Streams

Mark Jenkins

Mark Jenkins appears in the following:

'24 Days' Retells A Brutal Crime With Little Explanation

Thursday, April 23, 2015

24 Days recounts the grisly fate of Ilan Halimi, the young Jewish Parisian who in 2006 was kidnapped, held for ransom and tortured beyond what his body could endure. But it's not Ilan who addresses the camera at the beginning of the film. It's his mother, Ruth Halimi (Zabou Breitman).

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'Monkey Kingdom' Is Best When It's All Monkeys All The Time

Thursday, April 16, 2015

As much fun as a tree full of toque macaques, Monkey Kingdom is arguably the most entertaining of Disneynature's eight features. But purists will recoil as soon as The Monkees theme enters, and there are times when the story told by narrator Tina Fey probably doesn't reflect the extraordinary images ...

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Listening To The Ho-Hum Of The Machine

Thursday, April 09, 2015

The latest British movie to play the imitation game, Ex Machina, is the directorial debut of novelist-screenwriter Alex Garland. This time, the stakes are higher than the Nazi conquest of Europe. The talky sci-fi puzzler turns on nothing less than the potential displacement of humans by artificially intelligent cyborgs.

Then ...

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The Overstuffed, Overdone, Overlong, Cheerfully Absurd 'Furious 7'

Saturday, April 04, 2015

At the end of The Fast and the Furious, Brian (Paul Walker) gives former enemy Dom (Vin Diesel) a car so he can drive alone into the sunset. Fourteen years and six films later, there's precious little alone time for the Furious clan. This lucrative franchise has so many recurring ...

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Married Without Children, But With Overgrown Adolescents

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Noah Baumbach's best movie since 2005's The Squid and the Whale, While We're Young navigates into more mainstream territory while losing none of the writer-director's rueful wit. Oddly enough, the comedy's major weakness is that it's over-plotted, hardly an issue with such Baumbach flawed-character studies as Frances Ha and Greenberg.

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'Kumiko' Follows A Quest For A Film's Snowy Treasure

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Withdrawn and inarticulate, the heroine of Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter lives primarily inside her own imagination. And during at least two crucial scenes, this deadpan comedy seems to crawl in there with her.

Director David Zellner's film (co-written by brother Nathan Zellner) riffs on an urban legend. In 2001, a ...

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Two Sisters And One Tax Inspector Make Up '3 Hearts'

Thursday, March 12, 2015

The man at the center of 3 Hearts has a unreliable ticker. That may seem a brazen contrivance, but the movie is a melodrama that relishes such narrative ploys. Shot with handheld camera, director and co-writer Benoit Jacquot's movie looks like a naturalistic drama. But the script says otherwise.

For ...

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'Unfinished Business' You're Better Off Not Even Starting

Thursday, March 05, 2015

It's unclear what commerce is left undone in Unfinished Business, a fumbling mix of sentimental family fable and gross-out sex comedy. Maybe the movie was originally titled Unfunny Business, but someone decided that would be bad for, well, business.

The would-be hilarity begins with a Jerry Maguire moment: Dan (Vince ...

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A Disorienting But Electrifying Look At The Troubles

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Grim, terse and jumpy, '71 effectively evokes the chaos of early-1970s Belfast. A little too effectively, perhaps, since some sequences are as bewildering as the four-way civil war the movie re-creates. American viewers may wish the film came with both subtitles and a study guide.

'71 can be recommended, though, ...

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'Queen And Country' Follows A Familiar Protagonist Through A New War

Thursday, February 19, 2015

In John Boorman's first semi-autobiographical film, 1987's Hope and Glory, war came to the school-age protagonist's London. In Queen and Country, set roughly a decade later, the director's alter ego goes to war — except that he doesn't. As the Korean conflict rages, 19-year-old Bill Rohan (Callum Turner) is drafted, ...

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'Gett' Follows A Years-Long Quest For Separation

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Seen mostly in a cell-like white room, the characters in Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem circle each other fruitlessly, seeking a resolution that's probably unachievable. Both the scenario and its severity suggest a play by Sartre or Beckett. But these actors are trapped not in an existential void but ...

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In 'The Voices,' The Dog And The Cat Talk, But The Film Says Little

Thursday, February 05, 2015

A serial-killer spoof set in a parody of small-town U.S.A., The Voices wants desperately to be bizarre. But it manages just to be a little odd, and that's mostly because its vision of American gothic was crafted on a German soundstage by a Franco-Iranian director.

The screenplay is by veteran ...

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'Timbuktu': Stories From A City Held, Then Freed

Thursday, January 29, 2015

In one of Timbuktu's first vignettes, jihadists open fire on traditional sculptures, shredding wooden bodies with bullets. It's foreshadowing, of course: Human flesh will later face the same guns. But the moment is also a fine example of Abderrahmane Sissako's lyrical style. The Malian-Mauritanian director has made a film of ...

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A Lead Performance Keeps 'Still Alice' Grounded

Thursday, January 15, 2015

A circumstance that might well qualify as a fate worse than death is to continue living after one side of the human equation — body + mind — has been canceled. For a jaunty account of an active brain in a withering physique, see The Theory of Everything; for a ...

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Murder, Cows And Bad Funerals In The Absurd Comedy Of 'Li'l Quinquin'

Friday, January 02, 2015

Although set in Bruno Dumont's home region of northern France, L'il Quinquin finds the writer-director in unexpected territory. The film is a arguably Dumont's first comedy, and was made as a four-part TV miniseries.

Yet with its relaxed pacing, inconclusive plot and elegant widescreen cinematography, the movie doesn't feel much ...

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A Watery 'Goodbye To All That'

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Otto Wall, the protagonist of Goodbye to All That, is well-meaning, clumsy and a little dull. The movie embodies his character perfectly.

Goodbye to All That is the directorial debut of Angus MacLachlan, who's best known for writing 2005's Junebug, Amy Adams' breakout film. Both are set in North Carolina, ...

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An 'Exodus' With Extra Eyeliner And Crocodiles

Friday, December 12, 2014

The tale of Moses is not exactly fresh cinematic material, so anyone attempting an update would to be wise to have a theme. The subtitle of Exodus: Gods and Kings suggests that Ridley Scott intended just that. The director must have meant to contrast the decadent Egyptian pharaohs, who imagined ...

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A 'Wild' Trek Made A Bit Too Neatly

Friday, December 05, 2014

With a backstory that includes heroin use and zipless you-know-whats, Wild is a daring foray for its star and producer, the usually prim Reese Witherspoon. As an excursion into the untamed stream of human consciousness, however, the movie is less bold.

Wild was adapted by About a Boy man Nick ...

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'Before I Disappear': A Long Night's Tale Without A Short Film's Charm

Friday, December 05, 2014

Curfew, Shawn Christensen's 2012 Oscar-winning live-action short, tells a simple, affecting story about Richie (Christensen), a depressed man who is about to commit suicide when he receives an emergency call from his estranged sister (Kim Allen) asking him to babysit his preteen niece Sophia (Fatima Ptacek) for the night.

Ptacek ...

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In A Weekend Or A Year, Remoteness Is Captured On Film

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Remote Area Medical and Antarctica: A Year on Ice are both studies of human life in extremis, and each documentary employs a strict chronological framework. The former observes a single weekend, while the latter — well, it's right there in the title, although the movie draws on a decade's worth ...

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