Bob Brown

Bob is a graduate of the WORLD Journalism Institute’s mid-career course.

Associated Press/Columbia Pictures

Chappie (rated R for violence, language, and brief nudity) is not so much a story about artificial intelligence as it is about human “programming.” Are we born blank slates? Does our DNA or our environment have the greater role in shaping our character? Director Neill Blomkamp insightfully portrays human nature through a self-aware robot, though a fatal flaw fouls the film’s finale.

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Associated Press/Photo by Daniel McFadden/Relativity Media

The Lazarus Effect: Another unoriginal tale about deadish folks

Movie
by Bob Brown
Posted 3/03/15, 04:55 pm

Don’t expect The Lazarus Effect (rated PG-13 for intense sequences of horror violence, terror, and some sexual references) to square with Biblical eschatology. “Hell,” says the lone resurrected character in the movie, “is when you relive the worst moment of your life and you never wake up.” Kinda like watching yet another unoriginal tale about deadish folks.

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Associated Press/Photo by Frank Masi/Warner Bros. Pictures

Focus uses cheap tricks to steal moviegoers' money

Movie
by Bob Brown
Posted 3/03/15, 01:25 pm

“You get their focus, then you can take whatever you want.” This is how Nicky explains to Jess the art of lifting a mark’s valuables. It also describes Hollywood’s cinematic strategy: Tantalize with skin and salty language, and the public will hand over its wallet. Focus (rated R for language, some sexual content, and brief violence) offers the eye and ear candy many moviegoers gobble up, but the director fails to follow his main character’s advice on what starts out as a smart story.

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