Ben Mendelsohn

Mississippi Grind Review

Mississippi Grind Review

RATING: (4 STARS) A breathtaking rainbow at the start of Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck’s gambling drama Mississippi Grind promises gold on the other side. Whether or not the film and its two lead characters — the permanently down-on-his-luck Gerry (Ben Mendelsohn) and the naturally charming and seemingly care-free Curtis (Ryan Reynolds) — actually get […]

The Place Beyond the Pines Review

The Place Beyond the Pines Review

RATING: (3.5 STARS) “So Jesus said to them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise.’” —John 5:19 Derek Cianfrance burst onto the American independent movie scene with 2010’s searing […]

Killing Them Softly Review

Killing Them Softly Review

RATING: (2.5 STARS) It took five years following The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford for Andrew Dominik to return to the director’s chair. Five years is a long time to build anticipation for an obviously skilled filmmaker, and his skill is what gets Killing Me Softly through some narrative rough patches. […]

The Dark Knight Rises Review

The Dark Knight Rises Review

RATING: (3.5 STARS) With The Dark Knight Rises, the stirring finale to the wildly successful post-millennial Batman trilogy, director and cowriter Christopher Nolan laughs in the face of staggeringly high expectations and gives us perhaps the grandest of all superhero movies. The movie itself is this big, hulking monster—not unlike its main villain—but its flaws […]

The New World Review

The New World Review

RATING: (4 STARS) The first two hours of The New World represents director Terrence Malick’s greatest achievement to date. For those two hours, The New World is nearly perfect. It’s a tragic story of unobtainable love that brilliantly parallels the early American pioneers’ quest for utopia. It’s exquisitely composed and features some fantastic acting, yet […]

Animal Kingdom Review

Animal Kingdom Review

RATING: (3 STARS) Last April, I spoke to Nash Edgerton, director of The Square, about his film and the state of Australian cinema. He told me to keep an eye out for Animal Kingdom, a gangster thriller in the vein of Goodfellas that would be coming out a few months later. I finally caught up […]