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Biopic ‘Snowden’ informs, but suffers from lackluster dramatic twists

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Rating: «« out of 4

Running Time: 134 min.

Director Oliver Stone has given his take on numerous events in history over the years in titles like Salvador, Platoon, JFK, Nixon, and W., among many others. He is just as known for his contentious theories and button-pushing approaches to his subjects. It should come as no...

DVD/Blu-ray Roundup for Sept. 16, 2016

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It’s time for another edition detailing the highlights coming your way on Blu-ray and DVD. There are a multitude of great options, ranging from the independent scene to Hollywood blockbuster. So if you can’t make it out to the movies this week, be sure to give one of these titles a try!

Big New Releases!

Being Canadian - This documentary follows a man who has moved from Calgary to LA. Once there, he struggles to separate himself from Canadian stereotypes and mounts a cross-country trip through the Great White North to provide worldwide viewers with a more detailed picture of his homeland. Along the way, he interviews countrymen like Seth Rogen, Cobie Smulders, Kim...

‘Sully’ is a nice tribute, but lacks drama

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Rating: «« out of 4 stars

Running Time: 95 min.

The basis of drama in cinema is very simple: characters perform and enact highly tense and volatile situations for effect. The stories are often filled with various forms of conflict between the characters, building to a heightened climax. Of course, there are always exceptions to any rule, but generally speaking, the more opposition you can create, the better the results.

Sully is a biopic based on the admittedly flawless heroism of a man and his compatriots during a real-life crisis. It’s efficiently made and a decent film, but it’s also one that struggles to create a lot of drama.

The plot depicts the events of Jan. 15, 2009...

DVD/Blu-ray Roundup for Sept. 9, 2016

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Oh boy, oh boy. This is among the busiest weeks I’ve ever written about — there are more than 20 new releases arriving in a wide variety of genres… So if you can’t make it out to the movies this week, be sure to give one of these titles a try!

Big New Releases!

All the Way - While technically an HBO made-for-cable movie, this recent effort features an all-star cast and garnered critical raves that make it worthy of a mention here. Based on an award-winning play, this is a biopic about US President Lyndon B. Johnson and his early days in the White House after the Kennedy assassination. It has been called a powerful and well-acted drama with some interesting historical...

‘The Light Between Oceans’ looks gorgeous, but needs to dive into choppier waters

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Rating: «« out of 4 stars

Running Time: 132 min.

Director Derek Cianfrance has become known for his heavy and searing dramas revolving around family, as witnessed in films like Blue Valentine and The Place Beyond the Pines. His latest is called The Light Between Oceans, and it certainly shares similarities with previous films; while there isn’t a big cast, it looks like an epic and features oodles of torment among the inner lives of its characters.

Based on novel by M.L. Stedman, this period piece is set in Australia following the end of the First World War. Veteran Tom Sherbourne (Michael Fassbender) takes on a position as lighthouse keeper on an island. Despite his intentions...

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