BlacKkKlansman is Spike Lee’s best and most entertaining film in ages

On this week’s episode of Film Club, critics A.A. Dowd and Ignatiy Vishnevetsky sit down to discuss the latest from Spike Lee, which tells the bizarre true story of Ron Stallworth, a black detective for the Colorado Springs Police Department who infiltrates the local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan by posing as a white…

Christopher Robin gives Winnie The Pooh and his furry friends the Hook treatment

On this week’s episode of Film Club, critics A.A. Dowd and Ignatiy Vishnevetsky take a look at Disney’s new live-action Christopher Robin, inspired by the Winnie The Pooh stories by A. A. Milne and E. H. Shepard. In a Hook-esque twist, Christopher Robin follows a now grown-up, workaholic Christopher whose inner child…

How is Mission: Impossible still this good?

The summer movie season starts to wind down this weekend with Mission: Impossible—Fallout, the latest entry from one of Hollywood’s most reliably entertaining franchises. In a first for the series, which usually changes helmers with each film, Rogue Nation writer-director Christopher McQuarrie returns to orchestrate…

Not even Denzel can save the bland Equalizer 2 from itself

Welcome back to another edition of Film Club. For this week’s second episode , A.A. Dowd and Ignatiy Vishnevetsky follow up their discussion of Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again with a look at another lazy sequel. Although Denzel Washington has proven himself to be a credible action star in the past (see his collaborations…

"Here we go again" indeed: Our critics see more jukebox tackiness in the Mamma Mia! sequel

For the first of two Film Club segments today, critics A.A. Dowd and Ignatiy Vishnevetsky discuss the jukebox musical Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again, a combination sequel and prequel to the 2008 box-office hit. Even with a new writer-director (The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’s Ol Parker), Here We Go Again learns nothing…

Even with a much bigger building, Skyscraper falls way short of Die Hard

On this edition of Film Club, critics A.A. Dowd and Ignatiy Vishnevetsky sit down to discuss Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s latest star vehicle Skyscraper, the newest addition to Hollywood’s vast stable of Die Hard knockoffs, with the action in this entry taking place in The Pearl, a building that comfortably dwarfs Die…

Heel turns: 23 movie stars cast against type as villains

Villains can be much more fun to play than heroes. Just ask Gary Oldman or Christoph Waltz or any actor who’s built a résumé filthy with scoundrels. But perhaps the dark side exerts a particularly seductive pull on those performers who don’t specialize in heavies, those who have established a reputation for playing…

Disney goes back to the Hundred Acre Wood in the wistful Christopher Robin

Picture this: It’s the late 1940s or early ’50s, and Christopher Robin (Ewan McGregor), the little boy from A.A. Milne’s Winnie-The-Pooh stories, is all grown up. He works as a number-cruncher for a London luggage company, can’t get a weekend off to go to the country with his wife (Hayley Atwell) and their precocious…

The 50 greatest special effects movies of all time

For about as long as there have been movies, there have been special effects. That’s no exaggeration: The medium was only a few years old when people began finding ways to toy with the reality of what the motion-picture camera was capturing, creating tricks from quirks in photographic science. A century later, the…

Two young actors shine as a pair of troubled sisters in Night Comes On

When Angel Lamere (Dominique Fishback), the protagonist of Jordana Spiro’s debut feature Night Comes On, returns to Philadelphia, the first thing she does is get her hands on a gun. It’s her 18th birthday, and she’s just been let out of juvenile detention with nothing to her name but a phone with a dead battery and a…

Ant-Man And The Wasp is a fun (but inessential) entry in the MCU

Did the crushing cliffhanger of Avengers: Infinity War leave you anxious to find out what happens next? You’ll have to wait until next May, when the still-untitled fourth Avengers film hits theaters. In the meantime, there’s Ant-Man And The Wasp, a superhero digestif that finds Scott Lang (Paul Rudd), the…

Leave No Trace proves that Winter’s Bone was no fluke

Debra Granik’s low-budget Ozarks crime drama Winter’s Bone jumpstarted the career of the then-unknown Jennifer Lawrence and established its director as someone to watch. But in the years since, Granik has mostly remained under the radar, completing a documentary, Stray Dog, in between a number of film and TV projects…

Timothée Chalamet is an unlikely drug dealer in the insipid, derivative Hot Summer Nights

It’s the summer of 1991 in Cape Cod, a hormonal tragedy crudely destined to end in the billion-dollar biblical cataclysm of Hurricane Bob. The haves are the yachters, vacationers, and tennis-racket preppies. The have-nots are the townies: Hunter Strawberry (Alex Roe), the local prince of pot, a stud with a rumored…

A documentary muckraker takes on the tech sector of health in The Bleeding Edge

The business of health is built on other people’s problems. This simple fact is reiterated in one form or another throughout Kirby Dick’s muckraking exposé of the medical devices industry, The Bleeding Edge; we see it in regulatory buck-passing, excruciating side effects, and a level of corporatization that, in Dick’s…

Is the new Jurassic Park movie dumb fun or just dumb?

Twenty-five years and four films later, Hollywood is still trying to recapture the magic of the original Jurassic Park. The latest effort, Fallen Kingdom, the follow-up to 2015's Jurassic World, comes courtesy of director J.A. Bayona, who, to his credit, delivers more memorable images than his predecessor. But can his…