We like to think that we’re fundamentally all equal, and, in idealistic terms, it’s hard to take issue with that notion. However, from a practical, realistic standpoint, inequality is unfortunately alive and well in so many contexts. It’s undoubtedly unfair that such differences have been allowed to continue to hold sway and that there are those who must endure such inequities. But can the situation be rectified?
How far can one’s sense of compassion and helpfulness extend? In an age of rampant self-absorption, that’s a good question. So many individuals today are preoccupied with their own needs, wants and whims that they may be wholly dismissive of such commendable qualities. At the same time, though, there are also remarkably sympathetic souls who will readily go to the wall for others, gestures that those who are less considerate may look upon as strange or even unfathomable.
When it comes to doing right by someone in need, it should generally be fairly easy to determine what to do. Showing compassion and lending a helping hand are practices that come naturally to many of us. But how far should we go with this? What if we’re presented with a sizable request for assistance, one that could easily place quite a burden on us in our attempt at being a Good Samaritan?
Reeling 38, Chicago’s International LGBTQ+ Film Festival, recently completed its 2020 edition in its first-ever all-virtual format. With movie houses just now beginning to reopen due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this alternative approach made it possible for the festival to go forward, and it worked remarkably well, enabling viewers to screen a variety of films while remaining safe at home. In fact, in some ways, this is a viable approach well worth considering for future events, one that makes it possible to offer the festival’s films to a wider audience and providing flexible viewing conditions, benefits not necessarily available when presented in theatrical venues. Because of this new format, I was able to screen a greater number of films than [...]
“A Fantastic Woman” (“Una mujer fantástica”) (2017). Cast: Daniela Vega, Francisco Reyes, Luis Gnecco, Aline Küppenheim, Nicolás Saavedra, Amparo Noguera, Trinidad Gonzáez, Néstor Cantillana, Sergio Hernández. Director: Sebastián Lelio. Screenplay: Sebastián Lelio and Gonzalo Maza. Web site. Trailer. Saying goodbye is never easy. The pain and sorrow can be a lot to bear, even under the “best” of circumstances. But, when the situation becomes burdened by considerations that have no business intruding upon such a difficult process, the result can be unendurable. Such are the conditions addressed in the compelling new Chilean drama, “A Fantastic Woman” (“Una mujer fantástica”). Businessman Orlando Onetto (Francisco Reyes) leads what appears to be a fairly comfortable life in Santiago. The 57-year-old runs a successful [...]