Film Reviews

Yes, Maugham

The lead actors save The Painted Veil from being just another pretty picture.
Kristian Lin
Mark this as one of those coincidences that occasionally pop up within the format of this page.


Family Coup

The palaces are pretty but empty in the Chinese epic Curse of the Golden Flower.
KRISTIAN LIN
Four years ago Zhang Yimou made the most expensive film in Chinese history, Hero, with an estimated budget of $30 million.



Happily Never After

Elementally powerful, Pan’s Labyrinth is wondrous and devastatingly sad.
Kristian Lin
Chalk up yet another great year for Mexican filmmakers. The closely knit trio of Alfonso Cuarón, Guillermo del Toro, and Alejandro González Iñárritu all delivered acclaimed movies in 2006, though strangely enough it’s the...


No Kids Under 18

The human race nears its end in the remorseless sci-fi thriller Children of Men.
Kristian Lin
Two years ago, Alfonso Cuarón directed a luminous adaptation of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban and revitalized a movie series that might otherwise have died prematurely.



Scent to Death

Something smells amiss in the totally insane Perfume: The Story of a Murderer.
Kristian Lin
Since its publication in 1985, Patrick Süskind’s German novel Das Parfum has been hailed as an instant classic.


Top Films of 2006

With so many good movies, our film critic has a hard time sticking to just 10.
Kristian Lin
While it was going on, 2006 didn’t seem to me like that great a year for movies.



Company Man

The Good Shepherd doesn’t go astray, but doesn’t lead anywhere exciting.
Kristian Lin
If you want a big-name actor to play a colorless guy with a hole in his soul, Matt Damon is now officially your man.


Dream Supreme

And I am telling you Dreamgirls is a stunning, star-powered musical spectacle.
Kristian Lin
When Dreamgirls debuted on Broadway in 1981, it won over an entire generation of theatergoers, African-American and not, with songs by Henry Krieger and Tom Eyer that skillfully evoked a wide range of black music through recent...



Along Came a Spider

Humble and sometimes radiant, Charlotte’s Web is better with your eyes closed.
Kristian Lin
The new big-screen version of Charlotte’s Web moves me to a sentiment that may be a first for me: This movie should have been an audiobook. E.B. White’s classic children’s novel was turned into a film once before, a rathe...


Force of Will

A San Francisco man’s golden son shines for him in The Pursuit of Happyness.
Kristian Lin
I’ve been watching so many movies lately that maybe my usual defenses are worn down.