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Just Getting Started

Just Getting Started never really gets going. It only kept me thinking, “Is this ever just going to finish?”

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The Rape of Recy Taylor

A documentary with a great subject and powerful testimony, undone by its unnecessarily obtrusive style.

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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…

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MPAA Promotional Poetry Anthology, Vol. II

"Twister": Bovine poetry in motion.

Readers have sent in some choice bits of poetry and prose from the MPAA's Classification and Ratings Administration, which I consider to be the institutional poet laureate of Hollywood.

Chris Finke writes: "I work in a video store, and often read the mpaa ratings to pass the time. the two greatest ratings that i have come across are:

"'Gummo': 'Rated R for pervasive depiction of anti-social behavior of juveniles,including violence, substance abuse,sexuality and language.' (I didn't know that anit-social behavior was restricted to those over 17 years of age.)

"'The Day After Tomorrow': 'Rated PG-13 for intense situations of peril. (Straight, to the point, and most importantly, meaningless.)"

Jonathan Walker extolls a particularly atmospheric rating for the disastrous 1996 movie "Twister": "Rated PG-13 for intense depiction of very bad weather."

And Dan Maloney and Eric Mees write separately regarding the masterful blurb for 2004's "Team America: World Police": "Rated R for graphic crude and sexual humor, violent images and strong language - all involving puppets."

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