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Steve Carell

The Big Short Review

The Big Short Review

RATING: (4 STARS) Adam McKay is a tightrope walker. His latest film, The Big Short, is one of 2015’s funniest offerings. Its subject matter? The 2008 collapse of the American economy. McKay cut his teeth with Will Ferrell vehicles like Anchorman and Talladega Nights, which are both absurdist comedies with their own internal logics born […]

Foxcatcher Review

Foxcatcher Review

RATING: (3 STARS) In the winter of 1996, John du Pont—a wealthy ornithologist, philatelist, and philanthropist—shot and killed Olympic wrestling champion Dave Schultz. Most familiar with the case and the two men found the affair entirely uncharacteristic of du Pont. Schultz and du Pont were friendly. The latter employed the former as an assistant coach […]

2015 Oscar Predictions: First Guesses Before Fall Fests

2015 Oscar Predictions: First Guesses Before Fall Fests

It’s 2015 Oscar predictions time, so let’s dig the prognosticator’s hat out of the attic, dust it off, and take a look at the landscape of the 2015 Oscar race. If I’m being honest, though, I almost didn’t want to get involved with 2015 Oscar predictions at all. Last year’s Oscar season and the nonsense […]

The Deep Breath Before the 2014 Oscars Plunge

The Deep Breath Before the 2014 Oscars Plunge

Click on over to my 2014 Oscar Predictions page to see everything I’m forecasting in the major categories. The signs of fall are all around us. Temperatures are dropping (from sweltering to comfortable). Darkness knocks earlier every night. Most importantly, fantasy football research consumes most of my time. We’ve received a glut of movie news […]

The Office: A (Former) Fan’s Farewell

The Office: A (Former) Fan’s Farewell

Though it’s been years The Office was a must-watch TV comedy, I’ve stuck with it. Maybe it’s my Scranton (born and raised) roots. I’ve maintained that the end was near and I’d given it so much that it’d be foolish to quit. I kind of wish I had. The past two seasons have been pitifully […]

Hope Springs Review

Hope Springs Review

RATING: (2.5 STARS) David Frankel (whose The Big Year was, improbably, both one of last year’s biggest surprises and worst films) must have quite a rapport with Meryl Streep. He directed her to an Oscar nomination in The Devil Wears Prada, and he somehow convinced her to star in his latest, Hope Springs—a film that […]

Crazy, Stupid, Love. Review

Crazy, Stupid, Love. Review

RATING: (2 STARS) Crazy, Stupid, Love. isn’t exactly a bad movie, but it commits two absolutely unforgivable errors. It’s embarrassingly unoriginal (haven’t we seen Steve Carell get the makeover treatment and try to pick up women before?), but worse, it takes a dreadful subplot and gives it far more screen time than it deserves. Really, […]

Despicable Me Review

Despicable Me Review

RATING: (3 STARS) Despicable Me is what I would consider a great animated film—if only Pixar didn’t exist. It’s fun and heartwarming, but the Pixar magic isn’t quite there. The arc is completely predictable, and the laughs are fewer and far between than any Pixar film. I think the bar for animation has been set […]

Date Night Review

Date Night Review

RATING: (2.5 STARS) As I said in my review of The General, action comedies are hard to pull off. Usually a film focuses too much on forced laughter, which inevitably takes away from the action. A perfect example of this is Shawn Levy’s “Date Night,” a film that does both the comedy and the action […]