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Movies, dining and things to do / Spokane and North Idaho

Critics, fans finally agree: ‘Shoplifters’ is good

It's rare that a movie earns a 99 percent Tomatometer rating from critics while receiving a 90 percent rating from regular moviegoers.Yet that's what's happened with "Shoplifters," the Japanese film that is slated to open Friday at the Magic Lantern.

Seems the professionals have finally embraced their inner hoi polloi — or nearly so.

Which means either that the tastes of ordinary movie fans are improving or the critics are smoothing out their (our) typically elitist attitudes.  

In any event, "Shoplifters" is getting the kind of commentary usually reserved for something directed by, say, Alfonso Cuarón. Here are a few examples:

Tom Long, Detroit News: "Writer-director Hirokazu Kore-eda fills the film with grace notes, humor and fine observations, circling and filling out each character while leaning more on innocence than corruption."

Leah Greenblatt, Entertainment Weekly: "It's all beautifully done, if seemingly aimless; for most of its two-hour runtime, the joy of the movie lies mostly in watching these fine actors build their beautifully flawed and lived-in characters."

Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times: "Every one of master Japanese filmmaker Hirokazu Kore-eda's movies breaks your heart in a different way."

Again, the Magic Lantern has scheduled "Shoplifters" to open on Friday. Which is only natural for Spokane's singularly elite moviehouse.