MOVIE OF THE WEEK August 20, 2021: REMINISCENCE

Writer/director Lisa Joy’s twisty Reminiscence has all the hallmarks of a classic film noir. A flawed hero. A femme fatale with a dark past. A manipulative crime boss. Double-crosses and misdirection. Climate change. Wait, climate change? Humphrey Bogart and Robert Mitchum might never have had to deal with soaring temperatures and rising sea levels, but that all-too-realistic threat underlines everything in Joy’s sci-fi-tinged mystery, offering a new angle on a familiar trope.

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REMINISCENCE – Review by Susan Wloszczyna

Don’t be surprised if you get a Christopher Nolan vibe from this intriguing sci-fi thriller with a film-noir undercurrent amid a climate-change disaster scenario is set in a near-future flooded Miami coast. While rich land barons keep safe and dry behind a giant dam, the common folk must deal with the nasty damp byways of the city’s overflowing streets. Keeping track of the film’s narrative can be a bit tricky. Many of characters on screen aren’t fully fleshed out as well as they could or should be. That said, High Jackson’s emotional performance anchors the movie even if the narrative sometimes drifts away.

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REMINISCENCE – Review by Susan Granger

What went wrong on this South Beach jog down memory lane? Perhaps it’s because first time feature writer/director Lisa Joy, who co-created HBO’s Westworld with her husband, Jonathan Nolan, Christopher Nolan’s brother, wrote a clunky, cliché-filled, confusing script – plus, her predictably melodramatic pacing plods. Although Rebecca Ferguson and Hugh Jackman previously teamed in The Greatest Showman, there’s little on-screen chemistry with more talk than action.

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BAD EDUCATION – Review by Martha K Baker

Bad Education tells well the true story of a bad principal. Frank Tassone is one of those principals who knows each student’s name — and probably what his history project is or what sport she plays. He is compassionate, considerate, competent. He also harbors a secret worth millions.

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BAD EDUCATION – Review by Susan Granger

Based on a real embezzlement scheme that stunned suburban Roslyn, Long Island in 2004, it’s as timely as last year’s college admissions scandal. Perceptively acing a diabolically complicated character, Hugh Jackman oozes charismatic charm as the slick yet sinister administrator, a perfect counterpart to Allison Janney’s brash budget director.

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THE FRONT RUNNER – Review by Diane Carson

The Front Runner interrogates a watershed moment in media coverage In mid-1987, leading to the Democratic nomination of its 1988 Presidential candidate, Gary Hart was poised as the solid, impressive front runner. Director Jason Reitman takes that designation as the title for The Front Runner, an even-handed dramatization of watershed moments in media coverage of candidates; for during reporters’ unprecedented pursuit of Hart’s private life, the landscape shifted forevermore.

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TIFF18 Review: THE FRONT RUNNER – Pam Grady

Welcome to the worst episode of West Wing, ever, as directed by Jason Reitman trying to channel Robert Altman. Never has Altman’s signature overlapping dialogue and large, panoramic casts been so ill-used than in this pallid distillation of what went wrong with Colorado Senator Gary Hart’s 1988 presidential campaign.

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AWFJ Movie of the Week, February 22-28: EDDIE THE EAGLE

Opening February 26, AWFJ’s Movie of the Week is Eddie the Eagle, the big screen biopic of unlikely British sporting hero Eddie ‘The Eagle’ Edwards, who took the world of ski jumping by storm in the 1980s. Read on…

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