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Image: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures and Columbia Pictures

REVIEW: ‘The Magnificent Seven’ rides again

On September 22, 2016 by Johnny Szlauderbach

John Sturges’s The Magnificent Seven occupies a unique space within the international back-and-forth of moviemaking. Although the 1960 version walks and talks like the kind of classically rousing, Cinemascope epics that MGM cranked out in the Eisenhower era, it was a remake of Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai—itself deeply indebted to Hollywood Westerns. A year after […]

Image: Lionsgate

REVIEW: ‘Blair Witch’ is a cleverly effective jump-scare machine

On September 15, 2016 by Johnny Szlauderbach

Blair Witch is a jump-scare machine. Built for maximum efficiency, it cranks out shocks with spooky precision. Wisely dispensing with any pretense to fan service—the franchise’s villain was always lame—director Adam Wingard and writer Simon Barrett use every trick in the book to pound their audience into submission. It’s an exhausting experience. And it’s also […]

Film History

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Panic Fest Tingles KC Spines This Weekend

On February 3, 2016 by Johnny Szlauderbach

If you experience a certain creeping sensation north of the river this weekend—symptoms include chills, rapid heartbeat, and general paranoia—try not to be alarmed. As the dead of winter arrives, so does the hysteria of Kansas City’s most berserk film festival, Panic Fest, which possesses the Screenland Armour Friday, February 5th through Sunday, February 7th. Dug […]

Quentin-Tarantino

The Alamo Loves on “The Hateful Eight” with Tarantino Mini-Retrospective

On January 24, 2016 by Johnny Szlauderbach

“The 8th Film by Quentin Tarantino.” That’s what appears onscreen just before the title of the director’s latest behemoth, The Hateful Eight. Most movie nerds (and by extension, Tarantino fans) would guess the numerical designation refers to 8½, Federico Fellini’s seminal piece of pop autobiography. After La Dolce Vita had made him the world’s most […]