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When in Rome (review)

Hello, *sigh*! Enough of those “smart” romantic comedies that force down our throats the preposterous notions that women can be competent at work — sorta — without being idiots at everything else, or that men can ever be adults, or that humiliating old ladies and priests isn’t hilarious.

my week at the movies: ‘Gentlemen Broncos,’ ‘Michael Jackson’s This Is It,’ ‘Creation,’ ‘Fantastic Mr. Fox,’ ‘The Fourth Kind,’ ‘Pirate Radio’ (aka ‘The Boat That Rocked’), ‘Collapse’

Busy, busy week. And awards season hasn’t quite hit yet (though screeners are starting to come). It’s gonna be a crazy couple months… Most hilarious title ever? Gentlemen Broncos (opens in the U.S. on October 30; no U.K. release date has been announced) looks to be a hoot… and I do really like Jared Hess’s … more…

trailer break: ‘Gentlemen Broncos’

Take a break from work: watch a trailer… Oh my god, that’s Sam Rockwell as “Bronco.” Of course, before the trailer even got to that point, I was doubled over in pain from laughter. I’ve been to science fiction conventions. I know these people. I’ve been eagerly awaiting whatever Jared Hess — he of Napoleon … more…

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…

best writing and direction of 2004: cut and print…

BEST DIRECTOR Lars von Trier, Dogville Ever a risktaker, Lars von Trier took one of the biggest risks onscreen in 2004 with a determinedly uncinematic film that was also unabashedly political — a breathtaking and refreshingly daring combination in an era of play-it-safe “entertainment.” Setting his cast and his scene on a bare, black-box stage, … more…

best performances of 2004: ready for their closeup…

BEST ACTOR Don Cheadle, Hotel Rwanda It’s a role that, in the hands of even another very competent actor, could have descended into pathos and sentimentality, but Cheadle’s performance goes way beyond mere competence: As an Oskar Schindler-type figure in Rwanda’s 1994 genocide, he approaches incomprehensible horrors in a way that makes us intimate partners … more…