‘Boy Erased’ director wasn’t sure he was qualified to make new gay movie

By : Brian T. Carney OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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“Boy Erased” director Joel Edgerton was so smitten by the book the new movie is based on, he hunkered down during a vacation and started crafting the script before the movie rights had been secured.

To say it went well would be an understatement; the project quickly jelled with the kind of heat creative types know can’t be forced.

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Screened Out – Black Mass

By : Stephen Miller
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Johnny Depp, Joel Edgerton, Benedict Cumberbatch, Dakota Johnson, Kevin Bacon, Peter Sarsgaard, Adam Scott, Corey Stoll

In Catholic parlance, a Black Mass is a satanic inversion of the Holy Mass, where one sacrificed others instead of oneself, and no good can come of it. The metaphor fits this dark, slow, unforgiving film – a mob biopic about James “Whitey” Bulger. It’s a cold, methodical, violent piece about a cold, methodical, violent character.

With this as a theme, Black Mass is watchable, but it never illuminates Bulger to us – specifically, why he does what he does. He’s one note: just pure evil. People are loyal to him and we never find out why except for fear.

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Screened Out – Exodus: Gods and Kings

By : Stephen Miller
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Christian Bale, Joel Edgerton, Sigourney Weaver, Ben Kingsley, Aaron Paul, John Turturro, Isaac Andrews

It might be funny to imagine an inspiring Biblical story rendered as a distracting, schlocky blockbuster – something worth a Saturday Night Live skit. Actually, Ridley Scott (Bladerunner, Aliens, Prometheus) does it but takes himself seriously. The rest of us cannot. This is just a big, loud piece of popcorn fluff.

In truth, Exodus was plagued from the get-go. Biblical scholars disparage it for its reinvention of the Moses mythology. Actors hate it because it casts well-known white people as Egyptians (a problem it shared with the 1956 Cecil B. DeMille version, The Ten Commandments). As a special effects orgy of the ten plagues and the parting of the Red Sea, Exodus is trite fun. As a sensitive tale about a man discovering his true origin, connecting with God, and then freeing his people, it’s pretty hollow and bombastic.

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