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Preview: East Bay Express: Movies

Movies, East Bay Express

Movie reviews and showtimes for Berkeley, Oakland, the East Bay, Albany, the San Francisco Bay Area, Alameda, Emeryville, Richmond, El Cerrito

Published: Tue, 12 Dec 2017 00:00:01 -0800

Last Build Date: Tue, 12 Dec 2017 07:00:00 -0800

Copyright: Copyright 2017 East Bay Express. All rights reserved. This RSS file is offered to individuals, East Bay Express readers, and non-commercial organizations only. Any commercial websites wishing to use this RSS file, please contact East Bay Express.

Romantic Fantasy The Shape of Water Shapes Up to Be One of the Year’s Finest

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 01:00:00 -0800

(image) Guillermo del Toro and Sally Hawkins were made for each other. Guillermo del Toro's The Shape of Water, one of the very best movies of 2017, has the outlines of a classic fairytale.…

Gary Oldman Surpasses Himself in Darkest Hour

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 01:00:00 -0800

(image) Proof that there’s still room for another World War II flick. Here we are in December, with award-seeking movies flooding into theaters at an alarming rate. One of the more conspicuous is Joe Wright's Darkest Hour, the latest (maybe the last?)…

Wonder Wheel: The Very Latest Nostalgia

Tue, 05 Dec 2017 04:00:00 -0800

(image) Kate Winslet and Justin Timberlake, under the Coney Island boardwalk. With apologies to poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti, the setting of Wonder Wheel is a "Coney Island of the Mind" — in this case the mind of writer-director Woody Allen, who famously refuses to relinquish the 20th century. As imagined by Allen, with exquisite cinematography by Vittorio Storaro and production design by Santo Loquasto, Coney Island in the 1950s is crowded with working-class New Yorkers escaping the heat.…

A Refugee Discovers

Tue, 05 Dec 2017 04:00:00 -0800

(image) Once upon a time in Aki Kaurismäki's Helsinki. The Other Side of Hope begins with a startling sequence. A man emerges from a pile of coal on a ship in the middle of the night, picks up his sack, disembarks, and walks the streets of a city, wiping off the coal dust as best he can.…

Voyeur: Sex, Lies, and Book Deals

Wed, 29 Nov 2017 01:00:00 -0800

(image) Titillating motel sex story checks in, but the details don't check out. Spoiler alert: It's pretty much impossible to discuss the new Netflix documentary Voyeur without giving away the movie's big surprise.…

Coco's Carnival of Souls Hits the Right Chords

Fri, 24 Nov 2017 16:57:00 -0800

(image) Disney/Pixar goes to Mexico, winningly. A few quick notes on Disney/Pixar's Coco: There's hardly any violence.…

Justice League Is a Cheap-Looking Spectacle

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 10:18:00 -0800

(image) But you'll probably see it anyway. The contempt that Justice League has for its audience is open, unashamed, and matter-of-fact.…

Mudbound Is a Family Saga Worth Seeking Out

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 04:00:00 -0800

(image) Dee Rees' tale of strong emotions, raw injustice, and courage, Southern-style. Most of the movies released at this time of year arrive "pre-sold" for targeted holiday consumption, or as putative candidates for year-end awards.…

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri: Provocative Dialogue in a Unique Story

Wed, 15 Nov 2017 01:00:00 -0800

(image) Frances McDormand and Sam Rockwell in some of their finest performances. Martin McDonagh is no longer the new kid in the neighborhood.…

Lady Bird: Greta Gerwig and Saoirse Ronan Reinvent the Coming-of-Age Pic

Fri, 10 Nov 2017 04:00:00 -0800

(image) Gerwig's casting is impeccable — and the movie is, too. In Lady Bird, the title teenager (played through the roof by Saoirse Ronan) is poised at the threshold of womanhood, self-respect, self-assurance, sex, and independence.…

Last Flag Flying: Manhood

Wed, 08 Nov 2017 01:00:00 -0800

(image) Richard Linklater's portrait of America is in the humanistic spirit of his Boyhood. For his follow-up to 2014's Boyhood — one of the most beloved movies of the past 10 years — writer-director Richard Linklater deliberately wanders away from his comfort zone.…

In the Mood for Maggie Cheung

Fri, 03 Nov 2017 04:00:00 -0700

(image) BAMPFA salutes the ideal modern international actress. Maggie Cheung is an acquired taste. That may be a disingenuous way to describe a movie star with her credentials, but the Chinese international actress has occasionally gotten lost in the shuffle of drop-dead gorgeous women and dashing leading men passing through the Hong Kong-Shanghai-Taipei entertainment mills.…

Blade of the Immortal: Interview with the Samurai

Wed, 01 Nov 2017 01:00:00 -0700

(image) Miike Takashi’s 100th movie is a whirlpool of revenge. Filmmaker Miike Takashi, in common with his protagonists, takes a licking but keeps on ticking.…

Wonderstruck: Out of the Past

Wed, 25 Oct 2017 01:00:00 -0700

(image) Todd Haynes gets lost in a museum. In a small Minnesota town in 1977, a 12-year-old boy named Ben (Oakes Fegley) is plagued by a recurring nightmare of vicious wolves, in addition to serious family troubles.…

There Goes the Neighborhood: Suburbicon

Tue, 24 Oct 2017 04:00:00 -0700

(image) How many social ills can you cram into one movie? Maybe it's the surly public mood these days, but the prospect of family man Matt Damon, arriving home triumphantly with a lacerated face and bloody shirt, is actually attractive — in a shocking, action-movie sort of way. Of course, we only know that image from Suburbicon's TV commercial trailer. Exactly who Damon's character is and how he got that way is unspecified.…

The Snowman: Please Inform Frosty

Fri, 20 Oct 2017 01:00:00 -0700

(image) It takes four writers to murder this serial-killer thriller. Michael Fassbender in The Snowman…

Human Flow: Gimme Shelter

Wed, 18 Oct 2017 10:30:00 -0700

(image) We’re living in a world of refugees. Ai Weiwei (left) and an unidentified traveler in Human Flow…

Blade Runner 2049: Making America Dismal Again

Wed, 11 Oct 2017 04:00:00 -0700

(image) If you thought the 1982 version was depressing... In George Orwell's novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, the inquisitor O'Brien says: "If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face — forever."…

The Florida Project: To Be Young and Poor in Fantasyland

Wed, 11 Oct 2017 01:00:00 -0700

(image) Filmmaker Sean Baker’s warm-hearted follow-up to Tangerine. Bria Vinaite (left) and Brooklynn Prince in The Florida Project…

The Meyerowitz Stories: The Dad Zone

Tue, 10 Oct 2017 04:00:00 -0700

(image) Noah Baumbach and co-dependent Ben Stiller lay an egg. Regarding Noah Baumbach's The Meyerowiz Stories: Didn't he already make this movie, several times?…

Loving Vincent, and Perhaps Murdering Him, Too

Wed, 04 Oct 2017 01:00:00 -0700

(image) The mystery of Vincent Van Gogh is gorgeous to look at. The standard line used in defense of kiddy-show fantasy spectacles or bloated big-budget sci-fi flicks is that, yes, the movie may be pretty dumb, but it has outstanding visuals.…

The Mountain Between Us: Love at Altitude

Wed, 04 Oct 2017 01:00:00 -0700

(image) Kate Winslet and Idris Elba do more than just survive in gratifying adventure. Kate Winslet and Idris Elba in The Mountain Between Us (photo by Kimberley French)…

Woodshock: Lost in the Woods

Wed, 27 Sep 2017 10:46:00 -0700

(image) Kirsten Dunst suffers through solitary stoner melancholia. How do good actors end up in bad movies?…

Victoria & Abdul’s Royal Flush

Wed, 27 Sep 2017 10:44:00 -0700

(image) Stephen Frears and Judi Dench deflate the British Empire. There's a certain segment of the movie audience that absolutely adores the "private lives of royals" historical dramas — stuff like The King's Speech or Elizabeth, with their sumptuous settings and extravagant wardrobes.…

Il Boom: He’s Got to Have It

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 10:15:38 -0700

(image) Actor Alberto Sordi goes bonkers in bitter Italian satire. Alberto Sordi is almost completely unknown to American audiences today, but in his 60-year career he became Italy's best loved and most emblematic male movie star.…