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Sinister – Ethan Hawke delivers a strong performance in this disturbing horror film that finds the actor as a true crime author who moves his family into a house where a gruesome multiple murder occurred. A box of 8 mm films he finds in the attic contain disturbing images of horrific crimes and when he watches them, he unleashes a malevolent spirit that proves impossible to contain. Director Scott Derrickson does a masterful job of creating a sense of dread that permeates the film as it marches towards its gruesome and effective ending. Not for the faint of heart, this proved to be one of the better horror films of 2012.

Undefeated – The winner of the Academy Award for Best Documentary in 2012 chronicles the efforts of Manassas High School football team who attempt to lift themselves out of the cellar though their program is underfunded and many of the players must contend with debilitating personal issues. The key to the film is Coach Bill Courtney, a volunteer who puts the team before his family and reaps the reward of putting some of the school’s young men on the track to success. Be on the look out for a scene in which one of his players is informed he will have his college education paid for and see if you can hold back the tears. Truly moving and memorable.

Film Critic

Chuck Koplinski is The News-Gazette's film critic. His email is and you can follow him on Twitter (@ckoplinski).