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Freeheld stumbles over too many hurdles to recommend it. The film’s heart is in the right place, but its focus is not.



Cassel’s latest movie that smartly keeps his innate menace on a slow, low simmer, isn’t nearly as convincing or compelling as its star.

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Ballad of Narayama

"The Ballad of Narayama" is a Japanese film of great beauty and elegant artifice, telling a story of startling cruelty. What a space it opens…


Monsieur Hire

Patrice Leconte's "Monsieur Hire" is a tragedy about loneliness and erotomania, told about two solitary people who have nothing else in common. It involves a…

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Quentin Tarantino's Top 8 for 2009

Why don't more directors do this -- congratulate their fellow filmmakers on their favorite achievements? We know that movie-mad Quentin Tarantino loves movie lists as much as anybody. Last week he gave the Hollwywood Reporter's Heat Vision blog his list of the best films of 2009 (not including "Inglourious Basterds") -- and he seems pretty serious about it. He admits he hasn't seen some of the possible contenders ("Avatar," "The Lovely Bones," "Invictus") and feels there are a few more he'd like to see again before he firms up the list ("Bright Star," "District 9"). I know how he feels: I just caught up with "Bright Star," "Still Walking" and "Anvil! The Story of Anvil" this weekend, got second viewings of a couple others ("Liverpool," "35 Shots of Rum")... and I'm still playing catch-up.

Watch the video above for QT's presentation of his Top 8 (so far), or see the list below...

1. "Star Trek"

2. "Drag Me to Hell"

3. "Funny People"

4. "Up in the Air"

5. "Chocolate"

6. "Observe and Report"

7. "Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire"

8. "An Education"

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