Hidden Last Calls (This Week’s Movies)


Janelle Monae, Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer: Hidden Figures

Links to my reviews published this week in the Herald and Seattle Weekly, and etc.

Hidden Figures. “A few too many feel-good moments that seem unlikely given the early-60s setting.”

A Monster Calls. “Stop telling us about how wondrous the magic of storytelling is.”

Mifune: The Last Samurai. “Something gets missed.”

Early warning: The talkers of Framing Pictures will declare the best films of 2016, which means you can forget about all those other lists and awards. The truth will be told Friday night, Jan. 13, at 7, and the event is free. Check our Facebook page for more details.

By Departed (This Week’s Movies)

roberthortonLinks to reviews I wrote this week for the Herald and Seattle Weekly, and etc.

By Sidney Lumet. “Strangely unsatisfying.”

And a second annual account of onscreen movie people who died during 2016 – not a definitive list, but a roster of people I liked for one reason or another. (See photo above.)

Ten Lion Elle (This Week’s Movies)



Isabelle Huppert: Elle

Links to my reviews published this week in the Herald and Seattle Weekly, and etc.

Elle. “It’s provocative, and Huppert is indeed fantastic, but I’m not convinced.”

Lion. “A generic feel.”

And a Top Ten for 2016. The Weekly link is here; the Herald link includes ten worst, if that’s your idea of fun.

The shorthand version, as of today:

  1. Aquarius
  2. Our Little Sister
  3. The Fits
  4. Cemetery of Splendor
  5. Things to Come
  6. Everybody Wants Some!!
  7. Sully
  8. Paterson
  9. Green Room
  10. Aferim!

La La Things (This Week’s Movies)


Isabelle Huppert, Things to Come (Palace Films)

Links to my reviews published this week in Seattle Weekly and the Herald.

La La Land. “How can any movie lover, or any civilized person really, be against La La Land? Let me try to explain.”

Jackie. “Portman’s scarily composed performance is laser-focused, an act of empathy without tears.”

Things to Come. “A valentine to an experienced actress who absolutely owns the part.”

The Eyes of My Mother. “Seriously effed up.”

Sloane Miss (This Week’s Movies)


Jessica Chastain: Miss Sloane (Kerry Hayes/Europa)

A link to my review published this week in the Herald and Seattle Weekly, and etc.

Miss Sloane. “Believability is overrated, and it’s much more satisfying to let go of our plausibililty needs and sit back to enjoy Miss Sloane’s near-supernatural powers of strategic anticipation.”

Another installment of Framing Pictures is streamable from the Seattle Channel website. In this session, filmed at Scarecrow Video, Richard T. Jameson, Bruce Reid, and I speak of recent releases (Arrival, Loving, Aquarius, Moonlight) and pay tribute to the late French New Wave cinematographer Raoul Coutard. Watch here.

Manchester Stone (This Week’s Movies)


Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea (Claire Folger/Roadside Attractions and Amazon Studios)

Links to my reviews published this week by the Herald and Seattle Weekly.

Manchester by the Sea. “A convincing portrayal of someone who just can’t get over it.”

Old Stone. “A cynical tale, with an especially poisonous bite in its final moments.”

Nocturnal Rules Allied (This Week’s Movies)


Marion Cotillard, Brad Pitt: Allied (courtesy Daniel Smith/Paramount Pictures)

Links to my reviews published this week in the Herald and Seattle Weekly, and etc.

Allied. “Glamour is part of the appeal – and also part of the movie’s game of asking whether a pretty face could be a mask for deception.”

Rules Don’t Apply. “It’s a relief to see a Hollywood film that doesn’t have anything to prove, or even a need to please—this feels like the least audience-tested movie in years.”

Moana. “The turquoise sea comes to life in all kinds of ways.”

Bad Santa 2. “Can’t help feeling like more of the same.”

Nocturnal Animals. “Finding the substance beneath those surfaces is not easy.”

The Love Witch. “Really knows what it’s doing. And it’s hilariously funny, sometimes in an almost subliminal way.”