stephen frears

The Lance Armstrong biopic ‘The Program’ is engaging and interesting, yet doesn’t add anything new to a narrative that has enjoyed exhaustive media coverage.

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My Beautiful Laundrette, out now in a new, restored 2K digital transfer on Criterion Blu-ray, takes place in a specific setting and with such specific characters that, even though the place and time feels very unfamiliar, is rendered relatable with an expressionistic tone by a humanistic director who coached some true, raw performances — including one from then up-and-comer Daniel Day-Lewis.

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Although it’s far from Frears’ best work, Philomena is a solid film that offers the chance for Coogan and Dench to spend much of their time alone together onscreen in discussion of everything from trashy romance novels to the existence, and nature, of a higher power.

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Author Katherine Rife plumbs the depths of some of the most notorious, graphic, and bloody b-movies and exploitation films of the last 60 years as she looks at the influences of one of cinema’s most provocative talents in her book If You Like Quentin Tarantino…

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