Once is never enough for the murky thriller ‘Bluebeard’

Like the great crime thrillers “Bluebeard” tries to be, it leaves you with more questions than answers. Unlike those same movies, however, it’s not smart enough to let viewers come up with the answers.

‘Kung Fu Dunk’ comes on and slams

It’s the last five minutes of the second half. Your team is down by three. There’s no stopping your ruthless opponents. You take the shot from the free-throw line. You miss. All hope is lost. The game is done.

It’s a war of tones in the tryhard Austrian flick ‘Sarajevo’

Never has a movie been as blindingly overexposed as “Sarajevo.”

‘Predestination’ runs laps around viewers

A good time travel movie makes the viewer naive. It’s a wonder that genre fare like it has stuck around for as long as...

Yorgos Lanthimos trades hilarity for horror in ‘The Killing of a Sacred Deer’

Foreign Film Fanatic Jacob Holley-Kline says there’s nothing funny about Yorgos Lanthimos’ “The Killing of a Sacred Deer,” but that didn't keep him from laughing at it.

For better and worse, ‘Look Who’s Back’ rides on its premise

Oliver Masucci plays a mean Hitler, one who, surprisingly, is hard to hate. Sure, he’s Hitler, but his time has passed. Or has it?

Even in ‘The Painting,’ the world is divided

If central metaphor of “The Painting” is too on-the-nose for some, it’s well deserved. The movie makes no qualms about its socially conscious aims....

Naked comes the ‘Stranger by the Lake’

The French drama thriller is bursting at the seams with sex, simulated and unsimulated.

‘Sword Master’ tries to hide its well-trod story

The fight scenes are grand, the performances are larger than life, and the set design is lavish.

The timely “XXY” dives deep

Sometimes, a simple narrative is best. It seems that the complex subject of intersexuality would lend itself to something more intricate. What's so good...

‘Beyond the Black Rainbow’ is beautiful, empty

Title: Director: Country: Release date: Rating: "Beyond the Black Rainbow" Panos Cosmatos Canada December 31, 2010 3/5 stars The annals of sci-fi are haunted by the campiness, and occasional genius, of the ‘70s and...

‘Hell of the Living Dead’ transcends nonsense

Horror has a history of reveling in disaster. Where other genres lock away their failures, horror holds a special place for its own. A...

‘Come Out and Play’ fails to justify its existence

In an impressive feat, “Come Out and Play” manages to destroy viewers’ sympathy and investment within the first 15 minutes. How is this accomplished?...

‘The Turin Horse’ is toil for viewers

There was a point in watching “The Turin Horse” where I wanted to curl up in a dark place somewhere and sleep forever. It’s depressing. But not in the “I want to cry” way. It’s depressing in the “Oh, so life is meaningless?” kind of way.

The good in ‘JeruZalem’ emphasizes the bad

Reviewing two zombie movies in a row seems excessive, but hear me out. “JeruZalem” is another in a long line of Israeli genre flicks...

Darkness reigns in ‘Burke and Hare’

Getting by is hard. This adage is so true in the British dark comedy “Burke and Hare” that it drives the titular characters to...

34 years on, there’s no movie like ‘Eight Diagram Pole Fighter’

I first watched the Shaw Brothers masterpiece “Eight Diagram Pole Fighter” on a Saturday with my now fiancée. I knew what the Shaw Brothers...

Dour, thy name is ‘The Ritual’

Really, “The Ritual” has an identity problem: is it a monster flick smart enough to look original but too dumb to work? Or is it a coming-of-age story for four friends whose trauma keeps them apart?

‘Baskin’ breaks through finals week blues

Finals week crushes even the strongest students. It's a stressful, grating time where it's not unheard of to break down every once and a...

‘The Raid: Redemption’ is mostly bad

Most martial arts movies have bad character development and stories. They’re only redeemed through their fight scenes. A swift kick to the jaw or...

“Sauna” just misses the mark

Horror has the potential to be the most culturally reflective genre in cinema. Beneath the darkness, beneath the bloodshed, there’s something deeper at work....

Revenge is cold as can be in ‘Bad Day for the Cut’

Nigel O’Neill leads the pack as protagonist Donal, the fiercely loyal son of Florence (Stella McCusker) who fills his days looking after his mother and their farm. One night, he drinks himself to sleep and wakes up to see a “fancy sort of boy” and his shadowy associate leaving his home. Inside, he finds his mother bludgeoned to death on the carpet, her mantle clock as the murder weapon.

Sound is king in the claustrophobic thriller ‘Office’

The noise of white collar Korea is essential to representing the horror of it.

‘District 9’ falls apart in the end

“District 9” was released seven years ago to critical acclaim. Much of it was well-deserved. Director Neill Blomkamp had managed, in many ways, to...

“Childish Games” is a treat for horror fans

Title: Director: Country: Genre: Release date: Rating: "Childish Games" Antonio Chavarrias Spain Horror March 9, 2012 4/5 Taking “It’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt” to the extreme, the compact Spanish thriller, “Childish Games”...

‘The Second Woman’ doesn’t trust its audience

Watching “The Second Woman” is a bizarre experience. To begin with, it's bad with some good sprinkled on. The good is that it's very...

In ‘Raw,’ the family that eats together, keeps together

Save the cannibalistic urges, relating to “Raw’s” protagonist Justine (Garance Marillier) as she navigates the bloody sex maze of Veterinarian school is easy. She’s...

“The Salvation” is anything but

Title: “The Salvation” Director: Kristian Levring Release date: May 22, 2014 Genre: Western Country: Denmark Rating: 2 out of 5 “The Salvation” is anything but By Jacob Holley-Kline...

‘I Saw the Devil’ is perverse fun

Revenge flicks have been done and redone to death. Man loves woman, woman is killed, man avenges woman’s death. Who avenges whom is interchangeable,...

‘Nymphomaniac: Vol. 1’ is lusty indulgence

Film: &nbsp Director: Release date: Rating: Country: "Nymphomaniac: Volume 1" Lars von Trier March 6, 2014 4/5 stars Denmark If the viewer could look into filmmaker Lars von Trier’s mind, chances are it would look almost...