Author Archive: Matthew Fagerholm

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Youth in Revolt

Youth in Revolt

| January 11, 2010

Here’s an example of an actor choosing the right role at the right time. Michael Cera is clearly one of the best actors of his generation, though his last few films have led people to believe that he either has a limited range, or he’s simply playing himself. Cera’s comic persona is as impenetrable as […]

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Nine

Nine

| December 24, 2009

On a cinematic scale of one to ten, Rob Marshall’s new musical wouldn’t get a nine or even an eight and a half. It’s a big, splashy mess, populated by A-List actors who may be able to win Oscars, but would be hard-pressed to snag a Grammy. It’s hugely entertaining, but in the most purely […]

Police, Adjective

Police, Adjective

| December 24, 2009

Romanian cinema makes a good case for why Romania is not the greatest place to live. Cristi Puiu’s The Death of Mr. Lazarescu followed an ailing gentleman on his endless journey through a heath care system that’s ill-equipped to help him. Cristin Mungiu’s 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days followed a woman on her […]

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Invictus

Invictus

| December 11, 2009

It’s difficult to imagine an awards season without Clint Eastwood. Ever since 2003’s Mystic River, he’s released all of his directorial efforts during the last months of the year. Sometimes his films deserve to be contenders (Million Dollar Baby, Letters From Iwo Jima), and sometimes they don’t. Invictus is Eastwood’s most unimaginative Oscar bait yet. […]

Up in the Air

Up in the Air

| December 7, 2009

It’s debatable whether Up in the Air is the year’s best film, but it’s certainly the best title. In just four words, it tells you everything you need to know about the film’s plot, characters, themes, and overarching message for our current times. As far as film titles go, it sure beats the wordy self-importance […]

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The Cove

The Cove

| December 7, 2009

No animal lover or environmental activist can afford to miss Louie Psihoyos’s The Cove, a spectacularly involving and vital documentary that deserves to be ranked among the year’s very best. Like the subjects in Man on Wire, the Cove filmmakers are risking their lives on camera, allowing their story to acquire the rhythm and urgency […]

Fred Dekker and Eduardo Sanchez Create ‘Terror in the Aisles’

Fred Dekker and Eduardo Sanchez Create ‘Terror in the Aisles’

| November 30, 2009

On December 5th, horror fans across Chicagoland will flock to “Terror in the Aisles 3,” a shriek-worthy marathon of spooky flicks, live music and various surprises, presented by Movieside and co-sponsored by The Grindhouse. Doors open at 7pm at the Portage Theater, 4050 N Milwaukee Ave., where audiences will be treated to a triple feature […]

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Fantastic Mr. Fox

Fantastic Mr. Fox

| November 28, 2009

Wes Anderson’s first full-on foray into animation is a total charmer, though I doubt many kids will like it. While Spike Jonze’s equally audacious adaptation of Where the Wild Things Are delved into the psyche of a child (with brilliantly haunting results), Anderson’s film is clearly about (and for) adults. Mr. Fox tries to be […]

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The Road

The Road

| November 25, 2009

If John Hillcoat’s long-awaited adaptation of Cormac McCarthy’s towering novel teaches us anything, it’s that the apocalypse should not be scored. Hillcoat has forgotten that the most enveloping cinematic depictions of the world’s end contained very little music (The Birds, Children of Men), and found great power in the use of silence. That’s the approach […]

Terror in Mumbai

Terror in Mumbai

| November 17, 2009

“This is just the trailer. Just wait till you see the rest of the film.” Those bone-chilling words were uttered by an unnamed mastermind of last year’s horrific terrorist attacks in Mumbai. And thanks to a galvanizing new HBO documentary, those words can be heard by viewers across America. They’re an urgent reminder of the […]

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