Robbie-Ann McPherson - The Buffalo News

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Robbie-Ann McPherson


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The Burchfield Penney Art Center will play host to an eclectic selection of Cuban films during the second annual riverrun Global Film Series event, “Cuban Cinema & Culture.” Restored classics from the pre- and post Cuban Revolution eras, new films and scholarly lectures build on last year’s successful Iranian film series. Highlights of the weekend include the award-…

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“The Mountain Between Us” is a heart-wrenching romance-drama, the great, weepy kind that makes you want the characters to get together so badly it hurts. Our star-crossed lovers meet in the airport. Smolderingly debonair Idris Elba is Ben, a neurosurgeon who absolutely, positively has to get somewhere before overnight but his flight is canceled and Alex (an impossibly l…

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The Buffalo Niagara International Film Festival kicks off Sept. 20 at the Four Seasons Cinema in Niagara Falls with a red carpet event at 5 p.m. No less than a scheduled helicopter arrival of frequent Hollywood tough guy Robert Davi (“Goonies,” “Die Hard,” “License to Kill”) sets the tone for this year’s week-long festival. Davi will host a screening of his short “Davi’…

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We have all seen the Hollywood movies about the against-all-odds dreamer who has crazy talent, and if she just believes enough, she gets her lucky break and catches that rainbow to stardom. But what about rest of us? The people who have talent, just not enough to make the big leagues? The regular people who believed in something just as much as Jennifer Beals in “Flashd…

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"Leap!" is a charmer of an animated film that sneaks up on you a little bit, kind of like a sugar rush after eating too much candy. The film’s basic elements are not all that original: a feisty heroine fighting the odds, a roguish boy who is in love with her, a snooty rival with all the privileges and no heart, and an uplifting ending for its target audience of pre-teen…

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Buoyed by its four powerhouse leading ladies, “Girls Trip” is a gut-bustingly funny, if sometimes uneven, movie with a huge heart. This is a film written by women, about women, in particular four African-American women, and their relationships with each other. And when you mix in life, husbands, ex-husbands, kids, jobs, years gone by, shifting priorities, and a little t…

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Poor Philip. He’s an arrogant, naïve, spoiled rich young Englishman. His guardian runs off to Italy and marries Rachel, a beautiful woman he’s never met, and Philip starts receiving strange letters from the guardian that his new wife is trying to kill him. Philip rushes there but the guy is already dead, and Rachel has taken off. Is she a gold-digging murderess? Or a…

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“Unforgettable” is a movie with parts better than the sum of its parts. Its alchemy went wrong in the beaker somewhere and created a flat fizzle instead of a foamy, heady thriller. It’s not campy enough to enter into “Showgirls” territory, where it’s so bad it’s fabulous. “Unforgettable” is just … meh. Katherine Heigl is the tightly-wound Tessa Conover, ex-wife of David…

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“Land of Mine” is a gut-punch of a remarkable film, but anyone with even a little sensitivity may not actually enjoy sitting through it. This fictionalized telling of teenaged German prisoners of war on a Dutch beach, their fingers shaking and their eyes wide with terror as they disarm live landmines, will have you on the edge of your seat but not in a good way. It’s a …

Movies

CHiPS is a big, silly goof of a good time — one of those back-slap movies squarely aimed at marketing demographics like “males who own beer funnels” or “grown men who wear sideways baseball hats.” But a funny thing happens on the way to the vomit jokes, the naked breasts on display, the cringe-worthy bodily function discussions and the no-boundaries sexual humor: The wo…

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“Kedi” is as close to perfect a film as I’ve ever seen. Director Ceyda Torun has created a poignant, quiet documentary exploring the (nine) lives of the legendary feral cats roaming Istanbul that is lovely to look at, a technical marvel, and an emotional stunner all at once. Legend has it that when ships docked at Istanbul (or Constantinople as it was once known), their…

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“Rogue One” is somewhat of a distant cousin of the “Star Wars” saga — not a sister and not a sequel. The superfans need to get that straight before they settle in their seats and expect the initial burst of the “Star Wars” logo, the narrative crawl at the beginning disappearing into the galaxy, set to the blasting trumpets of John Williams’ main “Star Wars” title, which…

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MEMOIR The Princess Diarist By Carrie Fisher Blue Rider Press 257 pages, $26 If you were a kid of movie-going age in 1977, you can probably recount exactly when, where and how you first witnessed the cultural supernova that was “Star Wars” (for me I was 10, it was at the Holiday Theaters on Union Road in Cheektowaga, the first week of June, with my father). …

Movies

“Loving” is a deceptively simple movie about the complexities often hidden deep beneath the calm surface of simple appearances. It’s a quiet, subtle film that loudly exposes the mirage of black or white: black or white choices, black or white situations, black or white people. Seldom in life is anything as simple as black or white. Writer/director Jeff Nichols has made …

They’re Playing Our Song By Carole Bayer Sager Simon & Schuster 336 pages, $28 For those of us who grew up loving AM-Gold “yacht-rock” radio, there are certain places where violin-soaked love songs are appropriate – late night karaoke bars, solo car rides and pretty much any other time our snarky cool friends aren’t around. Legendary songwriter Carole Bayer Sa…