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Movies

CRITIC’S NOTEBOOK

Best picture win caps Ben Affleck’s resurgence

Went from idol to mocked star to director with gravitas

It’s official: We’ve got our Ben back. And, good Lord, what he had to put us through, and go through, to get here.

The 15-year arc of Ben Affleck’s career — from brash young talent to overexposed movie star to tabloid celebrity to Most Ridiculed Man in Showbiz and all the way back to humble yet triumphant cinematic craftsman ­— is one of the most singular round trips in American pop culture history.

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