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  • Crimes and Misdemeanors

    Crimes and Misdemeanors

    ★★★★★

    CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS is one of Woody Allen's best, which is saying a lot, isn't it? It includes a great ensemble featuring Allen, Mia Farrow, Martin Landau, Angelica Huston, Jerry Orbach, Alan Alda, Joanna Gleason, Sam Waterston, and more. Allen is a struggling documentary filmmaker, married to Gleason, who is in turn Alda's sister. Allen is following Alda around; Alda is in television -- a successful producer -- who is also an ass (if you have seen the film, you've…

  • The Crazies

    The Crazies

    ★★★

    THE CRAZIES deals with a terrifying idea -- a small Iowa town has its water supply contaminated. How is unimportant. What IS important is that the contamination creates maniacal, killer crazies. All of them are out to kill anyone that they come across. The crazies are trying to be stopped by a sheriff played by Timothy Olyphant and, rather reluctantly, his wife Radha Mitchell. Both Olyphant and Mitchell's performances help the film along as does the film's special effects. It's one I like well enough to have in my permanent film library, but it's no horror classic by any means.

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  • The War Zone

    The War Zone

    ★★★★★

    We all know and respect the acting talents of Tim Roth over lo these many years. But in 1999, he directed what I think is a masterpiece. No, it's not an epic, but rather a small film with secret upon secret revealed within a small family. You won't believe some of the the things this family is hiding and dealing with. It's not about a "war zone" such as Iraq or Vietnam, but about the war zone of a family…

  • Down to the Bone

    Down to the Bone

    ★★★★

    Before Vera Farmiga got everyone's attention in movies such as THE DEPARTED and UP IN THE AIR, she delivered a terrific performance in this from 2005. She plays a cocaine addict who briefly attempts rehag for her kids she says, but leaves after only a week in. We don't get the impression early on that she's going to make a better life for herself or her family. The film follows her over a nondescript period of time -- her ups…