“There is an imaginary line out there between right and wrong, good and evil. I believe what I am doing is good and what I am standing against is evil,” claims Tim Foley, leader of paramilitary group Arizona Border Recon in Matthew Heineman’s troubling documentary “Cartel Land.” His words echo throughout director Denis Villeneuve’s and […]

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Tell me if you’ve read, heard or seen this story before: a privileged member of society (preferably white) is facing a personal crisis when he or she meets a noble member of a minority group whose wisdom will offer a way out of this person’s predicament, maybe eve a path to redemption. Their worlds briefly […]

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The best books, the best movies, the best music, in fact, the best works of art offer an uncompromising view of the world its creators live in. “The Diary of a Teenage Girl,” Marielle Heller’s pull-no-punches adaptation of Phoebe Gloeckner’s semi-autobiographical hybrid novel of the same name, is such a work. Unlike other teen-driven dramas, […]

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Michael Heineman originally intended to focus his new documentary on one of the many vigilante and militia groups that have taken it upon themselves to patrol the border between the United States and Mexico in an attempt to stop the flow of undocumented immigrants and drugs. His protagonist would be Tim “Nailer” Foley, founder of […]

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Pity the much hyped-about and twitted-about festival film. Whether it premieres at Sundance, Berlin, Cannes or Toronto, the film, once it opens commercially, has to meet the huge expectations placed upon it by the twittersphere, early reviews and word of mouth. Winning the Audience and Grand Jury Awards at Sundance and being the subject of […]

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Former Sony film chief Amy Pascal was right, after all, in her evaluation of Cameron Crowe’s now-titled “Aloha.” Although I wouldn’t go as far as calling it “ridiculous” like she did in one of the emails released after Sony’s email servers were hacked, I would agree with her assessment that “it never not ever once […]

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A 50+ year-old former/current mercenary/military operative/super spy is contemplating retirement or has retired when his past (it’s always a “he”) suddenly catches up to him and he is forced to holster up once again and kick some ass. That, in a nutshell, describes the plot of “Taken” and its sequels, “Red” and its sequel, “The […]

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