VOX LUX- Review by Susan Granger

This garish, gaudy mess of a musical melodrama begins on Staten Island in 1999, when teenage Celeste (Raffey Cassidy) sustains a life-threatening spinal injury as she tries to talk down the shooter during a harrowing massacre at her school. Comforted by her older, more talented sister Eleanor (Stacy Martin), Celeste is understandably traumatized. Working through PTSD, they write “Wrapped Up,” a tribute ballad, mourning the tragic violence. When their song goes viral, they’re courted by a sleazy manager (Jude Law) who seems both paternal and predatory.

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THE GREEN BOOK – Review by Susan Granger

This fascinating, true story of an unlikely friendship begins with Dr. Don Shirley (Mahershala Ali), an elegant, educated Jamaican-American classical pianist who lived in an apartment above Manhattan’s Carnegie Hall. In 1962 when his record company sends him on a concert tour of the Deep South, Dr. Shirley hires a gruff, gluttonous, street-wise bouncer from the Copacabana nightclub to be his driver/road manager.

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DR SEUSS’ THE GRINCH – Review by Susan Granger

Illumination Entertainment, best known for creating the Minions in the “Despicable Me” franchise, does the crisp, visually alluring CGI animation, artfully coordinated by directors Yarrow Cheney and Scott Mosier. Kudos to Angela Lansbury, Kenan Thompson and Rashida Jones for adding far-too-brief vocal enhancement to their characters. And everyone is obviously ready to make that inevitable transfer to a Universal Studio theme park.

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WIDOWS – Review by Susan Granger

Oscar-winning director Steve McQueen and co-writer Gillian Flynn have come up with a compelling crime caper that has more twists and turns than a corkscrew! Living in a luxurious penthouse on Chicago’s Lake Shore Drive, elegant, educated, union organizer Victoria Rawlings never paid much attention to her felonious husband’s shady business – until one of his robberies goes awry and she’s left a widow, along with the wives of his crew.

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BEAUTIFUL BOY – Review by Susan Granger

This is the true story of a frantic father dealing with his son’s crystal methamphetamine addiction. Set in Northern California, it revolves around veteran Marin County journalist David Sheff (Steve Carell), who lives with his troubled 18 year-old son Nic (Timothee Chalamet) from previous marriage, his second wife Karen (Maura Tierney) and their two young kids.

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