Mark Jenkins

Mark Jenkins appears in the following:

A War Seen In Unnerving Close-Up

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Drone warfare forms the backbone of Eye In The Sky, starring Helen Mirren as a British military officer arguing over the messy ethics of collateral damage.


More Literary Whispers And Another Quest In Malick's 'Knight'

Friday, March 04, 2016

Enigmatic writer-director Terrence Malick has made what is essentially the same movie three times in a row: Tree of Life, To the Wonder, and now Knight of Cups. It's time to ask if he knows what he's doing.

On one level, he unquestionably does. Malick's movies are elegantly photographed and ...


Silly Accents And Too Many Shadows Sink 'Triple 9'

Thursday, February 25, 2016

In Triple 9's beyond-shadowy opening, a group of reprobates discusses plans for a military-precision bank robbery. The illumination is so dim that a bit of Anthony Mackie's brow is about all that's visible. Subsequent scenes allow a little more light, yet this laughably nihilistic movie just gets darker and darker.



The Strange And Intoxicating 'Embrace Of The Serpent'

Thursday, February 18, 2016

A river cruise is like a movie. The boat glides from scene to scene, the travelers get to know each other, and around the final curve awaits resolution, or perhaps revelation.

Or at least that's how the voyage proceeds in Colombian director and co-writer Ciro Guerra's fascinating The Embrace of ...


A Glimpse Into The Future In 'Mountains May Depart'

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Chinese writer-director Jia Zhangke's films are grounded in the reality of his frigid, coal-dusted hometown, Fenyang. But that doesn't mean he's a realist. His complex latest film, Mountains May Depart, begins in Fenyang in 1999 as a stylized romantic melodrama and ends, two chapters later, in a place that's not ...


'The Club': A Gathering Of Men In Exile

Friday, February 05, 2016

At the beginning of The Club, four men and a woman are living quietly in a small Chilean seaside town. Their days are filled with prayer and religious songs, but also wine and greyhound racing.

One of the house's residents, Vidal (Alfredo Castro) is devoted to the village's stray dogs, ...


'Aferim!' May Be Romania's 'Hateful Eight'

Thursday, January 21, 2016

When Aferim! debuted at the Berlin Film Festival a year ago, some called it a Romanian 12 Years a Slave. Now that it's on U.S. screens, there's an even closer analogy: Aferim! is Romania's The Hateful Eight.

Both movies are revisionist Westerns, with verbosely profane dialogue and stories shadowed by ...


Paris And A Perilous Marriage 'In The Shadow Of Women'

Thursday, January 14, 2016

The opening vignette of In the Shadow of Women shows a man in front of a wall, slightly off-center in the widescreen frame. Pierre (Stanislas Merhar) does little more than chew on a bite of sandwich for about a minute, an opening that suggests this will be one of those ...


For 2 Men, A Search For 'Treasure'

Thursday, January 07, 2016

One day, late to pick up his 6-year-old from school, a low-level Bucharest civil servant attempts to distract the boy with a reference to their mutual hero, Robin Hood. "You're not Robin Hood," the kid (Nicodim Toma) tells his dad, Costi (Cuzin Toma).

Is that a dare? Maybe not to ...


A Sagging 'Joy' That Doesn't Live Up To Its Inspiration

Thursday, December 24, 2015

The business of America is business, to paraphrase a line delivered by Calvin Coolidge four years before 1929's version of The Big Short. But Hollywood, no small industry itself, rarely tells the stories of people like Joy Mangano, inventor of the Miracle Mop and the inspiration for David O. Russell's ...


The Holocaust Remains Just Out Of Frame In 'Son Of Saul'

Thursday, December 17, 2015

The immensity of the Holocaust requires the filmmaker — even one making an eight-hour documentary — to exclude many aspects of the systematic savagery. None has done so more resolutely than Hungary's Lazlo Nemes, director and co-writer of Son of Saul. The grim yet kinetic drama spends all its time ...


The Guys Who Put Monster Bets On Bad Outcomes In 'The Big Short'

Thursday, December 10, 2015

The two best American movies of the year so far, Spotlight and The Big Short, are both docudramas, yet are entirely different in tone. Where the former is sober and pitch-perfect, the latter is garish, overreaching, and farcical. All of which is justified by the real-life burlesque act that's its ...


'Youth' In Themes And Variations

Thursday, December 03, 2015

Paolo Sorrentino is only 45, but the Italian writer-director is looking forward to looking back. His last four movies are journeys into the past, featuring actors and characters older than himself.

In the best of them, 2013's The Great Beauty, the protagonist is a weary veteran journalist whose apartment overlooks ...


A Lively 'Victor Frankenstein' Gives Igor The Spotlight

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

The world of Victor Frankenstein — red brick and gray skies, clanking gears and straining pulleys, exploding dials and jury-rigged gizmos — is utterly steampunk. But the latest resurrection of Mary Shelley's horror classic has a tech-era vibe that adds to its modest appeal.

Rather than Swiss, this Victor (exuberant ...


Two Tom Hardys Give A Boost To 'Legend'

Thursday, November 19, 2015

In revisiting the saga of real-life swinging-London gangsters the Kray twins, Legend has two advantages over 1990's The Krays: Tom Hardy and Tom Hardy. The actor plays both the seething Ronnie and the cooler Reggie, and endows each with more palpable menace than did Gary and Martin Kemp, the prettier ...


In 'Trumbo,' Bryan Cranston Brings A Long-Uncredited Writer To Life

Thursday, November 05, 2015

For most of the 1950s, Hollywood had the ideal screenwriter. He worked fast and cheap and even won Oscars. Also, he didn't mouth off in public, or try to take all the credit.

In fact, Dalton Trumbo didn't take any credit, at least under his name. That's because he was ...


Graphic Doesn't Mean Interesting, Particularly In 'Love'

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Roughly half of Gaspar Noe's Love consists of raw, unsimulated sex acts — presented in 3D, no less. Add a dollop of young-adult romantic upheaval and the result is the Franco-Argentinian filmmaker's blandest feature to date.

Of course, that's by comparison to his previous movies, which depict rape, murder, psychedelic ...


Bill Murray Can't Bring The Rhythm To 'Rock The Kasbah'

Thursday, October 22, 2015

When it comes to music, Afghanistan is famous for the Taliban's ban on it during their rule. And when it comes to Afghan women and music, well, they tend to face the same constraints as in every other arena. Yet women have competed on Afghan Star, the local counterpart of ...


Spielberg Takes On The Cold War In 'Bridge Of Spies'

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Your country may be wrong, Steven Spielberg's Bridge of Spies sadly admits. But it maintains that a solid American family man can always be trusted. In the Cold War, as at home, father knows best.

That father is Spielberg regular Tom Hanks, or rather James Donovan, who presents himself as ...


'The Forbidden Room' Might Be Closer Than You Think

Thursday, October 08, 2015

Eccentric Canadian cinephile Guy Maddin simulates battered 1920s films so brilliantly that it's easy to miss what else he does. His The Forbidden Room, co-directed by protege Evan Johnson, plays like an anarchic collage of late-silent-era melodramas, action flicks, and horror movies, just unearthed after going unseen for nearly a ...