Waste Land (2010)


This review was originally published at Good Letters, the blog hosted by Image, in December 2010.•In Rio de Janiero, there’s a saying that even Jesus turns his back on the poor.In a way it’s true. Early in Lucy Walker’s documentary Waste Land, a helicopter carries us around Christ the Redeemer, a white statue towering over Rio, arms outstretched embracing the wealthy of Copacabana, Ipanema, and Leblon. Behind it, we descend into the world’s largest landfill—Jardim Gramacho. … [Read more...]

The Fighter (2010)

My review of The Fighter, a film by David O. Russell, is published at Good Letters, the blog posted daily by Image journal. … [Read more...]

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (2010)

My review is published at Image's blog, Good Letters. … [Read more...]

Black Swan (2010)

Black Swan 2

[This review was originally published at Filmwell.]By now we know that the words "A Darren Aronofsky Film" promise us a fever dream, an intense psychological thriller, a discomforting but enthralling experience.We also know that we’re likely to see very good actors deliver performances so maniacal that veins will bulge and pulse across their temples and throats, as if they're androids plugged into more voltage than they can survive. And we'll be confounded by surreal visions  — a man digg … [Read more...]

Vision: From the Life of Hildegard von Bingen (2010)

My review of Vision: From the Life of Hildegard von Bingen is published on the site for Seattle Pacific University's Response magazine. … [Read more...]

Waste Land (2010)

My review of Waste Land, one of the most inspiring films I've seen this year, is up at Image. … [Read more...]

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

[November 2010 Update: It's been almost a decade since we turned the page on our calendars to 2001. And yet, Stanley Kubrick's masterpiece, 2001: A Space Odyssey, still feels prophetic. So I'm digging up my review of that re-release and posting it again, and I'll include this - an article that appeared just today on Kottke called "Kubrick Explains 2001."] -(Warning: This review is offered with the assumption that readers have seen this film. No attempt has been made to avoid plot … [Read more...]

Stone (2010)

My thoughts on John Curran's film Stone are up at Image's blog, Good Letters.  … [Read more...]

Conviction (2010)


If you don't like Conviction, you're going to seem sub-human, heartless, devoid of any decency. But that's not your fault. It's the movie's.Or better... it's the movies. How many times have we seen stories just like this?A woman (usually) or a man senses that a great injustice has taken place. So she goes after the truth with everything she's got, determined to right the wrong. She hangs on like a pit bull and won't let go until the bad guys cry "We surrender!" All she has to do is find … [Read more...]

Let Me In (2010) – or, Let the Right Version In.

Okay, this Halloween's vampire movie, Let Me In, is very well made. Much better than anything I would expect from the director of Cloverfield. Cinematic, patient, thoughtful, well-acted.But that doesn't excuse it. ... … [Read more...]