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Articles tagged with 'Movies'

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The 2015 Oscar nominations are in

Published Jan. 15, 2015

Bright and early this morning, the joint forces of Chris Pine, J.J. Abrams, Alfonso Cuaron and Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs prattled off the 2015 Oscar nominees. "Birdman" and "The Grand Budapest Hotel" lead the pack with nine nominations for each - including Best Picture nods for both.

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"Inherent Vice" gives off one great, groovy second-hand high

Published Jan. 14, 2015

Writer-director Paul Thomas Anderson's been called a lot of things over his prodigious career. Light and cartoonish, however, would not likely be two of them. Yet here we are with "Inherent Vice," which goes down satisfyingly like a late night pizza on 4/20.

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The best (and worst) movies of 2014

Published Jan. 12, 2015

Hollywood insiders and magazines would have you believe 2014 was a miserable year for movies. And from a financial perspective, yes, they're totally correct. From a quality standpoint, however, 2014 was kind of terrific. Movie critic Matt Mueller breaks down the best (and a few of the worst) the year had to offer.

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"The Woman in Black 2": Atmosphere abounds in scare-free start to 2015

Published Jan. 7, 2015

Like any respectable horror movie villain, "The Woman in Black" has refused to die, returning for the January sequel "The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death." Other than a jump in time period and a distinct lack of star power (Daniel Radcliffe's been traded out for an unknown British actress and the kid from "War Horse"), little has changed. It's still rich in ornately decorated spooky atmosphere but in need of some more potent nightmare fuel.

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Predicting the winners and losers of the 2015 Golden Globes

Published Jan. 6, 2015

The Golden Globes, hosted by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, are this Sunday, which means awards season has officially begun. OnMilwaukee.com's resident entertainment savants Matt Mueller and Colton Dunham wracked their heads together and made their picks - Matt on the film side, Colton for TV - for who will win Sunday night, as well as who should win and who should've at least gotten a nomination.

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"The Imitation Game" successfully cracks the code of a forgotten hero

Published Jan. 5, 2015

Thanks to "The Imitation Game," you can add another mentally sharp but socially challenged fellow to his resume: behind-the-scenes World War II hero Alan Turing, a man with a tragic, compelling story made even more so by Cumberbatch's dedicated oddness.

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"Unbroken" transforms a remarkable life into an unremarkable movie

Published Jan. 3, 2015

You could list every potential synonym for incredible - amazing, triumphant, inspirational, awe-worthy, etc. - and it would still fall short of giving Louis Zamperini's life its due. "Unbroken," the movie blessed with bringing his remarkable story to the big screen, unfortunately lives up to none of those words. It is anything but amazing or triumphant or inspirational or awe-worthy. It manages to take cinematic gold and morph it into pewter.

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Songs and performances cast a worthy spell in "Into the Woods"

Published Jan. 1, 2015

There are many morals taught and learned over the course of "Into the Woods." Look at the world through others' eyes. Let your children into the world. Stop giving Johnny Depp roles involving goofy hats. However, the ultimate overarching lesson is be careful what you wish for, one that was all too prescient for fans of the beloved musical concerned about Disney's big screen adaptation. For fans, however, this story ends with a "happily ever after."

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The desperately modern "Annie" is cinematic artificial sweetener

Published Dec. 29, 2014

Before the movie's going to congratulate itself for nixing its namesake, it ought to replace or reinvent it with something at least a little bit better. And unfortunately, this new "Annie" - encased in layers of fake sugary pop-song gloss and forced modernity - isn't all that much of an improvement.

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"The Interview" is worth some solid laughs, if maybe not a cyber war

Published Dec. 27, 2014

Ah, Christmas. The time for family. The time for memories. And, thanks to the collective cowardice of Sony Pictures and theater owners across the nation, the time for me to drive two hours up north to New London to see a Seth Rogen/James Franco comedy. But how's the movie?

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The final "Hobbit" brings the journey to an unexpectedly entertaining end

Published Dec. 23, 2014

With "The Battle of the Five Armies," at least the trilogy goes out on a high note, delivering an extended burst of some of what Jackson can do best. The final chapter is pure spectacle, and sure, much of it is hollow spectacle. But it's entertaining and enthusiastic, and it's the closest these echoes have felt to resembling the original volume of its Oscar-wining predecessor.

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Hey North Korea, is it OK if I see "The Interview" now?

Published Dec. 22, 2014

Hollywood execs should consider that, if they were starring in their own movie right now, they'd be playing the role of the feckless bureaucratic jerks. You know, the jellyfish-spined types who cave into terrorists or blackmail.

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"Wild" is a rich, wonderfully natural trek into the woods

Published Dec. 21, 2014

The bad news for "Wild": Director Jean-Marc Vallée, at least three films into his career this side of the Canadian border, specializes in making Oscar bait. No, wait; don't run away quite yet, because the flip side is that Vallée has mastered the art of making Oscar bait that doesn't feel like it. And now he's pulling off the same trick with "Wild."

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"The Interview" died; what comes next might be worse

Published Dec. 19, 2014

"The Interview" was canceled this past week amongst hack attacks and terrorist threats. It doesn't matter that this happened to THIS particular movie. What matters is what this means for ALL movies. And what this moment represents is a terrible precedent for the future of film and art altogether.

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Capra classic "It's a Wonderful Life" jumps from screen to stage

Published Dec. 16, 2014

The story behind "It's a Wonderful Life" is now almost as well-known as the story of George Bailey himself. The movie performed below expectations back in 1946, but several decades later, as the movie made its way into the public domain, "It's a Wonderful Life" grew into a holiday classic. Now there's many renditions of the story, including a staged radio show version - complete with old school sound effects - coming to the Marcus Center.