September 20, 2012 Writer-director Stephen Chbosky adapts his 1999 novel, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, into a film about loss, friendship and sexuality. Critic Mark Jenkins says that the film conveys the realization that being an outcast doesn't mean being alone.
September 20, 2012 Robert Lorenz's directorial debut, Trouble with the Curve, pits new against old on the most American of battlegrounds: the baseball field. Critic Mark Jenkins says the film's unfussy sensibility does justice to its exploration of family, purpose and love of the game.
September 13, 2012 The second acting-directing-writing effort from How I Met Your Mother's Josh Radnor explores the relationship between an aimless 35-year-old and an artsy college student (Elizabeth Olsen). Critic Mark Jenkins says the relationship is vexing and mildly painful at best.
September 6, 2012 So Yong Kim's film follows a misanthropic rocker (Paul Dano) going through a divorce and encountering his 6-year-old daughter. Improvised dialogue and on-location shootings provide a bleak realism, but the film doesn't do much with character, says critic Mark Jenkins.
August 28, 2012 Filmmaker Mads Brugger went to the Central African Republic to document rampant corruption in the capital, flourishing the credentials of a Liberian diplomat to connect with government officials and angling to buy "blood diamonds" to smuggle out of the country.
August 23, 2012 In Little White Lies, Guillaume Canet's follow-up to his arthouse thriller Tell No One, a group of romantically beleaguered friends takes its annual retreat together. Unsubtly indebted to The Big Chill, the movie leans heavily on cliche and nostalgia.
August 16, 2012 Beloved, Christophe Honore's second movie-musical venture, spans decades and encompasses the lives of a mother and daughter and their various paramours. The plot touches on serious issues, while the soundtrack co-opts British pop music, and the whole affair is enormous fun.
August 16, 2012 The creators of Persepolis return with a live-action fable about an Iranian violinist who wills himself to die — and the heartbreaks that drive him to it. (Recommended)
August 9, 2012 The Bourne Legacy, the fourth film in the action franchise, connects back to previous installments but introduces a new hero, Aaron Cross (Jeremy Renner). Critic Mark Jenkins says surface changes don't alter the consistency between the films when it comes to style and plotting.
August 2, 2012 Total Recall, a remake of the 1990 sci-fi film, stars Colin Farrell as a man who learns of a past life when he begins to have recurring dreams of an alternate existence. Critic Mark Jenkins says the film empties the scenario of any intelligent thoughts in favor of continuous, mindless action.
July 26, 2012 Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry covers the noted Chinese artist's battle against the authorities in Beijing. The film is not a comprehensive study of Ai's art, says critic Mark Jenkins, but it is undoubtedly a portrait of a brave eccentric who knows the power of looking larger than life on screen. (Recommended)
July 19, 2012 In a remake of a 1960s Japanese classic, a samurai asks permission to perform suicide at the estate of a wealthy man — though in fact he's planning to avenge the death of another samurai. Critic Mark Jenkins says the film doesn't outdo the original, but holds its own at second place.
July 12, 2012 Farewell, My Queen takes place in Versailles as the French Revolution approaches. But it focuses on Marie Antoinette's servant more than on the aristocracy. Critic Mark Jenkins says that approach makes the film more than a tale about doomed royalty; it's also about commoners on the verge of freedom.
July 12, 2012 Red Lights stars Sigourney Weaver and Cillian Murphy as two academics sparring with a psychic (Robert De Niro) whose powers they doubt. Critic Mark Jenkins says the film's one refreshing feature — its skeptical outlook — doesn't survive to the end.
July 5, 2012 Oliver Stone's latest pits two laid-back Stateside dealers (Taylor Kitsch and Aaron Johnson) against a Tijuana cartel that kidnaps their mutual girlfriend. Critic Mark Jenkins says that over-padded length aside, the movie finds Stone firmly in command of his material.