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Mr. Turner

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    Red Road (2007)

    Jackie (Kate Dickie) looks a bit like Chrissie Hynde (of the rock group the Pretenders) in a kind of homely/sexy way. She sits gazing into a bank of video monitors. For her job, she watches, godlike, all the people who pass by the myriad of video cameras planted all about Glasgow. If trouble arises, she makes a call and someone (hopefully) shows up on the scene. It seems like the perfect job for her, hovering over other people's lives without the slightest interest in her own. She appears lost, or hollow, and the director Andrea Arnold pulls off the admirable task of making her interesting without immediately giving away her secrets. When those secrets finally come out, they do so in such a way that avoids the obvious "Shyamalan twist." Refreshingly, Red Road is a movie about a person and not a gimmick. read more...
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      Red Road (2007)

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      • With: Kate Dickie, Tony Curran, Martin Compston, Nathalie Press, Andrew Armour, Paul Higgins
      • Written by: Andrea Arnold, based on characters created by Anders Thomas Jensen, Lone Scherfig
      • Directed by: Andrea Arnold
      • MPAA Rating: NR
      • Running Time: 113 minutes
      • Release Date: 05/19/2006
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      Beau Travail (1999)

      Though most of the world got to see Beau Travail last year, it has just reared its head here in the Bay Area. And it was worth waiting for. This adaptation of Herman Melville's Billy Budd by filmmaker Claire Denis is nothing short of a masterpiece. read more...
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      Beau Travail (1999)

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      • With: Denis Lavant, Michel Subor, Gregoire Colin, Richard Courcet
      • Written by: Jean-Pol Fargeau, Claire Denis, based on a work by Herman Melville
      • Directed by: Claire Denis
      • MPAA Rating: NR
      • Language: French with English subtitles
      • Running Time: 90 minutes
      • Release Date: 09/03/1999
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      Memories of Murder (2003)

      Bong Joon-ho's great second feature Memories of Murder is ostensibly based on a true story about a serial killer in Korea, but it's also quite a bit more, a sly comedy, and a story about problems and solutions, about searching and not searching. It's set in a farming community of Hwaseong Province, where several murders have occurred. Bong's frequent leading man Song Kang-ho effortlessly steals the show as shaggy detective Park Doo-man, in charge of the case. He claims he can spot a criminal by sight, but he's not above bullying a suspect to confess or casually falsifying a bit of evidence here and there. His partner is Cho Yong-koo (Kim Roi-ha), with a hair-trigger. The more polished, professional Seo Tae-yoon (Kim Sang-kyung) arrives from the big city (Seoul) to help. They run through false leads and wrong suspects, pick up clues, fail, and keep trying. At one point, Park visits his girlfriend and she, noticing how beat he looks, gives him an IV. Bong fashions the perfect ending, bittersweet, ironic, and unforgettable. It's not unlike David Fincher's Zodiac, made four years later, but more concise, and with more of a sense of satire. Indeed, on paper its parts shouldn't come together in any way, but they do, and beautifully. read more...
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        Memories of Murder (2003)

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        • With: Song Kang-ho, Kim Sang-kyung, Kim Roi-ha, Song Jae-ho, Byun Hee-bong, Go Seo-hee, Park No-shik, Park Hae-il, Jeon Mi-seon, Yeom Hye-ran
        • Written by: Bong Joon-ho, Shim Sung-bo, based on a play by Kim Kwang-rim
        • Directed by: Bong Joon-ho
        • MPAA Rating: NR
        • Language: Korean, with English subtitles
        • Running Time: 131 minutes
        • Release Date: 07/15/2005
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        White Hunter, Black Heart (1990)

        After some time and consideration, White Hunter, Black Heart (1990) emerges as one of Eastwood's finest achievements. Based on the book by Peter Viertel, who contributed to the screenplay along with the legendary Western writer/director Burt Kennedy, the film follows the fictional exploits of director John Wilson (Eastwood) -- a loose interpretation of John Huston -- as he flits off to Africa to shoot The African Queen in the early 1950s. But rather than making movies, he and his young screenwriter (Jeff Fahey) run off into the jungle to bag an elephant. Eastwood's saucy performance echoes the real Huston, but also veers off into its own bizarre territory. Directed by Eastwood, it's a truly stunning film, a fascinating exploration of manhood and Hollywood, but the finest moment has to be that heart-stopping final shot. read more...
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          White Hunter, Black Heart (1990)

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          • With: Clint Eastwood, Jeff Fahey, George Dzundza, Alun Armstrong, Marisa Berenson
          • Written by: Peter Viertel, Burt Kennedy, James Bridges, based on the book by Peter Viertel
          • Directed by: Clint Eastwood
          • MPAA Rating: PG
          • Running Time: 112 minutes
          • Release Date: 05/15/1990
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          The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada (2005)

          The more I think about this Western directed by Tommy Lee Jones, the more I like it. It's a clear homage to existential, masculine films like Sam Peckinpah's Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia (1974) and Monte Hellman's The Shooting (1966). And though it lacks the grungy, poetic grace of those films, it has its own unique, rugged atmosphere. read more...
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            The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada (2005)

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            • With: Tommy Lee Jones, Barry Pepper, Julio C├ęsar Cedillo, January Jones, Dwight Yoakam, Melissa Leo, Levon Helm, Vanessa Bauche
            • Written by: Guillermo Arriaga
            • Directed by: Tommy Lee Jones
            • MPAA Rating: R for language, violence and sexuality
            • Language: English and Spanish with English subtitles
            • Running Time: 121 minutes
            • Release Date: 05/19/2005
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