Film Reviews
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Two-Part Solo

The Identical is like Walk Hard without the jokes.
Kristian Lin
What if Elvis’ twin brother had lived? The makers of The Identical aren’t the first to ask that question, but they are the first to build a movie around the idea that a 1950s rock star had a long-lost twin who watched from ...


Kang Dong-won cuts a terrifying figure in Kundo: Age of the Rampant.

End-of-Summer Roundup

These films are easily overlooked at the multiplex. Should they be?
KRISTIAN LIN
It’s the end of August, and the movie distributors are busy depositing all their odd entries in the smaller auditoriums at the AMC Grapevine Mills. So I’ve put together this handy guide to help you sort through this esoteri...



Chloë Grace Moretz and Jamie Blackley jam around a campfire in If I Stay.

Wake Me Up

Chloë Grace Moretz does hospital rounds while comatose in the dull If I Stay.
Kristian Lin
Chloë Grace Moretz is 17 now, and in the past four years and change, I’ve seen her play a superheroine (Kick-Ass), a vampire (Let Me In), a werewolf (Dark Shadows), and a girl who can move things with her mind (Carrie). Her ...


Film 22

Strait Fighters

The record-breaking Roaring Currents depicts a hellacious battle at sea.
KRISTIAN LIN
This past weekend, the movie known in this country as The Admiral: Roaring Currents became the biggest box-office hit in South Korean history, surpassing Avatar. It also opened here at AMC Grapevine Mills, where it played to pa...



Brendan Gleeson prepares to tend to his spiritual duties in Calvary.

Crosses to Bear

Funny about a grim subject, Calvary is the year’s best religious film.
Kristian Lin
Brendan Gleeson has acted in many Hollywood and British movies, but only the filmmakers in his native Ireland seem to have really figured out how to use this actor. His hulking frame, bulbous nose, and adenoidal bark of a voice...


Jeff Bridges shows Brenton Thwaites a way out of their dystopia in The Giver.

Conceal, Don’t Feel

After 20 years, The Giver finally hits the big screen. Eh.
Kristian Lin
Lois Lowry’s novel The Giver famously took 20 years to come to the big screen, and when I caught up to it a few months ago, I could see why there might be problems in adapting it to film. Today’s science-fiction young-adult...



Daniel Radcliffe and Zoe Kazan share an umbrella in What If.

Taken

What If is the year’s best Canadian romantic comedy.
Kristian Lin
The romantic comedy What If is adapted from T.J. Dawe and Michael Rinaldi’s play Toothpaste and Cigars. I’ve never seen the play, but somehow I get the feeling that I might have appreciated the film better if I’d seen the...


Astrid Berges-Frisbey and Michael Pitt regard a white peacock in I Origins.

More Than Meets the “I”

In his sophomore effort, filmmaker Mike Cahill tackles evolution versus creationism.
KENNETH KOST
In a fresh look at a tired argument, director Mike Cahill adds his flavor to the ongoing evolution-versus-creationism battle with I Origins, and after a few bites the dish actually tastes pretty good. On the surface it appears ...



Patricia Arquette reads one of the Harry Potter books to Ellar Coltrane early in Boyhood.

12 Years a Child

Richard Linklater plays the long game in the remarkable Boyhood.
Kristian Lin
Bless him, Richard Linklater has never been afraid to experiment with the medium of cinema. The revolving protagonists of Slacker, the deliberate formlessness of Dazed and Confused, the episodic quasi-monologues of Waking Life,...


(Clockwise from top) Groot, Dave Bautista, Zoe Saldana, Rocket, and Chris Pratt are an unlikely bunch of Guardians of the Galaxy.

All You Need Is Quill

Guardians of the Galaxy is the funniest Marvel Comics movie yet.
KRISTIAN LIN
On the surface of a barren, hostile, alien planet, an Earthman named Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) boogies leisurely across the rocky terrain in his spacesuit, singing along to Redbone’s “Come and Get Your Love.” When a small...