Munna Michael

Action, Music ‐ July 23, 2017
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Munna Michael

Bollywood musical “Munna Michael” is too many movies crammed into one. This formulaic but satisfying crowd-pleaser shifts its focus from one protagonist to another so many times that it’s hard to tell whose story and emotions matter most. It only begins as a “Saturday Night Fever”-style celebration of lead protagonist Munna Michael (Tiger Shroff), a talented, self-absorbed dancer who hustles less-talented dancers by betting that he can out-dance them. The kicker is that all of Munna Michael’s dance moves—and some of the film’s song lyrics—are inspired by Michael Jackson. 

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The Untamed

Drama, Horror, Science Fiction, Thriller ‐ July 21, 2017
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The Untamed

Amat Escalante’s “The Untamed” is a movie about that beast called lust, specifically the way it can be equally irresistible, all-consuming, and dangerous. That very beast is portrayed, as the unflinching Mexican filmmaker is wont to do, by a tentacled creature that came from space. In a way that seems both inspired and completely separate from the niche world of tentacle porn, “The Untamed” creates its narrative around human beings and their need for pleasure, but not always from this monster. It’s a low-key trippy sci-fi movie about booty calls with an unwieldy space squid, but I wish I could …

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The Midwife

Comedy, Drama ‐ July 21, 2017
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Martin Provost’s character drama “The Midwife” stars esteemed French actresses Catherine Deneuve and Catherine Frot in their first on-screen appearance together. Deneuve has frequently dominated the international film circuit since her breakthrough performance in Jacques Demy’s “The Umbrellas of Cherbourg,” working with acclaimed directors like Francois Truffaut, Andre Téchiné, and Roman Polanski. In 1980, Frot made her film debut in Alain Resnais’ “My American Uncle” and has since been nominated for ten César awards, most recently winning Best Actress in 2016 for her role as the title character in “Marguerite.” In “The Midwife,” Provost deliberately positions Deneuve and Frot as …

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Landline

Comedy ‐ July 21, 2017
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Landline

One of the more welcome pleasures of “Landline” is that it takes place in 1995, right before mobile phones began their siege upon the general populace. That means the Manhattan dwellers in the movie are forced to actually talk to one another to relay information instead of being constantly enraptured by the presence of a glowing orb in their hands. As someone who has grown weary of watching actors regularly squint at text messages and caller IDs in every contemporary movie, I appreciate the opportunity to be placed in a wayback machine and taken to a not-too-distant past when no …

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Killing Ground

Horror, Thriller ‐ July 21, 2017
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Pitch-black Australian horror film “Killing Ground” goes where so many other chillers from the land down under have already gone by pitting two redneck hunters against a pair of doe-eyed lovers. The main distinguishing feature of this film is its almost-novel nesting-doll plot structure, and passing thematic interest in its narrative’s formulaic nature. Writer/director Damien Power asks viewers to follow three groups as they converge at an out-of-the-way camping site: newly-engaged couple Ian (Ian Meadows) and Sam (Harriet Dyer); poor white trash duo German (Aaron Pedersen) and Chook (Aaron Glenane); and happy parents Margaret (Maya Strange) and Rob (Julian Garner) and their two children, …

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