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Andy Bockelman columns

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The Bock’s Office: ‘Paddington’ a tale with lots of warm fuzzies

Winnie the Pooh had his honey, but the star of “Paddington” is addicted to a different substance in his cinematic escapades. Even so, the bear of very little brains isn’t the only one who can give us a sweet story.

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The Bock’s Office: What tops the list for 2014?

Each year I compile a top 10 list of the best films of the past 12 months, and each year it feels incomplete because of the near-impossibility of viewing every single movie to determine the hidden gems or deciding if the big releases are worth the hype. Either way, here is my countdown of my selections for the features I was able to watch that had the biggest effect on me.

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The Bock’s Office: ‘Unbroken’ mangled by poor storytelling

If your favorite part of a war movie is anything that doesn’t involve bullets or punches flying, “Unbroken” may not be the movie for you. If the aforementioned is in fact your preference, and this film doesn’t fill your quota, perhaps professional therapy is the way to go.

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The Bock’s Office: ‘Into the Woods’ is happily ever after all over again

No matter how many iterations of storybook characters come along, it’s hard not to identify with the ones you first heard as a child. Oh, wait, you say they sing in the fairy tale feature “Into the Woods?” Well, that changes everything!

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The Bock’s Office: ‘The Hobbit’ — For the love of gold…

Too much of a good thing inevitably has to have its downside. For those who have grown to love the cinematic tales of J.R.R. Tolkien, that aftereffect has finally come in the form of “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.”

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The Bock’s Office: ‘Birdman’ soars proudly toward madness

If you’ve done all you can to avoid films based on comic books in recent years, you’ll probably be out of luck for years to come because they’re here to stay. But the love affair that the public has with the idea of the caped crusader has its own dark side, as we can glimpse from a film like “Birdman.”

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The Bock’s Office: ‘Mockingjay’ almost satisfies your hunger

Given the title of the series and the time of its release, you can’t talk about “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1” without making a Thanksgiving joke. The difficulty with that is that while people may be ravenous for more of the franchise, right now, they’re only getting appetizers.

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The Bock’s Office: ‘Interstellar’ a great space film undone by Hollywood black hole

By now, announcing that you’re boldly going where no man has gone before barely even warrants a shrug from movie audiences. That doesn’t stop the maker of “Interstellar” from going a step beyond, even if he quickly takes two more steps backward.

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The Bock’s Office: ‘Nightcrawler’ a terrifying tale of media mayhem

Most people probably don’t realize the amount of labor that went into that 10 seconds of footage on the evening news that shocked and dismayed them. However, if you’re thinking that image always tells the whole story, the guy from “Nightcrawler” will have you thinking twice.

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The Bock’s Office: Halloween movies take all forms

Another October, another selection of horror-centric movies released in theaters. This year is no exception, whether your tastes lie with the extremely abject — in which case, be sure to check out Kevin Smith’s “Tusk” — the sensation of a good old-fashioned seance — “Ouija” — or something that is only slightly in the neighborhood of the holiday like the dramedy “The Skeleton Twins.” Here’s an assessment of some of the latest appropriate offerings.

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The Bock’s Office: World War II film ‘Fury’ hurt by delayed payoff

There are thousands of accounts of the American military’s exploits, all of which are worth hearing to get a greater picture of how our nation was strengthened during its hardest times. You want to believe that every depiction of these folks is an accurate and glowing one, but a film like “Fury” shows you can’t always reach high expectations.

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The Bock’s Office: ‘The Judge’ can be a bit of a trial to watch

The last thing legal counsel wants is to handle the case of someone who shares their surname. The only thing worse is someone who insists on backseat lawyering, something that happens, but isn’t as funny as it sounds, in “The Judge.”

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The Bock’s Office: ‘Gone Girl’ a mesmerizing mystery

The segment of wedding vows that mentions, “till death do us part” isn’t one most at the altar want to make their focus. However, those five words are very important to those who make up the cast list of “Gone Girl.”

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The Bock’s Office: ‘Runner’ isn’t quite a-maze-ing

Kids, whenever you think your parents are being unreasonable, consider the fact that they probably never forced you to live in the wilderness and question if your next day would be your last. Compared to the teens of “The Maze Runner,” adolescents who have their cell phone taken away have it pretty easy.

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The Bock’s Office: ‘No Good Deed’ has good acting but no good suspense

We all have the urge to play the Good Samaritan for people in times of trouble. Even so, you know what they say about “No Good Deed,” and the movie of the same name isn’t going to inspire you to have faith in that lonesome hitchhiker on the side of the road any more than you did before.

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