GrouchoReviews.com http://production.grouchoreviews.com/ Mon, 14 Oct 2019 05:59:49 GMT Film/DVD reviews, interviews and features. Pain and Glory (2019) [*** 1/2] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5182 /reviews/5182 The filmmaker contemplating his own creation as a man and an artist...plays as a poetic remembrance of things past, a reconciliation of self, powerfully capturing the emotional essence of keenly formative experiences and deep loves. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Joker (2019) [** 1/2] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5181 /reviews/5181 Joker isn’t the film to seriously tackle the issue[s]--it‘s more concerned with flair than genuine inquiry--but Phoenix’s pained, raw-nerve performance is one for the ages. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool (2019) [***] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5180 /reviews/5180 A primer...proves most valuable by gathering a number of Miles’ friends, lovers, musical collaborators, admirers, and musicologists...to share their recollections and perspectives on Davis, his musicality, and his personality. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Downton Abbey (2019) [**] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5177 /reviews/5177 Forgive me for suggesting that Conservative peer Fellowes…or, as he’s sometimes known, Julian Alexander Kitchener-Fellowes, Baron Fellowes of West Stafford DL…might consider Downton the cake he’s letting us eat. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice (2019) [*** 1/2] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5179 /reviews/5179 A deeply moving story of a remarkable woman, its only real fault an arguable virtue: adhering to the old showbiz adage of leaving the audience wanting more. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Official Secrets (2019) [** 1/2] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5178 /reviews/5178 It’s a story worth shining a light on, Gun a hero deserving of a movie-star moment. And yet this docudrama struggles to give feature-length narrative shape to the story in a way that brings it to vibrant dramatic life.  Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Ready or Not (2019) [**] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5176 /reviews/5176 Thin characters...thinner satire...maybe best to think of Ready or Not not as trolling us but as gifting us a mosh pit for primal-scream therapy. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Where‘d You Go, Bernadette (2019) [** 1/2] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5175 /reviews/5175 The film’s darkest-before-the-dawn middle passage honors the complexity of mental-health struggles for the sufferer and those who, unsure at every step, try to steer their troubled loved one down a path to healing. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Luce (2019) [*** 1/2] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5174 /reviews/5174 Luce primarily concerns itself with African-American identity, plagued by withering lowdown stereotypes and polar-opposite pressures...In some ways, the film’s subtle political satire proves even more distressing. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese The Kitchen (2019) [** 1/2] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5173 /reviews/5173 Because of its hurried pacing, the film doesn’t quite make us feel the potentially Shakespearean sweep of this arc, and the leading performances feel similarly hemmed in by the script’s limitations.  Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese The Farewell (2019) [*** 1/2] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5172 /reviews/5172 The setup makes for genuinely amusing light farce, but in their patient observation, Wang and cinematographer Anna Franquesa Solano conjure a heartfelt intimacy with the family...[and] the actors always offer up finely etched emotional truths... Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Once Upon a Time...in Hollywood (2019) [*** 1/2] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5171 /reviews/5171 Content finally joined by the movie gods to form…for at last, the moving-picture magpie has lighted on Hollywood as his setting and, in no small part, his subject. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Stuber (2019) [*] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5170 /reviews/5170 Unexciting action and unfunny comedy...Bautista and Nanjiani have star power, and could’ve made a buddy comedy work, but not with this script and this little help behind the camera. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Maiden (2019) [***] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5169 /reviews/5169 This Maiden voyage’s degrees of heroism and ugly behavior, of victory and defeat, illuminate a gripping and inspiring story that demands to be remembered. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) [***] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5168 /reviews/5168 Marvel deserves credit for the ways it has so far managed to freshen up formula, harness genres to its purposes, and hold a mirror up to contemporary society. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Yesterday (2019) [**] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5167 /reviews/5167 Make the mistake of considering this feature-length stunt’s many logical fumbles and obvious but ignored questions, and you’re likely to get angry... All you need is love...and a better script. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Toy Story 4 (2019) [*** 1/2] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5166 /reviews/5166 At a moment when studios and pundits have begun again to question the efficacy of sequels, Pixar’s graceful follow-up justifies the practice, when executed with smarts and heart.  Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Men in Black: International (2019) [**] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5165 /reviews/5165 Outside of the win for representation represented by the likeable Tessa Thompson’s leading role, there’s no creatively compelling reason to tell this story, which...drags on seventeen minutes longer than the 1997 original. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Crystal City (2019) [***] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5164 /reviews/5164 Potent... Crawford‘s empathy and care for his subjects shine through, inevitably taking the audience on an emotional journey. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) [** 1/2] http://production.grouchoreviews.com/reviews/5163 /reviews/5163 The CGI creatures impress…a star is reborn in Mothra...It’s just unfortunate that the picture as a whole lumbers a lot like its forty-story star. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Interview: Alfonso Cuarón…Roma…1/4/2019 http://production.grouchoreviews.com/interviews/471 /interviews/471 I was very lucky to be raised by two strong and very generous women...[Cleo] embodies, in one hand, those scars that I share with my family, but in the other hand, those scars that I share with a whole society. Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Interview: Pawel Pawlikowski…Cold War, Ida…10/5/2018 http://production.grouchoreviews.com/interviews/473 /interviews/473 The more you think about [your parents], the more contradictory they get...A lot of people find themselves in this film. You‘d expect it‘s such an unusual, eccentric story, but... Tue, 01 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Feature: 2018 Top 10 http://production.grouchoreviews.com/features/260 /features/260 The Year‘s Best Films 1. The Other Side of the Wind A long-coveted Holy Grail for cineastes, Orson Welles’ The Other Side of the Wind finally dropped in 2018, 33 years after its maker’s death. Wind in many ways serves as a sort of semi-autobiographical bookend to Citizen Kane in ruthlessly dissecting a deeply flawed but high-pow... Mon, 01 Jan 2018 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Interview: Peter Hedges…Ben is Back, The Odd Life of Timothy Green…10/12/2018 http://production.grouchoreviews.com/interviews/474 /interviews/474 Who wants to be directed by their father? Particularly at an age when…the fun part of being 21 is that you fire your parents. Y‘know, you‘re free of them. Mon, 01 Jan 2018 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Interview: Paul Dano…Wildlife, Love & Mercy…10/5/2018 http://production.grouchoreviews.com/interviews/472 /interviews/472 [I] immediately felt a sort of uncanny personal relationship to it: the characters, the sense of love in this really great struggle...a lot of pain. [Richard Ford] somehow wrote about this very difficult situation with a great amount of compassion. Mon, 01 Jan 2018 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Interview: Frederick Wiseman…Monrovia, Indiana; Titicut Follies…9/28/2018 http://production.grouchoreviews.com/interviews/470 /interviews/470 I‘m trying to make a group of movies that represent as many different aspects of contemporary life as I can. Mon, 01 Jan 2018 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Feature: 2017 Top 10 http://production.grouchoreviews.com/features/259 /features/259 The Year‘s Best Films               1. The Florida Project Sean Baker’s follow-up to the stylish, street-level Tangerine is the sort of film that sticks with you, whether you like it or not. In part a tribute to The Little Rascals, The Florida Project works on that level alone, with a low... Sun, 01 Jan 2017 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Feature: 2016 Top 10 http://production.grouchoreviews.com/features/258 /features/258 The Year‘s Best Films               1. Moonlight  In skillfully adapting Tarell Alvin McCraney’s unproduced play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue, writer-director Barry Jenkins shows a deep curiosity about one person’s development and inner life. We see this person grow from boy to teen... Fri, 01 Jan 2016 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Feature: Silicon Valley Comic Con 2016 http://production.grouchoreviews.com/features/257 /features/257 Thanks to prime mover Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple, San Jose now has its own “Comic-Con“: the Silicon Valley Comic Con. San Jose has been home to many science-fiction/film and TV/comic-themed toy shows or conventions over the years (many of us still have fond memories of TimeCon at the old San Jose Convention Center), some of them pretty rink... Fri, 01 Jan 2016 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese Feature: 2015 Top 10 http://production.grouchoreviews.com/features/256 /features/256 The Year‘s Best Films                     1. Chi-Raq  The right film at the right time, Spike Lee’s latest is his most creatively fertile and socially immediate narrative feature in years. A grabber from its opening sequence, a lyric video for Nick Cannon’s gut-punching... Thu, 01 Jan 2015 08:00:00 GMT Peter Canavese