The Pitt News

More Anderson than Perry: ‘Dear White People’ obliterates stereotypes in sharp satire

More Anderson than Perry: ‘Dear White People’ obliterates stereotypes in sharp satire

By Ian Flanagan / Staff Writer

November 3, 2014

"Dear White People"Directed by: Justin SimienStarring: Tessa Thompson, Tyler James Williams, Brandon P. BellGrade: B+The execution of an argument can be far more important than its substance, especially in politics. “Dear White People” has so much to say, but holds back in order to say only what is neces...

Renner impresses in ‘Messenger’

Renner impresses in ‘Messenger’

By Mason Lazarcheff / For The Pitt News

October 28, 2014

 "Kill the Messenger"Directed by: Michael CuestaStarring: Jeremy Renner, Robert PatrickGrade: B+Is anything worth obsessing over? For Gary Webb, the answer wasn’t just a resounding “yes” but a necessary dependence.Based on the true story of Webb (Jeremy Renner), a journalist for the San Jose M...

Former Pitt News EIC gets ‘Brutal’ in strong debut novel

Former Pitt News EIC gets ‘Brutal’ in strong debut novel

By Shawn Cooke / A&E Editor

October 24, 2014

"Brutal Youth"By Anthony BreznicanGrade: B+There’s a scene near the end of Richard Linklater’s recent opus, “Boyhood,” in which a teacher tells Mason (Ellar Coltrane) that you find your “people” in college. Anthony Breznican’s “Brutal Youth” would beg to differ.In his debut novel, the ...

Good Morning, Pitt: Williams’ character brought radio to Pitt

Good Morning, Pitt: Williams’ character brought radio to Pitt

By Stephanie Roman / Staff Writer

October 24, 2014

Saigon, 1965. A conflict brews, President Johnson increases the number of stationed men from 75,000 to 125,000 and Adrian Cronauer (Robin Williams) just landed a new job with the Armed Forces Radio Service (AFRS).“Good Morning, Vietnam” combines dark comedy, war drama, love story, travel film and period piece wi...

Murray shines in cliched, but touching ‘St. Vincent’

Murray shines in cliched, but touching ‘St. Vincent’

By Dylan Galper / For The Pitt News

October 22, 2014

"St. Vincent"Directed by: Theodore MelfiStarring: Bill Murray, Naomi Watts, Melissa McCarthyGrade: BIn his review of Jim Jarmusch’s 2005 film “Broken Flowers,” Roger Ebert wrote, “No actor is better than Bill Murray at doing nothing at all and being fascinating while not doing it.”  While t...

‘Fury’ rips every page out of WWII playbook, but still entertains

‘Fury’ rips every page out of WWII playbook, but still entertains

By Ian Flanagan / Staff Writer

October 21, 2014

“Fury”Directed by: David AyerStarring: Brad Pitt, Logan Lerman, Shia LaBeoufGrade: C+If you needed more proof that the war genre has been done to death, here’s “Fury,” a handsomely made, decently acted and robustly entertaining WWII film that lacks any sort of originality and has almost nothing ne...

Downey, Duvall carry compelling ‘The Judge’

Downey, Duvall carry compelling ‘The Judge’

By Andrew Fishman / Staff Writer

October 15, 2014

"The Judge"Directed by: David DobkinStarring: Robert Downey Jr., Robert Duvall, Vera FarmigaGrade: A-A judge is entrusted to dish out consequences for illegal actions. But life has a funny way of deciding consequences on its own, regardless of legality. “The Judge” explores how consequences are...

Twenty years later, ‘Clerks’ the definitive workplace comedy

Twenty years later, ‘Clerks’ the definitive workplace comedy

By Shawn Cooke / A&E Editor

October 13, 2014

Who ever said that the ultimate workplace movie had to be set in an office?For many millennial college graduates, their first job out of school might be behind a counter — not suffocating in a cubicle. Even though it might seem like we’re all headed toward a sea of TPS reports, migrating desks a...

‘Love Is Strange’ an honest, graceful modern romance

‘Love Is Strange’ an honest, graceful modern romance

By Ian Flanagan / Staff Writer

October 8, 2014

"Love Is Strange"Directed by: Ira SachsStarring: Alfred Molina, John Lithgow, Marisa TomeiGrade: B+Movies that grapple with the subject of love often struggle to depict it honestly, and “Love Is Strange” knows it. Instead of unnecessary flourishes and hackneyed drama, the film is unapologetic in it...

‘Friday Night Lights’ just as relevant in current football climate

‘Friday Night Lights’ just as relevant in current football climate

By Richard Koppenaal / Staff Writer

October 8, 2014

In 1988, H.G. Bissinger moved to Odessa, Texas, to study and report on the town’s people and politics. But his coverage of the local high school football team, the Permian Panthers, overshadowed the other aspects of the town.His book, “Friday Night Lights: A Town, a Team, and a Dream,” profiled th...

Fincher’s ‘Gone Girl’ an effective, tight-lipped thriller with bite

Fincher’s ‘Gone Girl’ an effective, tight-lipped thriller with bite

By Andrew Fishman / Staff Writer

October 6, 2014

"Gone Girl"Directed by: David FincherStarring: Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Neil Patrick HarrisGrade: B+ In film, the characters often know less than the audience, because the audience has the privilege of seeing everything that goes on in the narrative. But when the audience is purposely left out of ...

Gandolfini’s final performance wasted in lackluster ‘The Drop’

Gandolfini’s final performance wasted in lackluster ‘The Drop’

By Ian Flanagan / Staff Writer

September 24, 2014

"The Drop"Directed by: Michaël R. RoskamStarring: Tom Hardy, James Gandolfini, Noomi RapaceGrade: C+The most original thing about film, compared to other storytelling media, is its ability to convey emotion through particular visual framing ­­— shaping the mood and energy of cinematic situatio...

Employment Guide: Pittsburgh filmmakers need more than connections for success

Employment Guide: Pittsburgh filmmakers need more than connections for success

By Ian Flanagan / Staff Writer

September 12, 2014

For young, up-and-coming filmmakers, a passion for the movies is now just the bare minimum.“Don’t be afraid to bust your ass,” Tom Fisher, a 2012 Pitt film graduate currently working as multimedia producer at the Carnegie Museum of Art, said.Fisher emphasized the importance of a strong work ethic ...

Employment Guide: Pitt’s creative writing director talks Hollywood adaptations

Employment Guide: Pitt’s creative writing director talks Hollywood adaptations

By Mason Lazarcheff / For The Pitt News

September 12, 2014

The NFL has taken some considerable heat lately for issues off the field. But, when the adaptation of Jeanne Marie Laskas’ article “Game Brain” hits theaters, the conversation might shift back to effects of what happens on the field.“Game Brain” brought Bennet Omalu, a Pittsburgh pathologist...

Pair of directors film same script in Pittsburgh for ‘The Chair’

Pair of directors film same script in Pittsburgh for ‘The Chair’

By Kat Prosachick / For The Pitt News

September 11, 2014

Imagine your favorite movie — “The Notebook,” “Rocky,” “Goodfellas” — if it were directed by someone else. Chances are, it might have a radically different visual style, even if the script was still the same. What we now consider classics could be found at the bottom of the bargain bin....

Charming ‘Begin Again’ doesn’t limit itself to romantic expressions of love

Charming ‘Begin Again’ doesn’t limit itself to romantic expressions of love

By Dan Willis / Staff Writer

September 8, 2014

"Begin Again"Directed by: John CarneyStarring: Keira Knightley, Mark Ruffalo, Adam LevineGrade: BThe poster for John Carney’s “Begin Again,” the spiritual sequel to his 2006 musical drama “Once,” shows a demure but attentive Keira Knightley clutching a cup of coffee and smiling at a charmingl...

Gleeson stuns in darkly humorous, thought-provoking ‘Calvary’

By Ian Flanagan / Staff Writer

September 1, 2014

"Calvary"Directed by: John Michael McDonaghStarring: Brendan Gleeson, Chris O'DowdGrade: B+It’s surprising when tragedy and comedy overlap in life, and when movies sucessfuly combine the two, it’s especially alluring. “Calvary” meshes the categories with ease — it’s an ambiguous film in wh...

‘What If’ an inherently flawed, but pleasant romantic comedy

‘What If’ an inherently flawed, but pleasant romantic comedy

By Ian Flanagan / Staff Writer

August 28, 2014

“What If”Directed by: Michael DowseStarring: Daniel Radcliffe, Zoe Kazan, Adam DriverGrade: B-For all the romantic comedies that claim that love is messy, far fewer actually believe it. “What If” seems to think it’s a cut above the rest, but for all of its undeserving self-satisfaction, the f...

Forget weak box office: 2014 was vital summer for Hollywood

Forget weak box office: 2014 was vital summer for Hollywood

By Shawn Cooke / A&E Editor

August 26, 2014

Although the box office receipts may not agree, this was the most vital summer for big Hollywood pictures over the past decade.There were no Avengers, no Batmen, no Pixar characters and no Katnisses to save the day in summer 2014. But luckily, it was also free of the boom-or-bust urgency of years past....

All grown up: Best entertainment for college students

All grown up: Best entertainment for college students

By The A&E Staff

May 28, 2014

Vampire Weekend - Modern Vampires of the CityEarly last summer when Vampire Weekend’s in-your-face double entendre of a song “Diane Young” could be heard at your local Kohl’s or township swimming pool, the band also released its most mature and introspective record to date. On Modern Vampire...

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