Category: The Critics

the-return-of-droodles

THE RETURN OF DROODLES

When I was a boy my ambition was to be a cartoonist. I wrote fan letters to some of my heroes and got wonderful, encouraging replies from the likes of Charles M. Schulz, Chic Young, Jules Feiffer, and even Rube Goldberg, whom I interviewed in his Manhattan studio one memorable afternoon. But the only one…

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avengers-endgame

AVENGERS: ENDGAME

If there were ever a movie designed to please its target audience, Avengers: Endgame is an emblematic example. It assumes that its viewers are thoroughly familiar with the Marvel Cinematic Universe and all of its characters, so when one (or a group) of them makes an entrance it’s a cue for gasps and cheers. An…

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peterloo-history-in-the-making

PETERLOO: HISTORY IN THE MAKING

Mike Leigh is one of my favorite filmmakers, in part because you never know what to expect from him. He’s given us slices of life (Life is Sweet, Secrets & Lies), character studies (Another Year, Happy-go-Lucky), a lavish period piece about Gilbert & Sullivan (Topsy-Turvy) and a breathtaking portrait of a great British painter (Mr.…

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shazam-never-takes-off

SHAZAM! NEVER TAKES OFF

Shazam! wants to be slick and smartassy except when it suddenly chooses to be warm and sincere—like a TV commercial for some medication or life insurance. You can’t have it both ways but this film repeatedly tries to do so. I’ve always loved the character who originated as Captain Marvel in 1940s comic books (and lost…

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maltinfest-line-up-and-tickets

MALTINFEST LINE UP AND TICKETS

MALTINFEST 2019 at Grauman’s Egyptian Theatre In association with The American Cinematheque May 10-12, 2019 SING STREET (2016) is a musical charmer from John Carney, the Irish filmmaker who made ONCE. It’s the story of a young man who starts making music videos so he’ll have an excuse to talk to a beautiful girl (Lucy…

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