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Film Reviews

La Mission Is Missin’

A stalwart cast can’t redeem Peter Bratt’s maudlin San Francisco affair.
JIMMY FOWLER
Watching La Mission is a real whiplash experience. Writer-director Peter Bratt’s second feature follows intense, emotionally resonant scenes with moments that are so ham-fisted and underdeveloped, you have to stifle a giggle....


The Losers Is a Lost Cause

Logic goes out the window in this crappy shoot-’em-up.
STEVE STEWARD
Based on an award-winning, Vertigo-published comic, The Losers is about a top-secret Special Forces unit’s quest for revenge on a shadowy figure named Max (Jason Patric), who ordered the commandos’ death following a mission...



The Joneses: Life Is a TV Commercial

This satire doesn’t keep up with its early promise.
KRISTIAN LIN
You may have gotten your dose of movie satire last weekend at Kick-Ass. If that’s the case, I’m betting you had a better time than I did. I went to see The Joneses, which starts off quite well. That makes it all the more di...


Death at a Funeral: Back from the Grave

A British farce returns, African-Americanized and slightly better.
KRISTIAN LIN
Marginally less annoying than the British movie that it’s based on, Death at a Funeral stars Chris Rock as a tax accountant/unpublished novelist named Aaron who’s dealing with a host of troublesome family issues after his f...



This Movie Is Kick-Ass

It’s also a psychotic, satirical ode to superheroes.
KRISTIAN LIN
How do I describe the awesomeness of Kick-Ass? I could say this is the superhero flick that Watchmen desperately wanted to be, but that doesn’t quite cover it. I could call it a comic book fan’s dream come true, but then I...


It’s Not a Wonderful After.Life

Or even the best movie set at a funeral home this week.
KRISTIAN LIN
Eleven years ago, a great Japanese film came out in American theaters under the title After Life, a joyful meditation that imagined all of us going to a Buddhist temple/studio after our deaths to have our favorite memories made...



Film Shorts

KRISTIAN LIN
OPENING: After.Life (R) Christina Ricci stars in this supernatural thriller as a young woman who may or may not have died in a car accident and may or may not get buried alive by a sinister funeral director (Liam Neeson). Also ...


Ragged Date Night for Carell and Fey

The Fosters go bananas in this underwhelming comedy-thriller.
KRISTIAN LIN
You’re probably going to see Date Night because of Steve Carell and Tina Fey. And why not? They seem like a terrific match because they’re so similar. They’re both intelligent, straightforward types whose comic stylings s...



A Faulkner Story

A local doctor turns writer and star of a low-budget film.
KRISTIAN LIN
This is the sort of thing that happens to first-time filmmakers working on a shoestring budget: While shooting his drama Between Heaven and Hell, lead actor/screenwriter Marvin Faulkner was playing a scene in which his characte...


Three Films and Change: Mother, Chloe, The Last Song

A roundup of movies already playing, plus a new entry.
KRISTIAN LIN
Fittingly, the main character of the volatile, uproarious, and deeply disturbing Mother has no proper name, so she’s pretty much defined by her role as a mother.