Christopher Schobert
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Christopher Schobert

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For the first time in roughly a decade, David Lynch fans have reason to be breathless with anticipation. On May 21, Showtime debuts the 25-years-in-the-making return of Lynch’s television masterpiece, “Twin Peaks.” All 18 new episodes are directed by the man himself. Therefore, the release of “David Lynch: The Art Life,” a feature-length documentary exploring…

We’re only five months into 2017, but it’s already been a memorable year for Billy Dee Williams. He recently turned 80, provided a voice in the hit “Lego Batman Movie,” and joined the likes of Mark Hamill and Harrison Ford at the "Star Wars" Celebration fan festival in Orlando. The actor best known for his role as ultra-suave “Star Wars” hero Lando Calrissia…

The world changed rather dramatically from the time Hulu’s “The Handmaid’s Tale” started shooting in 2016 to when it started to air in April 2017. Suddenly, author Margaret Atwood’s dystopian classic felt a little less allegorical, and lot more … Possible? OK, that’s a bit of a leap. What’s undeniable, though, is that this story of a totalitarian society in…

The cinephile must-see documentary of 2017 is not showing in theaters -- it’s streaming on Netflix. However, the three-part series “Five Came Back” is so involving, so powerful, and so breathtakingly insightful that even non-film buffs will be enthralled. This story of how five Hollywood filmmaking giants contributed to the propaganda battle of World War II is, qu…

Ali MacGraw was a cinema icon in the late 1960s and early 1970s thanks to memorable performances in films like “Goodbye, Columbus,” “Love Story” and “The Getaway.” Today she lives in New Mexico, a place that plays an important part in the new documentary “Awakening in Taos.” MacGraw narrates the film about arts patron Mabel Dodge Luhan, a Buffalo native …

It’s hard to watch a low-budget Canadian horror film with exploding heads, oozing wounds and phallic tentacles and not think of the great David Cronenberg. The directors of “The Void” would likely have no issue with those thoughts. While “The Void” pays homage to early Cronenberg (plus the films of John Carpenter and Tobe Hooper), it never comes close to captu…

The most searing, compelling, insightful moral dramas in current cinema are coming from across the pond. Think of Asghar Farhadi’s Oscar winner “The Salesman,” or recent Oscar nominees like “Mustang” and “Leviathan.” Near the top of this list are the films of Romanian director Cristian Mungiu, the international cinema giant best known for 2007’s harrowin…

July 1 marks Canada’s 150th birthday, and as part of the celebration, Reel Canada has marked April 19 as National Canadian Film Day (NCFD 150). To salute the film culture of our neighbor to the north, the North Park Theatre (1428 Hertel Ave.) will hold a free screening of 2011 Oscar nominee “Monsieur Lazhar.” It is hard to pick just one Canadian film to highlight…

With acclaimed series “The OA” and the recent premiere of new film “The Discovery,” Netflix has cornered the market on emotionally involving, strongly spiritual mindbenders. The latter is noteworthy for several reasons. It's probably the most high-profile Netflix-only film to date (Adam Sandler trainwrecks notwithstanding). It features three major stars in Robert R…

It's one of those overused lines in film criticism: “You've never seen anything like NAME OF MOVIE!” But in the case of Polish horror-fantasy musical “The Lure,” it's accurate. Is it ever. A gory, blood-drenched version of “The Little Mermaid” set in 1980s Warsaw, “The Lure,” which plays Screening Room Cinema Cafe in a limited engagement starting April 6…

If you’ve ever seen a film released by the Japanese animation geniuses of Studio Ghibli, then you’re familiar with mascot Totoro, the rotund, cat-like spirit from Hayao Miyazaki’s “My Neighbor Totoro.” The character was a fitting choice, as “My Neighbor Totoro,” which screens at 11:30 a.m. April 9 at the North Park Theatre (1428 Hertel Ave.), is one of the st…

Considering the unending influence of George Orwell’s dystopian classic “1984,” it’s perhaps surprising that the novel has only been adapted twice as a feature film, in 1956 and, appropriately in 1984. The latter version screens at 7:30 p.m. on April 4 at Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center (341 Delaware Ave.). “1984” is Orwell’s tale of a totalitarian sta…

“The Zookeeper’s Wife” is a based-on-a-true story World War II drama bursting with feelings that are often in short supply: empathy and compassion. Whatever the flaws in this adaptation of Diane Ackerman’s bestseller — and there are several — the film’s focus on the power of goodness is both refreshing and, for the viewer, quite satisfying. There's another…