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  • Colette

    Colette

    ★★★½

    Colette is a very good historical bio-pic with more interesting and complex subjects and topics than is usual for an art-house-market historical movie. The movie, for all its candor and frankness about its subjects retains a familiar formality of both structure and tone. And Keira Knightley, good as she is, never really disappears into the character. Deliberately or not, these combine to keep the audience at a remove from the story; observers rather than vicarious participants.

  • Burnt Offerings

    Burnt Offerings

    ★★

    Burt Offerings certainly would have benefited by some tightening up. When an attempted murder-by-drowning in a swimming pool drags on long enough to become boring it's a good sign of some editing that the editor should have taken another whack or two at the movie. There's some good stuff here, though. The main characters aren;t all that interesting or engaging but the trio of character actors who greet the family at the beginning of the movie (Burgess Meredith, Eileen Heckart,…

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  • Passing Strange

    Passing Strange

    ★★★★½

    Filming a stage play is a fool's game; you can't capture the power, intimacy and intensity of a great live show. Spike Lee played that fool's game and won. This is an amazing film.

  • The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

    The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

    ★½

    Looks like we're just going through the motions at this stage. Move things around on the screen. Plop actors in front of green screen to recite their dialog and execute their choreography. Sorta-kinda integrate them with the animation and backgrounds.

    Martin Freeman is the only actor delivering any nuance. He's still great whenever his pull-on feet aren't visible to distract from his performance. And seriously, the stockings that gave him hairy hobbit legs were sagging at times. Couldn't that have…