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A Less Hostile View of ‘Alice Through the Looking Glass’

27 May 2016 11:27 AM, PDT

Having just seen Disney’s Alice Through the Looking Glass on opening night, with a paying audience at the El Capitan Theater in Hollywood, I am late in filing my review. I had a mixed reaction to the film, but I am somewhat surprised by the hostility expressed by my fellow critics. I took it as a given that this sequel to the 2010 Disney mega-hit would have little to do with Lewis Carroll. I also knew that screenwriter Linda Woolverton would call on the same female-empowerment theme that marked the previous Alice, directed by Tim Burton. And I knew that this modern interpretation of Alice would be perfectly personified by Mia Wasikowska, who seems incapable of striking a false note...

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- Leonard Maltin

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X-Men On The Brink

26 May 2016 6:00 PM, PDT

This screen series based on the colorful Marvel characters has proved to be both durable and flexible: having enjoyed a great run in its initial phase, it spun off two Wolverine vehicles for Hugh Jackman and then rewound the timeline to create a series of prequels, beginning with the excellent X-Men: First Class. Director and co-writer Bryan Singer, who launched X-Men in 2000 has steered this latest installment, X-Men: Apocalypse and delivered another winner. (He’s even planted a not-so-subtle in-joke about the first entry he didn’t direct in the series.)          Essentially, the screenplay (credited to series veteran Simon Kinberg,...

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- Leonard Maltin

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Weiner: You Can’t Look Away

24 May 2016 6:00 PM, PDT

Many of my friends have said of the current Presidential election follies, “You couldn’t make this stuff up.” The same is true of former New York Congressman Anthony Weiner’s career—before, during and after his notorious sexting scandal. When Weiner decided to run for Mayor of New York City in 2013 he allowed documentary filmmakers Josh Kriegman and Elyse Steinberg extraordinary access to his public—and even private—life. The results are utterly fascinating. Some might call them grimly fascinating, as there is a poignancy to Weiner’s saga: here is a respected public official, dedicated to serving the people, who threw it all away by texting photos of his penis—and making a lame attempt to...

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- Leonard Maltin

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