Eastern Promises movie review: viva Viggo

Movies about gangsters: You expect a lot of noise. Shouting and screaming. Barrages of gunfire. Not here. Here we have somber reflection, the lurking gray peril of an urban underbelly, shifting shifty glances and unspoken threats. ‘Eastern Promises’ is almost silent — even its title sounds like a shush.

Zodiac movie review: killer movie

Fincher rivets us through what could have been an interminable two-hour-and-forty-minute runtime, by daringly jumping through a crime spree that spanned decades with brisk panache, boiling it down into slices of suspense, drama, and fear, with a bit of media criticism thrown in sideways for spice.

Gosford Park (review)

Robert Altman’s latest saga is a sprawling yet intimate upstairs/downstairs murder mystery set at a shooting party at an English manor in 1932, a story much concerned with subtle class warfare and how very nasty very proper people can be. But don’t see it for that. See it for the catty gossip, the cheap rich … more…

Donnie Darko (review)

Donnie Darko in, in fact, what Ferris Bueller’s Day Off might have been if David Lynch had ever gotten his hands on it, a daring, disturbing, visionary debut from 26-year-old writer/director Richard Kelly.

Memento (review)

So I leave the screening room, in awe at Nolan’s achievement, a young writer/director coming out of nowhere with a film that is bold enough not only to mess with our minds by redefining our understanding of how time flows onscreen but also has the audacity to use that radical storytelling conceit to question what it is that makes us human.

Unbreakable (review)

I don’t think it’s venturing too far into hyperbole to call this, the followup to The Sixth Sense from writer/director M. Night Shyamalan, a work of transcendent filmic genius, one that acknowledges the audience’s expectations, confounds them, rebuilds them, and ends up using them to brilliant, astonishing advantage.

In the Heat of the Night (review)

Maybe it’s an indication of some slight social progress, or just a marker of how fine a film this is, that In the Heat of the Night also works as a crime-fighting story in a tradition as old as the Sherlock Holmes tales and as new as The X-Files.

Rebecca (review)

Atmospheric and moody, Alfred Hitchcock’s Rebecca is a masterpiece of style and substance, an extended meditation on how the dead haunt the living. Photographed in somber shadows, few movies before or since have taken such glorious advantage of black-and-white film.