Jumanji

(Photo by Buena Vista/courtesy Everett Collection)

All Coen Brothers Movies Ranked by Tomatometer

Since their 1984 neo-noir debut Blood Simple, brother directors Joel and Ethan Coen have danced amok across American cinema with mordant tales of wayward souls and their crimes and misdemeanors. Among their achievements include making a generation-defining comedy (The Big Lebowski), revitalizing the Western (True Grit), and winning Best Picture (No Country For Old Men). They even brought back bluegrass, achieved through cultural Trojan horse O Brother, Where Are Thou?. Recently, Joel Coen struck out on his own with The Tragedy of Macbeth, included in this guide to all Coen brothers movies ranked by Tomatometer!

#19

The Ladykillers (2004)
54%

#19
Adjusted Score: 60979%
Critics Consensus: Hanks' performance in the lead role is inspired, but this is a relatively minor offering from the Coen brothers.
Synopsis: Professor G.H. Dorr (Tom Hanks), a courtly Southern gentleman, arrives at the home of devout, elderly Marva Munson (Irma P.... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen

#18
#18
Adjusted Score: 60643%
Critics Consensus: Intriguingly strange and visually distinctive, The Hudsucker Proxy is ultimately almost -- but not quite -- as smart and absorbing as it needs to be.
Synopsis: Greedy executive Sidney J. Mussburger (Paul Newman) hopes to take control of the company he works for by purchasing a... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

#17
#17
Adjusted Score: 81382%
Critics Consensus: Though more mainstream than other Coen films, there are still funny oddball touches, and Clooney and Zeta-Jones sizzle like old-time movie stars.
Synopsis: Miles Massey (George Clooney) is an exceptional divorce lawyer who specializes in saving cheating husbands from having to pay expensive... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen

#16
Adjusted Score: 82824%
Critics Consensus: Though not as good as Coen brothers' classics such as Blood Simple, the delightfully loopy O Brother, Where Art Thou? is still a lot of fun.
Synopsis: Ulysses Everett McGill (George Clooney) is having difficulty adjusting to his hard-labor sentence in Mississippi. He scams his way off... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen

#15
#15
Adjusted Score: 88209%
Critics Consensus: With Burn After Reading, the Coen Brothers have crafted another clever comedy/thriller with an outlandish plot and memorable characters.
Synopsis: When a disc containing memoirs of a former CIA analyst (John Malkovich) falls into the hands of Linda Litzke (Frances... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

#14
#14
Adjusted Score: 87177%
Critics Consensus: Stylish but emotionally distant, The Man Who Wasn't There is a clever tribute to the film noir genre.
Synopsis: A dark tale of infidelity and murder, crime and punishment. Set in a small northern California town of the late... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen

#13

The Big Lebowski (1998)
83%

#13
Adjusted Score: 89049%
Critics Consensus: Typically stunning visuals and sharp dialogue from the Coen Brothers, brought to life with strong performances from Goodman and Bridges.
Synopsis: Jeff Bridges plays Jeff Lebowski who insists on being called "the Dude," a laid-back, easygoing burnout who happens to have... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen

#12

Hail, Caesar! (2016)
85%

#12
Adjusted Score: 108008%
Critics Consensus: Packed with period detail and perfectly cast, Hail, Caesar! finds the Coen brothers delivering an agreeably lightweight love letter to post-war Hollywood.
Synopsis: In the early 1950s, Eddie Mannix is busy at work trying to solve all the problems of the actors and... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

#11

A Serious Man (2009)
89%

#11
Adjusted Score: 97606%
Critics Consensus: Blending dark humor with profoundly personal themes, the Coen brothers deliver what might be their most mature -- if not their best -- film to date.
Synopsis: Larry Gopnik (Michael Stuhlbarg) is a physics professor at a 1960s university, but his life is coming apart at the... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

#10
Adjusted Score: 103035%
Critics Consensus: The Ballad of Buster Scruggs avoids anthology pitfalls with a consistent collection tied together by the Coen brothers' signature blend of dark drama and black humor.
Synopsis: An anthology of six short films that take place in 19th-century post-Civil War era during the settling of the Old... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

#9

Barton Fink (1991)
90%

#9
Adjusted Score: 94552%
Critics Consensus: Twisty and unsettling, the Coen brothers' satirical tale of a 1940s playwright struggling with writer's block is packed with their trademark sense of humor and terrific performances from its cast.
Synopsis: Set in 1941, an intellectual New York playwright Barton Fink (John Turturro) accepts an offer to write movie scripts in... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen

#8

Raising Arizona (1987)
91%

#8
Adjusted Score: 95570%
Critics Consensus: A terrifically original, eccentric screwball comedy, Raising Arizona may not be the Coens' most disciplined movie, but it's one of their most purely entertaining.
Synopsis: An ex-con and an ex-cop meet, marry and long for a child of their own. When it is discovered that... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen

#7
#7
Adjusted Score: 95306%
Critics Consensus: Though possibly more notable for its distinctive style than an airtight story, this Coen brothers take on the classic gangster flick features sharp dialogue, impressive cinematography, and a typically quirky cast of characters.
Synopsis: When the Italian Mafia threatens to kill a crooked bookie (John Turturro), Irish mob boss Leo O'Bannon (Albert Finney) refuses... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

#6
#6
Adjusted Score: 102851%
Critics Consensus: Smart, funny, and profoundly melancholy, Inside Llewyn Davis finds the Coen brothers in fine form.
Synopsis: In 1961 New York City, folk singer Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) is at a crossroads. Guitar in hand, he struggles... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

#5
#5
Adjusted Score: 105279%
Critics Consensus: Led by a stellar Denzel Washington, The Tragedy of Macbeth strips the classic story down to its visual and narrative essentials.
Synopsis: Power-hungry Macbeth sets his sights on the Scottish throne after receiving a prophecy from three witches.... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen

#4
#4
Adjusted Score: 105781%
Critics Consensus: Bolstered by powerful lead performances from Javier Bardem, Josh Brolin, and Tommy Lee Jones, No Country for Old Men finds the Coen brothers spinning cinematic gold out of Cormac McCarthy's grim, darkly funny novel.
Synopsis: While out hunting, Llewelyn Moss (Josh Brolin) finds the grisly aftermath of a drug deal. Though he knows better, he... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

#3

Fargo (1996)
94%

#3
Adjusted Score: 100374%
Critics Consensus: Violent, quirky, and darkly funny, Fargo delivers an original crime story and a wonderful performance by McDormand.
Synopsis: "Fargo" is a reality-based crime drama set in Minnesota in 1987. Jerry Lundegaard (William H. Macy) is a car salesman... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen

#2

Blood Simple (1984)
94%

#2
Adjusted Score: 102888%
Critics Consensus: Brutally violent and shockingly funny in equal measure, Blood Simple offers early evidence of the Coen Brothers' twisted sensibilities and filmmaking ingenuity.
Synopsis: "Blood Simple" was the first feature film from Joel and Ethan Coen. This is the newly restored and re-edited director's... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen

#1

True Grit (2010)
95%

#1
Adjusted Score: 105673%
Critics Consensus: Girded by strong performances from Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, and newcomer Hailee Steinfeld, and lifted by some of the Coens' most finely tuned, unaffected work, True Grit is a worthy companion to the Charles Portis book.
Synopsis: After an outlaw named Tom Chaney (Josh Brolin) murders her father, feisty 14-year-old farm girl Mattie Ross (Hailee Steinfeld) hires... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

Disney/courtesy Everett Collection

(Photo by Disney/courtesy Everett Collection)

All Oscar Isaac Movies Ranked by Tomatometer

Before he became Llewyn Davis, actor Oscar Isaac was the guy you saw constantly bringing it in secondary roles in high-profile projects, each career move taking him that much closer to the one perfect role that would make him a star. He worked twice with Ridley Scott with Body of Lies and Robin Hood, got to show off his sweet dance moves in Sucker Punch, shot a few guns in The Bourne Legacy, and brought uncommon empathy to his doomed ex-con character in Drive.

And as great as the Llewyn Davis character is on paper, being written by the Coen brothers after all, it was Isaac’s wry, sad, funny, and even mysterious performance that brought the folk singer to cinematic life. 2015 was A Most Violent Year for Isaac, but also a very good one, as that movie released, along with The Two Faces of January, word-of-mouth sci-fi smash Ex Machina, and the juggernaut that was Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens.

Recently, he was in The Card Counter and two Addams Family movies. Now, we’re taking a walk back now with ranking all of Oscar Isaac’s movies by Tomatometer!

#33

W.E. (2011)
12%

#33
Adjusted Score: 16316%
Critics Consensus: W.E. exhibits director Madonna's keen eye for striking style, but this shallow biopic is too enamored with aesthetics to offer any insight into its subject.
Synopsis: Dissatisfied with the way her own life is playing out, New York-based Wally Winthrop (Abbie Cornish) becomes obsessed with the... [More]
Directed By: Madonna

#32

Life Itself (2018)
13%

#32
Adjusted Score: 21830%
Critics Consensus: A mawkish melodrama that means less the more it tries to say, Life Itself suggests writer-director Dan Fogelman's talents are best suited to television.
Synopsis: College sweethearts Will and Abby fall in love, get married and prepare to bring their first child into the world.... [More]
Directed By: Dan Fogelman

#31
#31
Adjusted Score: 21305%
Critics Consensus: It has laudable aspirations, but For Greater Glory ultimately fails to fulfill its goals due to an overstuffed script, thinly written characters, and an overly simplified dramatization of historical events.
Synopsis: In late 1920s Mexico, retired Gen. Gorostieta (Andy Garcia) and his wife (Eva Longoria) watch their country degenerate into violent... [More]
Directed By: Dean Wright

#30

Sucker Punch (2011)
22%

#30
Adjusted Score: 30467%
Critics Consensus: It's technically impressive and loaded with eye-catching images, but without characters or a plot to support them, all of Sucker Punch's visual thrills are for naught.
Synopsis: Locked away, a young woman named Babydoll (Emily Browning) retreats to a fantasy world where she is free to go... [More]
Directed By: Zack Snyder

#29
#29
Adjusted Score: 33374%
Critics Consensus: Altogether ooky, and not in a good way.
Synopsis: Everyone's favorite spooky family is back in the animated comedy sequel, The Addams Family 2. In this all new movie... [More]

#28

Suburbicon (2017)
28%

#28
Adjusted Score: 46492%
Critics Consensus: A disappointing misfire for director George Clooney, Suburbicon attempts to juggle social satire, racial commentary, and murder mystery -- and ends up making a mess of all three.
Synopsis: Suburbicon is a peaceful, idyllic, suburban community with affordable homes and manicured lawns -- the perfect place to raise a... [More]
Directed By: George Clooney

#27

Mojave (2015)
31%

#27
Adjusted Score: 33722%
Critics Consensus: Mojave has no shortage of talent on either side of the camera; unfortunately, it amounts to little more than a frustrating missed opportunity.
Synopsis: A down-and-out artist (Garrett Hedlund) has a dangerous and shocking encounter with an evil drifter (Oscar Isaac) in the desert,... [More]
Directed By: William Monahan

#26

Won't Back Down (2012)
35%

#26
Adjusted Score: 37987%
Critics Consensus: Despite the best efforts of its talented leads, Won't Back Down fails to lend sufficient dramatic heft or sophistication to the hot-button issue of education reform.
Synopsis: Jamie Fitzpatrick (Maggie Gyllenhaal) and Nona Alberts (Viola Davis) are two women from opposites sides of the social and economic... [More]
Directed By: Daniel Barnz

#25
#25
Adjusted Score: 42240%
Critics Consensus: The Nativity Story is a dull retelling of a well-worn tale with the look and feel of a high-school production.
Synopsis: Betrothed to much-older Joseph (Oscar Isaac), Mary (Keisha Castle-Hughes) must remain a maiden for one year, but she subsequently receives... [More]
Directed By: Catherine Hardwicke

#24

Therese (2013)
41%

#24
Adjusted Score: 43135%
Critics Consensus: Although it benefits from a strong cast, In Secret's stars can't totally compensate for the movie's sodden pacing and overly familiar story.
Synopsis: A woman (Elizabeth Olsen) and her lover (Oscar Isaac) conspire to murder her mild-mannered husband (Tom Felton), but overwhelming guilt... [More]
Directed By: Charlie Stratton

#23

Robin Hood (2010)
43%

#23
Adjusted Score: 51697%
Critics Consensus: Ridley Scott's revisionist take on this oft-told tale offers some fine acting and a few gripping action sequences, but it's missing the thrill of adventure that made Robin Hood a legend in the first place.
Synopsis: After the death of Richard the Lion-Hearted, a skilled archer named Robin Longstride (Russell Crowe) travels to Nottingham, where villagers... [More]
Directed By: Ridley Scott

#22
#22
Adjusted Score: 53374%
Critics Consensus: The Addams Family's starry voice cast and eye-catching animation aren't enough to outweigh its saccharine handling of the delightfully dark source material.
Synopsis: Members of the mysterious and spooky Addams family -- Gomez, Morticia, Pugsley, Wednesday, Uncle Fester and Grandma -- are readily... [More]

#21
#21
Adjusted Score: 67945%
Critics Consensus: Overloaded action and a cliched villain take the focus away from otherwise strong performers and resonant themes, making X-Men: Apocalypse a middling chapter of the venerable superhero franchise.
Synopsis: Worshiped as a god since the dawn of civilization, the immortal Apocalypse (Oscar Isaac) becomes the first and most powerful... [More]
Directed By: Bryan Singer

#20

The Promise (2016)
51%

#20
Adjusted Score: 61641%
Critics Consensus: The Promise wastes an outstanding cast and powerful real-life story on a love triangle that frustratingly fails to engage.
Synopsis: Brilliant medical student Michael (Oscar Isaac) meets beautiful dance instructor Ana (Charlotte Le Bon) in late 1914. Their shared Armenian... [More]
Directed By: Terry George

#19
Adjusted Score: 83579%
Critics Consensus: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker suffers from a frustrating lack of imagination, but concludes this beloved saga with fan-focused devotion.
Synopsis: When it's discovered that the evil Emperor Palpatine did not die at the hands of Darth Vader, the rebels must... [More]
Directed By: J.J. Abrams

#18

Agora (2009)
54%

#18
Adjusted Score: 55953%
Critics Consensus: Noble goals and a gripping performance from Rachel Weisz can't save Agora from its muddled script, uneven acting, and choppy editing.
Synopsis: In the 4th century A.D., astronomer and philosopher Hypatia (Rachel Weisz) teaches her scientific beliefs to a class of male... [More]
Directed By: Alejandro Amenábar

#17
#17
Adjusted Score: 64918%
Critics Consensus: It isn't quite as compelling as the earlier trilogy, but The Bourne Legacy proves the franchise has stories left to tell -- and benefits from Jeremy Renner's magnetic work in the starring role.
Synopsis: When the actions of Jason Bourne spark a fire that threatens to burn down decades of research across a number... [More]
Directed By: Tony Gilroy

#16
Adjusted Score: 17889%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Dying from radiation poisoning, a man (Paddy Considine) gets mixed up in a plutonium scheme with a small-time criminal (Oscar... [More]
Directed By: Scott Z. Burns

#15

10 Years (2011)
60%

#15
Adjusted Score: 61729%
Critics Consensus: A sweet ensemble comedy about a high school reunion, 10 Years is well cast but unfortunately predictable and short on three dimensional characters.
Synopsis: Former high-school friends (Channing Tatum, Rosario Dawson, Justin Long) meet again after a decade and discover that the passage of... [More]
Directed By: Jamie Linden

#14

Operation Finale (2018)
61%

#14
Adjusted Score: 67674%
Critics Consensus: Operation Finale is well-intentioned, well-acted, and overall entertaining, even if the depth and complexity of the real-life events depicted can get a little lost in their dramatization.
Synopsis: Fifteen years after the end of World War II, a team of top-secret Israeli agents travels to Argentina to track... [More]
Directed By: Chris Weitz

#13

Triple Frontier (2019)
71%

#13
Adjusted Score: 77995%
Critics Consensus: An outstanding cast and ambitious story help Triple Frontier overcome an uneven narrative -- and elevate the end result above a crowded field of grim and gritty heist thrillers.
Synopsis: Former Special Forces operatives reunite to plan a heist in a sparsely populated multi-border zone of South America. For the... [More]
Directed By: J.C. Chandor

#12
#12
Adjusted Score: 89208%
Critics Consensus: Led by mesmerizing work from Willem Dafoe in the central role, At Eternity's Gate intriguingly imagines Vincent Van Gogh's troubled final days.
Synopsis: Famed but tormented artist Vincent van Gogh spends his final years in Arles, France, painting masterworks of the natural world... [More]
Directed By: Julian Schnabel

#11
#11
Adjusted Score: 83596%
Critics Consensus: With striking visuals, complex characters, and Hitchcockian plot twists, The Two Faces of January offers a pleasantly pungent treat for fans of romantic thrillers.
Synopsis: After he kills a detective, a con artist (Viggo Mortensen) and his wife (Kirsten Dunst) must trust a potentially dangerous... [More]
Directed By: Hossein Amini

#10

The Card Counter (2020)
86%

#10
Adjusted Score: 96922%
Critics Consensus: Led by Oscar Isaac's gripping performance, The Card Counter adds another weighty chapter to Paul Schrader's long inquiry into man's moral responsibility.
Synopsis: Redemption is the long game in Paul Schrader's THE CARD COUNTER. Told with Schrader's trademark cinematic intensity, the revenge thriller... [More]
Directed By: Paul Schrader

#9

Annihilation (2018)
88%

#9
Adjusted Score: 108010%
Critics Consensus: Annihilation backs up its sci-fi visual wonders and visceral genre thrills with an impressively ambitious -- and surprisingly strange -- exploration of challenging themes that should leave audiences pondering long after the end credits roll.
Synopsis: Lena, a biologist and former soldier, joins a mission to uncover what happened to her husband inside Area X --... [More]
Directed By: Alex Garland

#8

Dune (2021)
83%

#8
Adjusted Score: 107705%
Critics Consensus: Dune occasionally struggles with its unwieldy source material, but those issues are largely overshadowed by the scope and ambition of this visually thrilling adaptation.
Synopsis: Paul Atreides, a brilliant and gifted young man born into a great destiny beyond his understanding, must travel to the... [More]
Directed By: Denis Villeneuve

#7
#7
Adjusted Score: 98397%
Critics Consensus: Gritty, gripping, and weighted with thought-provoking heft, A Most Violent Year represents another strong entry in writer-director J.C. Chandor's impressive filmography.
Synopsis: In 1981 New York, a fuel supplier (Oscar Isaac) tries to adhere to his own moral compass amid the rampant... [More]
Directed By: J.C. Chandor

#6
#6
Adjusted Score: 126927%
Critics Consensus: Star Wars: The Last Jedi honors the saga's rich legacy while adding some surprising twists -- and delivering all the emotion-rich action fans could hope for.
Synopsis: Luke Skywalker's peaceful and solitary existence gets upended when he encounters Rey, a young woman who shows strong signs of... [More]
Directed By: Rian Johnson

#5

Ex Machina (2014)
92%

#5
Adjusted Score: 103683%
Critics Consensus: Ex Machina leans heavier on ideas than effects, but it's still a visually polished piece of work -- and an uncommonly engaging sci-fi feature.
Synopsis: Caleb Smith (Domhnall Gleeson) a programmer at a huge Internet company, wins a contest that enables him to spend a... [More]
Directed By: Alex Garland

#4
#4
Adjusted Score: 102851%
Critics Consensus: Smart, funny, and profoundly melancholy, Inside Llewyn Davis finds the Coen brothers in fine form.
Synopsis: In 1961 New York City, folk singer Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) is at a crossroads. Guitar in hand, he struggles... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

#3

Drive (2011)
93%

#3
Adjusted Score: 102675%
Critics Consensus: With its hyper-stylized blend of violence, music, and striking imagery, Drive represents a fully realized vision of arthouse action.
Synopsis: Driver is a skilled Hollywood stuntman who moonlights as a getaway driver for criminals. Though he projects an icy exterior,... [More]
Directed By: Nicolas Winding Refn

#2
Adjusted Score: 110988%
Critics Consensus: Packed with action and populated by both familiar faces and fresh blood, The Force Awakens successfully recalls the series' former glory while injecting it with renewed energy.
Synopsis: Thirty years after the defeat of the Galactic Empire, the galaxy faces a new threat from the evil Kylo Ren... [More]
Directed By: J.J. Abrams

#1

Balibo (2009)
100%

#1
Adjusted Score: 89014%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Roger East and Jose Ramos-Horta travel to East Timor to investigate the Balibo Five murders.... [More]
Directed By: Robert Connolly

In Time

(Photo by 20th Century Fox/ courtesy Everett Collection)

All Justin Timberlake Movies Ranked

Cause for alarm: Justin Timberlake has only been in a few Certified Fresh movies in his career, projects that have really hit with critics – we hope he has a second job to fall back on.

For now, Timberlake will just have to be content with the fact he’s been in some of the really good flicks of the 2010s, like David Fincher’s Best Picture nominee The Social Network, or the Coen brothers’ wry and sly take on the folk music, Inside Llewyn Davis. And no one can blame Timberlake for not being careful in cultivating his movie brand, making a few sex comedies (The Love Guru, Friends With Benefits), throwing in a few sci-fi risks (Southland Tales, In Time), and sweetening the stew with family movies (Yogi Bear, Shrek the Third).

Timberlake’s latest film, his first in three years, certainly falls in that last category: Trolls World Tour, which took the extraordinary step of skipping theatrical and going straight to on-demand. With the movie added to this list, we’re sync as we look back on all Justin Timberlake movies ranked by Tomatometer!

#18

Runner Runner (2013)
7%

#18
Adjusted Score: 11463%
Critics Consensus: It has an impressive cast and an intriguing premise, but Runner Runner wastes them on a bland, haphazardly assembled thriller with very little payoff.
Synopsis: Believing that he has been swindled, Princeton grad student Richie (Justin Timberlake) goes to Costa Rica to confront online-gambling tycoon... [More]
Directed By: Brad Furman

#17

Edison (2005)
13%

#17
Adjusted Score: 4573%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Ambitious young reporter Pollack (Justin Timberlake) suspects insidious corruption in his town's elite police unit, known as F.R.A.T., and finds... [More]
Directed By: David J. Burke

#16

Yogi Bear (2010)
12%

#16
Adjusted Score: 15463%
Critics Consensus: Yogi Bear's 3D effects and all-star voice cast are cold comfort for its aggressively mediocre screenplay.
Synopsis: Yogi (Dan Aykroyd) and his sidekick, Boo Boo (Justin Timberlake), are Jellystone Park's most-notorious troublemakers, hatching countless schemes to separate... [More]
Directed By: Eric Brevig

#15

The Love Guru (2008)
14%

#15
Adjusted Score: 19936%
Critics Consensus: The Love Guru features far too many gross-out gags, and too few earned laughs, ranking as one of Mike Myers' poorest outings.
Synopsis: Born in America and raised in an Indian ashram, Pitka (Mike Myers) returns to his native land to seek his... [More]
Directed By: Marco Schnabel

#14

The Open Road (2009)
29%

#14
Adjusted Score: 8918%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: While playing minor league baseball in Texas, Carlton Garrett (Justin Timberlake) receives word from his grandfather (Harry Dean Stanton) that... [More]
Directed By: Michael Meredith

#13

Wonder Wheel (2017)
31%

#13
Adjusted Score: 45875%
Critics Consensus: Wonder Wheel gathers a charming cast in an inviting period setting, but they aren't enough to consistently breathe life into a Woody Allen project that never quite comes together.
Synopsis: Four peoples' lives intertwine amid the hustle and bustle of the Coney Island amusement park in the 1950s: Ginny, an... [More]
Directed By: Woody Allen

#12

In Time (2011)
37%

#12
Adjusted Score: 42539%
Critics Consensus: In Time's intriguing premise and appealing cast are easily overpowered by the blunt, heavy-handed storytelling.
Synopsis: In a future where time is money and the wealthy can live forever, Will Salas (Justin Timberlake) is a poor... [More]
Directed By: Andrew Niccol

#11

Southland Tales (2006)
40%

#11
Adjusted Score: 43708%
Critics Consensus: Southland Tales, while offering an intriguing vision of the future, remains frustratingly incoherent and unpolished.
Synopsis: With the United States under the threat of nuclear attack, the lives of several people converge in a dystopian Los... [More]
Directed By: Richard Kelly

#10

Shrek the Third (2007)
42%

#10
Adjusted Score: 50245%
Critics Consensus: Shrek the Third has pop culture potshots galore, but at the expense of the heart, charm, and wit that made the first two Shreks classics.
Synopsis: When King Harold suddenly croaks, Shrek (Mike Myers) learns he will have to rule the land of Far, Far Away,... [More]
Directed By: Chris Miller

#9

Bad Teacher (2011)
45%

#9
Adjusted Score: 51219%
Critics Consensus: In spite of a promising concept and a charmingly brazen performance from Cameron Diaz, Bad Teacher is never as funny as it should be.
Synopsis: For most, teaching is an honorable profession -- except for Elizabeth (Cameron Diaz). The foul-mouthed, boozy woman can't wait to... [More]
Directed By: Jake Kasdan

#8
#8
Adjusted Score: 58598%
Critics Consensus: Though predictable and somewhat dramatically underwhelming, Trouble with the Curve benefits from Clint Eastwood's grizzled charisma and his easy chemistry with a charming Amy Adams.
Synopsis: For decades Gus Lobel (Clint Eastwood) has been one of baseball's best scouts -- but now his age is catching... [More]
Directed By: Robert Lorenz

#7

Alpha Dog (2006)
54%

#7
Adjusted Score: 59894%
Critics Consensus: A glossy yet unflinching portrait of violent, hedonistic teenagers. Bruce Willis and Sharon Stone chew the scenery, while Justin Timberlake gives a noteworthy performance.
Synopsis: Teenage dealer Johnny Truelove (Emile Hirsch) and his friends kidnap the impressionable younger brother (Anton Yelchin) of a junkie (Ben... [More]
Directed By: Nick Cassavetes

#6

Black Snake Moan (2007)
66%

#6
Adjusted Score: 71848%
Critics Consensus: Uninhibited performances, skillful direction, and a killer blues soundtrack elevate Black Snake Moan beyond its outlandish premise.
Synopsis: After her lover (Justin Timberlake) leaves to serve in the military, Rae (Christina Ricci) gives in to her raging libido... [More]
Directed By: Craig Brewer

#5
#5
Adjusted Score: 74315%
Critics Consensus: Friends with Benefits adds nothing new to its well-worn rom-com formula, but the chemistry between Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis is almost enough to carry the movie by itself.
Synopsis: Jamie (Mila Kunis) is a New York-based executive recruiter who entices Dylan (Justin Timberlake), an art director from Los Angeles,... [More]
Directed By: Will Gluck

#4
#4
Adjusted Score: 81879%
Critics Consensus: A fun follow-up for fans of the original, Trolls World Tour offers a second helping of colorful animation, infectious energy, and sing-along songs.
Synopsis: Poppy and Branch discover that there are six different troll tribes scattered over six different lands. Each tribe is also... [More]
Directed By: Walt Dohrn

#3

Trolls (2016)
75%

#3
Adjusted Score: 84907%
Critics Consensus: Trolls brings its instantly recognizable characters to the big screen in a colorful adventure that, while geared toward the younger set, isn't without rewards for parents.
Synopsis: After the Bergens invade Troll Village, Poppy (Anna Kendrick), the happiest Troll ever born, and the overly-cautious, curmudgeonly Branch (Justin... [More]
Directed By: Mike Mitchell, Walt Dohrn

#2
#2
Adjusted Score: 102851%
Critics Consensus: Smart, funny, and profoundly melancholy, Inside Llewyn Davis finds the Coen brothers in fine form.
Synopsis: In 1961 New York City, folk singer Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) is at a crossroads. Guitar in hand, he struggles... [More]
Directed By: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 107984%
Critics Consensus: Impeccably scripted, beautifully directed, and filled with fine performances, The Social Network is a riveting, ambitious example of modern filmmaking at its finest.
Synopsis: In 2003, Harvard undergrad and computer genius Mark Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg) begins work on a new concept that eventually turns... [More]
Directed By: David Fincher

Mark Hamill’s long-awaited return to active duty as Luke Skywalker is the big story for Star Wars fans heading out to see The Last Jedi this weekend, but he’s far from the only talented member of the cast — and to prove it, we’re taking a look at some of the other fine features credited to the members of this installment’s ensemble. Unfortunately, some Last Jedi stars are just too new to include (all apologies, Kelly Marie Tran!), but with the saga showing no signs of stopping, we’ll no doubt end up adding their later films to this list after Star Wars sequels to come. It’s time for Total Recall!


Daisy Ridley – Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) 93%

(Photo by )

Is it cheating to fall back on The Force Awakens for Daisy Ridley’s entry on our list? Well, maybe — but it was only a couple of years ago that she made her big breakthrough in this movie, and she hasn’t had a ton of time to do much else since. Ms. Ridley isn’t the first previously unknown actor to skyrocket out of obscurity in a blockbuster film, but few have carried the weight of a massive franchise so gracefully; once she’s done with the Star Wars saga, her performance as Rey suggests we’ll be seeing a lot of her for years to come. “Han Solo is back,” Pete Hammond wrote of the franchise’s long-awaited seventh installment, “but it is Daisy Ridley’s Rey that is the heart of The Force Awakens. She’s a keeper.”


Adam Driver – Paterson (2016) 96%

(Photo by Bleecker Street Media)

Adam Driver’s performance as Ben Solo, a.k.a. Kylo Ren, is appropriately over the top for a character grappling with internal conflict as he stands at the forefront of a movement poised to reshape the entire galaxy. He can be still and centered when the material calls for it, however — as exemplified by Paterson, Jim Jarmusch’s gently unfolding drama about a poet who supports himself as a bus driver while resisting his wife’s encouragement to publish his work. It’s the type of film that may not have a lot going on in terms of plot, but has a lot to say to viewers quiet enough to listen, and Driver’s work in the title role is a big part of what makes it so gratifying. As Tom Keogh wrote for the Seattle Times, “Driver’s performance as an uncertain man getting through the day-to-day prosaic, quietly buoyed by passion and artistic commitment, is exquisite.”


Mark HamillThe Big Red One (1980) 90%

(Photo by United Artists courtesy Everett Collection)

As far as generations of filmgoers are concerned, Mark Hamill is Luke Skywalker — and maybe the voice of the Joker too, during his downtime from a galaxy far, far away. But his acting gifts encompass more than just a Jedi and/or the Clown Prince of Crime, and 1980’s The Big Red One offers compelling proof. This World War II drama from director/co-writer Samuel Fuller, inspired by Fuller’s own experiences on the front lines, combines the talents of a solid ensemble cast led by Lee Marvin — and including Hamill, who plays a gifted yet reluctant sharpshooter. “The cast smartly underplays things, with Marvin being as charismatic as usual playing a man of few words,” wrote Jeff Vice for the Deseret News. “And Hamill, an actor given to over-the-top outbursts, reins it in here; this may be his best big-screen performance.”


Carrie FisherHannah and Her Sisters (1986) 91%

From the moment A New Hope hit, Carrie Fisher was forever linked with Princess Leia, but to her credit, she flat-out refused to be pigeonholed. In addition to an impressive career as an author and playwright, she spent years as one of Hollywood’s most in-demand script doctors — and that’s all while managing to turn in reliably scene-stealing supporting appearances in a handful of non-Star Wars classics. Take, for example, Fisher’s work in Woody Allen’s Hannah and Her Sisters, an Oscar-winning box office triumph that found the writer-director weaving together the lives and loves of mid-’80s Manhattanites with an ensemble that also included Barbara Hershey, Michael Caine, Dianne Wiest, and Mia Farrow. “Allen’s writing and directing style is so strong and assured in this film that the actual filmmaking itself becomes a narrative voice,” wrote Roger Ebert. “Just as we sense Henry James behind all of his novels, or William Faulkner or Iris Murdoch behind theirs.”


Andy Serkis – The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002) 95%

(Photo by Warner Bros.)

Andy Serkis is Hollywood’s reigning king of motion capture, with services so in demand that actually seeing his face onscreen is fairly rare; for every straight up live-action role like the MCU’s Ulysses Klaue, there’s a blockbuster production asking him to play a mo-cap creation like King Kong, Caesar in the recent Planet of the Apes trilogy, or nasty old Supreme Leader Snoke. It all started with Serkis’ boundary-shattering performance as Gollum in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy, which used cutting-edge technology — and Serkis’ dramatic gifts — to imbue the character with shockingly lifelike movements and expressions. “Andy Serkis’s work in creating Gollum deserved an honorary Academy Award,” wrote Nick Rogers of Suite101. “His gestures and voice, not computer software, make Gollum so memorable as he wrestles with his inner homicidal maniac. A soaring, searing tale of wonderment.”


Oscar Isaac – Inside Llewyn Davis (2013) 92%

(Photo by CBS Films)

Oscar Isaac scored some notable roles early in his film career, including appearances in Sucker Punch, The Bourne Legacy, and Ridley Scott’s Robin Hood. They were all just a warmup, however, for the major coming-out party he threw for himself with Inside Llewyn Davis. Starring as the titular ’60s folk singer in this acclaimed Coen brothers comedy, Isaac inhabited one of the less likable protagonists in recent memory — but even as Llewyn made a mess of his life and alienated friends, acquaintances, and enemies with equal aplomb, he remained relatable on some level, largely thanks to the actor’s judgment-free portrayal. “The film’s centerpiece,” wrote Joe Morgenstern for the Wall Street Journal, “is Mr. Isaac’s phenomenal performance.”


John Boyega – Attack the Block (2011) 90%

(Photo by Matt Nettheim/Screen Gems courtesy Everett Collection)

Before he traveled to a galaxy far, far away — and was conscripted into the First Order as the stormtrooper-turned-Resistance hero Finn — John Boyega had a very different type of extraterrestrial experience in 2011’s Attack the Block. A sci-fi action thriller from director Joe Cornish, Block imagines what might happen if aliens invaded a rough part of London, unwittingly wedging themselves into the ongoing conflict between local gangs, law enforcement, and ordinary citizens just trying to live peaceful lives — all of them willing to take extreme measures to protect what’s theirs. Not even in his 20s when the movie was released, Boyega amassed an impressive assortment of award nominations for his portrayal of a gang leader, setting up the worldwide breakthrough he’d enjoy just a few years later as Finn. As Leah Rozen wrote of Attack the Block for TheWrap, “This spunky, low-budget British action-comedy proves once again that a smart script can breathe new life into even the most tired of subjects.”


Domhnall Gleeson – Brooklyn (2015) 97%

(Photo by Fox Searchlight Pictures)

For a guy who isn’t yet quite a household name, Domhnall Gleeson has racked up a pretty impressive string of appearances in acclaimed films. From Never Let Me Go to the Harry Potter franchise and the Coen brothers’ True Grit remake, he displayed an uncommon early knack for picking film scripts, and that’s only continued — in 2015, he joined the Star Wars saga as the villainous General Hux while also landing roles in Ex Machina, The Revenant, and Brooklyn.  The latter effort proved Gleeson didn’t need magic, space battles, or AI to keep an audience’s interest; playing the thoroughly decent Jim Farrell, a prospective love interest for Saoirse Ronan’s Eilis Lacey, he helped add an extra dash of romantic angst to this Oscar-nominated period piece’s heart-tugging story. “Brooklyn is a story for anyone who has ever left home,” wrote Lindsey Bahr for the Associated Press. “It’s a story for those who’ve waffled in indecision, for those forming their identities and forging their own paths. And it’s one of the loveliest films to grace cinemas this year.”


Gwendoline ChristieStar Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) 93%

(Photo by Walt Disney Studios)

It may seem crazy to those of us who’ve seen her slay (literally) as Brienne of Tarth on Game of Thrones, but Gwendoline Christie really doesn’t have much of a filmography to speak of — before breaking out as Captain Phasma in The Force Awakens, she was briefly seen in The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, The Zero Theorem, and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2. But as anyone who’s seen Christie’s work knows, she has quite the commanding presence onscreen — and she can steal scenes even when her face is hidden behind a chrome helmet. Relive Phasma’s debut this weekend, and prepare to see Christie’s name in the credits of many features to come.


Benicio Del Toro – Sicario (2015) 92%

(Photo by Richard Foreman Jr./Lionsgate)

Some actors come to Star Wars looking for their first major role; for others, it’s a cool franchise stop in a career that already had plenty of its own momentum. With scads of other roles (and an Oscar) to his name, Benicio del Toro falls firmly in the latter camp — from his debut as Duke the Dog-Faced Boy in Big Top Pee-wee to classics like The Usual Suspects and beyond, a person could keep their queue busy with nothing but his movies for days at a time. If you want to start at the top, begin your Benicio binge session with 2015’s Sicario, a harrowing crime thriller from director Denis Villeneuve (working from a script by Taylor Sheridan) about United States federal agents working to bring down a Mexican cartel. As a member of the team with seemingly questionable loyalties, del Toro adds an extra layer of tension to the story — and drew acclaim from critics like the Las Vegas Review-Journal’s Christopher Lawrence, who wrote, “Then there’s Del Toro’s turn as Alejandro. Simultaneously tragic and terrifying, it’s the type of subtly menacing star turn that should keep him busy throughout awards season.”


Laura Dern – Rambling Rose (1991) 100%

(Photo by New Line Cinema courtesy Everett Collection)

Lots of people have known for a very long time that Laura Dern is an incredible talent — in fact, she was only in her early 20s when she picked up an Oscar nomination for her work in the title role of Rambling Rose. Dern’s dramatic chops might be in her genes — her Rose Oscar nomination came alongside one for her mother Diane Ladd, who had a supporting role in the movie — but she’s definitely made a name for herself over the course of a screen career that spans decades and shows no signs of slowing down. (Earlier this year, in fact, she won an Emmy for her work in HBO’s Big Little Lies.) Few could have truly foreseen the type of career Dern would create for herself after Rambling Rose was released, but she wowed more than a few critics with her portrayal of a woman who finds acceptance with a rural Georgia family after fleeing a life of forced prostitution. “Dern accomplishes her effects so invisibly and with such graceful ease that her skills may be under-appreciated, but pay attention,” wrote Hal Hinson for the Washington Post. “This is a spectacular actress arriving at the very peak of her talents.”

Sitcom star, dependable character actor, occasional leading man — John Goodman has basked in the glow of a number of different spotlights over the last few decades, carving out a career enviable for its versatility and sheer success as well as entertaining to watch. Whether he’s making good use of his expert comic timing or lending dramatic gravitas to a scene, Goodman has become a reliable indicator of quality for whatever project he happens to be involved with — and this weekend, given that the project in question happens to be Kong: Skull Island, we figured now would be the perfect time to pay tribute to Mr. Goodman with a look back at his best-reviewed films. All hail King Ralph, it’s time for Total Recall!


10. The Big Easy (1986) 89%

An early and enduring critical favorite, The Big Easy was a concerted move to the mainstream for director Jim McBride, who cut his teeth on stuff like the X-rated apocalyptic fantasy Glen and Randa. It captured Dennis Quaid at his Hollywood heartthrob peak, chucking him and Goodman into the bayou with a never-sultrier Ellen Barkin for a sex-drenched neo-noir about police corruption (and, it must be noted, really good music). Easy wasn’t a huge hit — it grossed less than $18 million during its theatrical run — but its cult has grown over the years, affirming the words of critics like the Washington Post’s Hal Hinson, who enthused, “This is one movie that lives up to its billing; it’s easy all right. Like falling off a log.”


9. Raising Arizona (1987) 91%

Something of a palate cleanser for the Coen brothers after the rich darkness of their previous effort, Blood Simple, 1987’s cockeyed comedy Raising Arizona united a motley crew of character actors to tell the tale of a well-meaning ex-con (Nicolas Cage) who hatches a plan with his police officer wife (Holly Hunter) to cure their childless condition by kidnapping a baby from a furniture magnate (Trey Wilson) who publicly jokes that his five infants are more than he knows what to do with. The kidnapping coincides with the unfortunate reappearance of Cage’s criminal associates (Goodman and William Forsythe), who complicate the situation with plans of their own — and then there’s the Lone Biker of the Apocalypse (Randall “Tex” Cobb) to contend with. Perhaps less a movie than an artfully assembled compilation of quirks, Arizona quickly ascended to cult classic status; as Time Out’s Geoff Andrew enthused, “Starting from a point of delirious excess, the film leaps into dark and virtually uncharted territory to soar like a comet.”


8. 10 Cloverfield Lane (2016) 90%

Goodman’s cuddly frame and avuncular smile have made him a natural for a number of kindly characters, but he also has a unique intensity that makes him great for villains — dual gifts that were both put to effective use in 2016’s 10 Cloverfield Lane. As Howard Stambler, a mysterious doomsday prepper who saves (or maybe kidnaps) our heroine (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) after a car accident, Goodman has to play a lot of character notes: is he a loony with outlandish end-of-days beliefs and nefarious plans for his guest/captive, or does he really represent safety in a world gone wrong? From scene to scene, the audience is never quite sure, and the end result is — as Jeannette Catsoulis put it for the New York Times — “A master class on narrative pacing and carefully managed jolts.”


7. Arachnophobia (1990) 93%

Frank Marshall (backed here by his longtime production partner Steven Spielberg) made his directorial debut with this affectionate, cheerfully creepy tribute to classic Hollywood creature features, in which a deadly breed of spider terrorizes a small town whose residents include a lunatic exterminator (John Goodman) and, of course, a doctor with the titular phobia (Jeff Daniels). “That sound you hear in the background is the ‘ugh!’ heard round the world,” chuckled Janet Maslin of the New York Times, adding, “luckily, Arachnophobia will also be generating its share of boisterous, nervous laughter.”


6. Barton Fink (1991) 90%

Goodman has delivered more than his share of memorable supporting performances, but his work in Barton Fink is near the top of a distinguished list, helping anchor an early Coen brothers picture that uses the uneasy partnership between art and commerce as a backdrop for a surreal drama about sex, lies, and a shotgun-toting traveling salesman (played by Goodman, natch). Calling the end result “Gnomic, claustrophobic, hallucinatory, just plain weird,” Time’s Richard Schickel lauded it as “the kind of movie critics can soak up thousands of words analyzing and cinephiles can soak up at least three espressos arguing their way through.”


5. Matinee (1993) 92%

Goodman’s outsize personality was a perfect fit for 1993’s Matinee — not only because it lent itself well to the leading character, the William Castle-inspired film producer Lawrence Woolsey, but also because Goodman proved an excellent on-screen foil for director Joe Dante’s equally boisterous style. Sadly, Dante’s fond look back at the politics and culture of the early ‘60s — which framed Woolsey’s efforts to debut a half-man, half-ant horror movie called Mant against the shadow of the Cuban Missile Crisis — failed to resonate with audiences, who ignored it to the tune of a paltry $9.5 million domestic gross. But it hit a home run with critics like Jeffrey M. Anderson of the San Francisco Examiner, who called it “A riot, and Joe Dante’s most touchingly personal movie at the same time.”


4. Inside Llewyn Davis (2013) 92%

Goodman’s work with the Coen brothers hasn’t always translated to a ton of screen time, but his association with the duo has given him the opportunity to play some truly memorable, scene-stealing characters. Case in point: Roland Turner, the unforgettably noxious jazz artist who shares a ride to Chicago with the titular protagonist during Inside Llewyn Davis. Turner’s passing presence in the film is just one of a handful of regrettable misadventures, but as he has so often in his career, Goodman adds an expert dash of seasoning with his performance — and rounds out what the Arizona Republic’s Bill Goodykoontz called “one of the strangest yet most satisfying movie experiences of the year” and “one of those films in which you can’t really appreciate what you’ve seen until it’s over.” Concluded Goodykoontz, “You just have to trust that the trip is worth the trouble. And it is.”


3. Monsters, Inc. (2001) 96%

The saga of Mike (Billy Crystal) and Sulley (Goodman), two employees of the titular kiddie-scaring company, Monsters, Inc. (and its belated prequel, Monsters University) vividly imagines a world in which children’s screams are the energy source that powers the secret city of Monstropolis — and one in which the monsters themselves are just 9-to-5 clock punchers with problems of their own. After meeting up in college and having some wacky academic adventures, Mike and Sulley go to work together — and ultimately discover that not only is inter-species harmony possible, but it may hold the key to their civilization’s looming energy crisis. “The analogy to our dependence on, say, oil is soon abandoned, the better to blur the distinction between abstract and concrete,” wrote Lisa Alspector of the Chicago Reader, pointing out that it’s “something older viewers of this 2001 animated adventure may appreciate more than younger ones.”


2. The Artist (2011) 95%

Given all the success he’s had with voicework, it might seem a tad ironic that one of John Goodman’s top-rated films is a silent movie. But aside from having an instantly recognizable voice, Goodman’s also been blessed with a marvelously expressive face, which made him a perfect choice for writer/director Michel Hazanavicius when casting The Artist, a Best Picture-winning romantic dramedy about a pair of silent film stars (played by Jean Dujardin and Bérénice Bejo) whose careers — both managed by studio boss Al Zimmer (Goodman) — diverge sharply with the advent of the talkies. A somewhat unlikely box office hit, The Artist also earned nearly unanimous praise from critics; as Mark Rabinowitz enthused for CNN, “There is literally nothing wrong with it. I don’t have a single nit to pick, minor flaw to point out or little bit that annoyed me. It is pure magic from the first frame to the last.”


1. Argo (2012) 96%

The lion’s share of the attention for this Best Picture Oscar winner went to star and director Ben Affleck, and rightly so — but Argo also offered Goodman one of the many crucial supporting roles he’s enjoyed during his career: real-life Hollywood hero John Chambers, the award-winning makeup artist whose clandestine involvement was critical in assembling the phony science fiction movie whose “film crew” sneaked into Iran and rescued a crew of refugee diplomats during the 1979 hostage crisis. Offering some well-timed comic relief, Goodman and his partner Alan Arkin helped provide a safety valve for the often excruciatingly tense Iranian scenes. “The movieland satire is laid on thick, but it’s also deadly accurate,” observed Peter Rainer for the Christian Science Monitor. “Schlock has never seemed so patriotic, and Arkin and Goodman have rarely been so good.”

It’s the beginning of the month again, which means we’ve combed through all the new releases on Netflix and Amazon Prime to bring you the best of the best. Read on for the full list of Certified Fresh films made newly available.


New on Netflix

 

In the Shadow of the Moon (2006) 95%

This documentary chronicles the history of NASA’s missions to the moon between 1968 and 1972, bringing together surviving crew members and presenting archival footage to stirring effect.

Available now on: Netflix


The Little Prince (2015) 93%

Jeff Bridges and Rachel McAdams lead an ensemble voice cast in this adaptation of the classic French story, which utilizes a combination of CGI and stop motion animation to tell the story an aviator who crashes in the desert and meets a prince from another world.

Available 8/5 on: Netflix


An Inconvenient Truth (2006) 93%

Davis Guggenheim’s Oscar-winning documentary focuses on former Vice President Al Gore’s efforts to educate the public on the dangers of global warming.

Available now on: Netflix


The Tribe (2014) 88%

This Certified Fresh drama, unique in that all of the dialogue is in sign language, is the story of a group of students at a Ukrainian school for the deaf involved in all matter of criminal activity.

Available now on: Netflix


Young at Heart (2007) 89%

This documentary profiles a chorus group comprised of senior citizens who sing covers of songs by the Ramones, the Clash, and Sonic Youth.

Available now on: Netflix


Winter in Wartime (2008) 74%

This World War II drama from the Netherlands centers on a young teen in Nazi-occupied Holland who helps hide a wounded British soldier.

Available now on: Netflix


New on Amazon Prime

 

Inside Llewyn Davis (2013) 92%

This recent Coen brothers project stars Oscar Isaac and Carey Mulligan in a modest dark comedy about a struggling 1960s singer-songwriter trying desperately to sign a record deal.

Available now on: Amazon Prime


No Country for Old Men (2007) 93%

Tommy Lee Jones, Josh Brolin, and Javier Bardem star in the Coen brothers’ Oscar-winning dramatic thriller about a man who discovers a briefcase full of cash, the deadly hitman ordered to retrieve it, and the grizzled local sheriff trying to make sense of it all.

Available now on: Amazon Prime


The Piano (1993) 91%

Holly Hunter, Harvey Keitel, and Anna Paquin star in Jane Campion’s Oscar-winning period drama about a mute piano player and her daughter living in New Zealand during the mid-19th century.

Available now on: Amazon Prime


Mr. Holmes (2015) 88%

Ian McKellen and Laura Linney star in this Certified Fresh drama about an aging Sherlock Holmes in deep rumination about an unsolved case that has haunted him through the decades.

Available now on: Amazon Prime


The Matrix (1999) 88%

– Trilogy

Keanu Reeves and Laurence Fishburne star in the Wachowskis’ groundbreaking sci-fi action series about a man who wakes from a virtual reality sleep to discover the real world has been ravaged by sentient robots, and only he holds the power to defeat them. The entire trilogy is available on Amazon Prime.

Available now on Amazon Prime: The Matrix, Reloaded, Revolutions


The Others (2001) 83%

Nicole Kidman stars in this supernatural thriller about a woman trying to protect her children from the spirits who dwell in her Victorian mansion, only to discover that things may not be what they seem.

Available now on: Amazon Prime


Cloverfield (2008) 78%

Odette Yustman and Lizzy Caplan star in Matt Reeves’ found footage thriller about a group of New Yorkers attempting to survive an attack on the city by a giant monster.

Available now on: Amazon Prime


The Eclipse (2009) 75%

Ciarán Hinds stars in this thriller as a widower with two children who connects with a supernatural fiction writer with troubles of her own after he is plagued by terrifying visions.

Available now on: Amazon Prime

For more than two and a half decades now, Joel and Ethan Coen have been thrilling critics — and, here and there, audiences — with their distinctive blend of dark humor, colorful violence, and singular visual flair. Not all of the Coens’ films have been critical darlings (alas, poor Ladykillers), but with lifetime Tomatometers above 80 percent, the brothers are easily two (or is that one?) of the most respected directors in the business. Their latest effort, Hail, Caesar!, hit theaters this week, and to celebrate, we’ve collected their most definitive directorial efforts, Total Recall style!


Blood Simple (1984) 94%

BloodSimple

Combining the shocks of a slasher film with the moral ambiguity and twisty plotting of film noir, the Coens’ debut, Blood Simple, shook American independent cinema to its core. Creepy and deliriously malevolent, it’s the story of a bar owner who hires a sketchy private eye to kill his cheating wife (Frances McDormand); double and triple crosses and bloody mayhem ensues. With their first film, the Coens showed an aptitude for the stylistic quirks that would become their trademark — namely, a love of the ghoulish balanced with a loopy sense of humor. The Palo Alto Weekly’s Jeanne Aufmuth identified what would become recurring themes in their work when she wrote, “The Coens’ complicated sense of the surreal is consistently entertaining, down to the fleeting, oddball cameos and distinctly weird scripting.”

Watch Trailer


Raising Arizona (1987) 91%

RaisingArizona

The first Coen brothers film to display their knack for quirky comedy, Raising Arizona helped seal the filmmakers’ reputation and cement their loyal following. Nicolas Cage and Holly Hunter are brilliantly cast as a cop and ex-con husband/wife duo who resolve their infertility with kidnapping. Though not their biggest hit, it’s infinitely quotable (“Edwina’s insides were a rocky place where my seed could find no purchase”), and the original score by Carter Burwell is not to be ignored. As the New Times’ Luke Y. Thompson ruefully sighed, “Nic Cage may never be better.”

Watch Trailer


Miller's Crossing (1990) 92%

MillersCrossing

As an homage to classic gangster movies, Miller’s Crossing is hypercharged; the language is harsher, the violence more brutal, the plotting more labyrinthine. Albert Finney and Gabriel Byrne star as Irish mobsters, threatened externally by the Italian mob and internally by their shared love of a woman (Marcia Gay Harden). This intriguing tale of loyalty features impeccable 1920s decor and a streak of dark humor; it’s arguably the Coens’ most straightforward work. Combustible Celluloid’s Jeffrey M. Anderson concluded, “it’s one of their best, most cohesive films and it holds up to repeated viewings.”

Watch Trailer


Barton Fink (1991) 90%

BartonFink

Legend has it the Coens had such a bad case of writers’ block while writing Miller’s Crossing that they took three weeks off to script Barton Fink, a 1930s-set black comedy about — what else? — a Hollywood scribe with writer’s block. A fledgling New York playwright who sells out (at the cost of… his soul!) and moves to the City of Angels, Barton Fink (played marvelously by Coen regular John Turturro) holes up in the seamy Hotel Earle, where exquisitely dismal wallpaper peels off the walls as a heat wave sweats the city. The mercury rises further when Barton’s gregarious neighbor (John Goodman) is around; almost hellishly so, you might say. But as every smart filmmaker is wont to do, the Coens offer no overt explanations of what’s really going on — just a well-told tale with visual imagery aplenty, and an ode to the sometimes infernal nature of the creative process. Describing it as “gnomic, claustrophobic, hallucinatory, just plain weird,” Time’s Richard Schickel lauded Barton Fink as “the kind of movie critics can soak up thousands of words analyzing and cinephiles can soak up at least three espressos arguing their way through.”

Watch Trailer


Fargo (1996) 94%

Fargo

Prior to No Country For Old Men, the macabre, pitch-black comedy Fargo was the Coens’ most decorated film, with seven Oscar nominations and two wins: Best Actress (Frances McDormand) and Best Original Screenplay. Fargo details a ransom kidnap scheme gone wrong, with very pregnant cop McDormand investigating the crime as the bumbling perpetrators attempt to cover their tracks. The Coens’ bleak humor and taste for blood and violence never mixed as well as it did in Minnesota, so the people over at FX decided to create an offshoot television series — with the Coens on board as executvie producers — and it’s gone on to win some awards of its own. According to Kevin N. Laforest of the Montreal Film Journal, “This is truly a brilliant film, the kind you don’t see often. Intelligent, raw, funny, daring and unique, pure cinematic delight from start to end.”

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The Big Lebowski (1998) 83%

BigLebowski

Though many of the Coens’ films can be labeled cult classics, perhaps none embody the term more than The Big Lebowski. Jeff Bridges stars as pot-smoking slacker hero Jeffrey “The Dude” Lebowski, who seeks restitution for his rug, urinated on by a pair of gangsters who mistook him for a different Lebowski — namely, the “big” one (played by David Huddleston). Along with his bowling buddies, The Dude embarks on a wild chase that’s as funny, depraved, and plain unpredictable as Los Angeles always feels like it should be. Not all critics were willing to join The Dude’s steadily growing cult — Todd McCarthy of Variety sniffed that the movie “Adds up to considerably less than the sum of its often scintillating parts” — but in the end, as Chuck O’Leary of FulvueDrive-in.com wrote, “It’s pretty much impossible not to love The Dude.”

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O Brother, Where Art Thou? (2000) 78%

Obrother2

With O Brother, Where Art Thou?, the Coen brothers took their thriller tropes (ill-fated criminal plans, ironic stereotypes, and a detached tone) and magically applied it towards an Odyssey-inspired farce. Starring George Clooney as the beleaguered but resourceful Odysseus, O Brother is a sepia-toned fantasia of throwaway jokes, slapstick, and killer bluegrass. In fact, the music proved popular enough to spawn a virtual cottage industry with multiple soundtracks, a documentary, and even a national tour. “The surprise is how much fruitful digression such plotlessness makes possible,” quipped Geoff Pevere of the Toronto Star. “With no particular place to go, this hobo of a movie is free to roam the damnedest places.”

Watch Trailer


No Country for Old Men (2007) 93%

NoCountryOldMen

Though the Coens have long been revered for their intermittently manic and macabre storylines, they’ve never made Oscar bait. It’s perhaps logical, then, that the massive Academy sweep they enjoyed with No Country for Old Men seemed like overdue praise. In No Country, based on the stoic anti-western novel by Cormack McCarthy, Josh Brolin’s protagonist sees a way out of his trailer in a bag of bloodied bills. Chance and destiny are invoked in the most resonant, least pretentious way in the sinister form of Anton Chigurh (Best Supporting Actor Javier Bardem), the hit man who coldly and relentlessly hunts Brolin’s Llewelyn. No Country is impeccable: the cinematography is breathtaking, the dialogue efficient, and the direction assured. Yet instead of the terse comic punch we’ve come to expect from the Coens, No Country takes a more dangerous tack with its morbid themes. With all the cards (and coins) falling tidily into place, this film presented the brothers as a truly mature filmmaking team, possibly at the peak of their careers — a sentiment echoed by Peter Keough of the Boston Phoenix, who proclaimed, “No Country for Old Men is the brothers at their most polished, austere, and humorless.”

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True Grit (2010) 95%

TrueGritStars

It takes some major stones to step into John Wayne’s boots for a remake of one of the Duke’s classic pictures, so even if the Coen brothers’ True Grit had well and truly stunk, we’d have to give their version credit for having something extra in its saddlebag — namely Jeff Bridges, who took the role of the cantankerous Rooster Cogburn and made it his own. Of course, it didn’t hurt that Bridges (in vintage late-period marble-mouthed form) was surrounded by an ace supporting cast that included Matt Damon and Hailee Steinfeld, or that the Coens went back to Charles Portis’ original novel for inspiration; in the end, the result was a career-launching hit for Steinfeld, a mainstream hit for the Coens, and another critically acclaimed outing for Bridges — all of whom earned Oscar nominations for their work. As Claudia Puig observed for USA Today, “Joel and Ethan Coen have pulled off an impressive feat: repurposing a classic film with their idiosyncratic blend of dark, deadpan humor and palpable suspense, while remaining ultra-faithful to the novel.”

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Inside Llewyn Davis (2013) 92%

InsideLlewynDavis

A brilliantly cast ensemble period drama shot through with pitch-black, borderline misanthropic humor and topped off with a killer soundtrack, Inside Llewyn Davis checks off any number of the boxes filmgoers have learned to associate with the Coen brothers, so it’s very much to the film’s credit that it somehow manages to feel fresh anyway. This is due in no small part to the work of Oscar Isaac, who plays the titular struggling folk musician with an utter lack of vanity while infusing the character with enough essential humanity to temper his overall lack of likability — and to the Coens’ screenplay, which serves as a savagely honest, yet ultimately affectionate, look at the self-delusional struggle for artistic purity as a means to its own end. “It may be the Coen Brothers playing well inside their comfort zone,” wrote Scott Mendelson for Forbes, “but what a fine and thoughtful comfort zone it is.”

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This week on home video, we’ve got an acclaimed hip-hop biopic, a thrilling mountain trek, an inspirational sports story, and an underseen indie. After that, we’ve also got a poorly received teen musical, a solid music documentary, and a couple of choice selections from Criterion. Read on for details:


The Diary of a Teenage Girl (2015) 95%

This Certified Fresh coming-of-age drama, based on Phoebe Gloeckner’s graphic novel of the same name, stars Bel Powley as a sexually curious 15-year-old in 1976 who begins an affair with her mother’s boyfriend. Bonus features include deleted scenes, a making-of featurette, and an LA Film Festival Q&A with Powley, co-star Alexander Skarsgard, and director Marielle Heller.

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Straight Outta Compton (2015) 89%

This Certified Fresh biopic charts the formation, rise, and eventual breakup of one of the most influential 1990s hip-hop groups, N.W.A. — along with all the tension and drama that surrounded them. Special features include interviews with the remaining real-life members of the group about its influence and its music, filming on location in Compton, deleted scenes, and more.

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Everest (2015) 72%

Jake Gyllenhaal and Jason Clarke star in this based-on-true-events survival thriller, which focuses on two expedition groups who simultaneously attempted to summit Mount Everest in 1996, with tragic results. Extras include a making-of doc, a look at cast preparations, interviews with people connected to the expeditions, and more.

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All Things Must Pass (2015) 94%

Colin Hanks directed this documentary, which is exactly what its title suggests: a look at the history of the iconic Tower Records chain. Bonus features include additional interviews and some deleted scenes.

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Woodlawn (2015) 73%

Sean Astin and Jon Voight star in this faith-based inspirational drama, about a real-life football team that came together in the midst of racial tensions in Alabama in 1973. No information on special features is available.

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Jem and the Holograms (2015) 22%

Inspired by the 1980s cartoon of the same name, this truly outrageous musical film follows an unlikely YouTube star who agrees to a record deal in order to help keep her aunt’s house from being auctioned off. Extras include a gag reel, a music video, a look at the big screen adaptation process, and a commentary track.

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12 Monkeys: Season 1 (2015) 60%

Based on Terry Gilliam’s mindbending time travel film of the same name, 12 Monkeys follows a man from the post-apocalyptic future who travels to 2015 in order to stop the plague that would eventually wipe out humanity. The season one set includes deleted scenes from four of the episodes, a gag reel, cast auditions and more.

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Gilda (1946) 90%

And finally, two choices from the Criterion Collection, beginning with Charles Vidor’s noir starring Rita Hayworth in one of her most iconic roles as the titular wife of a wealthy casino owner whose new employee is her old flame. It’s also that movie all the prisoners were giddy about in The Shawshank Redemption. Special features include 2010 interviews with Martin Scorsese and Baz Luhrmann talking about the film, an audio commentary by film critic Richard Schickel, and more.

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Inside Llewyn Davis (2013) 92%

Last up, we have the Coen brothers’ most recent effort, 2013’s Inside Llewyn Davis, starring Oscar Isaac and Carey Mulligan in a modest dark comedy about a struggling 1960s singer-songwriter trying desperately to sign a record deal. Extras include conversations between the Coens and Guillermo del Toro and T-Bone Burnett, a feature-length concert doc celebrating the music of the film, a short film by Dan Drasin, and more.

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This week on home video, we’ve got three Oscar-nominated selections, one thriller from a director who previously helmed an Oscar-winning film, and an actioner starring Jason Statham, as well as a few smaller movie that should also make for some great choices. Read on for the full list:



Inside Llewyn Davis

92%

Early on in this year’s awards season, it looked like the Coen brothers’ latest film, Inside Llewyn Davis, might be a major contender in a handful of Oscar categories including, at the very least, Best Original Screenplay or Best Original Song. In the end, the film notched just two nominations, for Cinematography and Sound Mixing, and left the Oscars empty-handed. Oscar Isaac stars as the titular folk singer, who is trying to get a solo gig started after his former partner has committed suicide. Broke and essentially homeless, Llewyn crashes on his friends’ couches and hitches his way to Chicago to audition for a producer he hopes will jumpstart his career. Inside Llewyn Davis features a lot of Coen brothers trademarks — understated tone, memorable side characters, an off-kilter sense of humor — and critics found the film both funny and thoughtful. Certified Fresh at 94% on the Tomatometer, it’s yet another worthy addition to the Coens’ already impressive filmography.



The Book Thief

48%

Speaking of Academy hopefuls, The Book Thief sported a few tried and true “Oscar bait” elements: it’s based on a book, it’s set in WWII-era Germany (read: “Holocaust movie”), and it features a young heroine who overcomes an obstacle against impressive odds. Relative newcomer Sophie Nélisse plays Liesel Meminger, who is sent to live with foster parents Hans and Rosa (Geoffrey Rush and Emily Watson) as war looms on the horizon. Liesel slowly learns to read from Hans and the pair form a bond; as WWII begins in earnest, a Jewish family friend seeks shelter in their home and sets events into motion that will have lasting effects on Liesel and her new family. While critics acknowledged the committed performances, they also felt The Book Thief skewed a little too sentimental, choosing to play things a bit on the tame side, and for that, the film earned a mixed 46% Tomatometer score.



Out of the Furnace

54%

Scott Cooper’s debut (as director) was the well-received 2009 film Crazy Heart, which netted a Best Actor Oscar for star Jeff Bridges and a second trophy for Best Original Song. For his follow-up, Out of the Furnace, Cooper got another acting heavyweight — Christian Bale — to play the lead in a story about a steel mill worker (Bale) who takes it upon himself to investigate the disappearance of his brother (Casey Affleck) after he returns from a tour in Iraq and falls in with a notorious crime ring. Unfortunately, Out of the Furnace failed to rack up the accolades that Crazy Heart did; despite an outstanding cast that included Willem Dafoe, Woody Harrelson, Zoe Saldana, Forest Whitaker, and Sam Shepard, critics had a hard time agreeing whether or not to recommend it. While some felt the acting alone was worth the price of admission, others were let down by the derivative, sometimes needlessly violent story. You may have to decide for yourself who you agree with more.



Homefront

42%

Phil Broker just wanted to settle down in a small town and live a normal life with his daughter; little did he realize that the small town he chose was run by a ruthless drug kingpin who would make his life more eventful than he would have liked. Jason Statham’s latest starring vehicle finds him playing this ex-DEA agent who runs afoul of the local criminal element, spearheaded by James Franco as meth dealer Gator, and critics say it’s a pretty by-the-numbers revenge thriller. Those who weren’t particularly impressed claim Homefront‘s action set pieces weren’t quite up to snuff, while its more dramatic elements also lacked the sophistication to work as an effective thriller. On the other hand, 42% of the critics felt the film was made competently enough to serve as an entertaining diversion if you’re in need of an action fix.



The Broken Circle Breakdown

83%

If you’ve been paying attention this awards season, chances are The Broken Circle Breakdown sounds familiar to you, even if you don’t quite recall why. Based on a play of the same name, this Belgian import about a couple brought together by their mutual love of bluegrass music and torn apart by tragedy was most recently nominated for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar. Though it ultimately lost the Academy Award to The Great Beauty, critics still found it to be a poignant, heartbreaking romance set to some incredible music, even if it’s occasionally undermined by its artistic ambitions. Certified Fresh at 79% on the Tomatometer, The Broken Cirlce Breakdown isn’t the happiest story of the year, but it’s engrossing, finely crafted, has a killer soundtrack, and serves to remind us how much great cinema we may be missing from other parts of the world.

Also available this week:

  • In Fear (88%), a psychological horror film about a young couple trapped on country roads as an unseen assailant torments them.
  • Certified Fresh Afghan novel adaptation The Patience Stone (86%), about a Muslim woman keeping watch over her paralyzed husband and confessing all the things she could never say before.
  • Enemies Closer (75%), starring Jean Claude Van Damme in an action film about a forest ranger (and former soldier) who is forced by drug cartels to help track down a missing shipment of narcotics.

This week at the movies, we’ve got a group of classy newsmen (Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, starring Will Ferrell and Paul Rudd); a prehistoric family (Walking With Dinosaurs, with voice performances by John Leguizamo and Justin Long); Feds and con-artists (American Hustle, starring Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper); an uneasy artistic partnership (Saving Mr. Banks, starring Emma Thompson and Tom Hanks); and a struggling folksinger (Inside Llewyn Davis, starring Oscar Isaac and Carey Mulligan). What do the critics have to say?



Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues

75%

Both a goofy workplace comedy and a sly media satire, Anchorman: The Legend Of Ron Burgundy earned a dedicated cult following, though the call for a sequel escalated slowly. Well, the wait is over, and critics say Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues is pretty funny stuff; though it’s uneven and less quotable than its predecessor, it’s just as sublimely silly, and the talented cast riffs with energetic abandon. It’s the 1980s, and Ron Burgundy (Will Ferrell) and his old Channel 4 pals have been hired by a new 24-hour news network. Eschewing hard news, they focus on the sensational and the absurd — and garner big ratings in the process. The pundits say that 60 percent of the time, Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues works every time; note every joke works, but a good many do, resulting in an anarchic comedy with a thing or two to say about our contemporary media landscape. (Check out this week’s Total Recall for a roundown of memorable movie journalists, and watch our video interviews with the stars of Anchorman 2.)



Walking With Dinosaurs

23%

When you’ve made a movie featuring painstakingly, naturalistically rendered CG dinosaurs, what more do you need? How about wiseacre dialogue and slapstick gags? Critics say that’s exactly the trouble with Walking With Dinosaurs, in which majestic visuals are seriously undermined by pedestrian storytelling. Based on a well-regarded BBC series, Dinosaurs is the tale of a young Pachyrhinosaurus (voiced by Justin Long) who squabbles with his siblings, encounters predators, and falls in love. The pundits say the filmmakers seem to have worried that a quasi-nature documentary approach might have turned off the youngsters, but the narrative is so poorly executed that the end result isn’t all t hat entertaining, much less educational.



American Hustle

92%

Plenty of filmmakers have paid homage to GoodFellas over the years. Critics say that with American Hustle, director David O. Russell has done them all one better: he’s crafted a deliriously entertaining crime picture with enough rich performances and stylistic razzle dazzle to actually earn comparisons to Martin Scorsese’s masterpiece. Bradley Cooper stars as Richie, an FBI agent who busts Irving (Christian Bale) and Sydney (Amy Adams) for low-level grifting and subsequently enlists them, along with Irving’s unpredictable wife Rosalyn (Jennifer Lawrence), into a sting operation designed to ensnare corrupt New Jersey politicians. The pundits say the Certified Fresh American Hustle is filled with fascinating characters, witty dialogue, toe-tapping 1970s tunes, and a giddy momentum that’s deeply infectious. (Check out our video interviews with Cooper, Adams, Bale, and Jeremy Renner.)



Saving Mr. Banks

79%

As the old saying goes, never let the facts get in the way of a good story. The critics say that even though Saving Mr. Banks deviates significantly from the historical record, it still manages to be a heartwarming showbiz tale with outstanding performances from Emma Thompson and Tom Hanks. Mary Poppis author P.L. Travers (Thompson) reluctantly agrees to meet with Walt Disney (Hanks), who desperately wants to adapt her book for the screen. Travers is deeply skeptical of Disney’s plans, and he has to pull out all the stops to persuade her to collaborate on the film. The pundits say the Certified Fresh Saving Mr. Banks is funny, poignant, and perfectly acted, even if the sharp edges of the real-life story have been sanded off.



Inside Llewyn Davis

92%

The Coen brothers have made plenty of movies about embattled outsiders, and critics say Inside Llewyn Davis is one of the best of the bunch, a bittersweet, lushly photographed chronicle of a down-and-out folksinger that’s heartfelt and darkly comic in equal measure. Haunted by the death of his singing partner, Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) is in the midst of a personal and professional slump; he has little money, no permanent address, a shortage of gigs, and a knack for snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. The pundits say the Certified Fresh Inside Llewyn Davis is an absorbing portrait of a struggling artist, stuffed with loving details that will delight music buffs. (Watch our video interviews with Isaac and co-star Carey Mulligan here.)

Also opening this week in limited release:

Luke Goodsell talks to Adam Driver, Stark Sands, and T-Bone Burnett about their initial nerves and eventual joy about working together to create the fantastic music from Inside Llewyn Davis.

 

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Carey Mulligan admits that her onscreen relationships with Oscar Isaac in both Inside Llewyn Davis and Drive have been less than friendly. She and Luke Goodsell discuss the likelihood of them lightening up, as well as singing alongside Justin Timberlake.

 

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Luke Goodsell discusses F. Murray Anraham’s symbolic role in the latest Coen Brothers film Inside Llewyn Davis.

 

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Inside Llewyn Davis was honored with top distinction by the Toronto Film Critics Association, who voted it Best Picture of 2013 when they announced their full list of winners on Tuesday, December 17. The film also earned Best Actor for its star, Oscar Isaac, while the rest of the awards were rounded out by familiar titles that have been building buzz so far this season. Here is the complete list of winners:

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