Eric D. Snider

Movie Review: "Knock Knock" D+ October 9, 2015

A man's fantasy turns into a nightmare

[In theaters and Video on Demand.]

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Movie Review: "Goodnight Mommy (German)" B+ October 7, 2015

Twins are creepy: an exhaustive report

Fact: Identical twin children in movies are creepy. (In real life, too, if we're being honest, but never mind.) "Goodnight Mommy," a quietly alarming thriller from Austria, puts this truism to good use immediately, starting with scenes of young Elias and Lukas (played by Elias and Lukas Schwarz) running through cornfields (!) and whispering secrets to each other.

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Eric's Blog October 6, 2015

Some things I've written lately

Ahoy, Internet friends! Just a little update on what's been happening at EDS HQ lately.

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Movie Review: "Hotel Transylvania 2" B- October 1, 2015

Stay animated and we're cool, Sandler

"Hotel Transylvania 2" confirms what its predecessor gave us reason to believe: that Adam Sandler can still be funny and likable; he just has to be a cartoon.

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Movie Review: "99 Homes" B+ September 25, 2015

Buying and selling houses, your own soul

The very first thing we see in "99 Homes" is the brain-spattered wall of an Orlando bathroom where a man has committed suicide rather than be evicted from his home. The evictor, a Florida-twanged foreclosure vulture named Rick Carver (Michael Shannon), stands with his back to the body, yelling into his phone about how this complicates the process of preparing the house for resale.

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Movie Review: "Black Mass [AUDIO]" C+ September 21, 2015

Johnny Depp in Scorsese-lite crime story

You know how there's crime? Especially in Boston? And how the cops and gangsters all grew up together? Sure. You've seen the Martin Scorsese movies -- "The Departed" for Boston specifically, but "Goodfellas" and "Casino" for the general vibe of violent, fact-based mob stories about sociopaths who say the F-word a lot. "Black Mass," directed by Scott Cooper ("Crazy Heart," "Out of the Furnace"), is the Whitey Bulger story, with Johnny Depp as Boston's notorious '70s and '80s crime boss. Depp is intense, and worthier of being taken seriously as an actor than he has been in quite some time. But it's actually John Connolly (Joel Edgerton), the FBI agent who protects Bulger by taking him in as an "informant," who's the protagonist. The film never really gets inside either man's head.

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Movie Review: "The Scorch Trials [AUDIO]" B September 20, 2015

Teens try to stay alive out in the heat

"The Scorch Trials," the sequel to last year's surprisingly good young-adult adaptation "The Maze Runner," is again good, so maybe it's not surprising anymore.

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Movie Review: "The Visit [AUDIO]" B- September 19, 2015

Finally, proof that old people are creepy

Discounting "The Last Airbender," which was an adaptation, and "After Earth," which was Will Smith's idea, "The Visit" is the first purely M. Night Shyamalan film since "The Happening," way back in 2008. The new thriller -- in which 15-year-old Becca (Olivia DeJonge) and 13-year-old Tyler (Ed Oxenbould) spend a week with their grandparents, whom they've never met before and who are acting strange -- isn't quite a return to form, but it's a step in the right direction. It's suspenseful at times, often funny (on purpose), and both kids have engaging personalities.

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Movie Review: "Cooties" C+ September 18, 2015

The "little monsters" are real monsters

[In theaters and Video on Demand.]

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