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cinematic roots of: ‘Buried’

In Buried, Ryan Reynolds’ contractor in Iraq wakes up in a coffin with nothing but a Zippo and a cell phone for company, and learns that his captors want a ridiculous ransom to release him. This flick sprang from (among other films)…

best production design of 2004 (plus some other bests and worsts of the year)

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN (encompassing production design, costumes, and makeup) The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou I usually favor invented worlds when picking the year’s best production work… and maybe I’ve done that here, too. Steve Zissou’s universe feels like it’s a baby step off skew with our own — the colors just a tad flat, … more…

Cellular (review)

That’s the kind of flick *Cellular* is: goofily obvious when it isn’t unexpectedly exciting. It’s one of those movies that succeeds partly by not being anywhere near as bad as you were expecting it to be — by being, really, not so bad at all, much to one’s shocked surprise. Seriously, I was anticipating two hours of that annoyingly pseudo-hip Elvis Costello-ish guy from the TV commercials who wanders around saying ‘Can you hear me now?’ into his cell phone — and why o why won’t someone kidnap *him*? — and instead the goofily obvious stuff is more than made up for by the suspense and the humor.