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Perfect 83 Points 2010

You needn’t be a racing fan to appreciate this cinéma vérité biography of superstar Formula One champion Ayrton Senna. An appreciation for bravura cinema, natural genius or Eurostyle glamour are other appetites the movie satisfies.

Senna draws from copious footage of the handsome young race…

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WikChip Image Popular Immortality: Senna action figure
Operation Finale
Perfect 66 Points 2018

The banality of evil gets a powerful debunking in Operation Finale, an awkwardly if accurately titled docudrama about the Mossad’s 1960 capture of Final Solution logistics chief Adolf Eichmann in Argentina. Little Adolf was famously said to embody “the banality of evil” as he dissembled during …

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WikChip Video The (real) Man Who Got Eichmann
Butch Cassidy a...
Perfect 83 Points 1969

The Old West ended when Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid hightailed it to Bolivia. Old Westerns ended when Paul Newman and Robert Redford became Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, outlaw charmers the likes of which the Silver Screen had never seen before. Four Oscars plus three additional n…

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WikChip Video Bewitching Musical Interlude
Master and Comm...
Really Great 66 Points 2003

Ultimate naval warfare movie, thy name is Master and Commander. It’s got everything: broadside cannon battles, flogging and grogging, close observation of life aboard an early 19th Century warship, mast-top ocean views, even visits to the Galápagos Islands. Ahoy.

Oh yeah, then there’s that…

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WikChip Image 1805 military surgery impressively re...
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The Infiltrator
Really Great 66 Points 2016

Coke culture from its Eighties heyday comes alive in The Infiltrator, a biopic that profiles the Medellin Cartel’s apparent money launderer. This guy lived la vida loca in all its money grubbing, slimy glory.

Bryan Cranston is nails as real life U.S. Customs agent Robert Mazur, who went de…

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WikChip Video Cranston talks Infiltrator with Colbert
Really Great 83 Points 2013

Thor Heyerdal and Kon-Tiki have been the coolest sounding names for well over half a century now. They certainly made an impression on me as a kid, when Heyerdal was already a longstanding legend. It didn’t hurt that his name was Thor – not uncommon for Nordics yet still bold. He wore it well,…

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WikChip Video Shark!! Stunning VFX throughout the ...
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The Secret in T...
Really Great 66 Points 2010

More than your ordinary police procedural, this affecting Argentine import includes a decidedly grown-up office romance & insight into Perón’s Argentina. Veteran Law & Order director Juan José Campanella deserves his Best Foreign Language Oscar for an &1 if nothing else.1

His film’s two…

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WikChip Video Argentine Law & Order Writ Large
Touching the Void
Great 17 Points 2003

Gripping movie about Simon Yates and Joe Simpson’s climb up Siula Grande in the Andes. But the ascent wasn’t the gripping part. The incredible story was about how Joe breaks his leg and how Simon lowers him down – an incredibly treacherous maneuver, which fails when Joe goes over a ledge forc…

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Great 66 Points 2013

So big it came down to YES or NO. A national referendum on authoritarian rule, YES or NO?

NO won, a shock to Chile, many Latinos and the world. Turns out that pop was the way to nail the weasel. The weasel was General Augusto Pinochet, the strongman who had fixed the economy but crushed diss…

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WikChip Video Selling Liberation Like Toothpaste
The 33
Great 83 Points 2015

Real-life drama ripped from TV news gets no more riveting or charming than in The 33, about the Chilean miners trapped half a mile below ground five years ago. Some three billion people followed their drama in 2010, including me and probably you. The fact that all 33 were safely brought to the …

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WikChip Video The real story of The 33