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‘Costa Brava’ compares engagement vs. escape

Staying engaged with the pulse of life is arguably the best way to get the most out of our existence. However, there are times when the pressures of everyday living can wear on us, making us feel as though we have to get away, especially if we believe that it’s placing our health, sanity and well-being in jeopardy. Retreating from such conditions can be rejuvenating and put us on a happier and more fulfilling path. But such isolation also has the potential to become a trap

2022-10-21T05:03:40+00:00September 12th, 2022|Conscious Creation, Drama, Foreign, Movie Reviews|

‘Chicago 7’ fights for the pursuit of justice

“The Trial of the Chicago 7” (2020). Cast: Eddie Redmayne, Sacha Baron Cohen, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Michael Keaton, Frank Langella, Mark Rylance, Alex Sharp, Jeremy Strong, John Carroll Lynch, Yahya Abdul Mateen II, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Ben Shenkman, J.C. MacKenzie, Danny Flaherty, Noah Robbins, John Doman, Caitlin FitzGerald, Alice Kremelberg, Wayne Duvall, Steve Routman, Mike Geraghty. Director: Aaron Sorkin. Screenplay: Aaron Sorkin. Web site. Trailer. We all want justice. We all want to see it served. But does it always turn out that way? Seeking it requires diligence and a concerted effort to make sure that what needs to be revealed indeed is. Nevertheless, even with the best of intentions and a noble approach, it’s possible that the process can become [...]

2020-12-10T16:23:48+00:00October 19th, 2020|Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews|

‘The Last Full Measure’ seeks to rectify justice denied

“The Last Full Measure” (2020). Cast: Sebastian Stan, William Hurt, Ed Harris, Samuel L. Jackson, Christopher Plummer, Peter Fonda, Diane Ladd, Bradley Whitford, Amy Madigan, John Savage, Jeremy Irvine, Alison Sudol, Linus Roache, Dale Dye, Ser’Darius Blain, James Jagger, Zach Roerig, Ethan Russell, Cody Walker, Richard Seymour Cawthorne, LisaGay Hamilton, Asher Miles Fallica, Rachel Harker, Hannah Black. Director: Todd Robinson. Screenplay: Todd Robinson. Web site. Trailer. An old adage maintains “Better late than never.” But is “late” truly acceptable? In many cases, it’s used as an all-too-convenient excuse for careless oversights, intentional snubs or even willful, agenda-driven and often-indefensible denunciations. It’s at that point when efforts to make up for those shortcomings often emerge, some of which slowly fall by the [...]

2020-10-07T13:57:41+00:00September 5th, 2020|Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews|

‘Raise Hell’ profiles one writer’s pursuit for truth

“Raise Hell: The Life & Times of Molly Ivins” (2019). Cast: Molly Ivins. Interviews: Dan Rather, Rachel Maddow, Lou Dubose, Jim Hightower, Andy Ivins, Sara Ivins Maley, Carlton Carl, Dave “Moose” McNeely. Archives: George W. Bush, George H.W. Bush, Ann Richards, David Letterman, Morley Safer, John Henry Faulk. Director: Janice Engel. Screenplay: Janice Engel and Monique Zavistovski. Web site. Trailer. Getting the word out about what’s really going on can be quite a challenge, especially when those in the know may try to conceal the truth, soft-peddle its implications or spin it to their personal advantage. Overcoming that takes a writer-investigator who’s willing to dig deep and to keep from caving in to pressure to doctor the information to fulfill [...]

2019-11-17T20:41:34+00:00September 25th, 2019|Conscious Creation, Documentary, Movie Reviews|

‘An Acceptable Loss’ grapples with responsibility, redemption

“An Acceptable Loss” (2019). Cast: Tika Sumpter, Jamie Lee Curtis, Ben Tavassoli, Jeff Hephner, Deanna Dunagan, Alex Weisman, Ali Burch, Clarke Peters, Rex Linn, David Eigenberg, Carmen Roma, Tim Hopper. Director: Joe Chappelle. Screenplay: Joe Chappelle. Web site. Trailer. In an age when it’s become all too easy to abandon responsibility, especially among those in positions of authority, it’s refreshing to see those who are willing to own up to their mistakes and even seek to redeem themselves for their oversights and misdeeds. But even those who genuinely attempt to make up for these shortcomings may face a difficult time of it and through no fault of their own. So what is one to do under such circumstances? That’s one [...]

2019-02-07T09:01:41+00:00January 21st, 2019|Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews|

Wrapping Up the Chicago Film Festival

With the 54th annual Chicago International Film Festival now complete, here’s my take on what I screened and what I thought about the releases in question. “An Acceptable Loss” (USA) This edge-of-your-seat political thriller unfolds gradually and with steadily increasing intensity, leading up to a climax that will leave viewers breathless, an approach not unlike that used by director Roman Polanski in such films as “Chinatown” (1974) and “The Ghost Writer” (2010). The picture follows former National Security Advisor Libby Lamm (Tika Sumpter) after she leaves government to become a university lecturer, a position for which she receives a less-than-hospitable welcome. It’s a circumstance that naturally begs the question, “Why?” Viewers come to discover the reasons as her story plays [...]

2018-11-20T10:11:53+00:00October 23rd, 2018|Movie Reviews|

‘Fahrenheit 11/9’ challenges us to rise to the occasion

“Fahrenheit 11/9” (2018). Cast: Michael Moore, John Podesta, Bernie Sanders, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Michael Hepburn, David Hogg. Archive footage: Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, Steve Bannon, Jared Kushner, George W. Bush, Jeb Bush, Nancy Pelosi, Steve Bannon, Gwen Stefani, Roseanne Barr, George Clooney. Director: Michael Moore. Screenplay: Michael Moore. Web site. Trailer. How did this happen? For many Americans, this is the question that’s on their minds when it comes to the current political landscape. With the polarizing election of Donald Trump in 2016, many have been left scratching their heads, wondering how we’ve ended up with such a divided nation with a President whose actions and policies often baffle the members of his own political party, let [...]

2018-11-12T23:33:51+00:00September 25th, 2018|Conscious Creation, Documentary, Movie Reviews|
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