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Oscars Round Up: ‘Fury Road’ has an inventiveness rarely seen in action films

Mad Max: Fury Road screenshot

For the final installment of our Oscars Round Up series, Pat Brown gives his take on a film with a staggering 10 Oscar nominations. Second only to ‘The Revenant,’ ‘Mad Max: Fury Road’ has gotten the nod in categories from Best Picture and Best Director (George Miller) to Best Visual Effects and Best Sound Design. […]

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Review: Charlie Kaufman’s ‘Anomalisa’ moderates a solipsistic worldview with ‘particularizing quirks’

Charlie Kaufman's 'Anomalisa' opens Friday, Jan. 22 at FilmScene

Anomalisa FilmScene — Opens Friday, Jan. 22 The notion of the “uncanny valley” is a familiar topic in discussions around video games and computer animation. It’s a relatively simple idea: animation can be cute, endearing and even empathetic within a certain level of abstraction, but as the animated object edges closer to the reality of […]

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Screenshot: Indie games growing in Iowa

Skull Shot

For the past several years, gamers have been in the midst of what will surely be looked back on as the heyday of independent gaming. The number of available indie games continues to increase, in large part thanks to online distribution and crowd-funding sources like Kickstarter. But if you find yourself, a couple years from […]

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Talking Movies: David Robert Mitchell’s ‘It Follows’

Writer/Director David Robert Mitchell’s It Follows hits many of the notes that are by now (beyond) familiar to horror aficionados — it is, in part, a good summary of the horror movie tropes of the last 25 years or so. The film includes a relentless stalker, the thematization of teenage sexuality, a handful of fake-out jump scares, unseen-but-material malevolent beings, scary children, heroes who make terrible decisions and a moment of shocking gore. But this rather typical assemblage of tropes and characters belies the film’s originality, which consists more in the effective and often unique way these elements are deployed. […]

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Talking Movies: Isao Takahata’s ‘The Tale of Princess Kaguya’

The Tale of Princess Kaguya Opening at FilmScene on Wednesday, Nov. 26 The Tale of Princess Kaguya is animator Isao Takahata’s first film in 14 years, and if you told me that he spent the last decade and a half working on this film, I might believe you. The most immediately striking aspect of the […]

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