Melanie Dishman's archive

Hunter Killer

Starring: Gerard Butler

Directed by: Donovan Marsh

Rated: PG-13

 

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Life Itself

Starring: Oscar Isaac, Olivia Wilde, Antonia Banderas

Directed by: Dan Fogelman

Rated: PG-13

 

Let this be a lesson: what works for television doesn’t always work for a feature film. Writer and director Dan Fogelman, the architect of the NBC hit series “This is Us,” spent his summer hiatus making this film for which the more correct title should have been “Life Bummer.”

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While this doesn’t have the emotional gut punch of “Munich,” it’s a solid companion piece for similar subject matter in its factual account about the capture of Adolf Eichmann, the SS officer largely responsible for Hitler’s “Final Solution,” which led to the deaths of over 6 million Jews during WWII.

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The romantic comedy genre has been overdue for a makeover and in this fresh new take is just the ticket. Easily, it’s one of the most entertaining movies I’ve seen this summer as it carries a great storyline while allowing entry into a culture I knew virtually nothing about.

Think of a storyline as a branch, with elements of the story hung like ornaments from it. Then think of the brightest, most colorful ornaments and that is “Crazy Rich Asians,” from start to finish.

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If not for recent events, which demonstrate that we still have far to go to repair racial relations in this country, Spike Lee’s new movie would be more like a history lesson — and it is, only it seems we’ve haven’t learned much of anything in the last 40 years.

Set during the turbulent ‘70s, the movie begins with a fictitious race baiter (Alec Baldwin) starring in a black and white movie touting white supremacy, but the story moves quickly to Colorado Springs where the police department is trying to integrate its ranks.

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