Film Reviews
Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, Jeremy Renner, Scarlett Johansson, and Chris Hemsworth go airborne in Avengers: Age of Ultron.

Rebuilding the Shield

The Avengers evolve by necessity in this bigger, shakier sequel.
Kristian Lin
Three years ago this week, The Avengers opened. Ultimately, it would become the third-biggest box office hit in movie history. Part of its success came from the novelty value of having so many superheroes who had carried their ...

Bill McAdams Jr. stares down the barrel of a gun in "Gallows Road."

Getting the Hang

North Texas filmmaker Bill McAdams Jr. keeps the faith.
Kristian Lin
I catch Bill McAdams Jr. during a whirlwind week. He was in Dallas on April 22 for the premiere of Gallows Road, the drama that he directed and co-stars in, which played on opening night of the USA Film Festival. However, when ...

A mysterious Skype user harasses Shelley Henig (left), Moses Storm (second from left), and others in Unfriended.

End-of-Spring Roundup

Before the summer blockbusters arrive, here’s a look at some smaller movies.
Kristian Lin
Only two movies are opening in wide release this week, and neither of them screened in time for our deadlines. Ex Machina is expanding to theaters in Tarrant County this Friday, and it’s your best bet for entertainment. Since...

Alicia Vikander ponders the faces of the prototypes before her in Ex Machina.

A Doll’s House

A directing debut descends into the uncanny valley in Ex Machina.
Kristian Lin
Alex Garland’s first movie as a director is Ex Machina, but he has been around the film business a long time. After his novel The Beach was adapted to the screen by Danny Boyle in 2000, the British writer collaborated more cl...

Jonah Hill and James Franco have a heart-to-heart in county jail in True Story.

Lie to Me

Comedy stars go serious to good effect in the crime thriller True Story.
Kristian Lin
You may be surprised to learn that True Story is only the second serious collaboration between James Franco and Jonah Hill, two actors who have spent much of their time making raunchy comedies for Judd Apatow and his stable of ...

Naomi Watts is the only grown-up at baby class without a baby in While We’re Young.

Hipster Replacement

Tonight let’s get some and see While We’re Young.
Kristian Lin
I’m so glad Noah Baumbach has lightened up. He spent the back half of the 2000s making a trio of dramedies — The Squid and the Whale, Margot at the Wedding, and Greenberg — whose closely observed character studies of loat...

Al Pacino cracks a smile in front of his tour bus in Danny Collins.

Dear John Letter

Good acting bails out the rough patches in the rock comedy Danny Collins.
Kristian Lin
In this current phase of Al Pacino’s career, when he’s playing broken-down old men with no one to blame but themselves for being broken down, Danny Collins is the best vehicle he’s encountered. Granted, this comedy isn’...

Brett Bentman prepares for his feature directing debut.

Brett Bentman Goes Big

A Fort Worth filmmaker looks to make the leap to features.
Kristian Lin
Five months ago, Fort Worth Weekly mentioned Brett Bentman in a feature story about local filmmakers (“Grappling With the Glitz Machine,” Nov. 5). At that time, the 33-year-old New Jersey transplant was operating on four-fi...

Helen Mirren and Ryan Reynolds pose in front of Gustav Klimt’s masterwork in Woman in Gold.

Das Bild

Woman in Gold turns a great Nazi art story into a museum piece.
Kristian Lin
The story of how the Nazis looted Europe’s storehouses of art masterpieces is a compelling one, whose salient details only came to light within the last few decades. It should make for a terrific movie. People are trying to m...

Maika Monroe enjoys a serene moment before she catches It in It Follows.

Tag, You’re It

Terror is a walking STD in the terrific It Follows.
Kristian Lin
Ever since It Follows debuted at last year’s Cannes Film Festival, horror fans haven’t been able to stop talking about it. Maybe you were lucky enough to catch the movie at last fall’s Lone Star Film Festival, but if you ...