Need For Speed

An eclectic arrangement of Hollywood action, poetic passions and innovative filmmaking makes “Drive” an off-centered pleasure in all respects. With clockwork precision, “Drive” eloquently juggles the world of art-house film and mainstream blockbuster without allowing the pitfalls of self-indulgence detract from its streamlined joy ride. “Drive” has made it clear
Read More…

Romanian ‘Aurora’ mystifies, bores

The Romanian New Wave has yielded its share of stark, clinical masterpieces (“4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days” for one) and also a few loosely metaphysical mind-bogglers (“Police, Adjective” for another). Chalk up Cristi Puiu’s “Aurora” somewhere between the two. It is the latter-day answer to Chantal Akerman’s “Jeanne
Read More…

A World Apart

When I entered the office space of Tiffany Shlain at Pier 38, which has the look of a pirate ship refurbished into a tech geek’s dreamland, she was on her iPhone, Bluetooth-in-ear. How apropos of her new documentary “Connected: An Autobiography About Love, Death & Technology,” a rumination on our
Read More…

‘The Debt’ reimagines Israeli espionage thriller

The saying goes that those who can’t do teach, and those who can’t teach make Holocaust movies. John Madden, director of such sappy, trophy-swiping schlock as “Shakespeare in Love” (1998) and “Proof” (2005), competently elevates “The Debt” from the constraints of that genre and into another: a dark, rich espionage
Read More…

‘Socialisme’ unifies with collective disinterest

Monsieur Godard, qu’est-ce que la big idea? Literally, what is “Film Socialisme” about? Is it an indictment of the blasé bourgeois of the West? Sure. Is it an indictment of the frantic images of contemporary cinema? Yeah. But both of these prove tiresome terrain for Jean-Luc Godard, who has already
Read More…

Abstract Adulthood

It has been a long six years since we have seen a feature film from Miranda July, the coyly svelte poster girl of independent cinema. But in the time since her debut feature “Me and You and Everyone We Know” (2005), July has been a busy little bee, toiling away
Read More…

‘One Day’ becomes a forgettable and haphazard mess

“One Day,” a tedious and plodding romantic comedy, is the cinematic equivalent of the proverbial kitchen sink.  It incorporates every single romantic comedy cliché — class differences, a dysfunctional family, an ugly duckling, a hopeless promise to preserve “the friendship,” a list of rules to help preserve said friendship and
Read More…