A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD – Review by Sarah Knight Adamson

Tom Hanks as Fred Rogers? Yep, it works—it works so well you’ll start shaking your head in utter wonderment as Tom Hanks has channeled Fred Rogers—his mannerisms, his quiet demeanor, his uncanny listening abilities, his deep curiosity into people’s lives, and his perceptive insight into a person’s soul.

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THE WARRIOR QUEEN OF JHANSI – Review by Brandy McDonnell

It’s a compelling story, and Devika Bhise shows great promise in the lead role. But the script isn’t up to telling it in a worthy way, with its overdependence on flashbacks and its lack of character development. Although played by fine actors – Rupert Everett, Nathaniel Parker, Derek Jacobi, Ben Lamb and Jodhi May – the British characters are particularly one-note cardboard caricatures.

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JUDY – TIFF19 Review by Loren King

Among the nearly 250 movies, from Hollywood blockbusters to independent foreign films, that screened at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, one of my favorites was Judy, anchored by an astonishing performance by Renee Zellweger. In her first musical performance since Chicago, Zellweger delivers a comeback role for the ages that puts her at the front of this year’s best actress Oscar race.

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WEEK IN WOMEN: Gal Gadot to play Hedy Lamarr – Brandy McDonnell reports

Gal Gadot, currently filming with director Patty Jenkins next year’s sequel to 2017’s Wonder Woman, is set to portray actor and inventor Hedy Lamarr in a Showtime limited series, which will chronicle the Austrian-born performer’s career starring in Ecstasy, Samson and Delilah and other films, as a brilliant inventor.

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BRIAN BANKS – Review by Martha K Baker

By telling the story of one innocent man exonerated, this biopic educates film-goers about the daunting and rewarding work of the California Innocence Project and its sisters across the country. em>Brian Banks satisfies viewers’ needs to know about quiet heroes, in and out of the juvenile court, on and off the football field.

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ROCKETMAN – Review by Susan Granger

Make no mistake: this jukebox musical/quasi-biopic offers little insight into the cryptic character of flamboyant Elton John. But as a campy musical – one that’s probably destined for Broadway – it’s ambitious – with 20 familiar songs, cleverly interwoven to cleverly depict significant sequences in the life of Reginald Kenneth Dwight, a pudgy musical protégé from suburban Middlesex, England.

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ROCKETMAN – Review by Diana Saenger

Filmmakers couldn’t have found a better actor than Taron Egerton to play Elton John in Rocketman. Even before critics were invited into the theater, a buzz of anxiety whirled through the lobby. Chatter inside the theater turned into a screaming and clapping audience eager to become invested in the story.. For me, Rocketman is a bit of history, a ton of laughs — and a terrific musical.

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THE CHAPERONE – Review by Diane Carson

In 1922 fifteen-year-old Louise Brooks travels from Wichita, Kansas, to New York with chaperone Norma Carlisle. Opening titles announce that within a few years Brooks “will become one of the most famous film stars in the world.” Director Michael Engel’s The Chaperone announces its focus on Norma as opposed to Louise, but the contrasts between these two drive the film.

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