Winter’s Bone

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Three stars

“Thump Milton!” Ree yowls at the figure weaving away amongst the cattle below.  It’s a funny name but this isn’t a time for laughing.  Ree needs to find her Daddy or at least his remains before the cold comes and the bondsman kicks her family from the house.  The trees tower over her, the keepers of Ozark secrets.  A table in the woods is smeared with squirrel guts.  “Goddamn you Thump.” Ree says and travels home to a silence as wide as a reservoir.  For a moment she finds solace in the strings of an old banjo, in her kid sisters jubilant trampoline hops, then she bends over the leaking sink and spits her teeth out.

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The New World

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Four stars

Reflections in the river, giant ships coursing to new land.  A wonderous, arty Pocahontas movie.  More sci-fi in it’s lyricism than that other Pocahontas movie Avatar.

Spotlight

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Three stars

Sometimes I’m swallowed by my mind and can do no right.  Bad habit trap.  I wanna be a good boy Mark Ruffalo.  Pouring all my time and energy into exposing the Catholic church, neglecting my marriage.  So Keaton can gaze down the long bridge of his nose to me.  The miles of distance between the Boston basement.  He’ll whisper, “Good job” and I’ll be whole.  He’ll caress me and sing to me in his Mother’s arm and carry me to sleep on the backs of a thousand rough-spun balloons.  This is one of those perfect Hollywood movies, totally entertaining while on and once over immediately forgettable.  We’re larger than movies.  We’re life.

Hamlet 2000

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Two stars

Your favorite 90’s weirdos in power suits and knitwear.  They shuffle through Manhattan high-rises.  They lounge in Blockbuster videos.  They’re trying to appropriate iambic pentameter for a burgeoning internet.  They’re pained and earnest and boring.  The texture is glass and steel.  The plot is The Lion King.  Also Hamlet.

D by: Michael Almereyda P by: John De Borman W by: Bill Shakes E by: Kristina Boden M by: Carter Burrell, w/Ethan Hawke, Julia Stiles, Kyle MacLachlan, Liev Schreiber, Diane Venora, Sam Shepard, Bill Murray, Paul Bartel, etc…, 112 min, USA, 2000