As an Oz historian and lover of film, I’ve always wanted a big screen biopic of Judy Garland’s life, a desire which might have proved a bit of “careful what you wish for.” Of course no one can really “play” Judy Garland. It’s what makes every production of The Wizard of Oz so challenging – ..
RYAN: Based on the true story of writer/historian Deborah Lipstadt, Denial is the best courtroom drama since A Few Good Men – and this time the stakes are higher, knowing it actually happened. CAROLINE: Wow. That sounds impressive. How is Rachel Weisz in this? RYAN: It’s the role of a lifetime for her. She has a personal connection ..
RYAN: This movie starts out in 1809 and covers slavery in a way that should be required viewing – it’s, as ever, an outrage and a necessary education. This is based on the true story of Nat Turner, a slave who fought back, in a way making this a loose non-fantasy version of Django Unchained. BECKY: (laughs) ..
RYAN: This is a true story based on the life of the recent chess champion from Uganda – a young girl – brilliantly portrayed by a new actress on the scene, Madina Nalwanga. She’s incredible. This is her first movie and she carries it so well. She could get a nomination, as could Lupita Nyong’o in the supporting category. ..
RYAN: Director Oliver Stone is really the King of the biopic. Joseph Gordon-Levitt stars as the whistle-blower, who between 2004 – 2013 worked at the CIA and other places, raising questions about whether government has the right to spy on us – all in the name of national security. JGL is amazing in this. He ..
RYAN: And thus the Oscar race begins – this is a biopic focusing on one chapter of pilot Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger which is truly cinematic, fascinating and heroic. Expertly Directed by Clint Eastwood, starring Tom Hanks who is nomination worthy here. He’s just as great as he’s ever been. We often see legends adapted to ..
RYAN: This is a biopic of Roberto Duran – a Panamanian boxer from the 70s/80s. I wasn’t interested in seeing this movie and then it turned out much better than expected. It’s very easy to watch and his life is a good story; the boxing sequences are shot differently than I’ve seen in other boxing ..
RYAN: This movie has one of the best trailers of the year. I’ve mostly stopped watching trailers, on the whole, but did catch this one and have been psyched to see it ever since. And the movie itself is terrific. It’s such a satisfying period film that is detailed in design but really stylized in ..
RYAN: This is a new crime drama about an undercover cop infiltrating a drug cartel, money launderer, based on a true story from the mid-80s in Tampa, Florida. It’s shocking and horrifying the amount of drug money filtered through our country and the way that banks are involved too. The drug biz is so large ..
RYAN: Written, produced, directed by and starring Don Cheadle, Miles Ahead is the very definition of tour-de-force – clearly a passion project and the achievement of a lifetime. It’s the Miles Davis biopic. I hadn’t known really anything about the man before this and this is how a biopic should be done. It may be the best ..
RYAN: This movie is pretty much summed up by the title and really isn’t much more than that. I think it wanted to come across as one of those “too wacky to be true/you can’t make this stuff up” stories but I wasn’t very entertained by it. It’s mostly boring. KEVIN: I agree. I wasn’t ..