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  • Rome Film Review: 'Angels of Revolution'

    LOS ANGELES ( - Coming from Russian maverick Aleksey Fedorchenko, the words "based on actual events" form a less concrete promise than they do from most filmmakers; few have demonstrated such a remarkable facility for fabricated folklore. It's difficult, then, to pinpoint the precise dividing line between fact and fancy in "Angels of Revolution," a challengingly opaque but undeniably arresting meditation on the Kazym Rebellion of the 1930s, which saw indigenous Siberian tribes taking a dignified stand against Soviet cultural collectivization. Weaving together blunt political rhetoric, naive traditional theater and arch sketch-based satire -- equal parts Sergei Parajanov and Roy Andersson, yet wholly itself -- the resulting tapestry matches 2012's "Celestial Wives of the Meadow Mari" for density, daring and probable divisiveness. As with that festival curio, the international distributors who stepped forward for Fedorchenko's 2009 breakout feature, "Silent Souls," may sit this "Revolution" out.
  • Film Review: '23 Blast'

    LOS ANGELES ( - Faith is literally blind in inspirational sports drama "23 Blast," the fact-based tale of a high-school football player who suddenly loses his sight, but not his place on the team. Drawn up using equal parts genre playbook...

    Will we be 'Bewitched' again?

    "Originality is undetected plagiarism." -- William Inge OH, PLEASE -- wasn't the feature film "Bewitched" enough bad news for fans of the old TV series, which starred Elizabeth Montgomery? (Nicole Kidman looked lost and her co-stars, Will Ferrell and...

    Tokyo Festival: James Gunn Points Laser At Asian Cultural Influences

    TOKYO - Considering that his "Guardians of the Galaxy" is one of the biggest commercial successes of the year, director James Gunn's tributes to film festivals and Asian culture Friday were all the more touching. "In a world where film has become...

    Daring and imaginative, 'Birdman' is a cinematic tour de force

    When I first read the thumbnail on this one washed-up Hollywood action hero seeks redemption by staging serious play, with most scenes transpiring backstage at a Broadway theater I thought, what a boring excuse for a bit of meta navel-gazing that will...