Monday, October 31, 2016

Marnie 1964

     Mark Rutland gives a nod indicating she should be hired when Marnie is interviewing for a job at a publishing firm.  He has seen Marnie before when she worked at another company.  He knows she stole money and left that job.  Mark stops her when she steals from the publishing firm.  He forces her marry him instead of running away like she always does.  Mark has a private detective look into her past and report back.  He believes something that happened to her as a child has caused her to steal.  She is terrified of thunderstorms and the color red. 
     Marnie needs a lot of psychological help but she won’t go to a doctor.  I wasn’t sure that Mark’s loving her and working her would be enough to help her?  She seems so cool, collected and sure of herself but inside she’s very troubled.  4* (I really liked this movie)

130 min, Drama directed by Alfred Hitchcock with Tippi Hedren, Sean Connery, Martin Gabel, Louise Latham, Diane Baker, Alan Napier, Bob Sweeney, Mariette Harley, Bruce Dern, S. John Launer, Meg Wyllie.

Note:  Imdb 7.2 out of 10, 82% critic 73% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Amazon 4.3* out of 5* with 380 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in San Jose, Universal City, California, Pennsylvania, Virginia, New Jersey and Maryland.  I saw while watching the film The Girl, TV movie of 2012, that the last scene in this movie was the first scene filmed.  It is at a train station in San Jose, California.  According to The Girl, Hitchcock was obsessed with Hedren and he called her every night at home.  He filmed the scene with the birds attacking her in the house over and over until her doctor recommended she take time off from the film.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

After Words 2015

    Jane is a librarian in Los Angeles and she is having a mid-life crisis.  The library where she works is being closed due to budget cuts.  She decides she will escape to Costa Rica for a vacation.  She is really planning on taking a lot of pills and never returning to LA.  She meets Juan, he is a younger man, he likes to entertain women and that is how he makes a living.  Anna is his daughter and he is sending her to a private school.  He’s behind on his tuition payments and the administrator reminds him that this cannot continue.  He gives Jane a tour of the park and he visits her later at her hotel.  He explains he needs $500 and she decides to give him the money.  He says cannot accept her gift and he only agrees to take the money after giving her guided tours worth that amount.
     Marcia Gay Harden brings her introverted and shy character Jane to life.  She has depression and loneliness.  She lives an isolated life surrounded by a big city full of people.  Juan is definitely not a person she would normally feel comfortable around.  He gets in her space and pushes her to try and do things out of her boxed in comfort zone.  The scenery, animals and plants of the area are very beautiful.  4* (I really liked this movie)

91 min, Drama directed by Juan Feldman with Marcia Gay Harden, Oscar Jaenada, Jenna Ortega, Ron Canada, Jackie Torres, Mauricio Astorga.

Note:  Imdb 6.4 out of 10, 38% critic 53% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Amazon 4.1* out of 5* with 138 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Costa Rica.  Oscar Jaenada was also in Pirates of the Caribbean: On Strange Tides. This film was in the theater on 8/21/15 and released on DVD 10/13/15, I previously didn’t see anything about it?

Wedding Doll 2015

     Hagit works in a toilet paper factory and she has a slight mentally disadvantaged.  Sarah is her mother and a divorcee who has devoted life to Hagit.  Independence is what Hagit wants but she can’t handle life on her own.  People can be cruel to her and treat her very badly.  Sarah would like to have some life of her own now that Hagit is an adult.  The owner of the factory decides he’s going to close because they are not making a profit.  This decision shakes up both Hagit and Sarah.
     The scenes of the Negev Desert are very beautiful.  Hagit makes intricate little dolls from toilet paper and the rolls used for the paper.  She doesn’t understand when people are not telling her the truth and they let her down.  This is a different movie and life is tough for both Hagit and Sarah.  3 ½* (I liked this movie)

82 min, Drama directed by Nitzan Giladi with Roy Assaf, Mili Avital, Anna Bagon, Aryeh Cherner, Eyal Chohen, Aviv Elkabeth, Aviva Ger, Itzik Fiuli.

Note:  Imdb 5.9 out of 10, 779% critic 90% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Roger Ebert 2 ½*, 4* out of 5* with 1 review.
Special Note:  The original title in Hebrew is Hatuna MeNiyar.  The Negev is a desert and semidesert region of southern Israel.  Cities are the capital Bersheba in the north, to the south is the Gulf of Aqaba and the resort city of Eilat.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Knight of Cups 2015

     Rick is a writer traveling through Los Angeles and Las Vegas.  He is searching for love and for himself.  He has a complicated relationship with his brother Barry and his father Joseph.  He was married to Nancy, they didn’t have children and they are divorced.  He tries to break his distraction with Nancy, Della, Helen, Elizabeth, Karen and Isabel. 
     I could not get interested in this film but I did watch until the end.  There is a lot of driving, a lot of water, a lot of desert and a lot of parties.  It seems that if you have no connection to family or to yourself, how can you connect with another person?  Everything becomes superficial and without meaning with endless searching?  2* (I didn’t like this movie)  

118 min, Drama directed by Terrence Malick with Christian Bale, Cate Blanchett, Natalie Portman, Brian Dennehy, Antonio Banderas, Freida Pinto, Wes Bentley, Isabel Lucas, Teresa Palmer, Imogen Poots, Peter Matthiessen.

Note:  Imdb 5.7 out of 10, 46% critic 39% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Roger Ebert 4*, Amazon 2.5* out of 5* with 228 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Burbank, Santa Monica, Los Angeles, Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Death Valley, California and Las Vegas, Nevada.  The Knight of Cups refers to the Tarot card portraying an adventurer guided by emotions.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Eye in the Sky 2015

     Colonel Katherine Powell is a UK based military officer commanding a top-secret drone operation.  Remote surveillance and on the ground information has determined that several people on the most wanted list will be together at a house in Kenya.  They later learn that suicide vests will be photographed with the people who will wear them.  Originally, the mission was to capture the wanted people but the explosives change this directive.  There is a lot of back-and-forth between the people at Powell’s location, the diplomats in the UK and out of the country plus the American drone pilot in Nevada.  There will be more collateral damage from the strike because of the added vest explosives.  A nine-year old girl is in the possible impact zone of the strike.  Everything possible is done to get her to a safer location.
     There is a LOT of tension in this film and this is the second time I’ve seen this.  I saw it in the theater when it was released.  A second watching didn’t seem to reduce the tension even though I knew all the details and the outcome.  4* (I really liked this movie)

102 min, Drama directed by Gavin Hood with Helen Mirren, Aaron Paul, Alan Rickman, Jeremy Northam, Iain Glen, Barkhad Abdi.

Note:  Imdb 7.3 out of 10, 95% critic 83% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Roger Ebert 3*, Metacritic 73 out of 100 with 38 critics 6.9 out of 10 with 121 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in South Africa.  Barkhad Abdi was also in Captain Phillips with Tom Hanks about Somali pirates capturing a ship.  This film is dedicated to Alan Rickman, he passed away 1/14/16 and the release date for Eye in the Sky was 4/1/16.  US drone strikes reportedly killed 150 people in Somalia the week this film opened?  I find it interesting that the name of the weapon on the drone is the Hellfire?

Bananas 1971

     Fielding Mellish lives in New York City and he works as a consumer products tester.  He meets Nancy and she is a political activist.  Fielding tries to fit in with Nancy’s life but she decides she wants someone with more leadership potential.  Fielding travels to San Marcos and joins the rebels.  He rises to become President of the country.  In order to obtain financial support for San Marcos from the United States, Fielding travels back to New York.  He meets Nancy again and she likes him more now that he’s a political leader.
     There are so many funny and crazy scenes in this film!!  You are thinking in your mind that the actor doing the news is Howard Cosell and it really is him?  The scenes in San Marcos are ridiculous with the government and the rebels.  The scenes with Fielding back in New York are ridiculous too.  3 ½* (I liked this movie)

82 min, Comedy directed by Woody Allen, written by Mickey Rose and Woody Allen with Louise Lasser Carolos Montalban, Woody Allen, Nati Abascal, Jacobo Morales, Miguel Angel Suarez, David Ortiz, Rene Enriquez.

Note:  Imdb 7.1 out of 10, 88% critic 74% critic on Rotten Tomatoes, Amazon 4.3* out of 5* with 92 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in New York City, Manhattan, New York and Puerto Rico.  Sylvester Stallone has a small-uncredited role as a subway thug.  This was one of his earliest roles and not a cameo.  There is a scene where musicians are playing during dinner but the instruments had not arrived.  Rather than wait, the scene was filmed without them.  This is Woody Allen’s second film as a director.  I was surprised I had not seen this film since I've seen a LOT of Allen's films?

Monday, October 24, 2016

Farewell to Harry 2002

     Nick Sennet heads back to his hometown in the Pacific Northwest to try to write his latest novel.  He runs into Harry, his father was the owner of the local hat manufacturing company but hats went out of fashion.  The factory has been closed for a long time and a legend says that Harry is a ghost?  Nick starts working in the projection room of the local theater.  He also begins to work with Harry to reopen the hat factory. 
     I could not get interested in this film?  I don’t know if it’s the subject or the characters?  It’s difficult to tell what era this film takes place.  Is it in the 40’s or is it more modern?  2 ½* (This movie is so-so)

103 min, Drama directed by Garrett Bennett with Joe Flanigan, William Hall Jr., Lysette Anthony, Joseph Franklin, Brent David Fraser, Micha Rice, Carl Ballantine, John Gilbert.

Note:  Imdb 7.1 out of 10, 71% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, 4.0* out of 5* with 20 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Seattle, Port Townsend, Bainbridge Island, Washington.

Standing Tall 2015

     Malony Ferrandot has had a lot of difficulties with attending school and with authorities since he was six years old.  He is now 16 years old.  Many of his problems are due to the parenting style or the lack of parenting by his mother Severine Ferrandot.  His father isn’t in the picture.  Maloney has a younger brother and he may be following the same path?  Maloney has been to see juvenile judge Florence Blaque many times with the same and additional problems every time.  She is running out of options and answers about the best path to take to obtain change in Malony’s life and that of his mother and brother.  Yann is a special needs educator and he tries to keep a positive outlook and influence on Maloney with constant strong opposition.
     This film offers real insight into French methods of handling juvenile delinquency.  I don’t know how the judge, the educators and the counselors can continue against such constant opposition from one person?  He can’t seem to ever control his violent and explosive behavior?  He likes to steal cars and he does it at every opportunity.  It’s really the only thing he likes to do?  3 ½* (I liked this movie)
120 min, Drama directed by Emmanuelle Bercot with Catherine Deneuve, Rod Paradot, Benoit Magimel, Sara Forestier, Diane Rouxel, Elisabeth Mazev, Anne Suarez, Christophe Meynet, Martin Loizillion, Lucie Parchemal.
Note:  Imdb 7.1 out of 10, 82% critic 71% audience on Rotten Tomatoes.
Special Note:  Filmed in Rhone-Alpes, Isere, Vercors, Ile-de-France, Region parisienne, Nord-Pas-de-Calais, Somme, Pas-de-Calais, Nord, Drome, Yvelines, France.  Originally Gerard Depardieu was considered for the role of the judge. 

Saturday, October 22, 2016

The Lady from Shanghai 1947

     Arthur Bannister and his wife Rosalie are looking for an additional crew member for their yacht.  Michael O’Hara decides to sign own even though his true feeling is that he should step back and pass on this job.  The yacht is headed to San Francisco with stops along the way.  Michael and Rosalie form a friendship but this may be dangerous for both of them.  They pick up Bannister’s law partner Grisby at one of the islands.  After they dock in Sausalito, Grisby presents a plan to Michael.  Grisby wants to disappear by faking his own murder.  Michael can receive $5000 if he agrees with the plan.  The money would allow Michael and Rosalie to go off together.
     It’s almost impossible to keep track of what is going on in this film?  It’s better to just follow the scenery and the characters.  Orson Welles is 35 years old and continued acting until 1987 at 72 years old.  Rita Hayworth is 3 years younger at 32 years old and she continued to act until 1972.  Welles and Hayworth were married during filming.  Rita was his second wife and they were together from 9/7/43 to 12/1/48.  2* (I didn’t like this movie)

87 min, Crime directed by Orson Welles with Rita Hayworth, Orson Welles, Everett Sloane, Glenn Anders, Ted de Corsia, Erskine Sanford, Gus Schilling, Carl Frank, Louis Merrill, Evelyn Ellis, Harry Shannon.

Note:  Imdb 7.7 out of 10, 86% critic 85% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Amazon 4.3* out of 5* with 171 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in San Francisco, Sausalito, Morro Bay, Los Angeles, California; New York and Acapulco, Mexico.  Columbia Pictures President Harry Cohn found the plot so incomprehensible he offered $1000 to anyone who could explain it to him?  He wanted to add new footage to straighten out the plot but it was too expensive.

Two Days, One Night 2014

     Manu and Sandra Bya are married and they have two children.  Manu has a job in a restaurant kitchen.  Sandra works at a solar panel factory but she has been hospitalized and on medical leave from her job because of depression.  Her supervisor, M. Dumont decides that her section can get along without her.  The work can support sixteen people with a little overtime instead of seventeen people and no overtime.  The company can also save by paying annual bonuses of 1000 Euros to sixteen people and not seventeen.  Sandra finds out the news from Juliette, her friend and also her co-worker.  There was a show of hands vote on Friday with the result 13-3 for the bonus option and elimination of Sandra’s job.  Juliette knows the section supervisor Jean-Marc is in favor of letting Sandra go and he put pressure on the employees to choose the bonus plan.
     The news about her job problems do not help Sandra with her depression and she starts back on her medication.  She can’t stop crying all the time and this was her original problem.  He husband encourages her to personally visit all the workers and ask them to forgo the bonus so she can keep her job.  It seems like this might be boring
with Sandra asking the workers the same question but she gets different attitudes and responses from everyone.  Cotillard is not wearing any makeup or special clothes.  3½* (I liked this movie)
95 min, Drama directed by Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne with Marion Cotillard, Fabrizio Rongione, Catherine Salee, Batiste Sornin, Pili Groyne, Simon Caudry, Lara Persain, Alain Eloy, Myriem Akeddiou.

Note:  Imdb 7.4 out of 10, 97% critic 77% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Roger Ebert 2 ½*, Amazon 3.7* out of 5* with 89 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Seraing, Liege, Wallonia, Belgium.  Marion Cotillard received a second Oscar nomination for this movie.  She won previously for La Vie en Rose of 2007.  She is the only actor to receive multiple Oscar nominations for foreign language films with the film not nominated for an Oscar.  She is also the only actor nominated for an Oscar for a Belgian film.

Friday, October 21, 2016

My Neighbors the Yamadas 1999

     The Yamadas are a middle class Japanese family living in urban Tokyo.  There are nine episodes in this film about their lives and it is based on a popular comic strip in Japan.  The stories are about the parents Takashi and Matsuko, Shige, Matsuko’s mother and grandmother to Noboru, a son aged 13 and Nonoko, a daughter aged 5.  They also have the family dog, Pochi and he has his own doghouse in the yard.  Nonoko is accidently left behind at the mall and the family races back to get her.  There are stories about the relationships between the parents, the children and the addition of a grandmother.  There are arguments over control of the television and the remote. 
     This family is relatable because they are like American families with the same joy, problems, misunderstandings and circumstances.  They love each other and care about each other.  The parents want to do the best they can for the children.  The parents and grandmother also worry about aging.  3 ½* (I liked this movie)

104 min, Animation directed by Isao Takahata with the voices of James Belushi, Molly Shannon, Daryl Sabara, Liliana Mumy, Tress MacNeille, David Ogden Stiers.

Note:  Imdb 7.3 out of 10, 75% critic 76% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Amazon 4.4* out of 5* with 83 reviews.
Special Note:  This is the first film from Studio Ghibli to be 100% digital.  It is also different because there is not a continuing storyline but short vignettes.  The comic strips are by written Hisaichi Ishii and are published with four panels. 

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Love Field 1992

     Lurene Hallett is a housewife living in Dallas.  She goes to Love Field on November 22, 1963 because this is the airport where President and Mrs. Kennedy arrive.  They will be to driving through Dallas in an open convertible.  Lurene has been living vicariously through Mrs. Kennedy and this has helped her to recover from the loss of her daughter.  Ray is her husband and he doesn’t understand any of this and he’s not going to the airport.  After the death of President Kennedy, Lurene leaves a note for Ray and she takes a Greyhound bus to attend the funeral in Washington DC.  She meets Paul Cater and his five-year-old daughter Jonell.  In the beginning, she is friendly to Paul and Jonell.  She finds out later that Paul has taken his daughter from an orphanage.  She was not being treated well and he wants to have custody of her.  Jonell was in the orphanage because her mother passed away.  Lurene’s dull housewife days are left behind on this bus trip. 
     Lurene deals with her own reality by changing her viewpoint to that of John and Jackie Kennedy.  She doesn’t realize how much her bus trip is going to make her life different.  She just wants to be there for this historic event and emotionally support Jackie from a distance.  3 ½* (I liked this movie)

102 min, Drama directed by Jonathan Kaplan with Michelle Pfeiffer, Dennis Haysbert, Stehpanie McFadden, Brian Kerwin, Lousie Latham, Peggy Rea, Beth Grant, Johnny Ray McGhee, Cooper Huckabee, Troy Evans.

Note:  Imdb 6.7 out of 10, 36% critic 56% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Amazon 4.6* out of 5* with 26 reviews.
Special Note:  This movie was filmed in Wilson and Rocky Mount, North Carolina, Richmond, Virginia and California.  This is the first film released by Michelle Pfeiffer’s production company, Via Rosa.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Morning Glory 1993

     This movie is based on a book written by Lavryle Spencer.  The setting is a small country town in the early 1940’s during the depression.  Will Parker has hit bottom and seems to have run out of options.  He was in prison for five years for the murder of a woman but his best friend was responsible for her death.  The court believed Will was guilty because his friend testified against him.  Will sees an advertisement in the paper from Elly Dinsmore.  Her husband has died, she has two young boys and is expecting another baby.  She has a small farm and she really needs help during the winter.  She is also looking for a new husband, she wants a man who is good with her children and can take over the heavy work of a farm.  Will comes to meet her and she agrees to have him live in the barn on a trial basis. 
     I’ve seen other movies set in this time span and the depression was a very tough time for those with property and also those with nothing.  Many people wandered from place to place just trying to stay alive.  Will Parker has more problems because of the actions of other people than he can handle.  Even though the times are tough, life was different in these days.  3 ½* (I liked this movie)

96 min, Drama directed by Steven Hillard Stern with Christopher Reeve, Deborah Raffin, Lloyd Bochner, Nina Foch, Helen Shaver, J.T. Walsh, Susan Astley.

Note:  Imdb 6.5 out of 10, 54% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Amazon 3.9* out of 5* with 378 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.  Deborah Raffin previously auditioned for the role of Lois Lane in Superman: The Movie of 1978.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Life as a House 2001

     George Monroe has lived alone for ten years in a run down shack on the Southern California coast.  All the other homes could be called estates but not the one George and his dog live in.  His dog has a ‘bad’ habit of peeing the car, newspapers and yard of one of the neighbors.  The plumbing is out and George pees in the ocean.  George has worked building scale models of architectural projects for the same firm for twenty-five years.  Everything is moving to computers and George is let go.  He learns he has advanced cancer and he decides he will finally build the house he has always wanted to live in.  He wants his rebellious sixteen-year-old son Sam to help him and he wants to try to change Sam’s life.
     Building the house changes more than Sam’s life, it changes George, Sam’s mother, her husband, her younger children, the neighbors and other people in Sam’s life.  I thought it was interesting and good how the project expands and it rises into a new house from a shack.  The people are also able to rise from brokenness.  3 ½* (I liked this movie) 

125 min, Drama directed by Irwin Winkler with Kevin Kline, Kristin Scott Thomas, Hayden Christensen, Jena Malone, Mary Steenburgen, Ian Somerhalder, Jamey Sheridan, Scott Bakula.

Note:  Imdb 7.5 out of 10, 47% critic 88% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Roger Ebert 2 ½*, Amazon 4.6* out of 5* with 518 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Long Beach, Los Angeles, Malibu, Palos Verdes, Santa Catalina Island, California and Bermuda.  Kevin Kline lost about 25 pounds, he was on a constant diet and had a trainer.  He wasn't sick but it was to show George getting sicker and sicker.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Man Hunt 1941

     Captain Alan Thorndike is a big game hunter vacationing in Bavaria.  He goes out into the woods and he has Adolf Hitler in his gun sight.  He wants to see if it would be possible to shoot him but he’s planning on not pulling the trigger.  He is captured by Nazi troops, beaten and left for dead in the woods.  He escapes back to London as a stowaway on a Danish steamer.  In London, German agents hound him but Jerry Stokes tries to help him.  To thank her, he wants his attorney to arrange for her to receive money after he leaves London but she refuses.
     I wondered how Thorndike could think he could get this close to Hitler without being discovered and captured?  He endangers himself and also those he meets after he escapes.  I wonder if the outcome was worth this adventure?  3* (This movie is OK)

105 min, Drama directed by Fritz Lang with Walter Pidgeon, Joan Bennett, George Sanders, John Carradine, Roddy McDowall, Ludwig Stossel, Heather Thatcher.

Note:  Imdb 7.4 out of 10, 90% critic 75% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Amazon 4.0* out of 5* with 87 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Los Angeles, California.  The director, Fritz Lang fled Germany to Paris in 1933 rather than accept an offer from Joseph Goebbels to make Nazi propaganda films.  The next year he came to America.  This is the first film out of four that Joan Bennett made with Fritz Lang.  She also made The Woman in the Window, The Secret Behind the Door and Scarlet Street.  She partnered with Lang to form the company Diana Productions for those films.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

The Silent War 2013

     This film is based on the true story of the underwater war between the US, UK and Soviet submarines in the second half of the 20th century.  The three countries sailed secretly around each other and tracked each other to deter a nuclear war.  A typical mission was two to three months at a time.  Traveling at the surface was a luxury as well as sunlight, fresh air, fresh food and showers.  It wasn’t easy to keep track of day and night plus the day of the week or year.  Other things to be worried about were the status of the atomic reactor and the sophisticated weaponry on board.  The crews were unable to talk about where they were going and what they were doing with friends and families.
     This is interesting and good.  The nuclear-powered submarine changed thinking about its use in warfare.  These boats could go faster, deeper and stay out much longer.  They were larger with complex missile launching platforms.  They were completely silent and cat-and-mouse games were played between the US and the Soviet Union.  Previously, the diesel boats were noisy and their sound patterns could be identified.  There was a lot of tension during this time that filtered down to the both the American and Soviet people and their feelings of safety.  3 ½* (I liked this movie)  

58 min each, 2 episodes, Know Your Enemy and The Russians are Coming, TV Movie, directed by David Belton and Graham Cooper.

Note:  Imdb 6.8 out of 10, The Telegraph 3* out of 5*, Amazon 4.0* out of 5* with 3 reviews.
Special Note:  I was surprised that only 3 people have watched and reviewed this film on Amazon?

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Hello, My Name is Doris 2015

     Doris meets the new art director John in the elevator.  She thinks he is very attractive and wonderful.  She starts doing everything she can to talk to him and get his attention.  She attends a self-help seminar with her Roz and she gets the idea to keep pursuing John.  Doris has led a very sheltered life living in Staten Island and taking care of her mother.  Her brother was too busy with his own life to help her with their mother.  Her mother has recently passed away and now she's on her own for the first time.  Roz worries that Doris will be hurt and she wonders about Doris getting dating advice from Roz's 13-year-old granddaughter?
     There are moments when you don't know what Doris is seeing is real or what she has in her imagination.  Doris is a very unusual person and her wardrobe is made up of Salvation Army finds.  She's not afraid to combine bright colors and patterns.  She also likes to pick up cast offs on her way to work and her home is pretty stuffed.  There are a LOT of very funny moments in this film.  Also, some times with Doris losing it!!  3 1/2*  (I liked this movie)

95 min, Comedy directed by Michael Showalter with Sally Field, Max Greenfield, Tyne Daly, Stephen Root, Wendi McLendon-Covey, Kumail Nanjiani.

Note:  Imdb 6.7 out of 10, 83% critic 78% critic on Rotten Tomatoes, Roger Ebert 3*, Amazon 3.7* out of 5* with 1266 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Los Angeles, California; New York City, Manhattan, Brooklyn, New York.  Sally Field is 69 years old and Max Greenfield is 35.

Sleeping with Other People 2015

     Jake dates a lot of women and he cheated on his latest girlfriend to end the relationship rather than say this isn’t working.  Lainey and Jake knew each other in college and they meet again years later.  Lainey has cheated on her boyfriends with an on again off again fling Matthew.  Lainey and Jake decide to be friends only and they talk to each other about other relationships.  This continues until Lainey decides even this isn’t working and she moves away.
     There isn’t anything new in this film and you could easily watch while doing tasks you don’t partially like!!  Ironing, reading a bad novel or magazine, washing your hair, cooking a bland and unmemorable meal!!  It took a lot of fortitude for me to finish this film.  I wanted to turn it off within a few minutes but I had some boring tasks I could do.  A lot of the humor is very crude and not funny at all.  2* (I didn’t like this movie)
101 min, Comedy directed by Leslye Headland with Jason Sudeikis, Alison Brie, Jordan Carolos, Margarita Levieva, Adam Brody, Jason Mantzoukas, Amanda Peet, Margaret Odette, Adam Scott, Natasha Lyonne.

Note:  Imdb 6.5 out of 10, 63% critic 56% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Roger Ebert 3*, Amazon 3.8* out of 5* with 283 reviews.

Special Note:  Filmed in New York City.  Alison Brie had the role of Trudy Campbell, Pete Campbell’s wife in the Mad Men series.  Jason Sudeikis has been on Saturday Night Live and in Horrible Bosses.
Special Note:  Filmed in Atlanta and Stockbridge, Georgia.  Director Michael Polish is married to Kate Bosworth and this is their fourth film together.  They met during the filming of Big Sur of 2013.  The book this film is based on has been translated into 46 different languages and has sold seven million copies.  Does this mean the book is a LOT better than the movie??

Friday, October 7, 2016

The Object of Beauty 1991

     Jake and Tina are an American couple living in London.  They are staying at an expensive London Hotel with prices beyond their means.  The hotel asks Jake to settle the bill since it is getting rather large.  Tina has a Henry Moore sculpture worth about 20.000 pounds that she received from her former husband as an anniversary gift.  Jake would like Tina to sell the sculpture at auction to raise money but Tina proposes a different plan.  They will give the piece to her friend and say it was stolen to claim the insurance money.  Surprisingly or not, the sculpture is really stolen from the hotel.
     Jake believes Tina gave the sculpture to her friend but she didn’t.  Tina believes Jake has hidden the sculpture deviating from the original plan?  Are these people still in high school instead of adults?  They seem to have no plan at all for their future and nothing matters except the now?  In some ways, this film resembles a Woody Allen movie?  3* (This movie is OK)

103 min, Comedy directed by Michael Lindsay-Hogg with John Malkovich, Andie MacDowell, Lolita Davidovich, Rudi Davies, Joss Ackland, Bill Paterson, Ricci Harnett, Peter Riegert, Jack Shepherd.

Note:  Imdb 5.7 out of 10, 77% critic 38% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Roger Ebert 3 ½*, Amazon 3.5* out of 5* with 26 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Sardinia, Italy and Ealing Studios, Ealing, London, England, UK.  Elizabeth Perkins was originally asked to play the role of Tina's friend Joan.  She dropped out because of illness.

I Know a Woman Like That 2009

     Elaine Madsen and her daughter Virginia work together on this film about women in their older years.  Elaine asks 16 women between the ages of 64-94 different questions about their lives now and what they think of aging.  Many of the women talk about how they don’t think about the number for their age and they focus on how they feel their lives are better now.
     I thought this was good and interesting.  Each person has a different perspective but all the remarks are positive.  It’s not about not having wrinkles, not being thin enough or popular enough.  It’s about having experiences and gaining knowledge though living.  Society puts a lot of pressure on women and aging!!  3 ½* (I liked this movie)

97 min, Doc directed by Elaine Madsen, produced by Karly Meola, Virginia Madsen and Elaine Madsen with Earth Kitt, Rita Moreno, Lauren Hutton, Lorraine Morton, Gloria Steinem, Lucille Borgen, Elaine Kaufman, Lupe Anguiano.

Note:  Imdb 6.8 out of 10, Amazon 4.8* out of 5* with 9 reviews.
Special Note:  Virginia Madsen is an actress and she has been in the TV Series American Gothic, Law and Order: Special Victims Unit and Witches of East End.  Her films have been Sideways, A Prairie Home Companion and many others.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Hope Bridge 2015

     Jackson is going through a very difficult time after the suicide of his father.  He gets into a fight at school and he’s suspended for five days.  He also must see a psychologist and be signed off to come back to school.  He meets Sophie at the group session and she is the one who delivers the pizza he ordered.  She asks him to accompany her on her remaining deliveries.  Later, they go to a bar where Jackson's father used to sing and she takes him to meet the grandmother he didn’t know existed.
     Jackson thinks he can deal with his pain if he finds more of the reasons behind what happened.  This doesn’t work and the pain doesn’t go away.  It will take other people helping him to allow the pain to ease up over time.  3 ½* (I liked this movie)

90 min, Drama directed by Joshua Overbay with Booboo Stewart, Kevin Sorbo, Sam Sorbo, Rebeca Robles, Fivel Stewart, Tantoo Cardinal, Nils Allen Stewart.

Note:  Imdb 5.8 out of 10, 67% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Amazon 3.9* out of 5* with 35 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Lawrenceburg and Lexington, Kentucky.  Kevin Sorbo is married to Sam Sorbo. 

Closer to the Moon 2014

     This film is based on a true story and takes place in Bucharest, Romania of 1959.  There has been a bank heist and the country is in an uproar.  After the war, this act is a slap in the face to the communist authorities.  They hold an iron fist on the country and how did this happen under their watch?  There is an arrest of four men and one woman.  They are tried, convicted and await their execution.  Before being put to death, they are forced to star in a propaganda film about crime and specifically their crime.  The people arrested were heroes of the resistance during WWII and they have held high status in Romanian society.  They must have realized they would be caught for their crime and what the punishment would be?
     I initially wondered about a comedy starting Mark Strong and the theme of execution.  The gang members reenact the bank robbery and they exaggerate everything about the event.  Originally, it was planned as a suicide mission but they were not killed during the crime?  Oh well, maybe execution is more of a statement?  3* (This movie is OK)

112 min, Comedy directed by Nae Caranfil with Vera Farmiga, Mark Strong, Harry Lloyd, Anton Lesser, Joe Armstrong, Monica Barladeanu, Christian McKay, Allan Corduner, Martin Hancock. Gwyneth Keyworth.

Note:  Imdb 7.1 out of 10, 46% critic 58% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Amazon 4.1* out of 5* with 18 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Lipscani, Carol Park and Bucharest, Romania.  Mark Strong starred in the film Anna of 2013 with Taissa Farmiga, Vera’s sister.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

The Fall: Season Two 2014

     Stella Gibson is a Metropolitan Police Detective Superintendent brought in to find a serial killer in Belfast, Northern Ireland.  The male attacker targets young professional women with dark hair.  There are many complications both inside and outside the department concerning this case plus other circumstances.  In the beginning of this Season, Paul Spector has been away from his family in Belfast.  Stella is running out of time and under intense pressure to solve these crimes.  Paul returns to Belfast and he kidnaps Rose from her home because he believes she has been talking to the police about their past.  A picture of Paul has been posted in the newspaper.  Although he now looks different with a beard, he is wary of being recognized in public.
     This is a very intense series!!  My mind wants to think about what I’ve seen and what will happen next!!  I would’ve liked a quick review of Season One at the start of this season because some of my recall is fuzzy?  I couldn't wait for this season to come out!!  4* (I really liked this series)
Each episode is 1 hour, crime, TV Series created by Allan Cubitt with Gillian Anderson, Jamie Dornan, Bronagh Waugh, John Lynch, Niamh McGrady, Sarah Beattie, Aisling Frnciosi, Emmett J. Scanlan, Archie Panjabi.

Note:  Imdb 8.3 out of 10, 100% critic 93% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Amazon 4.4* out of 5* with 77 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Belfast, County Antrim, Northern Ireland.  Gillian Anderson was in the XFiles.  Jamie Dornan is in Fifty Shades of Grey.

Scoop 2006

     Joe Stombel is a famous British journalist and he passes away.  His friends meet to recall that he was always looking for the next scoop.  Sondra Pransky is an American student of journalism in London.  Sondra is asked by magician and illusionist Sidney Waterman to come up on the stage to help him with his act.  She gets into a booth and Joe comes to her to tell her the identity of the tarot card serial killer.  Even after death, Joe is looking for the next scoop.  Sidney and Sondra join forces to investigate aristocrat Peter Lyman.  Sondra doesn’t believe Peter is involved but Sidney believes he is the killer.
     This film isn’t rocket science but it is interesting because you don’t know who is really guilty of the murder of several women.  Every time Sondra or Sidney, or both of them were sneaking downstairs to a secret room, I wanted to yell, get out of there!!  Scarlett Johansson was 21 at the time of filming and Hugh Jackman was 37.  Scarlett seems even younger in her role and Woody Allen wrote this part specifically for her.  3* (This movie is OK)

96 min, Comedy directed by Woody Allen with Scarlett Johansson, Hugh Jackman, Woody Allen, Romola Garai, Ian McShane, Charles Dance.

Note:  Imdb 6.7 out of 10, 40% critic 56% audience on Rotten Tomatoes, Roger Ebert 2*, Amazon 3.5* out of 5* with 221 reviews.
Special Note:  Filmed in Buckinhamshire and London, England, UK.