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‘The Breakfast Club’ is an antique analysis of adolescent anguish

Midway through John Hughes’ 1985 film “The Breakfast Club,” high school principal Richard Vernon has had enough. Vernon is tasked with supervising five students in Saturday detention, but one of them, John Bender, is particularly difficult to handle. After John insults Vernon for the umpteenth time, Vernon locks him in a storage closet. Vernon’s spiteful…

‘They Live By Night’ uncovers a soft side to a classic criminal couple

“Romantic” is an appropriate epithet for director Nicholas Ray. Best known for “Rebel Without a Cause,” Ray’s works often highlight the struggles of lovers trapped in cruel, cynical milieus. Indeed, his first film, “They Live by Night” (1948), focuses on two young protagonists, the powerful passion they share for each other and the obstacles to…

Amir Abou-Jaoude’s top five films of 2016

I submit this “best of 2016” list with some reservations. I still haven’t seen highly acclaimed films such as Barry Jenkins’s “Moonlight,” Maren Ade’s “Toni Erdmann,” Paul Verhoeven’s “Elle,” Pablo Almodovar’s “Julieta,” Mike Mills’s “20th Century Women,” Martin Scorsese’s “Silence,” and Kelly Reichardt’s “Certain Women.” And I am particularly excited to eventually see Whit Stillman’s…