Film

Pop Corn Movie

Hugh and Drew find their voices in the better-than-expected Music and Lyrics.
Kristian Lin
My job is difficult this week. I’m here to make a case for Music and Lyrics, a movie that well exceeded my nonexistent expectations.


The Way to Wonderland

It’s tough to bring a beloved fantasy novel to the screen, as this movie shows.
Kristian Lin
An unusual number of people have come up to me in the last month or so to tell me how marvelous they found Pan’s Labyrinth.



Sin for Your Supper

Only gluttons for cinematic theology will want a piece of The Last Sin Eater.
Kristian Lin
The title of The Last Sin Eater refers to a ritual that hails from the British Isles, in which a designated “sin eater” (a beggar or homeless man, usually) provides absolution to recently deceased people by eating bread and...


Violation

Breaking and Entering makes hash out of big issues, and that’s a petty crime.
Kristian Lin
Anthony Minghella made his name as the director of lush, cosmopolitan, epic literary adaptations with period settings, beginning with The English Patient in 1996 and continuing through The Talented Mr. Ripley and Cold Mountain.



Army of Shadows

A CATS alumnus turned documentarian discovers a great untold story in Belgium.
Kristian Lin
When Mat Hames was growing up in Grand Prairie, he managed to convince his mom one day that he’d been kidnapped. Not amused, she nonetheless figured she’d better find an outlet for that kind of imagination and signed him up...


Potter Books

The creator of Peter Rabbit remains flat on the page in this stuffy biopic.
Kristian Lin
Remember last week when I praised Notes on a Scandal as an antidote to what I called “tea-and-crumpets” British cinema?



Teacher’s Pet

Judi Dench takes Notes on a Scandal and reveals the blackness of one woman’s soul.
Kristian Lin
The tabloids would have you believe that movie stardom is exclusively for young hotties, but take a look at 72-year-old Judi Dench.


Off the Island

Letters From Iwo Jima is an Oscar nominee, but it falls short of the hype.
Kristian Lin
Clint Eastwood shot Letters From Iwo Jima and Flags of Our Fathers as companion pieces.



Barberic Violence

I feel you, Sweeney Todd. Tim Burton goes dark and beautiful with this revenge opera.
Kristian Lin
People who think of musicals as light and fluffy entertainment have been surprised that Tim Burton is doing one, even though previous Burton movies have burst into song and dance.


Idiocracy

Forest Whitaker reigns supreme over the flawed The Last King of Scotland.
Kristian Lin
Throughout his career, Forest Whitaker has always been the nice guy.