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Smuggler Thriller Manos Sucias Hurts Because It's Honest

For any thinking person, little in Josef Kubota Wladyka's fleet and sweaty Colombian-smuggler thriller Manos Sucias will surprise. Drug-running is work for the broke and desperate; the runners might be less broke after a delivery, but that desperation only grows worse; killing is gr...

Dior and I Shows How a Great House Kept From Falling

It's nearly impossible to persuade the average American citizen, especially if he's a straight man, that haute couture has a reason to exist. The phrase isn't just a catchall for "really expensive clothes," as it's commonly misunderstood, but a specific term for clothes made entirely by ha...

Clouds of Sils Maria: Assaya's Latest Pits Juliette Binoche Against Time Itself

No one likes the idea of growing older, and anyone who claims as much is lying, either to you or to herself. The anxiety of aging actors is particularly acute, not necessarily because they feel the passage of time intensely, but because, having the privilege of watching their faces change ...

Disney's Monkey Kingdom Is Wonderful and Full of Lies

Truth in film takes another jolly beating in Disneynature's Monkey Kingdom, a documentary-like nature flick with the last-century chutzpah to pass off its marvelous footage of some months in the life of a single-mom macaque as a full-fledged princess story, with three acts, a tearfu...

Avengers: Age of Ultron Is More Mediocre, Exhausted and Thoughtful Than the Original

Avengers: Age of Ultron is a complicated, ticking machine — a cuckoo clock under attack. Returning helmer Joss Whedon is earnestly trying to make a movie out of a bag of bolts: six stars, nine cameos, three enemies and at least ten films to go before the climactic Avengers:...

Little Boy Shows How Far Films of Faith Have Fallen

Did you know that there's a new family-audience feature film that implies God nuked Japan because one plucky American moppet dared to dream? That's no exaggeration. In the summer of 1945, the kid stands on a California dock, points his fingers magician-style out at the Pacific horizon and screams...

Capsule Art Reviews: April 23, 2015

"AT the Core of the Algorithm" Upon entering Hiram Butler Gallery to see Michael Petry's "AT the Core of the Algorithm" installation, one might quickly decide that everything could be seen within five seconds. However, if a visitor looks beyond the simple beauty of hanging glass globes, th...

Capsule Stage Reviews: April 23, 2015

The Cherry Orchard Recently Houston's theater scene has been blessed with some very fine Chekhov knockoffs: last season's superlative rendition of Christopher Durang's Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike at the Alley; and, recently, a regional premiere, also superlatively produced, ...

Roar Is an Odd and Near-Deadly Mad Anti-Masterpiece

A normal movie ends with the American Humane Association's assurance that "No animals were harmed." But Tippi Hedren's doomed 1981 obsession Roar isn't normal. The AHA's seal is the first thing on screen — yet, if the authorities had a safety code for humans, Roar would...

Ex Machina Is a Smart Film About the Shrinking Divide Between Man and Bot

Ex Machina is an egghead thriller with a scary selling point: Unlike Liam Neeson shooting up half of Boston, this actually could be taking place right now. It's a smart film about the shrinking divide between man and robot. It's also a hoot, an anti-comedy where all the jokes double...

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by Dr. Radut