The Daily Texan

All content by Penn Harrison

Top movie picks of 2016

January 17, 2017

Charles Liu: “Moonlight” “Who is you?” That’s the question Chiron, an African-American boy growing up in Miami, must answer as he comes to terms with his masculinity...

AWinterRose court of A Winter Rose, QuietCity Productions

Clichés, weak writing burden hopeful indie drama “A Winter Rose”

December 5, 2016

What if the struggles in your past prepared you for a better future? This hopeful message propels writer-director Riz Story’s indie drama “A Winter Rose.” Unfortunately, the film’s...

allied court of GK Films 2

“Allied” tells immersive, thrilling wartime love story

November 29, 2016

Polar opposites compose many great stories, and love and war are two of the most timeless. “Allied” is hardly the first film to depict a wartime romance that blossoms in Casablanca, but despite...

bleed-for-this court Open Road Films

“Bleed for This” tells conventional but uplifting comeback story

November 18, 2016

“You know what scares me about giving up? It’s easy.”  In 1991, a brutal car wreck left champion boxer Vinny Pazienza with a broken neck. Doctors said his chances of walking again...

arrival courtesy of paramount

Exquisite sci-fi drama “Arrival” will blow your mind

November 11, 2016

Decoding language is a dynamic exchange. The linguist poses a question, gets a response, then interprets it based on what came before. Watching Denis Villeneuve’s sci-fi masterpiece “Arrival”...

loving court of Raindog Films

“Loving” achieves excellence in understatement

November 4, 2016

 “I’m pregnant” are the two words that break the first of many long silences in “Loving,” a film in which few words often carry significant weight. Director Jeff Nichols...

hacksaw-ridge-court of Summit Entertainment

“Hacksaw Ridge” marks a rousing, visceral comeback for Mel Gibson

November 4, 2016

In every war there are two battles: the outer battle between armies and the inner battle of morals. Rarely has a film dramatized both as bluntly and beautifully as “Hacksaw Ridge.” Director...

certain-women courtsey of Film Science

Obnoxiously understated ‘Certain Women’ forgets to tell a story

October 27, 2016

There’s a place for minimalism, a time for subtlety and a moment for silence. But rarely has a film so blatantly overused all three that it forgot to tell a story.  Writer-director Kelly...

DallasBuyersClub_FocusFeatures

Four noteworthy films highlight LGBT narratives

October 21, 2016

Long before Hilary Swank and Jared Leto won Oscars for honest, powerful portrayals of LGBT characters, many films misrepresented and ignored members of the LGBT community. Below, The Daily Texan compiled...

Jack REacher courtesy of Paramount Pictures

Conventional “Jack Reacher” sequel overcomes predictability with thrills

October 21, 2016

Some movies are meant for a Friday night with a bucket of popcorn, not Sunday night at the Oscars. Judging a franchise action flick by its ability to be artful, original and profound will doubtless disappoint....

Jeff Nichols talks screenwriting, calling Austin home

October 18, 2016

Austin-based writer-director Jeff Nichols has delivered one critically successful film after another, from thrillers like “Take Shelter” to the coming-of-age drama “Mud” and science...

The Girl on the Train_court Universal Pictures

“The Girl on the Train” squanders source’s potential with lack of creativity

October 7, 2016

“We are tied forever now, the three of us,” laments Rachel (Emily Blunt) at the end of “The Girl on the Train.” “Bound forever by the story we share.”  On paper,...

deepwater horizon courtesy of participant media 2

Bleak, thrilling “Deepwater Horizon” honors real-life heroes

September 30, 2016

Peter Berg opens “Deepwater Horizon” a mile beneath the sea, where mounting oil pressure threatens to rupture the rig’s base. Berg only builds the cinematic pressure from there.  “Deepwater...

Q&A: Flight Facilities discuss international audiences, their rise to fame

September 29, 2016

After their breakout 2010 hit “Crave You,” Sydney-based duo Flight Facilities quickly rose to prominence as one of Australia’s most popular electronic dance acts. The Daily Texan spoke...

magnificent 7 Courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM)

Flawed but fun, “Seven” remake is magnificent time

September 23, 2016

The Seven have checkered pasts, little to lose and even less fear of a death they think is imminent. When they ride into battle to liberate a tiny town from a tyrannical miner, they go for broke. Like...

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Austin on camera: An Industry on the Rise

September 9, 2016

When Austin’s main airport was moved from Mueller to Bergstrom in 1999, an expanse of empty aircraft hangars was left behind. In them, Austin-based film director Richard Linklater envisioned the...