Snide Remarks: "Truth Decay" May 2, 2013
American communities have been fluoridating their water for 60 years, and 70% of the country's population currently lives in places where the water is fluoridated. But Portland, Oregon, where I live, is not one of those places. In fact, Portland is the largest U.S. city without fluoridated water! We're about to vote on whether to start doing it -- and the issue is not as clear-cut as you might think. Many Portlanders are against it.
Movie Review: "An Oversimplification of Her Beauty" B April 30, 2013
While it's true that nobody makes a film entirely alone, some movies are closer to being a one-person operation than others. That can be good or bad. Artists love having total creative freedom. But the ones most likely to get it are young, inexperienced filmmakers producing do-it-yourself indie features -- and they're often the very people who could benefit most from having some guidance, some reining-in, someone to tell them no. The rejection files of every film festival are crowded with movies made by people who ought to have gotten some outside perspective.
Eric's Blog April 28, 2013
I'm doing a new column at Film.com! Sort of. Basically, instead of doing one-off features like I've been doing, they'll be gathered under a heading: "Eric D. Snider's Movie Column." It took us a long time to come up with that. The first one is about CinemaScore: what it is, what it wants from us, whether it can hurt us, etc.
Movie Review: "The Angels' Share" B+ April 26, 2013
“The Angels’ Share” comes to us from Ken Loach, the socially conscious British director whose “The Wind That Shakes the Barley” won the Palme d’Or in 2006. But “The Angels’ Share,” written by regular collaborator Paul Laverty, is much more lighthearted than the I.R.A.-based “Barley,” being concerned with nothing more than the exploits of some Glasgow delinquents who want to steal some very old, very valuable whisky. It’s the “Ocean’s Eleven” of whisky-heist movies!
Movie Review: "Pain & Gain" C April 26, 2013
"Pain & Gain" is a brash, puerile action-comedy of errors about a trio of muscle-obsessed idiots who set out to extort money from a sleazy Miami businessman by kidnapping and torturing him. Michael Bay, who directed it, is almost the right person for the job. Almost.
Movie Review: "Oblivion" C+ April 25, 2013
Joseph Kosinski's second movie, "Oblivion," is a lot like his first, "Tron: Legacy." Both are gorgeous-looking, futuristic sci-fi tales that benefit from amazing computer-generated imagery and a few nifty action beats, but suffer from a lack of human connection.
Movie Review: "At Any Price" B+ April 24, 2013
"It's gonna be a great harvest," says a farmer's wife near the end of "At Any Price." She's referring to the corn crop, but what this resonant, well-acted drama has made clear by this point is that "you reap what you sow" applies to everything. For some of the characters, the harvest is going to be rough.
Snide Remarks: "Correction News Network" April 23, 2013
Good evening. Thank you for joining us. Before we get to tonight's top stories, CNN would like to clarify -- and in some cases correct -- statements we made on the air yesterday.
As you know, most of the day's coverage was devoted to the bold daylight robbery of a bank in downtown Peoria, Illinois, which led to a high-speed chase and, eventually, the capture of the suspected robbers. CNN stands by the bulk of its coverage, but we regret that in our urgency to bring you the news, we conveyed some details that later proved to be erroneous.
Movie Review: "To the Wonder" C- April 19, 2013
Terrence Malick, the idiosyncratic director of "The Tree of Life," "Badlands," "Days of Heaven," "The New World," and "The Thin Red Line," probably has as many detractors as he has admirers. His movies tend to be untraditional, after all, and one person's transcendent, lyrical cinematic experience is another person's boring, plot-less slog.
Movie Review: "My Brother the Devil" B+ April 19, 2013
The lives and culture of Muslims in the Western world have been the focus of numerous films since the turn of the century, many of them austere dramas examining the torturous relationship between ordinary, faithful followers of Islam and their extremist cousins. What is it like to be a Muslim in a post-9/11 world? That's the question, sometimes as subtext but often as text, in this cycle of films. And as worthwhile as that question is, and as multi-faceted as the answers may be, a certain sameness starts to emerge after a while.
The last 60 days:
- 42 C+
- Admission C+
- The Angels' Share B+
- Antiviral B-
- At Any Price B+
- Evil Dead B
- Frances Ha A-
- G.I. Joe: Retaliation C
- The Great Gatsby C
- The Hangover Part III D+
- The Iceman C-
- Iron Man 3 B+
- Mud B+
- Oblivion C+
- An Oversimplification of Her Beauty B
- Pain & Gain C
- The Place Beyond the Pines B+
- The Reluctant Fundamentalist B-
- Room 237 (documentary) C+
- Scary Movie 5 F
- Simon Killer B-
- Star Trek Into Darkness B-
- Stories We Tell (documentary) B+
- To the Wonder C-
- Upstream Color B+
- Wrong B