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‘Knives and Skin’ charts the slow journey out of dysfunction

“Knives and Skin” (2019). Cast: Marika Engelhardt, Raven Whitley, Tim Hopper, Audrey Francis, Marilyn Dodds Frank, Grace Smith, Ty Olwin, James Vincent Meredith, Kate Arrington, Robert T. Cunningham, Kayla Carter, Alex Moss, Jalen Gilbert, Tony Fitzpatrick, Genevieve Venjohnson, Aurora Real De Asua, Ireon Roach, Haley Bolithon. Director: Jennifer Reeder. Screenplay: Jennifer Reeder. Web site. Trailer. When we feel like we’re stuck in a rut, escape seems almost unfathomable. And, the greater the dysfunction associated with that condition, the more onerous the circumstances become. But such conditions need not be an irrevocable sentence, especially if we can find it within us to search for a way forward. These are the challenges of a group of adult and teen residents in a [...]

2020-03-19T09:30:14+00:00February 22nd, 2020|Comedy, Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews|

‘1917’ shows us the reality of reality

“1917” (2019). Cast: George MacKay, Dean-Charles Chapman, Colin Firth, Benedict Cumberbatch, Mark Strong, Andrew Scott, Richard Madden, Daniel Mays, Claire Duburcq, Roland Maaser. Director: Sam Mendes. Screenplay: Sam Mendes and Krysty Wilson-Cairns. Web site. Trailer. How aware are we of our existence? We may think we have a good handle on it, but do we really? Sometimes we need a “reality check,” where we’re thrown into a scenario that gives us a greater and more mindful appreciation of the realm in which we find ourselves. That can be a rude awakening, for sure, as a pair of young soldiers discover for themselves in the new wartime drama, “1917.” With the brutal combat of World War I stuck in a virtual stalemate [...]

2020-02-06T17:26:59+00:00January 22nd, 2020|Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews|

The Best – and Worst – of 2019

With another year coming to a close, it’s time for my annual review of the best – and worst – in cinema of the past 12 months. And what a generally disappointing year it was. Truly great films were few and far between, with only a handful earning the status of being genuinely outstanding. Some offerings were commendable, and many were adequate, but quite a few were sorely lacking. In fact, in compiling my list, I had far less trouble coming up with my Bottom 10 than I did with those at the top, something that speaks volumes about the quality of 2019’s offerings. This is something that’s reflected in this year’s field of Oscar nominees as well, a subject [...]

2020-02-02T02:25:25+00:00January 16th, 2020|Movie Reviews|

The Best and Worst of 2018

Another year in filmdom has come and gone, and countless movie reviewers have issued their best and worst lists for 2018. And so, with that said, it’s time to add my voice to the chorus, with my choices for the cream of the crop and the curdled cream best discarded. In the interest of full disclosure, I must confess that I did not screen every film that was released in 2018, most notably those that were distributed through limited or select channels or have yet to go into wide release, such as a number of foreign films and a few lesser-known independent productions, like “Stan & Ollie.” However, I did spend considerable time staring at those flickering lights on the [...]

‘Border’ helps us discover what separates and divides us

“Border” (“Gräns”) (2018). Cast: Eva Melander, Eero Milonoff, Jörgen Thorsson, Ann Patrén, Sten Ljunggren, Tomas Åhnstand, Josefin Neldén, Kjeli Wilhemsen, Rakel Wärmländer, Andres Kundler, Matti Boustedt, Henrik Johansson. Director: Ali Abbasi. Screenplay: Ali Abbasi, Isabella Eklöf and John Ajvide Lindqvist. Short Story: John Ajvide Lindqvist, “Gräns.” Web site. Trailer. Coming to terms with who we are is sometimes a difficult process. If we’re significantly unlike those around us, we may feel uncomfortable about our differences and seek to fit in as best we can, hoping that our distinctions are downplayed or go unnoticed. But how long can we keep a lid on a pot like that, especially when the contents begin to boil? In fact, should we even try to [...]

2018-12-06T00:28:34+00:00November 12th, 2018|Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews, Romance, Sci-Fi|
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