Pick of the week: “FIlly Brown” — It’s the eternal showbiz cautionary tale, as a female Latino rapper must choose between her art and selling out to be successful. But the music is great, the perspective of a female in hip-hop is fresh, and Gina Rodriguez shines in the title role.
Drama of the week: “There Will Be Blood” — My full review is here. Paul Thomas Anderson’s epic deconstruction of the American myth — the self-made man — is like “Citizen Kane” drenched in blood and oil and left to bake in the California sun. Daniel Day Lewis is mesmerizing as the self-made man who chases financial success and moral ruin.
Documentary of the week: “A Place at the Table” — My full review is here. This thoughtful documentary looks at the state of hunger in America, where 51 people don’t get enough to eat, from the inner city to bucolic small towns and everywhere in between. It could be the start, finally, of an honest conversation of what poverty really looks like.
Comedy of the week: “Zoolander” — Incredibly, Ben Stiller hasn’t directed a film since this 2001 comedy, and his upcoming “Walter Mitty” doesn’t look nearly as funny as this bizarre and riotous send-up of the fashion world. Blue Steel lives.
Sci-fi of the week: “WarGames” — Young hacker Matthew Broderick accidentally tricks a supercomputer into thinking World War III is coming, and must undo the damage in this fun and thoughtful 1983 film.