Director Joe Wright’s new adaptation of “Anna Karenina” is a triumph, if for no other reason than his dizzying camera work and bold art direction, as well as a powerhouse performance by Keira Knightley, inject vigor and energy into this oft-told classic of Russian literature.
“Killing Them Softly” is a slick film about grimy people. It’s occasionally brilliant, and features performances that are practically earmarked for Best Actor Oscar consideration, but the film as a whole is sloppily edited and heavy-handed in terms of tone and message.
“Lincoln” is all but a shoe-in for multiple Oscar nominations: it’s packed full of lyrical writing from screenwriter Tony Kushner, memorable performances from talented character actors, and many opportunities for Daniel Day-Lewis to show once again why he’s the premier method actor of his generation.
In many ways, “Flight” comes at you like many other stories about the fear, denial, and mistakes that are a part of alcoholism and addiction. But having Denzel Washington in the lead and director Robert Zemeckis at the helm make all the difference in piloting this morality tale to memorable heights … and depths.
Director Ben Affleck’s “Argo” is masterful – it’s a riveting work of film that completely immerses you in the tensions of a particular time and place in world history through recreations of iconic images and memorable performances from an all-star cast.
The moments that make “End of Watch” most effective aren’t the car chases, the fights, or the gun battles, although those are all done well. It’s the easy chemistry between its charismatic leads, Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Peña, which makes what they face day to day and the danger they encounter all the more immediate and intense.
Thanks to an excellent cast and a script that gives equal, honest weight to the whole range of emotions and scenarios that people might imagine when they think about high school reunions, “10 Years” is engrossing, enjoyable, and at all times genuine.