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      Bright Lights Film Journal

      Bright Lights Film Journal is not a Tomatometer-approved publication. Reviews from this publication only count toward the Tomatometer® when written by the following Tomatometer-approved critic(s): Dan Callahan, Matthew Sorrento, Tony Macklin.

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      Rating Title | Year Author Quote
      Meek's Cutoff (2010) Matthew Sorrento Of Time and Place: An Interview with John Raymond on Meek's Cutoff
      Posted May 08, 2011
      Cronos (1993) Matthew Sorrento The truly child-bound perspectives of The Devil's Backbone and Pan's Labyrinth are still to come, though Aurora has flights of del Torian wonder.
      Posted Dec 07, 2010
      Modus Operandi (2009) Matthew Sorrento "Loving the Bad: An Interview with Frankie Latina and Sasha Grey on Modus Operandi"
      Posted Nov 28, 2010
      Kawasaki's Rose (2009) Matthew Sorrento Rose cleverly uses its contemporary fictional narrative to depict documentary filmmaking's process of revealing truth.
      Posted Nov 24, 2010
      Machine Gun McCain (1969) Matthew Sorrento [A] minor, worthy entry [...] Cassavetes, like Gene Hackman, had access to a reserve of energy.
      Posted Nov 16, 2010
      For Colored Girls (2010) Matthew Sorrento [Perry] pulls off disturbing moments by finding conviction and vulnerability in his performers.
      Posted Nov 06, 2010
      The Social Network (2010) Matthew Sorrento [Network's rise and fall] relates to the classic gangster film narrative ... More directly, [the film] positions itself as a new Citizen Kane, with its protagonist reaching the heights of a communication empire.
      Posted Oct 02, 2010
      Catfish (2010) Matthew Sorrento The final narrative movement ... lets the early part of the film rest as the weaker premise that it is.
      Posted Sep 24, 2010
      A Woman, a Gun and a Noodle Shop (2009) Matthew Sorrento The Coens' Loren Visser (M. Emmet Walsh) is cold blooded, but to see the new hitman's method of silent murder will unveil the real noirish heart of darkness.
      Posted Sep 17, 2010
      Eat Pray Love (2010) Matthew Sorrento Rodney [Dangerfield] may have cracked about "praying after you eat," but this film reflects the need to surfeit before finding balance.
      Posted Aug 13, 2010
      Inception (2010) Matthew Sorrento (S)tories should show, not tell, and Nolan keeps telling us that he can't tell this story.
      Posted Jul 15, 2010
      The Last Airbender (2010) Matthew Sorrento Fantasy works best off linear narrative clarity, while many scene transitions whirl like air in the hands of Aang. Yet, Night ignites the separate moments with visual magic worthy of his mythology.
      Posted Jul 02, 2010
      Mystery Train (1989) Matthew Sorrento (O)nce it plants itself within, it remains a vivid cultural memory.
      Posted Jun 22, 2010
      Jonah Hex (2010) Matthew Sorrento The filmmakers try to squeeze action from their trampling of a genre.
      Posted Jun 17, 2010
      Metropolis (1927) Matthew Sorrento The new release of Metropolis, fully restored to just shy of Fritz Lang's original vision, is an example of the grandest telepathy: what was thought to be lost forever.
      Posted Jun 12, 2010
      Bluebeard (2009) Matthew Sorrento [S]omething very different and, as usual for the filmmaker, very fresh.
      Posted Jun 02, 2010
      Two in the Wave (2009) Matthew Sorrento A tribute that also serves as an introduction ... For those of us already in the know, the film plays like a passionate return to a great conversation.
      Posted May 20, 2010
      Babies (2010) Matthew Sorrento Babies is one of the most human fly-on-the-wall docs I've ever come across.
      Posted May 11, 2010
      Exit Through the Gift Shop (2010) Matthew Sorrento Here comes a rich smell drawn from a load of bullsh-t.
      Posted Apr 19, 2010
      Hot Tub Time Machine (2010) Matthew Sorrento Cusack seem(s) like a casting error [in this hilarious comedy], a cameo miscast into a lead.
      Posted Mar 30, 2010
      The Runaways (2010) Matthew Sorrento After all this, we can't help but ask, why Cherie, anyway? ... Shine on, Joan.
      Posted Mar 19, 2010
      Revanche (2008) Matthew Sorrento The film's first half uses a restrained style to build interest, while the latter, as clever in its construction as it is human, elevates the characters of this potential potboiler.
      Posted Mar 09, 2010
      I Am a Fugitive From a Chain Gang (1932) Matthew Sorrento The film suggests the denial of the common worker, whose service to industry is only as worthy as his social status.
      Posted Feb 02, 2010
      (500) Days of Summer (2009) Tony Macklin The independent film 500 Days of Summer is as refreshing as hot air. It's as formulaic and calculating as the Hallmark greeting cards to which it feigns superiority.
      Posted Aug 12, 2009
      Avanti! (1972) Tony Macklin There is a lot of Billy Wilder in [Avanti!], including the idea that age is a state of mind. The film doesn't all work, [but] when the rigid Armbruster warms up on a sunny rock,... Wilder is telling us something that is more than just fun.
      Posted Mar 24, 2009
      Sunset Blvd. (1950) Tony Macklin Sunset Boulevard's entire point of view is based on a gimmick. Whether one considers it an "artistic cheat" or a valid and audacious device depends up his ability and desire to suspend his disbelief.
      Posted Mar 09, 2009
      About Schmidt (2002) Tony Macklin About Schmidt drives another nail in the coffin of irony. It is as lacking in irony as its blatant crayon drawing ending. It's a synthetic antidote to an ironic world, a superficial contrivance that is getting voluminous applause from those who sho
      Posted Feb 02, 2009
      Friday Night Lights (2004) Tony Macklin Friday Night Lights is a feel-good movie, but it's not real. It's a hard-hitting Hallmark greeting card. It's no wonder it appealed to Larry King %u2014 it's safe, easy, conventional, and feigns incisiveness.
      Posted Feb 02, 2009
      Million Dollar Baby (2004) Tony Macklin Million Dollar Baby adds to Clint Eastwood's legacy in ways we might not have expected. It explores emotional terrain as he hasn't done before, and it gives him a kind of role that he has never had before.
      Posted Feb 02, 2009
      Glory Road (2006) Tony Macklin Glory Road doesn't have any of the individual moments that humanized Hoosiers, The Rookie, and Miracle. It's a feel-good sports movie by the numbers.
      Posted Feb 02, 2009
      A Prairie Home Companion (2006) Dan Callahan It is obviously the film of a master and certainly feels like a swan song.
      Posted Nov 25, 2008
      Hairspray (2007) Matthew Sorrento Even if the new Hairspray seems a welcome return to camp for Travolta, his mock seriousness is as frozen as ever.
      Posted Jul 10, 2008
      Zodiac (2007) Tony Macklin It's a deceptively rich film.
      Posted Jul 18, 2007
      Blast of Silence (1961) Tom Sutpen A model thriller and character study, it takes us step by step through Frankie Bono's process in setting up his prey for the eventual kill.
      Posted May 12, 2005
      A Damsel in Distress (1937) Alan Vanneman George and Ira Gershwin probably turned out more first-rate popular songs than any of their competitors, including Irving Berlin.
      Posted Mar 31, 2002
      Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988) Robert Castle Fantasy as escape and entertainment is one thing, but one wonders whether Who Framed Roger Rabbit? is just fantasy-as-denial.
      Posted Dec 09, 2001
      The Saragossa Manuscript (1965) Gary Mark Morris Enthralling good company.
      Posted Jan 01, 2000
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