People visit the great art museums of the world hoping to find meaning by getting lost in the work. In Jem Cohen's lovely Austrian film Museum Hours, two solitary souls fall into a deep yet temporary friendship under the watchful yet passive gaze of subjects long dead but forever frozen in paint.
Thanks to the breezy performances of Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch, and the rhythmic way they play off of each other, David Gordon Green’s Prince Avalanche is an unexpected delight. Set amongst the charred remnants of lush Texas forests ravaged by wildfires, it’s a clever bromance that addresses the angst of the contemporary male with its tongue firmly in cheek.
In the quietly explosive new movie The Hunt, Danish filmmaker Thomas Vinterberg chillingly documents the swiftness with which a man’s life can crumble. At the center of the upheaval is Mads Mikkelsen, who gives an extraordinary performance as Lucas, a divorced kindergarten teacher brought to his knees by a confused little girl’s rigorously prompted claim that he has done something horrible to her.
For more than a century writers and directors have based films on real life events. From the life of Thomas Edison to the battle of Gettysburg — actual events and real-life stories often make the best films.
Friday on Central Standard movie critics Russ Simmons, Loey Lockerby and John Tibbets share reviews of movies out right now, plus they'll discuss how Hollywood handles real-life events. When is making a film too soon after the event? When has Hollywood gotten it right, and when have they gotten it wrong?
The executives at SeaWorld must be spitting nails and circling up a wagon of lawyers upon the release of the excoriating documentary Blackfish.
Director Gabriela Cowperthwaite’s penetrating and sad look inside the training and treatment of killer whales at SeaWorld and other marine parks delivers such sharp blows to the industry that it would be cruel and unusual should anyone who sees the film actually ever visit one again.
In the heartfelt and pithy Canadian film Still Mine, James Cromwell and Genevieve Bujold portray a couple in their eighties who are struggling with issues both physical and bureaucratic.
While he is building a smaller house for them on their vast New Brunswick acreage and being besieged with local governmental red tape, she is slowly slipping into mental incapacity. It’s as if his obsession with finishing the house is a planned strategy to hold his grief at bay.
Drive-in movie theaters were once a staple of American popular culture, but over the decades, they've been closing across the country. Kansas City, however, seems to be an epicenter for the disappearing relic across the rest of the United States - we've got three.
Current movie hits like “Pacific Rim” and “Despicable Me 2” are loaded with computer generated imagery (CGI).
But did you know that Kansas City has become something of a hub for computer animation that finds its way to Hollywood? On today's Central Standard, host Russ Simmons will talk with fellow film critics Marie Asner and Eric Melin as well as Jim Lammers from Trinity Animation and Bruce Branit from Branit FX about their contributions to some of your favorite movies and TV shows.
On its surface, the Danish film A Hijacking (in Dutch, Kapringen) is a tense hostage drama about a cargo ship overtaken by Somali pirates and the ensuing negations for the crew's release.
But director Tobias Lindholm has much more on his mind. Besides making a nail-biter where the potential for death hovers in very close quarters, he's also commenting on socioeconomic class and the wide ethical gap between the cooks and engineers on board the ship and the suits back at the corporate office who really reap the most benefits.
The appeal of foreign films is that they take audiences to all corners of the world and intimate places within those faraway spaces. And the Israeli film Fill the Void is, more than many such films, an invitation into a culture seldom displayed on big movie screens.
In Alex Gibney’s engrossing new documentary We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks, that organization’s founder, Julian Assange, comes off as complex, enigmatic, and narcissistic. By the end of the 130 minute running time, viewers will know much more about him and his passions yet still be stumped about whether he’s a hero, a megalomaniac, or a terrorist.
Music lovers will be thunderstruck by the immense roster of talent in Morgan Neville's salute to background singers called 20 Feet From Stardom. It's a jubilant, rich and moving portrait of the vocalists who indelibly put their stamp on classic songs while finding a place for themselves front and center just out of reach.