Author's posts

Come to Daddy

His father left when he was five years old. 30 years later, Norval Greenwood (Elijah Wood) receives a letter from his old man, hoping that the son will visit the father. That’s the setup for “Come to Daddy,” a film that keeps changing direction so often that it’s almost a miracle the filmmakers don’t give …

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Overcomer

There’s about half a movie in “Overcomer.” The other half or so is a pretty half-hearted sermon. Neither half is particularly worthwhile, and the whole is cheap, cheesy, and, to put it charitably, churchy. That’s the method of director Alex Kendrick, who has helmed and, with his brother Stephen, co-written several faith-based movies. (The brothers …

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Breakthrough

There’s never any doubt that things will work out just fine in “Breakthrough,” and not only because Roxann Dawson’s movie is based on a true story. It’s also because of the film’s overtly Christian approach, which leans strongly toward the evangelical side of its discussion of faith and religion. The story focuses on Joyce Smith (Chrissy …

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After

“After” opens with some narration about how certain moments in life seem to define a person, and from there, the clichés pretty much don’t stop. If there’s a defining moment in the life of Tessa Young (Josephine Langford), it’s either meeting, initially being annoyed by, falling in love with, being heart-broken by, or reuniting with …

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Captive State

The thinking behind “Captive State” is admirable. The execution is far from that. Here is a thriller about an alien invasion that mostly avoids mass destruction and firefights. Instead, the story follows the humans on the ground, as they go through their routines and, eventually, execute an elaborate plan of subterfuge to try to start …

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To Dust

Some thoughts are nearly impossible to shake, especially for those of a certain mindset and/or under certain circumstances. For Shmuel (Géza Röhrig), it’s the thought of his recently deceased wife’s decomposing corpse. She died of cancer, and now, the widower, a Hasidic Jew, has nightmares of her big toe, blackened and decaying, splitting at the …

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Blood Brother

The screenplay for “Blood Brother” establishes an intriguing premise, filled with broken alliances, conflicted allegiances, and a dark secret from the past that could either bring together a group of old friends or destroy whatever remains of their bond. Then, one of those old friends definitively shows that he’s a madman, bent on bloody and …

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A-X-L

Here’s another story of a boy and his dog—except that the dog is a robotic killing machine, developed by an amoral arms manufacturer for the United States military. What could possibly go wrong? The answer, expectedly, is a lot, and that doesn’t have anything to do with the details of the plot of this strange …

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