Category Archives: Movie Reviews

Savages Capsule Review

Originally, I was supposed to review Savages for Paste, but due to some personal matters, I had to pass on the review. Here was my introduction, which makes for a sort of capsule review:

Whatever you do, don’t listen to all the chatter—Savages doesn’t mark the “return” of Oliver Stone. That’s not just because he never went anywhere, but it’s also because his new film is simply passable. Whereas the veteran director usually says it like it is—a straightforwardness I find refreshing—here he wallows in ambiguity. His half Buddhist, half pro-drug message gets muddled in an over-extended, sometimes exciting slosh of pulp.

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Red Hook Summer Review

All too typical of a Spike Lee joint, Red Hook Summer is bound to leave you utterly conflicted, overwhelmed with both admiration and frustration.

Read my review at Christianity Today.

 

360 Review

With all due respect to Fernando Meirelles, the director behind the terrific 2002 gangster flick City of God, the Brazilian filmmaker’s new film is so bad that it almost feels like a sin to take the time to write about it.

Read my review at Paste.

The Watch Review

Only a handful of scenes sticks with you—a bad indicator for any film. From a motorcycle jump at the local swimming pool to several fights between father and son to an endless list of one-liners, this certainly wasn’t the case for Schaffer’s Hot Rod.

Read my review at Christianity Today.

Alps Review

Alps proves a superior example of defamiliarization, enhancing our perception of the familiar via the unfamiliar.

Read my review at Paste.

Beasts of the Southern Wild Review and Interview

Like the world it so carefully constructs, Beasts of the Southern Wild is both broken and transcendent—a magical revelation overflowing with misplaced hope.

Read my review at Christianity Today.

Read my interview with writer-director Benh Zeitlin at RELEVANT.

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter Review

Timur Bekmambetov’s Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter functions like a two-edged sword (or axe, to reference Honest Abe’s weapon of choice). For every pro, there’s a con; for every moment of greatness, there’s a moment of frustration.

Read my review at Paste.

The Do-Deca Pentathlon Review

In pertinent moments throughout all the Duplass films, starting with their mumblecore debut The Puffy Chair, the camera quickly zooms in on characters—like, well, a punch—shifting the focus from big to small, from macro to micro.

Read my review at Paste.

Moonrise Kingdom Review

With a Wes Anderson film, there’s always a sense that something isn’t right—that what you’re seeing couldn’t be real. Like, why does everyone in The Royal Tenenbaums act as if they live in the 1970s? Or why is no one killed in the shootout between the pirates and Team Zissou in The Life Aquatic?

Read my review at Christianity Today.

Dallas International Film Festival Coverage

At least, my DIFF coverage is online. I reviewed the following films:

Alps, Cinema Six, Cowgirls n’ Angels, The Elect, Elena, Faith, Love and Whiskey, Father’s Chair, I Wish, Maya, My Way, Punch and Qwerty.