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Today in Movie History: April 28

Two movies on opposite ends of the emotional spectrum opened today. We’ll start with Woody Allen, whose Bananas doesn’t have quite the same critical heft as some of his other works, but it’s loads of fun for those attuned to Allen’s nebbish shtick and enjoys an enduring reputation among his fans. It opened today in 1971. And then there’s United 93, Paul Greengrass’s gut-wrenching …

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Movies for the Resistance: Ghostbusters (2016)

(Welcome to Movies for the Resistance, a weekly column intended to showcase films with particular pertinence for 2017. One of the fundamental purposes of art in general, and movies in particular, is to serve as a spiritual armory: bringing hope, timely lessons and shared experiences when times are dark. They can move us to positive political action, lend insight to …

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Today in Movie History: April 21

We go all silent movie on your ass today, starting with Buster Keaton’s masterpiece Sherlock Jr. It’s a slight story of a lonely projectionist fighting haplessly for the girl he loves: filled with Keaton’s jaw-dropping stunt work, but also the innovative use of the film within a film as a narrative device (Keaton’s character falls asleep and reimagines his dilemma on the screen …

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Movies for the Resistance: Citizen Kane

(Welcome to Movies for the Resistance, a weekly column intended to showcase films with particular pertinence for 2017. One of the fundamental purposes of art in general, and movies in particular, is to serve as a spiritual armory: bringing hope, timely lessons and shared experiences when times are dark. They can move us to positive political action, lend insight to …

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Movie Review: The Fate of the Furious

Starring: Vin Diesel, Dwayne Johnson, Jason Statham, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Nathalie Emmanuel, Charlize Theron and Kurt Russell Directed by: F. Gary Gray Running time: 136 minutes Rating: PG-13 Year of release: 2017   In my review of the last Fast and the Furious movie, I opined that the franchise had little left to do but pop Vin Diesel …

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Today in Movie History: April 14

We’re noting the opposite ends of the romantic spectrum today, starting with Say Anything… , Cameron Crowe’s near-perfect ode to high school love and the need to be yourself. John Cusack and Ione Skye make a couple for the ages and — stalker snickering notwithstanding — the sight of Cusack holding that boombox over his head is an iconic part of movie …

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Movies for the Resistance: The Dead Zone

(Welcome to Movies for the Resistance, a weekly column intended to showcase films with particular pertinence for 2017. One of the fundamental purposes of art in general, and movies in particular, is to serve as a spiritual armory: bringing hope, timely lessons and shared experiences when times are dark. They can move us to positive political action, lend insight to …

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Today in Movie History: April 7

We have a very diverse quartet to recognize today, starting with the earliest. Abel Gance’s passion project Napoleon, covering the early years of the French leader’s life, became one of the most innovative efforts of the silent era: pioneering numerous techniques such as multi-camera set-ups and multi-screen projection (making it one of the first truly widescreen movies) that influenced countless …

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Movies for the Resistance: Star Wars Double Feature

(Welcome to Movies for the Resistance, a weekly column intended to showcase films with particular pertinence for 2017. One of the fundamental purposes of art in general, and movies in particular, is to serve as a spiritual armory: bringing hope, timely lessons and shared experiences when times are dark. They can move us to positive political action, lend insight to …