‘Back Roads’ Review: Nuanced Storytelling Propel Alex Pettyfer’s Directing Debut

The element of surprise, especially if it’s a great one, is something that should always be welcome in cinema. Case in point is Alex Pettyfer (I Am Number Four, Magic Mike) an actor who had a straight shot to the Hollywood A-list before taking a several year detour. That change of direction lead him to Back Roads and, if anything, we’re the beneficiaries of an inspired and immersive narrative.

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Spoiled Cinema: ‘Hereditary’ (Toni Collette, Alex Wolff, Gabriel Byrne)

I’m starting this new category called “Spoiled Cinema” which will feature Spoiler-filled discussions of various movies. I’ll do a lengthier “origin story” about Spoiled Cinema on a future post, but let’s get down to business with . . . Hereditary!!

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Rising Stars: ‘The Witch’ Actress Anya Taylor-Joy

 

Opening February 19, The Witch is the heralded debut of filmmaker Robert Eggers, who received the Directing Award at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival. The movie is also filed with excellent performances, as newcomer Anya Taylor-Joy delivers stunning work as Thomasin, a teenage girl in 1630 New England who may “possess” an inextricable bond with a mysterious figure in the forest.

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