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Wish I Was Here

Here are two things I don’t get:

And So It Goes

Is that the blandest title of all time? It tells you absolutely nothing about the film; it doesn’t even include the Nick Lowe song of the same name as an excuse (though the soundtrack is otherwise overloaded with oldies that contribute nothing to the story). You could plausibly call any movie And So It Goes, even Andy Warhol’s 24-hour film about the Empire State Building. To get a more generic title, you’d have to go with Movie.

Venus in Fur

Roman Polanski has always had an affinity for dramas staged in confined spaces: Repulsion, Rosemary’s Baby, The Tenant. That may be tied to his liking for theatrical adaptations like Death and the Maiden and Carnage. Working from David Ives’ hit play that features two characters on a single set, Venus in Fur may not be his best film, but it might be one of his most typical. And it’s far from his worst.

A Most Wanted Man

It takes away a little of the sting—just a little—of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s premature death to know that in his last film (the Hunger Games sequels don’t count) he got to play a role he was born for, one of John le Carre’s world-weary but still committed intelligence operatives. (You don’t want to call them “spies”—especially in the post-James Bond era, that tarts them up too much.)

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