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'Frank & Lola' Matches:

Frank & Lola

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    The Wife (2018)

    I finally caught up with The Wife now that Glenn Close has won a Golden Globe and received an Academy Award nomination (her seventh) for her lead performance. That may be a little too much pressure to review the film objectively, and certainly Close is outstanding. But I think I agree with the IMDB commenter who said, "A very good movie which I didn't like." Close plays Joan Castleman, the wife of novelist Joe Castleman (Jonathan Pryce). Joe has just been chosen to receive the Nobel Prize for Literature, and the family -- including grown son and aspiring writer David (Max Irons) -- are off to Stockholm for the ceremony. Through flashbacks (young Joan played by Annie Starke and young Joe played by Harry Lloyd) we learn of a "shocking" twist, that the film decides to reveal well past the halfway point. To start, for a movie all about the art of writing, The Wife is, at times, annoyingly pedestrian. Whenever the pesky would-be biographer Nathaniel Bone (Christian Slater) shows up, Joan explains that she doesn't want to be seen as a victim, or the long-suffering wife, yet that's pretty much what she is. When Joe asks "why did you marry me," her answer is "I don't know." And we don't either. Oddly, the flashback scenes seem to work the best, and some of Slater's scenes are interesting, but when it centers back around to present-day Joe and Joan, as they fight and talk about Joe's eating, medication, and extramarital affairs, it turns into hackneyed melodrama. Perhaps if the screenplay had laid everything on the table all at once, then all the characters could have been more fully developed. But as it is, The Wife is a partly-effective exercise that will likely be forgotten after awards season ends. Elizabeth McGovern, of all people, appears in one scene as a bitter published writer that warns the young Joan against pursuing a career in prose. read more...
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      The Wife (2018)

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      • With: Glenn Close, Jonathan Pryce, Max Irons, Christian Slater, Harry Lloyd, Annie Starke, Elizabeth McGovern, Johan Widerberg, Karin Franz Körlof
      • Written by: Jane Anderson, based on a novel by Meg Wolitzer
      • Directed by: Björn L. Runge
      • MPAA Rating: R for language and some sexual content
      • Running Time: 99 minutes
      • Release Date: 08/16/2018
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      Spinning Man (2018)

      This little thriller, part lurid potboiler and part philosophical quandary, plays like a sturdy little "B" movie; it won't change the world, but it may keep late-night viewers from changing channels. read more...
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        Spinning Man (2018)

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        • With: Guy Pearce, Minnie Driver, Odeya Rush, Alexandra Shipp, Pierce Brosnan, Clark Gregg, Freya Tingley, Jamie Kennedy, Sterling Beaumon, RJ Walker, Carlo Rota
        • Written by: Matthew Aldrich, George Harrar
        • Directed by: Simon Kaijser
        • MPAA Rating: R for some language including sexual references
        • Running Time: 100 minutes
        • Release Date: 04/05/2018
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        State Like Sleep (2019)

        As the title suggests, this so-called thriller could be trying to emulate a dreamlike or sleepwalking state, but instead it tells a terminally disjointed, boring story in a way that can induce sleep. read more...
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          State Like Sleep (2019)

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          • With: Katherine Waterston, Michiel Huisman, Luke Evans, Michael Shannon, Mary Kay Place, Julie Kahner
          • Written by: Meredith Danluck
          • Directed by: Meredith Danluck
          • MPAA Rating: NR
          • Running Time: 104 minutes
          • Release Date: 01/03/2019
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          My Cousin Rachel (2017)

          The novels of Daphne Du Maurier should be a prime source for filmmakers, given that the author's works fueled three of Alfred Hitchcock's movies, Jamaica Inn (1939), Rebecca (1940), and The Birds (1963). Now filmmaker Roger Michell (Notting Hill, The Mother, Venus) snaps up another of her stories, My Cousin Rachel, for his latest feature. Michell is often terrific at films about people and emotions, but he seems to be lacking the stuff of genre; in other words, he effectively generates longing and suffering, but he can't quite whip up much suspense or dark manipulation. read more...
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            My Cousin Rachel (2017)

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            • With: Rachel Weisz, Sam Claflin, Holliday Grainger, Iain Glen, Pierfrancesco Favino, Simon Russell Beale, Vicki Pepperdine
            • Written by: Roger Michell, based on a novel by Daphne Du Maurier
            • Directed by: Roger Michell
            • MPAA Rating: PG-13 for some sexuality and brief strong language
            • Running Time: 106 minutes
            • Release Date: 06/08/2017
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            Beatriz at Dinner (2017)

            Yet another movie that seems to have grown more relevant after the 2016 election, Beatriz at Dinner is an effective portrait of the divide between people's beliefs. Salma Hayek — deliberately dowdy — plays Beatriz, a massage therapist and healer who is invited to the home of the wealthy Kathy (Connie Britton) for a quick massage before a dinner party; Beatriz saved their daughter's life and they are grateful to her. However, when Beatriz's car fails to start, she is invited to stay for the party, despite the fact that she's not dressed for it and apparently doesn't understand dinner party etiquette. There, she meets a backstabbing, selfish, greedy, nasty businessman, Doug Strutt (John Lithgow), and feels the need to stand up to him and his destructive beliefs. The characters are richly drawn and the talk is effective, but unfortunately, the movie has no idea how to end itself. (It's just like life; the left and the right have absolutely no idea how to speak to each other.) Mike White wrote the screenplay and Miguel Arteta directed. Jay Duplass, Amy Landecker, and Chloë Sevigny play the other party guests. read more...
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              Beatriz at Dinner (2017)

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              • With: Salma Hayek, John Lithgow, Connie Britton, Jay Duplass, Amy Landecker, Chloë Sevigny, David Warshofsky
              • Written by: Mike White
              • Directed by: Miguel Arteta
              • MPAA Rating: R for language and a scene of violence
              • Running Time: 83 minutes
              • Release Date: 06/08/2017
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