james frazier reviews

Review: “Total Recall”

It’s fitting that Len Wiseman’s “Total Recall” remake features a gigantic robot army, given that his films have always demonstrated the bare minimum level of interest in actual people. That’s why Wiseman was a particularly poor choice for adapting Paul Verhoeven’s 1990 masterpiece about a man who discovers that his memories are false and he’s […]

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Review: “Dark Horse”

Todd Solondz’s films are trips into abysses of intense misery, seriously disturbing examinations of lower-middle-class suburban despair. Almost irreverently infused with shocking dark humor and achingly unsentimental, his better works are beautifully strange pieces of filmmaking, aggressively painful stories that manage to feel profound even as they resemble rides through an emotional hell. Then there’s

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Review: “Savages”

This is the Oliver Stone I like. In recent years, the famously intense, quasi-loony auteur has produced one oddity after another, from a big budget catastrophe (“Alexander”) to a saintly solemn portrayal of 9/11 responders (“World Trade Center”) to a schizophrenic hit-piece on President 43 (“W.”). None of them reached the thematic highs of “Platoon,”

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Review: “Magic Mike”

“Magic Mike” is certain to disappoint a lot of people. Anyone familiar with Steven Soderbergh knew that his latest work certainly couldn’t be the sexy, slick male stripper fantasy that Warner Bros’ marketing campaign has made it out to be. Those expecting a semi-erotic, amusing romp likely won’t leave satisfied by the 10 minutes or

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Review: “That’s My Boy”

“That’s My Boy” begins with a felony being committed, but the movie itself is only a serious misdemeanor. Film critics share a mutually understood sense of dread every time we are forced to see the latest of Adam Sandler’s Happy Madison productions, which are all ceaseless assaults on the good sensibilities of those who enjoy

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Review: “Prometheus”

Given its pedigree and hype, one would expect “Prometheus” to have Great Film written all over it. This is an even more important label than Oscar Material, because Great Films are the ones that set the standards and populate the coffee table books, becoming the currency of Best lists and endless debates about what works

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