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The White Ribbon
Perfect 66 Points 2010

This dazzling German movie shows the sociological antecedents of Nazism in ways both fresh and timeless. A penetrating societal examination unprecedented in its knowingness, it would be a landmark no matter which nation it examined. That it elucidates the generation of Germans who grew up to fo…

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WikChip Image Hand Kissing: Minimal Family Affection
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The Last Station
Really Great 83 Points 2009

Celebrity, genius, marital complexity and misguided idealism collide in this loose recreation of Leo Tolstoy’s last year on earth. A resplendent movie – Helen Mirren’s performance and costumes alone are worth the price of admission – The Last Station doesn’t require the viewer to know that Cou…

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WikChip Image Sofya seduced her husband time & again.
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A River Runs Th...
Really Great 83 Points 1992

Male bonding, tragic beauty and fly fishing merge into one – and exceptional writing runs through it. With apologies to Norman Maclean, that takeoff from his lauded autobiographical novella describes this treasured movie of the same name. Beautifully constructed by director and narrator Robert …

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WikChip Video Even the trailer brings a lump to the...
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Saving Mr. Banks
Really Great 66 Points 2013

Mary Poppins has a fascinating and affecting backstory. Who knew. Yet it’s not a surprise when you think about it. Then, how much have we thought about Mary Poppins? Deeply that is. We’ve watched it, each of us, first as kids, loving it like no other movie. It’s the perfect kid’s movie afte…

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WikChip Video Don't love this? You're dead.
There's No Busi...
Really Great 66 Points 1954

There’s No Business Like Show Business and there was no show business phonier than vaudeville, till movies. So an overtly phony movie about vaudeville makes for a phony convergence. It was perhaps the last of the musical extravaganzas, a calorically rich compendium of Irving Berlin’s showstoppi…

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WikChip Video Marilyn Monroe & Donald O'Connor: Sta...
The Aviator
Really Great 83 Points 2004

Howard Hughes is a name that evokes American mythos to those of us of a certain age. He made and flew the fastest planes, made and directed the biggest movies and was the world’s richest man. Most of us forget about the movies, enormous though they were. Martin Scorsese – cinema’s number one …

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WikChip Video Love Kate lovingly looking at Howard
The Man Who Kne...
Really Great 66 Points 2015

Harry Potter echoes throughout The Man Who Knew Infinity, the biopic of Srinivasa Ramanujan, a math wizard from humble circumstances who rose to prominence at an opulent and august English institution. Set in the ornate halls of 1910s-era Trinity College, it profiles an amazingly able – and rea…

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WikChip Video Who was Ramanujan? Math Wizard
Wonder Woman
Really Great 83 Points 2017

Miss Israel kicks ass as Wonder Woman. But that’s not all, not by a long shot. Wonder Woman is a perfect superhero movie, deeply of the genre, yet soaring above it. That puts it in the small pantheon of DC movies, deadly earnest in the DC tradition, a la The Dark Knight

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WikChip Video That's right, the women are smarter.
The African Queen
Really Great 66 Points 1951

Grownup romances don’t get better than this, with Bogie and the Great Kate as middle-aged fogies surmounting countless obstacles on their way to love and glory. Long celebrated as one of the all-time greats, The African Queen is less well known than Casablanca_…

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WikChip Image Two adults seizing the day: Bogie & Kate
War Horse
Great 83 Points 2011

Stephen Spielberg’s War Horse is an instant classic in several categories:

  • War Movies: WWI’s trench warfare, poison gas and mismatch between pre-industrial and industrial warfare are vividly shown, albeit without the explicit savagery of Saving Private Ryan
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WikChip Image Bringing Swords to a Gun Fight
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