Amy Adams in Arrival (2016)

Arrival: Who Knew a Movie About Alien Linguistics Would Cut So Deep?

Directed by Denis Villeneuve (Prisoners, Sicario), Arrival isn’t your typical sci-fi. Yes, it has the striking visuals of aliens and their ships (on a fairly modest $50 million budget, I might add) and a truly unnerving yet gorgeous score from Jóhann Jóhannsson (The Theory of Everything, Sicario), but it’s less focused on the “wow factor” of science fiction. Instead, it chooses to be a deep and devastating story about life and human connection. And throughout all of it, it examines the role language plays in those moments. Continue reading “Arrival: Who Knew a Movie About Alien Linguistics Would Cut So Deep?”

Movie still from Captain America: Civil War (2016)

Captain America: Civil War Sets Up the Game for Marvel’s Phase III

“Choose a side” was the marketing message for Captain America: Civil War. It’s Team Cap vs. Team Iron Man. But after years of watching these characters grow and work side-by-side, it’s impossible to choose a side. I like all of them. I want good things for them. And even though I’ve secretly wondered who could kick the crap out of whom among the team, I’ve never wanted them to hurt or kill one another. It’s what makes Civil War so good. Continue reading “Captain America: Civil War Sets Up the Game for Marvel’s Phase III”

Avengers: Age of Ultron Is a Spectacular Follow-Up to The Avengers

After Ultron, an artificial intelligence created by Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) and Dr. Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo), goes rogue, the Avengers are called in to stop him from wiping out the human race with Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) and Quicksilver (Aaron Taylor-Johnson), who have unique powers of their own. Continue reading “Avengers: Age of Ultron Is a Spectacular Follow-Up to The Avengers”

David O. Russell's American Hustle

American Hustle: When Sassy Meets Gritty

American Hustle follows the story of con artists Irving Rosenfeld (Christian Bale) and Sydney Prosser (Amy Adams), who run a loan business called London Associates where Prosser pretends to be a British banking advisor named Lady Edith Greensly. When they’re busted by FBI agent Richie DiMaso (Bradley Cooper), Rosenfeld and Prosser are forced to help the FBI. Their new target? Mayor Carmine Polito of New Jersey, who’s taking dirty money to start casinos that will revive Atlantic City’s economy. Continue reading “American Hustle: When Sassy Meets Gritty”