James Mangold

Role: 

Ford V Ferrari

Academy Award-winners Matt Damon and Christian Bale star in Ford V Ferrari, based on the remarkable true story of the visionary American car designer Carroll Shelby (Damon) and the fearless British-born driver Ken Miles (Bale), who together battled corporate interference, the laws of physics, and their own personal demons to build a revolutionary race car for Ford Motor Company and take on the dominating race cars of Enzo Ferrari at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in France in 1966.

Logan

In 2029 the mutant population has shrunken significantly due to genetically modified plants designed to reduce mutant powers and the X-Men have disbanded. Logan's attempts to hide out on the Mexican border with an ailing Professor X are up-ended when a young mutant arrives, being pursued by dark forces. Logan agrees to escort the mysterious Laura (Dafne Keen), a mute, deeply troubled preteen, to a sanctuary in Canada. In the process, Logan learns that Laura is his cloned daughter, and part of a corporate effort to produce artificially created mutants.

The Wolverine

In 2013's summer of superheroes, The Wolverine breaks a lot of rules of the genre and comes out a winner for the most unexpected of reasons. Both the movie and the man (make that super-man) are driven by vengeance, anger, and the existential angst of the whole "with great power comes great blah, blah, blah" thing. But The Wolverine has a sense of higher responsibility and a quietude that distinguishes it from the likes of Iron Man 3, Man of Steel, and even the numerous X-Men movies that forged its legacy.

3:10 To Yuma

Here's hoping James Mangold's big, raucous, and ultrabloody remake of 3:10 to Yuma leads some moviegoers to check out Delmer Daves's beautifully lean, half-century-old original. That classic Western spun a tale of captured outlaw Ben Wade (Glenn Ford)--deadly but disarmingly affable--and the small-time rancher and family man, Dan Evans (Van Heflin), desperate enough to accept the job of helping escort the badman to Yuma prison.

Walk The Line

A solid and entertaining biopic, Walk the Line works less as a movie than an actors' showcase for its stars. Joaquin Phoenix's total immersion into the skin of singer Johnny Cash is startling--watching it, you can't believe this is the same guy who whined about being "vexed" in Gladiator. As he evolves from a farm boy to gospel croonin' plunker to the Man in Black, Phoenix disappears into Cash's deep baritone, his way of slinging the guitar onto his back, and his hunched-up style of strumming.

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