Author Archive for Tricia Olszewski

Reviewed: The Counselor

You can’t just plaster Cameron Diaz with makeup and turn her into Tommy Lee Jones. Rather, let’s take a step back: You can’t take a celebrated novelist and turn him into a remarkable—nor, apparently, even mediocre—screenwriter. The Counselor, directed by Ridley Scott, is Cormac McCarthy’s first big-screen script. And No Country for Old Men it's not. [...]

Mother of George, Reviewed

In many cultures, eager parents of adult couples shamelessly nag their kids about when they’re going to give them a grandchild. In traditional Nigerian culture, parents may not only nag, but dictate how many babies the woman’s going to have, what she's going to name her firstborn (which, of course, has to be a boy), provide [...]

Runner Runner, Reviewed

Oh, Batfleck. How did you nosedive from Oscar-winning Best Picture director (which is water-cooler distinct from Best Director, for Argo) to agreeing to don a superhero costume (again!) to starring as a corrupt badass in a throwaway film such as Runner Runner in the space of a year? Ben Affleck, you are not a corrupt [...]

Reviewed: Rush

In Ron Howard’s Rush, Chris Hemsworth is the charismatic feel-gooder who, with his shining eyes and swoony smile, will fill the seats playing 1970s British Formula 1 racing legend James Hunt. The lesser-known Daniel Brühl, as Hunt’s Austrian rival/frenemy Niki Lauda, goes head-to-head, both fictionally and professionally, with the actor best known to audiences as [...]

DC Shorts, Showcase 7: Mimes, Starving Dogs, and a Claw Machine

DC Shorts' Showcase 7 largely skews serious—except when it focuses on mimes, in which case it’s just irritating. Three of the eight tell of strained parent-child relationships; there’s a documentary about a group who tends to dogs in an impoverished area; and a nearly incomprehensible, sort of doc-like drama about a Malaysian man who...does something [...]

DC Shorts, Showcase 6: A Bucket Full of Something

See DC Shorts' Showcase 6 to laugh. Or be charmed. Or be moved by stories of love—which are funny and charming. But politics and international social commentary? Perhaps too complex for a 17-minute film. Likewise, sometimes freaky tales need a bit more context. But the failures in this showcase breeze by so quickly you may [...]

Adore, Reviewed

You know how young, handsome guys are always trying to bash each other’s faces in because they’re screwing the other guy’s mother? No? Well, such a soap-opera-ready love quadrangle is possible—and treated quite earnestly—in Adore, directed and co-adapted by Anne Fontaine (Coco Before Chanel). Perhaps you’re thinking that "adapted" is an awfully formal word to [...]

Thérèse, Reviewed

In 2001, Amélie introduced Audrey Tautou to the world. But if just the thought of that film and its cloyingly cute star makes your teeth hurt, the antidote is Thérèse. The late Claude Miller’s final, leisurely drama, which he adapted along with Natalie Carter from a novel (though it’s also a remake of a 1962 [...]

Terms and Conditions May Apply, Reviewed

“Dumb fucks.” That’s what Mark Zuckerberg wrote in an IM chat with a friend shortly after launching Facebook, offering his redacted pal all manner of data on the social networking site’s then-4,000 users.
At least that’s what director Cullen Hoback claims in Terms and Conditions May Apply, a documentary on what its title spells out—the legalities [...]

Crystal Fairy, Reviewed

When you’re at a party and higher than the stars, chances are you’re either in the mood for group hugs or bashing your fist into the nearest face. Crystal Fairy, written and directed by Sebastian Silva (2009’s The Maid), centers on Jamie (Michael Cera), who feels the former one night and the latter the next [...]