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Review: Phantom Thread

— by RON WILKINSON —

Announced by Daniel Day-Lewis as his last film, the three-time Oscar-winner has opted to go out with dignity and grace. Nominated for a Golden Globe, and backed up by a Globe-nominated score by Jonny Greenwood, watching “Phantom Thread” is like walking through an art museum with a symphonic orchestra playing on the mezzanine. It exudes the gratefulness of a legendary artist happy enough to be taking a rest. It remains to be seen if such a thing is possible.

The restfulness will be a disappointment to those who revered Day-Lewis for his pounding rhetoric in “There Will Be Blood,” “Gangs of New York” and the like. As dressmaker to royalty, Reynolds Woodcock has grown to become his own worst enemy. (CONTINUED)


Review: The Post

— by RON WILKINSON — Director Steven Spielberg missed the boat with “The Post,” a mundane re-enactment of the Washington Post’s history-making role in the Pentagon Papers. Part of the problem is the work of first-time feature screenwriter Liz Hannah and emerging co-writer Josh Singer. The dialogue rings of the glib exchanges that made Singer’s […][...]


Review: Molly’s Game

— by RON WILKINSON — Jessica Chastain has never looked better than playing high stakes poker mastermind Molly Bloom. Raised by a psychotically demanding father (Kevin Costner), Molly fails as a world class downhill skier but succeeds in organizing one of the highest-stakes poker rings in the world. In doing this, she brings to the […][...]


Review: The UnAmerican Struggle

— by BEV QUESTAD — The Doug Jones election win, though narrow, may indicate that things are not as rock-solid depressing as director/writer Ric Osuna has been thinking. His passionate documentary, compiled in the wake of the November 2016 election, is a collection of reactionary interviews and images. As Osuna sees it, the concept of […][...]


Review: Darkest Hour

— by RON WILKINSON — Gary Oldman comes out swinging as Winston Churchill in this period piece set during four weeks at the outset of World War II. A hard-drinking, cigar-smoking curmudgeon who bullies everyone in sight, he appears to have been put in a position nobody else wanted, that of the newly appointed, and […][...]


Review: Pitch Perfect 3

— by JESSIKA OWENS — It’s been five years since “Pitch Perfect” oozed its way into pop culture with quips, mash-ups and cups. It’s been 2 years since its sequel snuck in with some one-liners and cameos. And that brings us to “Pitch Perfect 3” – the so-called farewell tour. I use the term “so-called” […][...]


Review: The Shape of Water

— by RON WILKINSON — The month of December brings out the big guns. The biggest stars and the biggest screenplays. Unfortunately, most do not make use of the stars and the screenplay. “The Shape of Water” not only makes use of a perfect cast, it leverages that with a charming story of love in […][...]


Review: Star Wars: The Last Jedi

— by RON WILKINSON — The Force lives on with new blood. The same special effects and light saber hokum stalls for time in what appears to be a rebuilding year for the franchise. Notice is given at the outset when a 100-decibel opening dose of John Williams knocks you back in your seat like […][...]


Review: I, Tonya

— by RON WILKINSON — Unbridled ambition to rival Nicole Kidman’s “To Die For,” Tonya Harding’s story may be the dark comedy of the season. The first woman to land a triple axel in competition and one of only eight in the history of the sport, Harding was banned for life from skating competition. Spanning […][...]