What the critics are saying | The Moviegoer

What the critics are saying

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The Holiday
Every holiday season, a feel-good movie comes along that is just a bit warmer, more romantic and intelligent than the others.  Last year, it was the wise, incandescent and criminally underrated The Family Stone.  This December, it’s The Holiday, a movie so loaded with charm that it makes you glow all over and puts a smile in your heart. Writer-director Nancy Meyers (Something’s Gotta Give, What Women Want) doesn’t always get it right, but anyone who wrote Baby Boom, one of my favorite comedies of all time, can be forgiven anything. At least 90 percent of The Holiday is a stocking-stuffer from Tiffany’s. - Rex Reed, New York Observer

Blood Diamond
The makers of “Blood Diamond,” an exceptionally foolish thriller starring a most excellent Leonardo DiCaprio, want you to know there may be blood on your hands, specifically your wedding finger. The story involves so-called conflict diamonds, illicitly mined stones that have been used to finance some of the most vicious wars in Africa. If films were judged solely by their good intentions, this one would be best in show. Instead, gilded in money and dripping with sanctimony, confused and mindlessly contradictory, the film is a textbook example of how easily commercialism can trump do-goodism, particularly in Hollywood. - Manohla Dargis, New York Times

Apocalypto
And say what you will about him — about his problem with booze or his problem with Jews — he is a serious filmmaker.Which is not to say that “Apocalypto” is a great film, or even that it can be taken quite as seriously as it wants to be. Mr. Gibson’s technical command has never been surer; for most of its 2-hour 18-minute running time, “Apocalypto,” written by Mr. Gibson and Farhad Safinia, is a model of narrative economy, moving nimbly forward and telling its tale with clarity and force. It is, above all, a muscular and kinetic action movie, a drama of rescue and revenge with very little organic relation to its historical setting. - A.O. Scott, New York Times


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