Archive for the Reviews Category

Film review: “Lady Macbeth”

Posted in Reviews on August 2, 2017 by Steve Mesa

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Watching “Lady Macbeth” would no require brushing up on the Scottish-set play written by The Bard himself, William Shakespeare. This cold and dark period thriller set in the 19th Century rural northern England marks the filmmaking debut of British theater director William Oldroyd.

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Film review: “The Lost City of Z”

Posted in Reviews on April 25, 2017 by Steve Mesa

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James Grey is a filmmaker who best known for helming films like The Yards and We Own the Night which were set in his hometown of New York City. With The Lost City of Z, Grey moves from the concrete jungle to the Amazonian jungle by adapting author David Grann’s book of the true story of British explorer Percy Fawcett.   Continue reading

“August: Osage County” is a bittersweet Southern melodrama

Posted in Reviews with tags , , , , on January 10, 2014 by Steve Mesa

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“August: Osage County,” the adaptation of playwright Tracy Letts’ Pulitzer and Tony-winning play, unfolds like a generic soap opera featuring an all-star cast instead of a compelling and original movie. Instead of evil twins, evil plots and people coming back from the dead, we get family secrets, tragic pasts and forbidden love affairs.  Continue reading

Joss Whedon modernizes Shakespeare with “Much Ado About Nothing”

Posted in Reviews on June 21, 2013 by Steve Mesa

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Leave it up to writer-director Joss Whedon to shoot a movie at his Santa Monica home in 12 days with his close friends while in the middle of editing a blockbuster movie like “The Avengers.” “Much Ado About Nothing” is the most original and charming take of one of William Shakespeare’s plays since Baz Luhrman took on the Bard with “William Shakespeare’s Romeo + Juliet.” Shot in black and white, Whedon’s interpretation of this play moves the story from 1600 Italy and setting in comtemporary California while keeping the original text intact. Continue reading

“Man of Steel” isn’t quite super

Posted in Reviews on June 14, 2013 by Steve Mesa

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It was expected that “Man of Steel” would be a visual feast for the eyes, knowing that director Zack Snyder (“300,” “Watchmen”) would be at the helm. It was even more promising when it was announced that Christopher Nolan, the man who helped reboot the Batman movie franchise, would have a hand in rebooting another iconic DC character. Despite all of this, “Man of Steel” is a disappointing film that establishes some interesting ideas to the Superman mythology, but only to fail to follow up on those ideas to make this movie more than just another “Superman” film. Continue reading

“Before Midnight” is the culmination of Linklater’s trilogy about a relationship

Posted in Reviews on June 7, 2013 by Steve Mesa

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In what feels like a feature-length version of Michael Apted’s “Up” series, Richard Linklater, Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy has managed to create a cinematic evolution of a relationship between two people from different part of the world with the “Before” trilogy. Continue reading

“Frances Ha” is a charming and witty coming-of-age film

Posted in Reviews on May 24, 2013 by Steve Mesa

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Writer-director Noah Baumbach collaborates with his real-life girlfriend Greta Gerwig to make “Frances Ha,” a lighthearted comedy that also pays tribute films made during the French New Wave, American-style. Continue reading