itself (2018) 1
Colette 4
Roma (2018) 5
Vox Lux 3
MORE MOVIES

2018 New York Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Roma (2018) 5
Cold War (2018) 4
MORE MOVIES

2018 Chicago International Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Border 5
Rafiki 4
Can You Ever Forgive Me? 4
Roma (2018) 5
Road Not Taken, The 4
MORE MOVIES

2018 Fantastic Fest MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Halloween (2018) 3.47
Border 5
MORE MOVIES

2018 AFI Fest MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Cold War (2018) 4
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EFC STATS
Movies Listed: 31722
Total Ratings: 248081
Total Reviews: 28026
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SPOTLIGHTED FEATURES REGULAR COLUMNS
Films I Neglected To Review: Bodied Rage And Murder
Films I Neglected To Review: Dismissed
Films I Neglected To Review: Don't Axe
"Here's To The Good Stuff." The 70mm Film Festival Returns.
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Film Festivals of the World
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DVD Reviews
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The Oscar Eye
Films I Neglected To Review with Peter Sobczynski
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WGN Radio's Movie Reviews Podcast (w/ Nick Digilio, Erik Childress & Collin Souter)
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LATEST REVIEWS
OUTLAW KING
"Missing what it takes to be an epic for small or big screen."
3 stars
Jay Seaver says... "A local theater has a 70mm/widescreen festival that includes a lot of epics of the sort that "Outlaw/King" is looking to be, and though Charlton Heston seems like ridiculous casting for 75% of the ones he's in, I wonder what a Robert the Bruce picture with him in the lead would have been like, or at least one made to dazzle on a huge Cinemascope screen rather than one shot knowing that it will get 99.9% if its audience on Netflix. Maybe it had the same problems, but maybe it stands a chance of overpowering them with sheer theatricality and spectacle." (more)
LAST LETTER (2018)
"Grief and laughter mixed just right."
5 stars
Jay Seaver says... "It is entirely possible that by this time next year, we'll be looking at this "Last Letter" as one half of a phenomenon fairly unique in film history, as director Shunji Iwai is already shooting a remake of this Mandarin-language movie in his native Japan - it usually goes in the other order, and seldom in such rapid succession. Those strange circumstances make this film an oddity, but nevertheless still in line with Iwai's previous films, an earnest and emotional work that's also quite sweet and funny." (more)
OVERLORD (2018)
"Delivers a solid battle with Nazi monsters, and what more do you want?"
4 stars
Jay Seaver says... "Even without the horror stuff plastered all over the advertising, I don't think you could take someone to see "Overlord" as a wartime action film and have them be caught flat-footed by things going into a decidedly less realistic direction. It gives the game away fairly early and doesn't build quite enough to feel like more than the basics before doing so, but the jump to mad scientists and monsters works pretty well." (more)
ROMA (2018)
"Maybe Cuaron's best, smart and heartfelt and beautiful all at once."
5 stars
Jay Seaver says... "There are those that believe that subtlety is the mark of truly great art, and manipulation is its enemy, but it seems unlikely that Alfonso CuarĂłn is among them, and not just because he has done as much popular, commercial work as art-house material. "Roma" falls into the latter category, and viewers can spend a lot of time teasing out how it works and what its symbols mean, but even without putting that sort of academic effort in, they'll feel what CuarĂłn is saying and be pulled along. It's superficially a piece of film-snob material that anybody can enjoy." (more)
RAMPANT
"This combination should be more fun."
3 stars
Jay Seaver says... "You might reasonably expect a fusion of palace intrigue and supernatural action to be a lot more exciting than "Rampant" turns out to be, or at the very least more crazy. Maybe that's an inevitable peril of setting this sort of horror movie in a time when people mostly believed in demons - they are just not going to yell "what the hell?" when discovering that they're in the middle of this crazy mash-up the way the audience is - but either half could certainly be a better take on its genre." (more)
VOX LUX
"A voice that says more or less than it seems."
3 stars
Jay Seaver says... "Huh. I have apparently aged to the point where I am incapable of distinguishing pop music from a parody of such. That makes this one difficult to figure; writer/director Brady Corbet gives his story of a pop star's rise and potential stumble a heightened presentation and occasionally absurd details but otherwise plays things almost completely straight, cutting off the easy routes to mockery or earnest appreciation. It's an interesting set-up, but one which often leaves its characters and audience in an in-between spot." (more)
BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY
"It Isn't Just The Wind That Blows Here"
1 stars
Peter Sobczynski says... "With his raw and undeniable charisma, his unabashedly sexual presence, his ability to command the attention and focus of anywhere he stood, from a recording studio to the stage of the mammoth Live Aid concert, and, of course, that knockout voice that filled arenas throughout the world with a series of raucous anthems that continue to be played and celebrated decades after they were recorded, Freddie Mercury, the late lead singer of the hugely popular rock band Queen was, even by the oftentimes outlandish world of contemporary music, a performer who could legitimately be considered one of a kind. For anyone trying to put together a biopic centered around Mercury, that leads to the inevitable problem of trying to find someone capable of perfectly emulating all of those aspects that made Mercury stand out amongst his peers while at the same time delivering a convincing dramatic performance. This is no doubt the reason why “Bohemian Rhapsody” took so long to get made—there are precious few actors out there who would even seem to qualify for consideration (I have always thought that the only ideal person would have been the “Rocky Horror”-era Tim Curry) and the ones that might have been able to pull it off—Sacha Baron Cohen reportedly flirted with the part for a while—presumably bailed because of the extremely high risk of failure." (more)
NUTCRACKER AND THE FOUR REALMS, THE
"Don't Try So Hard"
1 stars
Peter Sobczynski says... "Over the years of my existence, I have seen more permutations of the holiday favorite “The Nutcracker,” ranging from readings of the original E.T.A. Hoffmann short story “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King” to several live productions of the ballet adaptation staged by legendary choreographer Ruth Page to more film versions than I care to recall, including a clinically insane 2010 take that somehow managed to work Nazis, Albert Einstein (played by Nathan Lane, no less) and the augmentation of Tchaikovsky’s legendary music with lyrics by the slightly less immortal Tim Rice and then presented it in exceptionally ugly 3-D to boot. I must confess that I have never particularly cared for the story, regardless of the format—my favorite version is probably the one they did on “SCTV” in which they used it as a framework to skewer the increasingly hacky stylings of a certain comedic genius in an elaborate film parody entitled “Neil Simon’s Nutcracker Suite”—but I have seen enough of them to tell when one isn’t working for me just because of my general antipathy towards the material (such as the Ruth Page productions, which I dutifully attended as family events because my younger brother, perhaps inevitably, adored it) and when one is working because it is just bad. Until now, I would have named that aforementioned version that included Nazis and Einstein (and which also included John Turturro as the Mouse King, as I recall) as the impossible-to-beat nadir but now that I have seen “The Nutcracker and the Four Realms,” I have to admit that we have a new winner for that deeply dubious title. At least with the one with Einstein, it was of such a screw-loose what-could-they-have-been-thinking? badness that it compelled you to watch, if only to see how much more frothing mad it could get. This one, on the other hand, is such a misshapen lump of ham-fisted “fun” that the mere act of sitting through it becomes actively painful after a while—imagine having a three-ton gumdrop sitting on your lap for 90-odd minutes and you can only begin to fully conjure the horror that this movie inspires." (more)
MORE REVIEWS

LATEST FEATURES
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by Peter Sobczynski
"Please enjoy short reviews of "Bodied," "Monster Party" and "Viper Club."" (more)
FILMS I NEGLECTED TO REVIEW: 'THERE’S SOMETHING IN THE FOG!”
by Peter Sobczynski
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