Steve Coogan

There are few sight gags or throwaway lines, but for the most part the humor of ‘Alan Partridge’ stems from the characters and central story. This makes for film that is amusing throughout.

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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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What Maisie Knew is a perceptive adaptation of Henry James’ 1897 novel about a child stuck in the middle of a custody battle between divorced parents in London. If you want to see a film where secret service agents, military, and the highest ranking officials in the U.S. government are mowed down in bloody gunfire and subjected to humiliation, Olympus Has Fallen is for you.

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Currently playing at this year’s Seattle International Film Festival, and in full release today, What Maisie Knew should be commended for breaking the traditional mold of children in movies. Indeed, while it isn’t always pretty, the film at least has the courage to commit to its message: the emotional and spiritual protection of children.

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