It’s the dog days of summer, and there’s a bunch of great cinema to experience in the Twin Cities.
Somehow, summer is halfway over. That being said, you should probably spend as much time as possible out enjoying the warm season on a lake or a patio.
For movie fans, there are two distinct seasons: awards season and summer. Some people consider them the respective high and low points of the year. These people are killjoys. Though Hollywood studios’ continuing habit for holding their most “important” releases until November and December grates, at least the payoff is some of the finest, biggest dumb entertainment that obscene budgets can buy. There’s nothing wrong with a little escapism, as the ten movies I feature here prove.
Questions about vigilantism are at the heart of Cartel Land, a gripping documentary on the people risking their lives taking a stand against Mexican drug cartels on both sides of the border. Directed by Matthew Heineman, whose camerawork is athletic and fearless, the movie unfolds like a blockbuster action flick, not unlike executive producer Kathryn Bigelow’s The Hurt Locker or Zero Dark Thirty. The film starts in Mexico, in the dead of night, with masked men cooking meth, explaining that while the drugs might wreak havoc in America, it’s the only way for them to escape poverty. What choice do they have?
With the holiday weekend come and gone, perhaps there’s a bit more free time in your schedule for movies. If that’s the case, you may want to check out the Walker Art Center’s Summer Nights/Cool Cinema series, which starts this week.
Emotionally explosive and wonderfully amorphous, “About Elly” is a 2009 film out of Iran getting its well-deserved release in the U.S. just now. Directed by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Asghar Farhadi (“A Separation”, “The Past”), the film is a naturalistic drama that could easily be described as a thriller. Its characters are believable and mysterious, and the film highlights, to Western eyes, the weight honor holds in cultures built around it.
It’s the Fourth of July, which means fireworks displays galore. But if you happen to be stuck inside this evening, you’ll probably want to take in a great display via a classic movie. These are 10 of the top best scenes involving fireworks in movie history.
The “Wolfpack” raises far more questions than it answers, and that’s both why the documentary is so compelling and, at the same time, somewhat frustrating.
It’s been a few years since I ran down my top 10 lists for the best and worst movie mothers. And until now, it never occurred to me to put together a list of their […]
Though I found myself struggling to come up with a shortlist of candidates as compelling as the collection that formed the distaff side, the horror genre alone ensured that there would be no shortage of contenders.
A history of “Saturday Night Live” that isn’t afraid to dive into the show’s issues of diversity and identity, “Live From New York” is a compelling and effectively moving portrait of a program than in 40 years has gone from being an avant-garde game-changer to an American institution.
One of the best films to screen at the latest Minneapolis-St. Paul International Film Festival, Slow West blends a Coen brothers-like sense of humor with Tarantino-smacking violence to create a frontier story that’s hard to pin down and also forget.
The penultimate film of Albert Maysles is a loving and inquisitive look into the life of a now 93-year-old fashion icon.
Growing up as a kid with special needs, Nick Bertsch didn’t get invited to birthday parties or sleepovers. Making friends was tough, yet that didn’t stop him from becoming a close friend to one of TV’s most iconic characters: Big Bird.
A lot of power in a relatively small package, “Tangerines” is an anti-war chamber drama with the emotional thrust of a knife to the gut.
Dozens have been killed and mutilated in Tanzania in the past 15 years, and all because they were born with albinism, a congenital pigmentation disorder. But these people were not targeted simply because of their unusual appearance. Some in the East African country believe harvesting the organs and body parts of albinos provides good luck.
I sort of thought it would be fun to write a review of the new film The End of the Tour as short as David Foster Wallace’s masterpiece Infinite Jest is long. So … yeah. […]
The Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is a spiritual place for anyone who has ever ventured there, for an ordeal packed with unforgettable serenity. But even in the of the golden age of the Minnesota Film Board in the 1990s, a location scout could never convince anyone that the BWCA was a practical place to shoot for even an afternoon.
Science documentaries focusing on climate change in Antarctica, with gorgeous images of cerulean icebergs and throngs of wobbling penguins, are not exactly rare these days. Dena Seidel’s Antarctic Edge is the latest among them, and while it’s not as mesmerizing as last year’s Antarctica: A Year on Ice, it does champion an important group of people: the scientists spending huge chunks of their lives studying the frozen continent.
When press notes compare a documentary to Errol Morris, what does that typically tell you as a viewer? Does it suggest that you’re going to see a film that digs like a termite at its subject? Does it suggest to you a seamless blend of interview footage and dramatic recreation?
The beauty of director Naji Abu Nowar’s Theeb lies in its seeming simplicity. On the surface, it looks like a boy’s coming-of-age adventure story. Yet, on a deeper level, the film surges with western themes […]
Stanley Nelson’s gripping and thorough documentary on the Black Panther Party is the first in his series of three films about the black experience in America. The documentarian — best known for the immersive and […]
Perhaps if one mixed the cinematic vision of the Coen brothers with the Rocky Mountain vistas and greasy leather hats of Red Dead Redemption, the result would be something like John Maclean’s incredibly stylish and […]
My introduction to Japanese artist and director Katsuhito Ishii was, oddly enough, at the 2005 Minneapolis-St. Paul International Film Festival. I had no idea what I was getting into at a screening of The Taste Of Tea — a hilarious, quiet, outrageous, sensitive, violent, magical and sob-provoking tale of a multi-generational family.
There are longueurs that occur throughout French director Céline Sciamma’s new drama Girlhood almost as if on a schedule. These moments feature the central character Marieme (Karidja Toure) seemingly soaking in a privileged moment in […]