J.K. Simmons

Film Review: The Snowman

by Carrie Kahn on October 20, 2017

This Snowman will leave you cold       

Detective Harry Hole (Michael Fassbender) searches for a killer, and we search for a good movie. Which of us will be successful?

Whenever a movie is based on a book, there are always those who will passionately argue that “the book was better.” Sometimes they’re right and sometimes they’re wrong, but, in the case of The Snowman, which opens today, I firmly believe the-book-is-better-crowd is correct, and I haven’t even read the book upon which the film is based. But, I have seen the movie, and, after watching it, I cannot possibly fathom that anything could be worse than this nonsensical, hastily thrown together, boring mess.
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Film Review: Patriots Day

by Carrie Kahn on January 13, 2017

Flawed but well executed, third Berg/Wahlberg collaboration is worth seeing

Boston police officer Tommy Saunders (Mark Wahlberg, center) assists FBI Special Agent Rick DesLauriers (Kevin Bacon, l.) and Police Commissioner Ed Davis (John Goodman, r.) with their investigation.

The third time may be the charm for director Peter Berg and actor Mark Wahlberg, who collaborated on two previous films (Deepwater Horizon and Lone Survivor) with middling results. Patriots Day, their new film, is definitely the best of the trio, although it’s not without its problems. Another film based on a true story, Patriots Day recounts the Boston Marathon bombing of 2013 and the investigation and manhunt that immediately followed. Working from a script based on the 2015 book Boston Strong: A City’s Triumph Over Tragedy, Berg and a quartet of screenwriters manage to bring the recent and familiar story alive without glorifying or exploiting the tragedy or the bombers, who are secondary characters here, serving only the plot.
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Film Review: The Accountant

by Carrie Kahn on October 14, 2016

Convoluted, violent story doesn’t add up to a picture worth seeing   

Accountants Dana (Anna Kendrick) and Chris (Ben Affleck) are puzzled by some discrepancies they discover on the books at a robotics firm.

Ben Affleck has always had a sort of a cold, distant quality; showcasing warmth and deep emotion isn’t his strong suit. Such chilliness is what made him both a decent Batman and so good in a role like the one he had in Gone Girl, in which he played such a standoffish husband that he easily seemed capable of murdering his wife. So it’s not surprising that director Gavin O’Connor (best known for the 2011 cult hit Warrior) would cast Affleck in his new film The Accountant, an action thriller in which Affleck plays Christian “Chris” Wolff, an imperturbable accountant and assassin with a high-functioning form of autism who connects better with numbers than with people. The problem, though, is that O’Connor and screenwriter Bill Dubuque (The Judge) play much of Chris’s condition for laughs, and the Rain Man-as-Jason Bourne premise doesn’t succeed nearly as well as the filmmakers probably hoped it would.
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Film critics Carrie and Chad on who will – and who should – win the 87th Academy Awards

The 87th Academy Awards air this Sunday, February 22nd on ABC at 5:00pm PST (red carpet coverage begins at 4:00, if you want to dish on fashion highs and lows). There are some tight races this year – Best Picture and Best Actor are especially hard to call. Here are Carrie and Chad’s predictions – and hopes – for the major categories:
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