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November 2013
Free Birds is Anything but Family Fun

I was expecting Chicken Run with a Thanksgiving twist. Instead, I got a mean-spirited tale that left a bad aftertaste.

  • Susan Ellingburg |
  • November 04, 2013 |
  • comments
 
Ender’s Game is Beautiful, Beguiling and a Bit of a Headscratcher

Despite getting bogged down in details that don't always add up, one can't ignore its greatest strength: plenty of fascinating big ideas.

  • Christa Banister |
  • November 01, 2013 |
  • comments
 
About Time Not Bad, but Nothing Special

There are some films you instantly become passionate about – a great romance especially. This wants to be one of those movies. It's not.

 
The Laughs are on Life Support in Last Vegas

Gives the audience no reason to care, creating yet another movie where a slew of A-list talent can't save it from being a stinker.

  • Christa Banister |
  • November 01, 2013 |
  • comments
 
Diana Paints a Dreary Portrait of a Disenchanted Princess

The romance between Princess Diana and Dr. Hasnat Khan is the focus of this film, but also its major problem for lacking passion.

  • Christian Hamaker |
  • November 01, 2013 |
  • comments
October 2013
The Counselor a Colossal Waste of A-List Talent

Ultimately a frustrating, cautionary tale on how drug trafficking doesn't pay. Does anyone really need to watch a movie to learn that?

  • Christa Banister |
  • October 25, 2013 |
  • comments
 
All is Lost is Man vs. Nature Done Spectacularly

Easily the sparsest film of the one-man survival genre, this virtually wordless film pairs intriguingly with current release Gravity.

 
Promising Parables Found in Switchfoot's Fading West

Christian rock-umentary serves as a touching lesson on the natures of faith, family, and life in the midst of change.

 
Controversy is Surprisingly Boring in The Fifth Estate

Who knew that such a gripping, ripped-from-the-pages plotline could be reduced to something hardly worthy of the big screen?

  • Christa Banister |
  • October 18, 2013 |
  • comments
 
12 Years a Slave the Definitive Slavery Film

We’ve seen slavery depicted on film before, but not like this, comparable to the depths Spielberg plunged us to in Schindler’s List.

October 2013
Powerful Testimony Delivers Church Girl

Suffers from a few trademark flaws that mar faith-based films, but succeeds in telling a story that will resonate with most audiences.

 
Carrie Could Make You See Red

This remake lacks nuance, is spiritually arid and, for most of its running time, visually dull, no matter how much blood is spilled.

  • Christian Hamaker |
  • October 18, 2013 |
  • comments
 
A Brainy Stallone Aids Escape Plan

Despite the grim setting and violence, it's a fun film for those who fondly recall the heyday of Stallone and Schwarzenegger.

  • Susan Ellingburg |
  • October 18, 2013 |
  • comments
 
Hanks & Greengrass Bring Captain Phillips' True Story to Life

Tom Hanks carries the weight of this observational piracy story with a control that is all at once intellectual, primal, and brittle.

 
Romantic Spark Missing from Otherwise Handsome Romeo and Juliet

Doesn't redefine Shakespeare's tragic love story for a new generation, but it should find a receptive audience among younger viewers.

  • Christian Hamaker |
  • October 11, 2013 |
  • comments
 
Faith and Perseverance Frame Linsanity

What really sets Linsanity apart from other documentaries is the presence of faith basketball star Jeremy Lin gives to his interviews.

 
Grace Unplugged Hits a Few of the Right Notes

A heartwarming message and strong production values are bogged down by an unnecessary dichotomy between faith and using our talents.

  • Christa Banister |
  • October 04, 2013 |
  • comments
 
Simple Story, Visual Mastery Mark Mesmerizing Gravity

Your response to this movie will depend on which element of filmmaking—originality, characters, or performances—means the most to you.

  • Christian Hamaker |
  • October 04, 2013 |
  • comments
 
Enough Said a Moving Showcase for Two of TV's Finest

The appeal goes well beyond a "will they or won't they" formula, showing how our instincts to prevent a wounded heart can hurt others.

 
Formulaic Runner Runner Isn’t Worth Betting On

A year out from Argo, a Ben Affleck film is coasting by with sloppy editing, poor cinematography and basic disregard for good dialogue.

  • Christa Banister |
  • October 04, 2013 |
  • comments
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