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Out in Theaters: ‘SUFFRAGETTE’

We have an inherent tendency to want to give the benefit of the doubt to a piece of art with “good intentions”. In the case of Suffragette, Sarah Gavron’s English women rights docudrama, the well-meaning intention is there in spades but the product itself is bungled and bandaged, thick with platitudes and disastrously short on emotion. For a feature documenting a major historical event that saw children torn from the arms of their mothers, clumps of activists jailed and tortured for sticking to their egalitarian beliefs and women brutalized for expressing their desire to be able to vote alongside the men, Suffragette is almost appallingly, unforgivably devoid of organic impact. Read More

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Out in Theaters: CINDERELLA

From the first time they put pen to paper, the House of Mouse changed things. Classics from Snow White to Sleeping Beauty capitalized on groundbreaking innovation, brokered a new medium for entertainment and launched the phenomenon of the Disney princess, a cultural landmark that lasted for decades. Maybe it was my being a teenager and all, but from what I gathered, that cultural landmark dried up around Y2K, petering out with a string of computer animated duds. Dinosaur, Atlantis, Brother Bear and Chicken Little all represented a low point for the imaginative power of the ubiquitous studio, especially when juxtaposed with the meteoric rise of Pixar. With a certifiable hit in Princess and the Frog reviving the old-fashioned charm of the Disney engine a year earlier, Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland arrived on the scene to dominate the box office to the tune of a billion dollars. Dollar signs in their eyes, the once great studio turned its attention to recycling old mainstays with new CGI to the collective groan of people everywhere. Read More