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  • Fist Fight

    Fist Fight

    ★★

    I will give them props for trying to make a madcap comedy that's actually about something beyond its raunchy gags and constant spewing of four-letter invectives; and also for not really caring that the "hero" is such a shrill, unlikable twerp.

    But the things I'm giving it props for are also the reasons it doesn't really work. 

    First of all: Sure, it's "about" something. It's trying to say a few things about the broken educational system of the US, the…

  • War for the Planet of the Apes

    War for the Planet of the Apes

    ★★★★

    As would be expected, this reboot trilogy is brought to a close in a sobering and dramatic way. 

    We are given a sophisticated action/adventure summer blockbuster with terrific special effects, great characters, memorable performances and genuinely stirring emotion. And, as the credits roll, there is a good chance we are moved...maybe even to tears.

    But we are not surprised.

    Don't get me wrong, there's a lot of stuff going on in this thing, and most of it is great; and…

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  • Out for Justice

    Out for Justice

    ★★★½

    My personal favorite Steven Seagal film. You get the sense that the script (originally titled "The Price of Our Blood") was intended for a serious crime drama of the type churned out by Sidney Lumet in the 70s and 80s. I wouldn't be surprised if this thing was collecting dust on the Warner shelves until Seagal retooled it to fit his sensibilities. He treats it like a serious... movie and tries to give an honest to God real performance. With…

  • Interstellar

    Interstellar

    ★★★★★

    Christopher Nolan wears his influences on his sleeve about as blatantly as Tarantino if you really pay attention. The difference is he masks it in a sense of academia that passes for subtlety. And so, the mark of inspiration is all over this. There's bits of Kubrick, chunks of Spielberg, a dash of Tarkovsky and, just for seasoning, a little Soderbergh.

    Oh, it's clear from the get go what Blu Rays Nolan was checking out in preparation for this. And,…