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Happy, Happy...

Review: Happy, Happy

A familiar tale of adultery
First time filmmaker Anne Sewitsky finds a compassionate way to tell a familiar tale of adultery, and she's helped immeasurably by a first-rate acting ensemble, especially the two superlative actresses, whom you could imagine cast in films of the late Ingmar Bergman.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  September 20, 2011

review of Love, etc

Review: Love, etc.

Jill Andresevic documents a collection of real relationships
Jill Andresevic's simply photographed documentary springs from an equally simple premise: shoot a varied bunch of New Yorkers, young to aging, who are thinking hard about love or are involved in relationships, and see what happens to them over a few months.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  July 26, 2011

The Arbor - short take review

Review: The Arbor

Clio Barnard tells Andrea Dunbar's cursed story
Andrea Dunbar turned her smothering, abused, and abusive life in a West Yorkshire housing project into a series of raw autobiographical dramas, and, as a teen playwright in the '80s, she became a star in London with acclaimed productions of The Arbor and Rita, Sue and Bob Too — the latter an excellent film, as well.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  July 19, 2011

Septien; short take

Review: Septien

A magnificent exorcism
What can be done with this unhappy home? Enter a self-appointed minister with messianic impulses.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  July 12, 2011

Terri - movie review

Review: Terri

Subtle, sweet, and eccentric
Credit indie director Azazel Jacobs for building a case for Terri, so that — without manipulation or sentimentality — we begin to appreciate the clumsy lad at the same time that he starts to shed his self-loathing.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  July 12, 2011

beautiful boy list

Review: Beautiful Boy

Is there an audience for this finely acted, sensitively directed film of unhappiness and sorrow?
By: GERALD PEARY  |  June 17, 2011

boston movies, review of The First Beautiful Thing

Review: The First Beautiful Thing

As a child in the Tuscany port town of Livorno, Bruno was understandably anxious and unsettled as he and his sister scooted after their hot mamma (Micaela Ramazzotti) because all three had been bounced from their home by a jealous father.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  June 09, 2011

louder list

Review: Louder Than A Bomb

Young poetry slammers tell their stories
The kids whom Jacobs and Siskel have chosen for us to watch are so enthralling, with such remarkable life stories, that their autobiographical poems have actual power.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  June 02, 2011

sons list

Review: Sons of Perdition

Polygamy reigns
If Jonestown's Jimmy Jones ran North Korea, it would be like the cultist, fascist, ignorant, sexually craven society that exists in Columbia City, Colorado, under the thumb of self-proclaimed prophet Warren Jeffs.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  May 26, 2011

Blank City movie review by Boston Phoenix movie critic

Review: Blank City

A new documentary looks at the downtown NYC No Wave film scene
When you romanticize, everything awful is awesome and inspiring. And so it is with the nostalgic, now-middle-aged, indie filmmakers interviewed in Céline Danhier's Blank City, reflecting on the late '70s and early '80s on New York's Lower East Side.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  May 26, 2011


Review: Incendies

 Thrillingly philosophical art movie
Of the five pictures nominated by the Academy for Best Foreign Language Film this year, Denis Villeneuve's Incendies is the one that should have taken the Oscar.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  May 12, 2011

queen list

Review: Queen to Play

 Determined to learn
A hotel maid, Hélène (Sandrine Bonnaire), in a French resort sees a glamorous foreigner (Jennifer Beals) playing chess one day, and she's determined to learn to play herself.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  May 04, 2011

review of new movie Carancho

Review: Carancho

 Argentina's Official Selection as Best Foreign Language Film for the Academy Awards
Pablo Trapero's soggy, misguided, derivative melodrama was, somehow, Argentina's Official Selection as Best Foreign Language Film for the Academy Awards.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  April 27, 2011


Review: Circo

Gran Circo Mexico
Out there on the dusty back roads of rural Mexico, that's where American documentarian Aaron Schock went to find a bona fide old-time circus, with a roaring lion and tigers and tightrope walkers under an actual big top.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  April 19, 2011


Review: Le Quattro Volte

Pythagoras, beyond the theorem
There's more to Pythagoras than his theorem concerning right triangles.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  April 13, 2011


Review: Bill Cunningham New York

The legendary “street style” photographer
Richard Press's sweet, heartfelt celebration of the New York Times ' fashion photographer, Bill Cunningham, is already a sensation in the Big Apple, where it has smashed box-office records at the Film Forum.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  April 07, 2011


Review: I Am

The "new" Shadyac is still a Hollywood hack
Tom Shadyac found a perfect nest for his low-watt-lightbulb sensibility in today's Hollywood, where he helmed a series of blockbuster comedies that ranged in quality from the passably silly ( Ace Ventura: Pet Detective ) to the unforgivably execrable ( Patch Adams ).
By: GERALD PEARY  |  March 31, 2011


Review: Orgasm Inc.: The Strange Science of Female Pleasure

Is "female sexual dysfuction" real?
For nine years, Vermont-based filmmaker Liz Canner raced around the country with her camera doing research and interviews for this exemplary, absorbing, muckraking documentary.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  March 25, 2011


Review: Phil Ochs: There But For Fortune

Powerful rock doc about America's seminal protest rocker
Ken Bowser's film biography of a seminal American protest singer of the '60s and '70s is conventionally told but also informative and moving.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  March 10, 2011


Review: Even the Rain

Movie-within-a-movie is almost a first-rate political drama
The first hour of Icíar Bollaín's film, which was written by Ken Loach's perennial screenwriter, Paul Laverty, is a first-rate political drama.
By: GERALD PEARY  |  March 02, 2011


Review: The Housemaid

Korean remake fuses art and soft-core thrills in steamy class drama
In Kim Ki-young's 1960 original, one of the all-time South Korean classics, the title housemaid was a psychopathic femme fatale wrecking the lives of her employers, a composer and his hard-working wife
By: GERALD PEARY  |  February 16, 2011

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