THE GOOD LIAR – Review by Susan Granger

In their first film together, Helen Mirren and Ian McKellen match wits in a clever crime caper, set in London. Widowed Betty McLeish (Mirren) is a retired Oxford professor with $3.6 million in assets and no idea how to invest her money. Tweedy, chivalrous Roy (McKellen) Courtnay is the professional con man she meets via an on-line service called Distinctive Dating.

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THE GOOD LIAR – Review by MaryAnn Johanson

Helen Mirren as a meek, naive widow simply ripe for the picking by Ian McKellen’s silver-fox dating-app con artist? That… seems unlikely. “Sometimes casting alone gives a movie’s game away right from the get-go, doesn’t it?” is the inevitable default position anyone with even a modicum of movie knowledge takes into The Good Liar.

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THE NUTCRACKER AND THE FOUR REALMS – Review by Martha K Baker

The Nutcracker and the Four Realms combines fantasies. The latest Disney extravaganza is fantastic — literally. The ballet most people know by Marius Petipa is based on a short story called The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, written by E.T.A. Hoffman. Both fantasies. Ashleigh Powell wrote a screenplay to expand those flights of fancy.

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THE NUTCRACKER AND THE FOUR REALMS – Review by Susan Granger

Disney’s big-budget attempt to adapt E.T.A. Hoffmann’s 1816 fantasy and Tchaikovsky’s ballet is a muddled mess, comparable to A Wrinkle in Time. In Victorian London, the story begins with inventive young Clara Stahlbaum (Mackenzie Foy) in the attic demonstrating her elaborate Rube Goldberg-type mousetrap to her younger brother Fritz (Tom Sweet).

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THE WEEK IN WOMEN: Judd and Mirren Honored, Chenoweth Cast and Weinstein Ousted! — Brandy McDonnell reports

In an unprecedented move, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has terminated Harvey Weinstein’s membership, following the storm

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EYE IN THE SKY — Review by Susan Granger

Starring Helen Mirren and the late Alan Rickman, this timely British thriller about drone warfare turns out to be a real nail-biter. It begins in a Cabinet office in London, where Lt. Gen. Frank Benson (Rickman) and several officials realize they’ve ascertained the exact location in Nairobi, Kenya, where several people on their Most Wanted list have convened, including a radicalized British woman with an Al-Shabaab militant.

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