.Richard von Busack

Hollow TV screen with a river behind it
Jan 2, 2022

Life Is But a Stream: Movie Trends in 2021

Things fall apart. Markets fragment. The critic’s traditional “top 10” list means less in this era of diversified audiences. Audiences are multiverses, each with...
Mar 18, 2020

House Arrest

Hillary Clinton's life exemplifies the Goldilocks test, with which all second-wave feminists are familiar: you're always either too this or too that. You can be Secretary of State for four years and still have a male passerby say you need to smile more.
Mar 11, 2020

Review: ‘The Night’

One wants to note the levels of censorship in Iran; rules dictate everything from the invocation to Allah on the first title card, to the conduct of the characters. (To be fair, the production code in Hollywood film was deeply restrictive and yet oversaw hundreds of brilliant films.) Bretow and Ahari sent me a note explaining.
Mar 11, 2020

Review: ‘Onward’

It's about 1975, if there's a way to account for the cellphones: Big burly Barley (Chris Pratt does the voice) with his attempted beard, and his beat up van with Pegasus on it, complicates the life of his little brother Ian (Tom Holland) who has just turned 16. Barley has a headful of Magic the Gathering type lore, which he swears is all based on authentic historical events.
Mar 11, 2020

Monument Man

It's a tale of dashed hopes and silver linings. In other words, it's a typical Irish story. On March 17, 3Below Theaters & Lounge stages the U.S. debut of a play about a small Irish town and a fateful visit from former President Bill Clinton.
Mar 4, 2020

The 30-Year ‘Quest

If Walter's book is right, humanity may soon strike a profound blow against an adversary that so far still has a perfect record. The same people who disrupted media, commerce, transportation, entertainment, relationships and countless other sectors are now poised to disrupt the Big Sleep.
Mar 4, 2020

Home Movies

I'm also always interested in stories about migration. About individuals who leave their families in search of better economic opportunity, and the impact that that has on their psychology. Wendy, the main character in this film, not only leaves her family at a young age, but she also faces incredible pressure to succeed in a very particular way, with no one around to guide her through her journey. As a daughter and granddaughter of immigrants, these themes resonated with me.
Mar 4, 2020

Black Rider

How sad: send your son to Spain from the New World for an education, and they'll send you back a fop, a mollycoddle. Diego is useless to defend either his fiance Lolita (Marguerite de la Motte), or her persecuted family; all he can do is grin feebly and toy with his kerchief. As Sgt. Garcia (Noah Beery) pantomimes how he'll get his hands on that black-clad ruffian Zorro, how he'll knock him to the floor, skewer him and twist the sword, Diego averts his eyes at the dreadful spectacle.

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