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Film, "The Motel Life": Down and Out in One of These Kinds of Stories

"The Motel Life": Down and Out in One of These Kinds of Stories

Accomplished direction can't compensate for hazy scripting in The Motel Life, Alan and Gabe Polsky's adaptation of Will Vlautin's novel about two Reno brothers, Frank (Emile Hirsch) and Jerry Lee (Stephen Dorff), forced to hit the road after Jerry Lee…
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Film, "Zaytoun": At Last, An Israeli/Palestinian Buddy Movie

"Zaytoun": At Last, An Israeli/Palestinian Buddy Movie

Eran Riklis's Zaytoun is probably the fluffiest movie about the Lebanese Civil War ever made. Set in 1982, 10-year-old Palestinian boy Fahed (Abdallah El Akal) is among the denizens of a Palestinian refugee camp who capture a downed Israeli pilot…
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Film, "Somewhere": Celebrity living has its downside

"Somewhere": Celebrity living has its downside

Dissolute action-movie star Johnny Marco (Stephen Dorff), first seen doing laps in his black Ferrari, has no destination in Somewhere, Sofia Coppola's mood ring of celebrity lassitude. Coppola's fourth feature, winner of the Golden Lion at Venice this year, is,…
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Film, Show Me the Mommy

Show Me the Mommy

Monster's Ball producer Lee Daniels makes his directorial debut with Shadowboxer, and it couldn't be clearer that he's trying to follow his previous formula for success. Oscar-caliber actors? Check. Interracial sex? Plenty. A violent demise or two, all in the…
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Film, <i>Fear</i> the Creeper

Fear the Creeper

If you're looking for a horror film to revitalize the genre, keep looking. If you're looking for a horror movie with believable characters ... yes, you're gonna have to keep looking. But if sudden loud noises, relentless strobe lights, digital…
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Film,

Reel World

One Night Stand Wesley Snipes' bodyguard is smaller than your humble correspondent, but he's a pillar of Zen calm, even as his employer sits for an interview 15 feet away. Maybe it's his martial arts training; could be his 20…
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