Coming of age is a human process that virtually everyone goes through, no matter where one lives and under what conditions. It’s a time of wonder, exploration and challenge as we examine and seek to understand the world in which we find ourselves. It’s an odyssey that’s generally as diverse as the various surroundings in which we reside. Yet there are also elements quite common to each individual’s particular experience...
“Divine Love” (“Divino Amor”) (2019 production, 2020 release). Cast: Dira Paes, Julio Machado, Antonio Pastich, Teca Pereira, Emílio de Melo, Clayton Mariano, Mariana Nunes, Suzy Lopes, Thardelly Lima, Thalita Carauta, Tuna Dwek, Thiago Justino, Edilson Silva, Nataly Rocha, Calum Rio (narrator). Director: Gabriel Mascaro. Screenplay: Gabriel Mascaro, Richard Daisy Ellis, Esdras Bezzerra, Lucas Paraizo and Marcelo Gomes. Web site. Trailer. For many of us, faith is looked upon as central to our worldview and existence. Its form may vary somewhat from individual to individual, but its essence is generally the same. However, no matter how much we may proclaim we adhere to our faith, how authentic are we with ourselves when it comes to our practices matching our contentions in [...]
“A Sinner in Mecca” (2015, 2020 re-release). Cast: Parvez Sharma. Director: Parvez Sharma. Screenplay: Sajid Akbar, Alison Amron and Parvez Sharma. Web site. Trailer. When faced with a paradox, it’s easy to lose hope. Circumstances may seem so inextricably entangled that it appears there’s no way to sort matters out. Indeed, it’s the kind of situation where it seems like only divine intervention can help. And it’s that kind of help that’s being sought by a seriously conflicted individual whose hopes, dreams and aspirations are caught up in a conundrum ostensibly incapable of being unraveled, the subject of the recently re-released documentary, “A Sinner in Mecca.” After the completion of his controversial debut feature, filmmaker Parvez Sharma became a marked [...]
“This Changes Everything” (2018 production, 2019 release). Cast: Marisa Tomei, Jessica Chastain, Reese Witherspoon, Natalie Portman, Chloë Grace Moretz, Meryl Streep, Zoe Saldana, Cate Blanchett, Gillian Anderson, Rashida Jones, Sharon Stone, Amandla Stenberg, Heather Graham, Rosario Dawson, Geena Davis, Mary-Louise Parker, Sandra Oh, Tiffany Haddish, Taraji P. Henson, Rose McGowan, Brit Marling, Ellen Pompeo, Amber Tamblyn, Yara Shahidi, Jackie Cruz, Lena Dunham, Marg Helgenberger, Tracee Ellis Ross, Judd Apatow, Alan Alda, Paul Feig, Shonda Rhimes, Jill Soloway, Patty Jenkins, Catherine Hardwicke, Mira Nair, Kimberly Peirce, Lesli Linka Glatter, Julie Dash, Lynne Littman, Maria Giese, Cherien Dabis, Courtney Kemp Agboh, Callie Khouri, Anita Hill, Kalpana Kotagal, Melissa Goodman, Maureen Ryan, Howard Rodman, Clifford Alexander. Director: Tom Donahue. Web site. Trailer. Movies and [...]
“Searching” (2018). Cast: John Cho, Debra Messing, Sara Sohn, Michelle La, Joseph Lee, Alex Jayne Go, Megan Liu, Kya Dawn Lau, Ric Sarabia. Director: Aneesh Chaganty, Screenplay: Aneesh Chaganty and Sev Ohanian. Web site. Trailer. We can take comfort in knowing that certain aspects of our life are exactly as they seem to be. Or can we? Are we getting a clear, accurate picture of the people, places and things that make up our existence? Or are we falling prey to what we’d like to think we know about such elements of our reality? The result can be eye-opening – and disillusioning – as an anguished parent discovers for himself in the sizzling thriller, “Searching,” now available on DVD, Blu-ray [...]
“The Wife” (2017 production, 2018 release). Cast: Glenn Close, Jonathan Pryce, Christian Slater, Max Irons, Elizabeth McGovern, Harry Lloyd, Annie Starke, Alix Wilton Regan, Karin Franz Körlof, Nick Fletcher. Director: Björn Runge. Screenplay: Jane Anderson. Book: Meg Wolitzer, The Wife. Web site. Trailer. When we wonder why our reality turns out as it does, if we want an honest answer to that question, we have to ask ourselves what motivates us. All too often we drift through life not taking stock of our intentions, letting life unfold seemingly on its own, as if we’re oblivious to the part we play in its manifestation. But, even if we believe we have no hand in the process or are afraid to see [...]
“The Death of Stalin” (2017 production, 2018 release). Cast: Steve Buscemi, Jeffrey Tambor, Andrea Riseborough, Michael Palin, Simon Russell Beale, Adrian McLoughlin, Jason Isaacs, Paddy Considine, Olga Kurylenko, Dermot Crowley, Paul Whitehouse, Paul Chahidi, Rupert Friend, Tom Brooke, Karl Johnson, Diana Quick, Gerald Lepkowski. Director: Armando Iannucci. Writers: Armando Iannucci, David Schneider, Ian Martin and Peter Fellows. Original Screenplay: Fabien Nury. Comic Book Source Material: Fabien Nury and Thierry Robin, The Death of Stalin. Web site. Trailer. When opportunity knocks, it may be tempting to pursue it with all the gusto we can muster. The rewards awaiting us can be incalculable. But what if such a quest prompts us to engage in questionable, almost Machiavellian behavior? Is the prize still [...]
“Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story” (2017). Cast: Interviews: Hedy Lamarr, Fleming Meeks, Anthony Loder, Denise Loder-DeLuca, Lodi Loder, Peter Bogdanovich, Mel Brooks, Robert Osborne, Jennifer Hom, Diane Kruger, Michael Tilson Thomas, Jeanine Basinger. Archive Footage: Merv Griffin, Howard Hughes, John F. Kennedy, Clark Gable, Victor Mature, George Antheil. Director: Alexandra Dean. Screenplay: Alexandra Dean. Web site. Trailer. To be blessed with great beauty is truly miraculous. To be gifted with a great mind is genuinely extraordinary. But to be the beneficiary of both is a dream beyond measure – or at least that’s what most of us probably believe. As it turns out, though, that belief may not be as true as we might think, a conundrum brought to light [...]