Steve Carell

Film Review: Last Flag Flying

by Chris Piper on November 10, 2017

Time heals all wounds, mostly

Sal (Bryan Cranston), Mueller (Laurence Fishburne), and Doc (Steve Carell) on one last mission

Sal (Bryan Cranston), Mueller (Laurence Fishburne), and Doc (Steve Carell) on one last mission.

Here’s an interesting number, 18, which is the number of feature films directed by Richard Linklater. He’s made a film about rootless Austin hipsters, a film about 70’s high school escapades, a film about 80’s college escapades, a film about opening a school of rock, a film about a ragtag little league baseball team, a film about growing up, even a film about two erstwhile friends, their shared lover, and two hours of very tense conversation.  It’s an impressive number, 18, and would seemingly cover just about every conceivable theme. But whatever the plot, whichever the characters, wherever the setting, Linklater always makes films about time. And his 19th film, Last Flag Flying, is once again a film about time.

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Stone and Carell serve up a winner in still timely ’70s tennis drama      

Billie Jean King (Emma Stone) and Bobby Riggs (Steve Carell) play to the crowd at a press conference preceding the Battle of the Sexes.

Opening nearly 44 years to the day after the famous tennis match it’s named after, Battle of the Sexes chronicles the much publicized and widely watched (90 million viewers tuned in worldwide) 1973 match between then 29-year-old women’s champion Billie Jean King and former men’s champion 55-year-old Bobby Riggs. Billed as the ultimate Battle of the Sexes, the match became much more than just an exhibition game; it took on a life of its own, and, after King’s resounding defeat of Riggs, it became a touchstone for the growing women’s equality movement of the early 1970s. Husband and wife directing team Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris (Little Miss Sunshine) and screenwriter Simon Beaufoy (127 Hours; Slumdog Millionaire) wonderfully capture the zeitgeist of the period down to the smallest details, and have assembled a stellar cast to bring this often infuriating but always engaging true story to life.
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Spinning Platters film critics present their top 10 films of 2015

Spinning Platters film critics Carrie Kahn and Chad Liffmann each share their ten favorite films of 2015. Here is Chad’s list, presented in reverse-awesome order. Also check out Carrie‘s top ten list!

10.) Cinderella
Lily James emerging from her pumpkin-turned-coach.

Lily James emerging from her pumpkin-turned-coach.

A lack of the classic Disney song ‘Cinderelli!’ didn’t prevent Kenneth Branagh’s live action version of Cinderella from reaching magical heights. After a plethora of disappointing “re-imaginings” and “discover the true story” versions of classics — Maleficent, Alice in Wonderland, Oz the Great and Powerful — it was time for a movie to play it straight, and Cinderella did just that. With amazing performances from Lily James and Cate Blanchett and beautiful costumes and set designs, Cinderella (hopefully) represents the first in a new series of live action Disney remakes that stick to the strong source materials without egregious silly additions. (Read my full review of Cinderella here.)

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Film Review: The Big Short

by Chad Liffmann on December 11, 2015

One the most brilliantly infuriating films in years.

The men who knew too much.

The men who knew too much.

Let’s get this out there—Adam McKay, the director of Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgandy, should be nominated for an Oscar come February. Sorry, did I say an Oscar? I meant two Oscars, one for writing and one for directing The Big Short, adapted from the book, The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine, by Michael Lewis. The film follows the true story of a few key players in the housing credit bubble collapse of 2007, specifically, a few that saw the crash coming and invested in the collapse. Yes indeed, there are no heroes here. Just anti-heroes and a whole lot of a**hole douchebag jerk faces that f*cked all of us over! Whew, ok, now that I got that off my chest, I should mention that this is one of the best films of the year. The incredibly witty script keeps the otherwise confusing subject matter entertaining and comprehensive. The Big Short treats its story with flair and casual grace, rather than overloading it with unnecessary drama or uppity intellectuality. Basically, the true events speak for themselves. The filmmakers just supplied the superb cast, tight script, and brilliant tongue-in-cheek storytelling devices to frame it.

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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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Film Review: Foxcatcher

by Carrie Kahn on November 21, 2014

Carell’s performance is main event in otherwise slow wrestling movie

John du Pont (Steve Carell) gives wrestler Mark Schultz (Channing Tatum) an earful.

Director Bennett Miller returns to the big screen this month with Foxcatcher, his first feature since 2011’s Moneyball. Like that film, Foxcatcher also draws its inspiration from a true-life sports story, but, ultimately, Foxcatcher is really more of a psychological character study. While it’s a compelling look at descending madness, the film proves itself a rather static, chilly narrative, albeit one with some exceptionally strong performances.

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Film Review: The Way, Way Back

July 5, 2013

The first truly great summer movie has arrived today with the opening of The Way, Way Back, a delightful picture that adults and teenagers alike are sure to love. Co-writers Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, (who also penned The Descendants), in their directorial debut, have made a sweet, charming, funny film that is destined to […]

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Film Review: Despicable Me 2

July 3, 2013
http://youtu.be/HwXbtZXjbVE

Gru’s minions are so gosh darn adorable and hilarious!  The production team behind Despicable Me 2 knows this, hence the endless amounts of advertising for the film featuring the little yellow round bundles of gibberish-speaking joy.  Despicable Me 2 lacks the overall charm of the original, choosing instead to focus on minion mayhem, a tireless string of […]

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Film Review: The Incredible Burt Wonderstone

March 15, 2013
http://youtu.be/11TzXCWnUao

starring: Steve Carell, Steve Buscemi, Jim Carrey, Olivia Wilde, Alan Arkin screenplay:  John Francis Daley & Jonathan M. Goldstein director:  Don Scardino MPAA:  Rated PG-13 for sexual content, dangerous stunts, a drug related incident and language.

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Film Review: “Hope Springs”

August 9, 2012

starring: Meryl Streep, Tommy Lee Jones, Steve Carell written by: Vanessa Taylor directed by: David Frankel MPAA: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic content involving sexuality

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