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By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,SUN FILM CRITIC | January 12, 2001
Rarely has combat been portrayed as beautifully as in "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," Taiwanese director Ang Lee's thoughtful meditation on menace, mortality and the martial arts. Resolutely Eastern in its attitudes and sentiments, "Crouching Tiger" uses a visual style borrowed from "The Matrix" to create a world where women warriors battle across roofs, where treetops serve as arenas for combat, where gravity is defied with regularity. The effect is nothing short of stunning - it's as if Peter Pan had become a samurai.
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By Dave Rosenthal | March 8, 2013
L. Frank Baum's classic about a wonderful wizard is getting a new look, in a movie prequel called "Oz: The Great & Powerful. " This isn't a true adaptation -- in fact, Dorothy, the Cowardly Lion and other key characters do not even appear, and references to Baum's work are kept to a minimum. Early reactions show that the movie may be more appealling to general sudiences than to critics . It's a reimagining of the background of the huckster who is swept away to a magical land and is thrust into an uncomftable role as leader.
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By MICHAEL SRAGOW and MICHAEL SRAGOW,SUN MOVIE CRITIC | May 5, 2006
Not long ago, every major American director felt compelled to mount a large-scale Western to show the world what he could do with a classic native form. Often, the result would be a stiff or a debacle - most spectacularly, Michael Cimino's Heaven's Gate. I hope the same thing isn't happening with Chinese directors and sweeping medieval martial-arts fantasies. After Ang Lee set the trend with Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (a giant hit, though I found it just as draggy and opaque as I do most of Ang Lee's work)
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Chris Kaltenbach and The Baltimore Sun | February 24, 2013
Quentin Tarantino, Hollywood's reigning enfant terrible, seems to have some fans in the motion picture academy -- and in the pressroom. Tarantino's win, his second (he also won for "Pulp Fiction"), was a bit of a surprise, as it bested pre-Oscar favorites "Amour" and "Zero Dark Thirty. " But his win in the Original Screenplay category suggests the academy is becoming fond of Tarantino's brand of outrageousness. And the backstage pressroom's reaction -- a collective gasp followed by some heartfelt applause -- suggests cinema scribes feel likewise.
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By Michael Sragow and Michael Sragow,Sun Movie Critic | October 12, 2007
Not just to embody but to act the throes of passion, with every inch of flesh exposed - that's what first-time movie actress Tang Wei does to the hilt, and way beyond the hilt, in Lust, Caution, Ang Lee's otherwise ponderous tale of intrigue in Japanese-controlled Shanghai during the Second World War. Tang Wei brings a terrible and awe-inspiring purity to an impure character: the key performer in a patriotic theater cell that becomes an assassination unit...
ENTERTAINMENT
Chris Kaltenbach and The Baltimore Sun | February 24, 2013
Quentin Tarantino, Hollywood's reigning enfant terrible, seems to have some fans in the motion picture academy -- and in the pressroom. Tarantino's win, his second (he also won for "Pulp Fiction"), was a bit of a surprise, as it bested pre-Oscar favorites "Amour" and "Zero Dark Thirty. " But his win in the Original Screenplay category suggests the academy is becoming fond of Tarantino's brand of outrageousness. And the backstage pressroom's reaction -- a collective gasp followed by some heartfelt applause -- suggests cinema scribes feel likewise.
FEATURES
By Jay Boyar and Jay Boyar,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | June 20, 2003
With a budget upwards of $150 million, The Hulk may be the most expensive art film ever made. Then again, with its monster-on-the-rampage action, you could also call it a Godzilla flick for eggheads. Either way, The Hulk is a fascinating, if flawed, extravaganza. Based on the Marvel comic book, the film tells of Bruce Banner, a scientist who, after being zapped with gamma rays, turns into a green-skinned behemoth whenever he gets angry. "We're gonna have to watch that temper of yours," says David Banner, Bruce's half-crazed dad, whose role in his son's uncontrollable transformations is anything but incidental.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Stephen Hunter and Stephen Hunter,Sun Film Critic | August 26, 1994
"Eat Drink Man Woman," which opens today at the Rotunda, is fine moving funny good.A brilliant film from the Chinese-American filmmaker Ang Lee (who did "A Wedding Banquet," which moved me not a whit), it's a kind of "King Lear" of the kitchen. It follows the greatest Chinese chef on Taipei as he comes to terms with the romantic fates of his three very different daughters. For their part, they must come to terms with the old goat who's been running their lives for three decades.Lee films cooking as if it's war. Master chef Mr. Chu (Sihung Lung)
NEWS
By CHRIS KALTENBACH and CHRIS KALTENBACH,SUN MOVIE CRITIC | March 5, 2006
Santa Monica, Calif. -- Brokeback Mountain won big at yesterday's Independent Spirit Awards, setting the stage for what could be a great weekend for director Ang Lee's gay-cowboy drama. The movie stars Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal as 1960s ranch hands who fall in love atop a Wyoming mountain one summer, then spend their lives alternately reveling in and concealing that love. The movie, which is up for eight Oscars tonight, won the best feature Spirit, and Lee won for his direction.
FEATURES
By Dave Rosenthal | March 8, 2013
L. Frank Baum's classic about a wonderful wizard is getting a new look, in a movie prequel called "Oz: The Great & Powerful. " This isn't a true adaptation -- in fact, Dorothy, the Cowardly Lion and other key characters do not even appear, and references to Baum's work are kept to a minimum. Early reactions show that the movie may be more appealling to general sudiences than to critics . It's a reimagining of the background of the huckster who is swept away to a magical land and is thrust into an uncomftable role as leader.
NEWS
By Dave Rosenthal | November 23, 2012
This holiday season may be the greatest ever for book adaptations, and this week, we have a visual stunner: "Life of Pi," Ang Lee's take on the best-selling Yann Martel novel . Among the other big adaptations is "Lincoln," the Steven Spielberg movie that was inspired by Doris Kearns Goodwin's "Team of Rivals," and that has already become an Academy Award favorite.  The season's bounty also includes "The Hobbit," "Les Miserables"...
FEATURES
By Michael Sragow and Michael Sragow,Sun Movie Critic | October 12, 2007
Not just to embody but to act the throes of passion, with every inch of flesh exposed - that's what first-time movie actress Tang Wei does to the hilt, and way beyond the hilt, in Lust, Caution, Ang Lee's otherwise ponderous tale of intrigue in Japanese-controlled Shanghai during the Second World War. Tang Wei brings a terrible and awe-inspiring purity to an impure character: the key performer in a patriotic theater cell that becomes an assassination unit...
FEATURES
By MICHAEL SRAGOW and MICHAEL SRAGOW,SUN MOVIE CRITIC | May 5, 2006
Not long ago, every major American director felt compelled to mount a large-scale Western to show the world what he could do with a classic native form. Often, the result would be a stiff or a debacle - most spectacularly, Michael Cimino's Heaven's Gate. I hope the same thing isn't happening with Chinese directors and sweeping medieval martial-arts fantasies. After Ang Lee set the trend with Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (a giant hit, though I found it just as draggy and opaque as I do most of Ang Lee's work)
NEWS
By CHRIS KALTENBACH and CHRIS KALTENBACH,SUN MOVIE CRITIC | March 5, 2006
Santa Monica, Calif. -- Brokeback Mountain won big at yesterday's Independent Spirit Awards, setting the stage for what could be a great weekend for director Ang Lee's gay-cowboy drama. The movie stars Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal as 1960s ranch hands who fall in love atop a Wyoming mountain one summer, then spend their lives alternately reveling in and concealing that love. The movie, which is up for eight Oscars tonight, won the best feature Spirit, and Lee won for his direction.
TRAVEL
By ALAN SOLOMON and ALAN SOLOMON,CHICAGO TRIBUNE | February 12, 2006
There is no Brokeback Mountain. That doesn't mean people won't pay to see it. The mountain, like the Annie Proulx short story in the New Yorker (and later in a book) that spawned a much-honored motion picture bearing the name, is fictional. Proulx placed it somewhere in Wyoming's Bighorn Mountains. The movie's director, Ang Lee -- because it was cheaper -- shot the film in Alberta, along the Canadian Rockies, primarily in the Kananaskis Country area near Banff National Park. If you film it, people come.
FEATURES
By Jay Boyar and Jay Boyar,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | June 20, 2003
With a budget upwards of $150 million, The Hulk may be the most expensive art film ever made. Then again, with its monster-on-the-rampage action, you could also call it a Godzilla flick for eggheads. Either way, The Hulk is a fascinating, if flawed, extravaganza. Based on the Marvel comic book, the film tells of Bruce Banner, a scientist who, after being zapped with gamma rays, turns into a green-skinned behemoth whenever he gets angry. "We're gonna have to watch that temper of yours," says David Banner, Bruce's half-crazed dad, whose role in his son's uncontrollable transformations is anything but incidental.
NEWS
By Dave Rosenthal | November 23, 2012
This holiday season may be the greatest ever for book adaptations, and this week, we have a visual stunner: "Life of Pi," Ang Lee's take on the best-selling Yann Martel novel . Among the other big adaptations is "Lincoln," the Steven Spielberg movie that was inspired by Doris Kearns Goodwin's "Team of Rivals," and that has already become an Academy Award favorite.  The season's bounty also includes "The Hobbit," "Les Miserables"...
FEATURES
By Ann Hornaday and Ann Hornaday,SUN FILM CRITIC | November 19, 1999
Maryland Film Festival founder Jed Dietz pronounced last Sunday's Barry Levinson Home Movie Marathon at the Charles Theatre a resounding -- and somewhat surprising -- success."
ENTERTAINMENT
By Chris Kaltenbach and By Chris Kaltenbach,Sun Movie Critic | May 25, 2003
Don't expect much in the way of simpler cinematic pleasures over the next few months: Summer 2003 is shaping up as a pulse-pounding, heart-stopping, slam-bang action-thriller kind of season, with superheroes, super villains and even a super horse vying for their share of the megaplex dollar. Fans of more restrained fare may want to keep an eye on the Charles and Rotunda Cinematheque theaters, whose fluid schedules make most anything possible. For the rest of you, here are 10 films to watch for this summer, listed by release date: 1. Finding Nemo (Friday)
FEATURES
By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,SUN MOVIE CRITIC | January 24, 2002
The Golden Globes are history - which means it's time to start handicapping the Oscar race in earnest. Judging by Sunday's awards show, A Beautiful Mind should earn itself a passel of Oscar nominations when the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announces its Oscar finalists for 2001 films Feb. 12. That was obvious going in, however: Director Ron Howard's film, loosely based on the life of Nobel laureate John Forbes Nash Jr., was one of the...
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