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Black And White (2002) Review


Good
Cinema is littered with "true stories" of criminal justice gone horribly wrong, and generally these films are fair, good, or borderline great. Black and White, saddled with one of cinema's most cliched titles, is square in the middle of the pack, a piece about an Australian aborigine in the 1950s who was, quite obviously, wrongly convicted for raping and murdering a young girl. And though his tale is tragic, it's framed amidst a story about how backwards the Australian legal system is, and how unprepared the man's lawyer (Robert Carlyle) is to defend him in this climate. Interesting history lesson, but the drama ultimately takes a back seat to the lecture.

All The Way Review


OK
Dennis Hopper as Frank Sinatra? It's a crazy idea, but not as wild as you might think. From a distance, Hopper bears a striking resemblance to the older, chunkier Frank. And whoever's doing the singing for him reasonably approximates a blend of Hopper's voice with Sinatra's.

Of course, there's a plot you need to suffer through to marvel at the stunt casting, and it involves a presumably true story about Sinatra being wooed to visit Australia in 1974 by a two-bit promoter. Getting him Down Under is only half the fun. Once he arrives, Frank -- in his inimitable way -- insults a reporter (Portia de Rossi) by calling her a whore. Aussie's native sons rise to defend her, and over 100 unions go on strike to ensure Frank won't be able to eat, drink, travel, or take a shower -- much less perform on stage. Hilarity ensues as our promoter friend (Joel Edgerton) tries to patch things back together, dealing with his own love life along the way.

Continue reading: All The Way Review

Ladies In Lavender Review


OK
Hear about a movie starring Maggie Smith and Judi Dench, and it's pretty obvious what you're going to get, and it's not going to be car chases and bank heists. Two of the grandest dames of the screen star in Ladies in Lavender, a scenic, charming, and quaint tale set in the 1930s. It's the kind of movie many English filmmakers specialize in.

Sisters Janet (Smith) and Ursula (Dench) Widdington live a quiet and active life in their spacious seaside house in Cornwall when a young man washes up on shore. The sisters take him in as a boarder and immediately take a liking to Andrea (Daniel Brühl), a Polish violin maestro who can't speak a word of English. The sisters soon grow close to Andrea, with Janet acting like a concerned mother, while the never married Ursula quietly falls in love with the hunky Andrea.

Continue reading: Ladies In Lavender Review

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Dennis Hopper as Frank Sinatra? It's a crazy idea, but not as wild as you...

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