GrouchoReviews.com http://grouchoreviews.com/ Thu, 18 Dec 2014 06:21:23 GMT Film/DVD reviews, interviews and features. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014) [** 1/2] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4751 /reviews/4751 Narratively bereft...thematically redundant...[but] fans of the series and fanboy grumblers may have to agree that The Battle of the Five Armies is often entertaining. Tue, 16 Dec 2014 19:10:51 GMT Peter Canavese The Imitation Game (2014) [***] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4750 /reviews/4750 Serviceably dramatizes an important historical story while giving rising star Cumberbatch suitably juicy material. Tue, 16 Dec 2014 18:58:27 GMT Peter Canavese Top Five (2014) [** 1/2] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4749 /reviews/4749 Were Top Five more deeply felt and less by-the-numbers, Rock might have avoided the impression of a long-winded, self-massaging fantasy about reclaiming authenticity... Sat, 13 Dec 2014 04:04:13 GMT Peter Canavese Exodus: Gods and Kings (2014) [** 1/2] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4748 /reviews/4748 A biblical epic in 2014 is a strange beast indeed, walking a fine line in the hopes of pleasing both the faithful...and those audiences more accustomed to secular myths. Tue, 09 Dec 2014 20:44:00 GMT Peter Canavese Wild (2014) [***] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4747 /reviews/4747 A satisfying excursion, a secular but spiritual journey of self-discovery. Mon, 08 Dec 2014 21:49:17 GMT Peter Canavese Foxcatcher (2014) [*** 1/2] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4746 /reviews/4746 Quietly but firmly interprets the disturbing story of millionaire John du Pont through bifocal lenses of American dreaming and the sexual fantasies made accessible by wealth. Mon, 08 Dec 2014 21:44:00 GMT Peter Canavese Penguins of Madagascar (2014) [**] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4745 /reviews/4745 Will probably divert kids with ease, given its manic exertion and pace...[but] we find out the hard way that these waddlers are better in small doses. Mon, 08 Dec 2014 21:38:32 GMT Peter Canavese The Hunger Games: Mockingjay…Part 1 (2014) [** 1/2] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4744 /reviews/4744 We‘re meant to feel the weight of Katniss‘ situation, and we do, but the picture can also fairly be called leaden... Wed, 19 Nov 2014 16:46:12 GMT Peter Canavese The Theory of Everything (2014) [**] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4743 /reviews/4743 With its equation tantalizingly out of reach, winds up being by the numbers. Wed, 19 Nov 2014 16:40:00 GMT Peter Canavese Rosewater (2014) [***] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4742 /reviews/4742 Above all, and not surprisingly, media icon Stewart shows his deep belief in the almost holy power of media to bolster political change, and he‘s not wrong. Wed, 19 Nov 2014 16:36:04 GMT Peter Canavese Laggies (2014) [***] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4741 /reviews/4741 While the borderline silly material could easily have sunk like a lead balloon, Shelton and her actors sprinkle enough pixie dust to make Laggies fly. Wed, 05 Nov 2014 18:28:33 GMT Peter Canavese Interstellar (2014) [** 1/2] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4740 /reviews/4740 Love is what‘s really between the stars, y‘all. Wed, 05 Nov 2014 17:18:00 GMT Peter Canavese The Notebook (2014) [**] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4739 /reviews/4739 Are you a nihilist? Trouble finding a way to bring satisfaction to a Friday night in the void of meaningless suffering that is your universe? Well, do I have the movie for you. Fri, 31 Oct 2014 22:12:57 GMT Peter Canavese The Boxtrolls (2014) [***] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4738 /reviews/4738 The stealth allegory of the insidious nature of gossip as a tool of domination, and the scathing class satire of misbegotten and socially unjust personal goals, carry a productive sting that should leave kids smarting but a bit wiser... Fri, 31 Oct 2014 22:01:00 GMT Peter Canavese Dear White People (2014) [***] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4735 /reviews/4735 This intelligent, funny, articulately hyper-verbal campus comedy-drama...serves up tart satire... Fri, 31 Oct 2014 21:52:00 GMT Peter Canavese Birdman (2014) [***] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4737 /reviews/4737 The crackpot Birdman on some level tells a relatable story of one person‘s attempt to get, for once, something right, while functioning as a useful cultural critique of the disconcerting inextricability of commerce from art on stages and screens. Fri, 31 Oct 2014 19:28:00 GMT Peter Canavese Citizenfour (2014) [*** 1/2] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4736 /reviews/4736 A film every single American and, indeed, every world citizen should see and contemplate. Fri, 31 Oct 2014 19:22:38 GMT Peter Canavese Whiplash (2014) [*** 1/2] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4734 /reviews/4734 An indie Amadeus...it‘s the career-best performances by Simmons and Teller...that make Whiplash unforgettable. Fri, 24 Oct 2014 20:18:08 GMT Peter Canavese Fury (2014) [***] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4733 /reviews/4733 A throwback combat movie that offers tanks for the memories, along with vivid performances. Mon, 20 Oct 2014 20:18:00 GMT Peter Canavese The Judge (2014) [** 1/2] http://grouchoreviews.com/reviews/4732 /reviews/4732 Runs on clichés and ultimately earns more credit for what it doesn’t do...than for what it does. Fri, 10 Oct 2014 13:41:00 GMT Peter Canavese Interview: Raphael Bob-Waksberg & Lisa Hanawalt…BoJack Horseman…8/14/2014 http://grouchoreviews.com/interviews/403 /interviews/403 Staying with some friends in this big house in the Hollywood hills...I just remember looking out over the deck of this house and seeing the city below and feeling like ‘Oh, I’m on top of the world. And I’ve never been more lonely or isolated.‘ Sat, 23 Aug 2014 21:19:31 GMT Peter Canavese Interview: Ira Sachs…Love Is Strange…8/11/2014 http://grouchoreviews.com/interviews/404 /interviews/404 It’s a pretty classic kind of set-up for the love story genre because it’s two people who are in love who have to face an obstacle together. And what we reveal in the story is the depth of their love, through how they do that. Fri, 22 Aug 2014 20:11:35 GMT Peter Canavese Interview: Chris Mulkey…Last Weekend, Twin Peaks…5/2/2014 http://grouchoreviews.com/interviews/395 /interviews/395 Malcolm is a totally different kind of role than I‘ve ever played. He‘s a listener. And that‘s a really powerful thing to be able to do...Hank Jennings was a duplicitous guy... Tue, 29 Jul 2014 07:37:46 GMT Peter Canavese Interview: Richard Linklater…Boyhood…7/17/2014 http://grouchoreviews.com/interviews/402 /interviews/402 At the end of the shoot, I would talk to the actors, like ‘Okay, next year, here‘s what‘s coming.‘ And then I had the year to think about it, and so did they. Fri, 25 Jul 2014 06:13:00 GMT Peter Canavese Interview: Rob Reiner…And So It Goes, The Case Against 8…6/19 & 6/20/2014 http://grouchoreviews.com/interviews/400 /interviews/400 I enjoy the creative process. I love the writing part of it, the editing…one of my favorites. But I also like the production process. It’s just fun to do. That’s what I’ve discovered, you know, as I’ve gotten older. Thu, 24 Jul 2014 06:34:00 GMT Peter Canavese Feature: The 57th San Francisco International Film Festival (April 24-May 8, 2012) http://grouchoreviews.com/features/253 /features/253 SCROLL DOWN FOR THE LATEST CAPSULE REVIEWS! No one would say that the San Francisco Film Society has had an easy time of the last few years, but its Filmmaker360 program to support and fund independent film can (and does) boast successes like Beasts of the Southern Wild and Fruitvale Station, and with new Executive Director Noah Cowan in place, st... Thu, 24 Apr 2014 19:10:11 GMT Peter Canavese Feature: 2013 Top 10 http://grouchoreviews.com/features/252 /features/252 The Year‘s Best Films             1. Her  The “zeitgeist“-y American movie of the year is a slightly futuristic tale that reflects blindingly on our present. Written and directed by Spike Jonze with elegant, melancholy calm, Her functions as a sincere and most unusual romance…between a human and a f... Tue, 24 Dec 2013 14:40:59 GMT Peter Canavese Feature: Mill Valley Film Festival 36 (October 3-13, 2013) http://grouchoreviews.com/features/251 /features/251 In the fall, a young film‘s fancy heavily turns to thoughts of awards. Long well-positioned as a harbinger of Oscar attention to come, the Mill Valley Film Festival brings out big films and big stars as part of an eclectic slate of studio and indie films, fiction films and documentaries, tributes and panels, a Childrens‘ Film Fest, concerts in the... Thu, 26 Sep 2013 20:18:28 GMT Peter Canavese Feature: 2012 Top 10 http://grouchoreviews.com/features/250 /features/250 The Year‘s Best Films             1. This is Not a Film  This is the rare film that is more: a rebellious yawp over the rooftops of the world, a vital social document, a moral but illegal political statement. World-class filmmaker Jafar Panahi (Crimson Gold) has frequently tangled with the... Fri, 21 Dec 2012 20:26:04 GMT Peter Canavese Feature: The 17th San Francisco Silent Film Festival (July 12-15, 2012) http://grouchoreviews.com/features/249 /features/249 In the last few years, leaps and bounds have taken The San Francisco Silent Film Festival to new heights of ambition and stature. The 17th San Francisco Silent Film Festival running July 12-15, 2012 at the Castro Theatre bears that out in what has been the institution‘s banner year thus far. The Fest topped itself with its historic presentation, ea... Sat, 07 Jul 2012 06:32:00 GMT Peter Canavese