Sunday, February 26, 2017

Get Out

Classic Horror tropes are the foundation for the creative film Get Out. When a woman brings her boyfriend to meet her parents, strange things begin to happen and we take a ride down a crazy rabbit-hole. The less you know going ito this one, the better. I'll just say see it and enjoy! I did.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

I am Not Your Negro

The words of James Baldwin come to the screen in I Am Not Your Negro. A beautiful, intelligent journey through racism, art and politics that makes you think. Using movie clips, interviews and narration, Baldwin's words come to life. There is a lot to digest. I think I'll see this a few more times. Excellent documentary.

The Light Between Oceans

Losing a child is devestating. In The Light Between Oceans a couple endures this burden more than once. The difficult dynamics of isolation, loss, conflict and doing the right thing are played out in this strong drama. The ending was sad, but satisfying.

Friday, February 24, 2017

The Dressmaker

In The Dressmaker wardrobe is a tool of revenge. When a young woman returns to her small home town as a successful designer, the truth behind a nagging event is revealed and avenged. Dark, funny, poignant. I really liked how events unfold in this quirky drama. Good rental.

Oscar Picks 2017

If I were asked to vote for the Academy Awards, this is what my ballot would look like. Tune in Sunday night to see if the Academy agrees with me....

Picture - Moonlight
Actress: Natalie Portman - Jackie
Actor: Denzel Washington - Fences
Supporting Actress: Viola Davis - Fences
Supporting Actor: Mahershala Ali - Moonlight
Director: Damien Chazelle - La La Land
Animated Feature: Kubo and the Two Strings
Documentary: I Am Not Your Negro
Original Screenplay: Manchester by the Sea
Adapted Screenplay: Fences
Original Song: How Far I'll Go
Musical Score: La La Land
Visual effects: Doctor Strange
Editing: Moonlight
Production Design: La La Land
Makeup and Hair-styling: Star Trek Beyond
Costumes: Jackie
Foreign: The Salesman
Sound Mixing: La La Land
Sound Editing: Hacksaw Ridge
Documentary Feature: O.J.: Made in America
Documentary Short: Joe's Violin
Animated Short: Piper
Live Action Short: Ennemis Interieurs

Hacksaw Ridge

I avoided seeing Hacksaw Ridge in the theater because I heard that the war scenes were pretty gruesome. Since it was nominated for several Oscars I was happy to see it released to DVD before the awards ceremony. It is the only nominee for Best Picture that I hadn't seen. The first half of the movie was all background and story. The second half was mostly battle scenes. It was kind of like 2 movies. I liked the set-up and story of the plucky young solider who was a conscientious objector, but if this had not been a true story, I would not have believed half of what went on in the battle scenes. The dramatization was gory, but then again, so is war. I liked this movie more than I expected to. A decent rental.

Friday, February 10, 2017

American Pastoral

A dysfunctional family is front and center in American Pastoral in a sad, desperate story. A disgruntled daughter runs away and crisis is achieved. Strange behavior on the home-front and pursuit of activism make for high drama. A decent rental.

The Accountant

A thriller with the title The Accountant doesn't sound quite right. How can an accountant have an edge? Make him a killer. Cooking the books and stronger tactics ensue in this film. OK rental.

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

Frank & Lola

The pressure and struggle in romantic relationships makes for good cinema. In Frank & Lola such struggles are presented with wonderful performances and a dark tone. The baggage that each character brings to the relationship is interesting and dramatic. A thoughtful film with an edge. Good rental.

Friday, February 03, 2017

Denial

Theories that the Holocaust did not happen blow my ind. In the film Denial an author is sued for libel when she challenges such an author in print. The case is tried in the UK which brings it's own eccentricities and drama to this legal battle. The emotion and examples are real. Based on a true story, I liked this film.

Thursday, February 02, 2017

13 Hours

The reality of struggle and violence in the Middle East is portrayed in 13 Hours. Libya is a volatile place and the courage of CIA agents to try to bring it under control is portrayed in this film. We see their personal lives alongside their professional lives. This provides a stark contrast. An intense film I liked a lot.