Arts and Culture

Arts, Pop Culture, Music, and Dance Documentaries

Breaking A Monster

Review on the movie‘Breaking A Monster’

June 28, 2016

BREAKING A MONSTER chronicles the break-out year of the band UNLOCKING THE TRUTH, following 13-year-old members Alec Atkins, Malcolm Brickhouse and Jarad Dawkins as they first encounter stardom and the music industry, transcending childhood to become the rock stars they always dreamed of being. The music in it is good, probably better for people into […]

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The Importance of Teen Comedies

November 8, 2015

Much like taxes and death, teen comedy movies are a certainty of life. On Friday, February 20, the newest addition to the pantheon of high school dramas will be released: “The DUFF,” starring Mae Whitman and Robbie Amell. Whitman plays Bianca, the “designated ugly fat friend” (DUFF) of her social group. The plot of the […]

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Film Review: ‘SPL 2 — A Time for Consequences’

October 13, 2015

Courtesy of TIFF Limbs are twisted, bones are shattered, necks are snapped and coincidences are brandished with breakneck abandon throughout “SPL 2 — A Time for Consequences,” a frenetic follow-up — but most assuredly not a sequel — to producer Yip Wai Shun’s 2005 action-thriller, “SPL: Sha Po Lang” (released in North America as “Kill […]

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Busan Film Review: ‘4th Place’

October 5, 2015

Courtesy of Busan Film Festival Fans of “Whiplash” will recognize the physical and psychological bruising a young swimmer receives from his coach and mother in order to win a medal in “4th Place,” South Korean helmer Jung Ji-woo’s poetic and engrossing drama condemning the underlying sadism and psychosis of a competitive educational culture, which destroys […]

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Film Review: ‘The Sky Trembles and the Earth is Afraid and the Two Eyes Are Not Brothers’

October 3, 2015

Courtesy of Artangel Marquee letter placers won’t be the only ones profoundly unnerved by “The Sky Trembles and the Earth is Afraid and the Two Eyes Are Not Brothers,” the latest mind-muddling meditation from singular British experimentalist Ben Rivers. Eventually more narrative in nature than most of Rivers’ previous films — though the line between […]

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Film Review: ‘Thru You Princess’

September 28, 2015

Courtesy of Toronto Film Festival The astounding and thoroughly inspirational account of an artistic collaboration between an Israeli remix artist and an obscure, yet undeniably talented New Orleans-based vocalist he discovered half a world away, “Thru You Princess” puts talk-show fairy godmothers Ellen or Oprah to shame. Nothing fancy in terms of technique, yet no […]

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Toronto Film Review: ‘Beeba Boys’

September 14, 2015

Like personality in domesticated animals, originality goes a long way in genre cinema, and Deepa Mehta’s “Beeba Boys” deserves recognition for being the first hyperviolent, Tarantino-inspired comedy to take place entirely within the Canadian Sikh criminal underworld. But as intriguing as it is to see the respected arthouse auteur cut loose with this deliriously unserious, […]

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Toronto Film Review: ‘Spear’

September 11, 2015

Courtesy of LevelK Charting a young indigenous man’s journey from metaphorical birth to the hard realities and saving cultural nourishment of urban Aboriginal life today, “Spear” is a unique experience in urgent storytelling through movement from first-time feature director and celebrated choreographer Stephen Page and his indigenous, Sydney-based Bangarra Dance Theatre. Audiences attuned to the […]

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Venice Film Review: ‘Equals’

September 4, 2015

“Equals” director Drake Doremus has good news and bad news about the future. The bad news is that love, sex and anything to do with human emotion has been eradicated, which means it won’t be easy for Nicholas Hoult and Kristen Stewart to follow through on the longing gazes they exchange from across their post-apocalyptic […]

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Film Review: ‘Bride Wars’

August 25, 2015

Courtesy of Fox Intl. Prods. Possibly the first mainland Chinese remake of a Hollywood nuptial-themed romantic comedy, “Bride Wars” offers a veritable handbook on wedding arrangements that may spark a new genre of Chinese matrimony porn, but what little heart or frothy fun there was in the Gary Winick-directed original are crushed by all that bling and put-on pageantry. […]

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Film Review: ‘Reset’

August 6, 2015

Courtesy of Broken Lock Prods. A man seeking to redefine himself and repudiate the conservative values of his parents returns to the metropolis in which he grew up, determined to live a bohemian lifestyle centered around an unusual sexual obsession, in Paul Bojack’s aggressively indie third feature, “Reset.” The writer-director, whose previous work, 2006’s “Resilience,” […]

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Film Review: ‘Monster Hunt’

July 29, 2015

Courtesy of Edko Films In “Monster Hunt,” the protagonists are greenish ogres with mushy hearts — not surprisingly, since this jolly live-action/animated Chinese period fantasy is helmed by Raman Hui, the Hong Kong-born animation supervisor who was involved with the genesis of the “Shrek” franchise. Although this yarn about a humans-vs.-monsters struggle to capture a monster princeling […]

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