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'Blackbird' Matches:

Blackbird

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    What They Had (2018)

    This big-hearted drama, a feature writing and directing debut by Elizabeth Chomko, is impeccably cast and acted, with vivid, intricate relationships played out on a deceptively feisty, unruly canvas. read more...
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      What They Had (2018)

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      • With: Hilary Swank, Michael Shannon, Robert Forster, Blythe Danner, Taissa Farmiga, Josh Lucas
      • Written by: Elizabeth Chomko
      • Directed by: Elizabeth Chomko
      • MPAA Rating: R for language including a brief sexual reference
      • Running Time: 101 minutes
      • Release Date: 10/18/2018
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      Drunktown's Finest (2015)

      Written and directed by Sydney Freeland in her feature debut, Drunktown's Finest has some awkward, amateur moments here and there, mostly in some of the line readings and in some of the generic setups and payoffs of the plot. But Freeland's passion is deeply felt, and it's very refreshing to see the lives of American Indians portrayed onscreen with such sympathy. It's easy to forgive the movie its shortcomings and tumble headfirst into the lives of its characters. read more...
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        Drunktown's Finest (2015)

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        • With: Jeremiah Bitsui, Morningstar Angeline Wilson, Carmen Moore
        • Written by: Sydney Freeland
        • Directed by: Sydney Freeland
        • MPAA Rating: NR
        • Running Time: 94 minutes
        • Release Date: 02/26/2015
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        The Big Trail (1930)

        The Big Trail (1930) is an essential item in any history of the American Western for two reasons. The first is that it was John Wayne's starring debut, and the second is that it introduced a widescreen process called "Fox Grandeur." However, both of those things failed with the immense, costly failure of the movie. Wayne would slink back to the purgatory of bad "B" movies for nine more years (until Stagecoach), and widescreen movies didn't show up again until 1958. Part of the high cost is that many scenes were filmed twice, once for the 35mm camera and once for the 70mm camera. Comparisons of certain shots show that landscapes were better served by the bigger format and that close-ups were more complete in the smaller format (they were cropped for the wide format). Director Raoul Walsh's compositions are amazing, using clutter and landscape and space to fascinatingly emotional effect. (It was far too expensive and troublesome to actually move a camera.) However, the storytelling is leaden and numbingly slow, relying heavily on dialogue to dole out information. Subsequently, the actors are stuck performing as if in a community theater play. Walsh picked up the pieces and made another movie with Wayne ten years later, Dark Command (1940), and then made a much more psychologically nuanced Western, Pursued (1947). read more...
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          The Big Trail (1930)

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          • With: John Wayne, Marguerite Churchill, El Brendel, Tully Marshall, Tyrone Power, David Rollins, Frederick Burton, Ian Keith, Charles Stevens, Louise Carver, Ward Bond, Iron Eyes Cody
          • Written by: Hal G. Evarts, Marie Boyle, Jack Peabody, Florence Postal
          • Directed by: Raoul Walsh
          • MPAA Rating: NR
          • Running Time: 122 minutes
          • Release Date: 10/01/1930
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          To Sleep with Anger (1990)

          I was lucky enough to see Charles Burnett's To Sleep with Anger during its all-too-brief 1990 theatrical release. I loved it then, and my memory of that time is frosted with Burnett coming to my college to speak (I attended with only a handful of other students), and my first and only meeting with Danny Glover (he was very friendly and gave me an autograph). But I never took any notes on the film and as the years passed and I wanted to write up a review, I found my memory of it a little too faded. Worse, it had become something of a lost film, never released on DVD and quite difficult to find. Now, in what will surely be one of the most essential Blu-rays of the year, the Criterion Collection has finally righted this wrong. read more...
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            To Sleep with Anger (1990)

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            • With: Danny Glover, Paul Butler, Mary Alice, Carl Lumbly, Vonetta McGee, Richard Brooks, Sheryl Lee Ralph, DeVaughn Nixon, Reina King, Sy Richardson, Cory Curtis, Paula Bellamy, Wonderful Smith, Ethel Ayler, Beverly Mickins, Jimmy Witherspoon, DeForest Covan, Davis Roberts, John Hawker, Julius Harris, Irvin Mosley Jr., Margueritte Ray, Rai Tasco, Lorrie Marlow
            • Written by: Charles Burnett
            • Directed by: Charles Burnett
            • MPAA Rating: PG
            • Running Time: 102 minutes
            • Release Date: 12/31/1989
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            Never Look Away (2019)

            Here's an example of what is wrong with the Best Foreign Language Film category of the Academy Awards. The Academy does not simply choose from the best foreign language films released in a year. Each country submits one (and only one) film to a committee that narrows it down to the final five. Of course, each country is going to submit something that they think will win, something noble and upright and proper, something that represents the country in a positive light... in other words, boring. Many countries have their favorite go-to filmmakers that grind out these things. Germany's is Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, and he won with The Lives of Others, a film that somehow beat Guillermo Del Toro's masterpiece Pan's Labyrinth. read more...
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              Never Look Away (2019)

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              • With: Tom Schilling, Sebastian Koch, Paula Beer, Saskia Rosendahl, Oliver Masucci, Ina Weisse, Rainer Bock, Johanna Gastdorf, Jeanette Hain, Hinnerk Schönemann, Florian Bartholomäi, Hans-Uwe Bauer, Jörg Schüttauf, Ben Becker, Lars Eidinger, Cai Cohrs
              • Written by: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
              • Directed by: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
              • MPAA Rating: R for graphic nudity, sexuality and brief violent images
              • Language: German, with English subtitles
              • Running Time: 188 minutes
              • Release Date: 01/24/2019
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