Saturday, March 31, 2018

Isle of Dogs

With stop motion animation, Isle of Dogs tells the story of loyalty and perseverance.When a virus makes the entire canine population sick, the dogs are exiled to Trash Island. A boy sorely misses his dog and sets out on a quest to find his beloved companion. There are interesting characters in this film presented with dry, dry humor. Worth a look.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Love, Simon

The teen romance gets a bit of a twist, good writing and strong performances in Love, Simon. The characters in this story of sexual awakening for a young man in high school. When he admits to himself that he is gay, he finds an anonymous confidante who he develops a crush and then a relationship with. This story is about identity, growing up, family, friends bullying and self defense. I liked this film a lot.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

The Death of Stalin

I'm glad I brushed up on the historical details before seeing The Death of Stalin. Another film where I wouldn't believe elements of the story if they weren't true. The satire is hilarious, though the circumstances are dire. Great cast. Good black comedy.

Friday, March 23, 2018

Justice League

Oh Superheros... Justice League joins the cannon in predictable fashion. A lot of the same old battles as worlds collide and snappy dialog. I did enjoy the character of The Flash. An OK rental for me.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Pitch Perfect 3

Did the world need Pitch Perfect 3? Probably not, but I did find it more entertaining than Pitch Perfect 2. The Bellas are now young adults and dealing with the successes and disappointments in life. An opportunity to sing together arises and the adventure begins. Of course, there is a competition. This movie is entertaining enough and I always like the music. It's an OK rental.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Literally, Right Before Aaron

When a couple has dated for over 7 years the bond is strong. It is easier for some to move on than others. For the man who was Literally, Right Before Aaron, Adam has trouble reconciling his feelings when she invites him to her wedding. There are several earnest performances and the uncomfortable scenes are, well, uncomfortable. Good rental.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018


When a girl is sexually assaulted at 13, she thinks she love her attacker. In the film Una we see her struggles with relationships and her sexuality as a result. She tries to confront her attacker years later and it does not go well. A bleak, slow film. I appreciate the performances, but would not recommend this film.

Friday, March 09, 2018

Band Aid

A couple is grieving a miscarriage in the film Band Aid. They find solace and re-connection through music. They fight through the music. The music helps their voice. An important take-away for me from this film is that Fred Armisen is an amazing drum. Good drama.

Thursday, March 08, 2018

Who Killed the Electric Car?

In the documentary Who Killed the Electric Car? we watch greed and the almighty dollar do its thing. The electric car was beloved, but did not fit the automotive world's economic model, so they destroyed it. A sad chapter of automotive history. Good documentary.

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

Faces Places

Two photographers jump in a photo van and ride the countryside looking for subjects for larger-than-life murals in the documentary Faces Places. From lone subjects to groups, the murals tell stories of lives lived and their relationships. The dynamic between the two artists is very interesting as well, and becomes very endearing. This is a very sweet documentary that I liked very much.

Sunday, March 04, 2018

Oscars 2018

Here are my Oscar picks for this year. Saw 50 of the 59 nominated films. It was a good year!

Best Picture - Get Out
Best Director - Guillermo del Toro for The Shape of Water
Best Actress - Frances McDormand
Best actor - Gary Oldman
Best Actress in a supporting role - Allison Janney
Best Actor in a supporting role - Sam Rockwell
Original screenplay - Get Out
Adapted screenplay - Call Me by Your Name
Animated Feature - Coco
Documentary Feature - Faces Places
Foreign language film- A Fantastic woman
Original score - Phantom Thread
Original song - Mystery of Love
Sound editing - Baby Driver
Sound mixing - Baby Driver
Makeup  and Hair-styling - Darkest Hour
Costume design - Victoria & Abdul
Cinematography - Mudbound
Production Design - The Shape of Water
Film editing - Baby Driver
Visual effects - The Last Jedi
Documentary short - Traffic Stop
Live Action short - Watu Wote: All of Us
Animated short - Lou

Thursday, March 01, 2018

The Poker House

Survival of a young family in a house with a drug and drink addled Mother is a true story of survival in The Poker House. The older sister tries to protect her little sisters while holding down several jobs and playing on her high school basketball team.Her Mother and a variety of boyfriends, one who is her pimp gives the girl the attention she craves which takes an ugly turn. This film is based on a memoir. Early work from Jennifer Lawrence makes this worth watching.