Justin Chang Justin Chang is a film critic for The New Yorker and NPR's Fresh Air
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Justin Chang

Justine Ungaro/Justin Chang
Justin Chang, Fresh Air Film Critic
Justine Ungaro/Justin Chang

Justin Chang

Film Critic, Fresh Air

Justin Chang is a film critic for The New Yorker and NPR's Fresh Air. He previously served as film critic at the Los Angeles Times and chief film critic at Variety.

Chang is the author of FilmCraft: Editing, a book of interviews with seventeen top film editors. He serves as chair of the National Society of Film Critics and secretary of the Los Angeles Film Critics Association and is a member of the New York Film Festival selection committee. He teaches at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California.

Story Archive

Thursday

Seydou (Seydou Sarr, in gray) crosses the desert in Io Capitano. Greta De Lazzaris/Cohen Media Group hide caption

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Greta De Lazzaris/Cohen Media Group

Join a Senegalese teen on a harrowing journey in this Oscar-nominated film

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Friday

In Drift, Jacqueline (Cynthia Erivo) winds up in Greece after experiencing something terrible during a visit to her family in Liberia. Sundance hide caption

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Sundance

A Liberian woman with a mysterious past dwells in limbo in 'Drift'

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Friday

Juliette Binoche prepares one elaborate dish after another in The Taste of Things. Stéphanie Branchu/IFC Films Release hide caption

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Stéphanie Branchu/IFC Films Release

'The Taste of Things' is a sizzling romance and foodie feast — but don't go in hungry

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Friday

Le Phong Vu plays Thien, a young man looking for answers in the Vietnamese countryside. Cercamon hide caption

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Cercamon

'Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell' is a film where a big screen makes a big difference

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Friday

Jessica Chastain plays a single mother who connects with a man with early-onset dementia (Peter Sarsgaard) in Memory. via Ketchup Entertainment hide caption

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via Ketchup Entertainment

Two strangers grapple with hazy 'Memory' in this unsettling film

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Thursday

Sandra Hüller plays a mother who lives next door to Auschwitz in The Zone of Interest. A24 hide caption

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A24

Chilling 'Zone of Interest' imagines life next door to a death camp

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Thursday

A24; A24; Searchlight Pictures; Grasshopper Film & Gratitude Films; Janus; Atsushi Nishijima/Searchlight Pictures

2023 was a great year for moviegoing — here are 10 of Justin Chang's favorites

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Friday

In Poor Things, Emma Stone stars as Bella Baxter, a woman created as part of a back-from-the-dead mad science experiment. Atsushi Nishijima/Searchlight Pictures hide caption

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Atsushi Nishijima/Searchlight Pictures

Unhinged yet uplifting, 'Poor Things' is an un-family-friendly 'Barbie'

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Thursday

Twelve-year-old Mahito journeys into an otherworldly realm in The Boy and the Heron. via Studio Ghibli hide caption

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via Studio Ghibli

In 'The Boy and the Heron,' Miyazaki asks: How do we go on in the midst of grief?

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Friday

Bradley Cooper plays composer Leonard Bernstein in Maestro. Jason McDonald/Netflix hide caption

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Jason McDonald/Netflix

Bradley Cooper's 'Maestro' fully captures Bernstein's charisma and complexity

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Thursday

Natalie Portman (left) and Julianne Moore star in May December, Todd Haynes' film inspired by a real-life story of a schoolteacher who was convicted of raping her sixth-grade student. Francois Duhamel/Netflix hide caption

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Francois Duhamel/Netflix

Inspired by a 1990s tabloid story, 'May December' fictionalizes a real tragedy

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Thursday

Michael Fassbender plays an assassin on the run in The Killer. Netflix hide caption

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Netflix

What happens when a hit man misses his mark? 'The Killer' is about to find out

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Friday

Intimate and piercingly sad, 'Priscilla' is Sofia Coppola's strongest movie in years

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Thursday

Dominic Sessa stars as Angus Tully and Paul Giamatti is Paul Hunham in Alexander Payne's The Holdovers. Focus Features hide caption

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Focus Features

Alexander Payne keeps real emotion at bay in the coyly comic 'Holdovers'

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Thursday

Lily Gladstone and Leonardo DiCaprio in Killers of the Flower Moon. Apple TV+ hide caption

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Apple TV+

Scorsese centers men and their violence once again in 'Killers of the Flower Moon'

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Friday

Sandra Hüller plays a writer accused of murdering her husband in Anatomy of a Fall. NEON hide caption

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NEON

'Anatomy of a Fall' dissects a marriage and, maybe, a murder

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Thursday

Madeleine Yuna Voyles plays Alphie, a pensive young robot child in The Creator. 20th Century Studios hide caption

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20th Century Studios

Did AI write this film? 'The Creator' offers a muddled plea for human-robot harmony

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Friday

Tina Fey and Michelle Yeoh join Kenneth Branagh in A Haunting in Venice. Walt Disney Co./Courtesy Everett Collection hide caption

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Walt Disney Co./Courtesy Everett Collection

The big twist in 'A Haunting in Venice'? It's actually a great film

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Friday

Gael García Bernal and El Hijo del Santo in Cassandro. Alejandro Lopez Pineda/Amazon Content Services LLC hide caption

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Alejandro Lopez Pineda/Amazon Content Services LLC

Gael García Bernal crushes it (and others) as 'Cassandro,' lucha libre's queer pioneer

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Friday

'Bottoms' offers an over-the top mix of teen realism and comic exaggeration

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Thursday

Hannah Gross, Sophia Lillis and Michael Cera play grown siblings in The Adults. Variance Films hide caption

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Variance Films

Snark and sarcasm rule the roost in 'The Adults,' a comedy about grown siblings

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Tuesday

Franz Rogowski as Tomas and Adèle Exarchopoulos as Agathe in Passages. MUBI hide caption

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MUBI

'Passages' captures intimacy up-close — and the result is messy and mesmerizing

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Thursday

Sophie Wilde in Talk to Me. A24 hide caption

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A24

'Haunted Mansion' is a skip, but 'Talk to Me' is a real scare

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Thursday

It's not every day that an exuberant comedy about a Mattel doll goes head-to-head with a brooding drama about the father of the atomic bomb, but both Barbie and Oppenheimer deliver. Above, Margot Robbie as Barbie and Cillian Murphy as J. Robert Oppenheimer. Jaap Buitendijk, Warner Bros. / Melinda Sue Gordon, Universal Pictures hide caption

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Jaap Buitendijk, Warner Bros. / Melinda Sue Gordon, Universal Pictures

Go see 'Barbie' and 'Oppenheimer' in theaters — doubleheader or not is your call

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