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  • Kate & Leopold

    Kate & Leopold

    ★★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    A movie in which we cheer as Kate abandons every advance fought for by women in the last 130 years, leaving it all for a simpler mythical time when men had inexhaustible integrity and women, if they landed a rich one, could spend their remaining days wandering around in a nice spacious house. Fortunately, Hugh had the good sense to kick the ugly match made for him to the side at the end in favor of endearingly cute Meg Ryan. /s

  • Tootsie

    Tootsie

    ★★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Revisiting Tootsie was delightful. It's as sharp as a knife in its first act as it lays open the differing standards by which men and women are evaluated. Small moments take on great meaning as clothing options are evaluated and workplace behavior is put under a microscope. Initially, Hoffman seems an odd choice to me for the lead role but his small stature and some top-level costumes and make-up let him pull it off believably in the context of the…

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  • The Passion of Anna

    The Passion of Anna

    ★★★★½

    Bergman strikes again with this visually gorgeous movie that explores the capacity in us for caring and for antagonism. Divorced Andreas (Max von Sydow) has his Faro island privacy interrupted by Anna (Liv Ullmann), recovering from an accident which claimed her husband and child. Their meeting brings him into contact with unhappily married couple Elis (Erland Josephson) and Eva (Bibi Andersson). There's a back story about a sicko torturing and killing animals. This set-up allows Begman to explore wide-ranging emotional terrain. The actors are top-notch, none better than Liv Ullman who delivers a show-stopping monologue at the mid-point of the movie.

  • Arrival

    Arrival

    ★★★

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    Aliens’ attempt at first contact brings linguist Louise Banks (Amy Adams) face to face with them. Theoretical Physicist Ian Donnelly (Jeremy Renner) is paired with her and the two chart a path toward an exchange of ideas with their visitors. A framing story has Banks, post-separation/divorce, caring for a sick daughter. So, I love the trend in sci-fi toward a balanced diet offering thinking sci-fi along with the shoot-‘em-ups, and I was with this movie every step through the communication…