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Review: ‘The Finest Hours’ is a tension-filled adventure about real life heroism

Review: ‘The Finest Hours’ is a tension-filled adventure about real life heroism

By MARK VIOLA Of the various branches of the U.S. armed forces, I probably know the least about the U.S. Coast Guard. I’d wager that’s probably true for most people…

Review: ‘Kung Fu Panda 3’ provides another round of anthropomorphic kung fu

Review: ‘Kung Fu Panda 3’ provides another round of anthropomorphic kung fu

By MARK VIOLA I tend to hold family movies, especially animated films, to just as high a standard as I do other movies. There is no reason to pander to…

Review: ‘Room’ tells a story filled with horror that somehow manages to be hopeful

Review: ‘Room’ tells a story filled with horror that somehow manages to be hopeful

By MARK VIOLA Each January, once the Academy Award nominations are announced, I begin a quest to see every Best Picture nominee I hadn’t already seen by that point. It’s…

Review: Michael Bay surprises by making an actual good movie about Benghazi in ‘13 Hours’

Review: Michael Bay surprises by making an actual good movie about Benghazi in ‘13 Hours’

By MARK VIOLA It’s impossible for me to go into a movie inside a vacuum, especially considering how much film news I read on a weekly basis, but I do…

Review: ‘Carol’ is a powerful romance with two of last year’s best performances

Review: ‘Carol’ is a powerful romance with two of last year’s best performances

By MARK VIOLA I know we’re quite a ways into 2016, but I still have some unfinished business when it comes to 2015, thanks mostly to the fact that a…

Review: Wonderful ‘When Marnie Was Here’ may be Studio Ghibli’s final movie

Review: Wonderful ‘When Marnie Was Here’ may be Studio Ghibli’s final movie

By MARK VIOLA I’ve never made it a secret that Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki is one of my favorite directors of all time, having been responsible for such movies as…

Review: DiCaprio gives the performance of his career in brutal, powerful ‘Revenant’

Review: DiCaprio gives the performance of his career in brutal, powerful ‘Revenant’

By MARK VIOLA According to Webster, revenant is defined as  “one who returns to a former place after a prolonged absence.” An alternative definition reads “the ghost of a dead…

Review: ‘The Hateful Eight’ isn’t Tarantino’s best, but it’s still lots of bloody fun

Review: ‘The Hateful Eight’ isn’t Tarantino’s best, but it’s still lots of bloody fun

By MARK VIOLA I’ve been reviewing movies for more than nine years now, so I have to be more careful about repeating myself with these little introductions. And that’s extra…

Review: ‘The Big Short’ turns the housing market collapse into a fun movie

Review: ‘The Big Short’ turns the housing market collapse into a fun movie

By MARK VIOLA In 2011, I saw “Moneyball,” a film written by Aaron Sorkin (“The Social Network”) and starring Brad Pitt, which managed to take a seemingly boring subject–baseball analytics–and…

Review: ‘The Danish Girl’ tells powerful story with two wonderful performances

Review: ‘The Danish Girl’ tells powerful story with two wonderful performances

By MARK VIOLA Although he has been acting for some time, it would still be accurate to say Eddie Redmayne burst onto the cinematic landscape last year with his transformative…

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