REVIEW: The Purge: Election Year [2016]

“Is murder our new religion?” The escalation of terror has dialed up a few more notches as writer/director James DeMonaco takes us further down the hole of first world genocide in The Purge: Election Year. What began behind fortified walls and a false sense of modest superiority to show how no one was safe when bloodlust, greed, and jealousy ruled mankind soon entered the outdoors to find the government blatantly enforcing its own thinly veiled mantra of “kill the poor” when the public stopped doing it for them. The only…

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REVIEW: The Purge: Anarchy [2014]

“We’ve lost our souls to attain this peace” I enjoyed last year’s suspense horror The Purge a lot—despite high expectations for the premise actually going where it needed to prove more than another generic home invasion flick. Writer/director James DeMonaco gave us the graphic brutality its conceit promised through its claustrophobically bottled skirmish between malicious debutantes and an (not so) innocent family trying to survive while also lending the social commentary at its back a voice. I use the parentheses because it just so happened that the Sandin’s patriarch was…

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REVIEW: Captain America: The Winter Soldier [2014]

“I thought you were more than just a shield?” Despite what’s been said the past couple weeks, Marvel still hasn’t released that “A” film quite yet. Don’t get me wrong: the universe they have created is unparalleled and possessed by a consistency of success on par with Disney’s other child Pixar, but has there been a The Dark Knight? An X-Men 2 even? Not yet. The closest we’ve come is probably The Avengers for finding a way to integrate the many disparate storylines into the series’ most standalone feature to…

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REVIEW: Zero Dark Thirty [2012]

“Some hummus, tabouli—I don’t know what that is—some figs” I have a very clear recollection of the day Osama bin Laden was killed in Pakistan because I was having dinner in India when a friend Facebook messaged me from America with the news. With no fanfare or announcement, Hindi reporters on TV were my only point of confirmation before bed. Naively (stupidly) while waiting to leave Jaipur for Ahmedabad as lobby televisions played soaps instead of breaking news the next morning, I allowed a local paper to interview me about…

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REVIEW: End of Watch [2012]

“Comfortable footwear. Police is all about comfortable footwear.” If David Ayer is to be believed, life as a South Central L.A. cop is a ticking time bomb ready to explode. What the region isn’t, however, is a cesspool of corrupt officers on the take forming yet one more gang of street thugs to combat. This is a new development in a career built on the nefarious deeds of men in power and the amorality of fresh blood taken under their wings. The writer/director of Harsh Times, Street Kings, and scribe…

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REVIEW: The Grey [2012]

“Live and die on this day” Struggling to find meaning in a life of solitude by punishing himself to self-exile in a desolate world caught between the pristine white backdrop of untouched snow and the turbulent mass of flesh populating it as a refuge from decent society, Ottway (Liam Neeson) wonders if the time has come to retire. Writing a note to the woman he loves but can no longer see except in memory, he recalls a poem from his childhood and wonders if his fight has led him to…

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REVIEW: Warrior [2011]

“I think I liked you better when you were a drunk” Considering it’s only its third Friday in theatres and already has been demoted to one screening per day should mean Warrior isn’t worth your time. The amount of praise heaped upon it by both critics and fans alike would disagree. A crowd-pleaser looking to earn the same hearts Rocky did over three decades ago—winning the Oscar for Best Picture—Gavin O’Connor‘s return to the sports genre has the appeal to transcend its MMA stigma. Like he did directing Miracle, O’Connor…

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