David Fincher's film of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo should please fans of Stieg Larsson's Millennium Trilogy. Fincher and his screenwriter, Steven Zaillian, remain faithful to the complicated plot of the trilogy's first book, and they reproduce most of its many characters. In truth they improve vastly on their source material.
Carnage plays out entirely in a New York City apartment, where
two couples are trying to deal with a playground incident involving
their 11-year-old sons, one of whom struck the other in the mouth with a
stick. In the process, the film—directed and coscripted by Roman
Polanski, based on Yasmina Reza's play God of Carnage—peels back the skin of each supposedly caring parent, revealing the person beneath the civilized facade.
The primary reason to immerse yourself in the jagged world of We Need to Talk About Kevin
is the towering lead performance by Tilda Swinton, an actress of
continuing spontaneity who traveled a circuitous route through
experimental and art cinema before embarking on a second career in the
The Iron Lady, which stars Meryl Streep as Margaret Thatcher, is the worst biopic since Nixon. It's so cautious that it lacks a coherent point of
view, and it's so scattered that it tells you almost exactly nothing.
Documentarian Steve James has a journalist's nose for a great story. His beat is the
challenges faced by low-income city kids, in this case young Chicagoans whose lives are blighted by the cycle of violence.
No one understood my nightly need to be reassured I’d wake up again the next day. Eyes closed, I saw no sheep but the tufts of pampas grass looming silver like a solitary path. The scroll hung above me, a verse in five and seven, its flowing hand thin and illegible—I still knew it was about our life not lasting very long. How is it that adults were okay with such a prospect? In July, bamboo blades rustled against paper cranes and prayer strips; I wondered how I’d made the cut, when I wasn’t a boy my father wanted, wasn’t a koi princess my mother said would magically turn her tail into a pair of legs. I looked for the fabled rabbits on the moon, a family of them taking turns to pound rice into pearly cakes along their dark, elliptical orbit.