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Brief Reviews: Headhunters, The Killer Inside Me, and End of Watch

By on Apr 9, 2014 in Reviews | 0 comments

This week’s Brief Reviews, I’ve lined up three films with a criminal theme.

Headhunters

Easily the film with the highest production value and sharpest cinematography, Headhunters is a surprisingly unsatisfying experience. Based on bestselling Norwegian author Jo Nesbø’s crime fiction, Headhunters tells the tale of an art thief who makes the misstep of stealing a painting from a former special forces soldier who specialized in tracking people. A great setup which the film executes as if the producers of CSI made their own version of No Country for Old Men. Perhaps it is telling that director Morten Tyldum spent the majority of his career heading a Norwegian TV series.… Read the rest

David O’ Russell Hustles Up An Acting Master Class But Forgets The Sizzle

By on Mar 26, 2014 in Reviews | 0 comments

Who would have guessed that the director of Spanking the Monkey would turn into one of Hollywood’s darlings? I certainly didn’t. David O’ Russell has been on a winning streak since The Fighter. His latest film American Hustle racked up 10 Academy Award nominations but walked away empty handed on award’s night. Unlike most decisions by the Academy, there was good reason why.

Russell’s directing is near perfect and the entire cast brings their A-game, but the film invites comparisons to much more compelling movies. With such expectations the risks it takes are not high enough and the con game at its center is not slick enough.… Read the rest