During his career Gavin O’Connor has already shown that he loves the cardinal techniques of cinematography. Sports dramas are especially pleasant to him. One of his pictures was the biographical hockey tape "Miracle" with Kurt Russell. Later, O’Connor tore the Audience Award with his "Warrior" and played a complex fraternal drama with scuffle, where young Edgerton and Hardy played. The film then made a fuss and encouraged many boys to go to sport sections and train. Now, for the third time, the director tried to throw a three-pointer with his new sports drama "The Way Back", where his eyes turned to another popular sport (especially in the USA), basketball. Unfortunately, out of his three pictures on sports subjects this one is the weakest and the "most sterile".
Gavin O’Connor’s new film can be compared with way too many similar films. He relies on the shoulders of his more successful and recognized predecessors. First one of all is an excellent and bright Coach Carter's tape with Samuel L. Jackson comes to mind. In that movie coach Carter is an example of how to shoot a sports drama about basketball. “The Way Back” is a bright example of how you shouldn’t shoot the film. I can immediately recommend you more successful films on similar topics. For example, “Second Chance”, “Remembering the Titans”, “Coach” with K. Costner. Yes, they are not about basketball, but they are delivered and spelled out much better than O’Connor’s movie indeed. It seems that his main problem is that with the potential and always up-to-date scenario, the film does not touch, does not move us, does not fell us "cared", does not force the plot to live together with the characters and so on and so on. I tried to watch it three times and I had the same feeling over and over again. The movie is simply way too plain. It slowly rolls along the scenic rails from the starting point to the final credits. It is making stops from time to time for superficial everyday reasoning but not causing stormy impressions and emotional responses from the viewer. Full stop!
There are a lot of shortcomings but one of the most significant is the choice of an actor for the main role. You probably need to start with the fact that the role in this picture is not suitable for Affleck. He seems not interested in it, there is no chemistry between him and the "game", he does not pull it emotionally (although the topic of alcohol is clearly close to him), spiritually or physically - not on any level. Ben does not look like a former basketball player (although he looks like a drunk). He looks as a coach, to put it mildly, but even this is not closely convincing; it is more close to opposite: ridiculous and unconvincing. Even in key scenes, Affleck fails to achieve strong engagement and chemistry with the team. He looks like he got on the set, but having read a completely different scenario... and it's not that he plays poorly, he performs, no, he is cool... Let's be honest. Affleck has always been an actor not lively and plastic enough for heavy and interesting dramatic roles. This person is not able to pull a similar film on his shoulders. In "Coach Carter" movie the main actor was able to make the movie better than it could be due to his powerful energy, persuasiveness and charisma. The same applies, for example, to "Remembering the Titans". However, in this film Gavin O’Connor and the rest of the characters for some reason got a little time. Team players are spelled out very badly. Their lives and characters remain behind the scenes and again if they surface a bit they make us "not caring" again. All of them are extras and empty vessels. There is no weight. All the attention of the picture is riveted to Jack Cunningham and it would be nice if O’Connor opened it better somehow. All those interesting topics just freeze in the air and later are completely forgotten. For example, religion: about the protagonist who was disappointed in God, which could be more advantageously used in history. There is only one short dialogue on this subject with Jack's school chaplain on the bus which is limited to a couple of suggestions. It all goes in the spirit of: "You think someone on top of it cares what I tell the children!"
Sadly, with all of this, Gavin O’Connor cannot be blamed for negligence as a director. He is true to himself. Everything was shot normally, but simply, now, it doesn’t catch our attention and makes us care more. There are no catchy drama scenes or even game scenes. In general I believe that the theme that he chose is still beneficial and relevant for the cinematography but it was in this case that his on-screen statement turned out to be very dull and trivial. The story is no less sad than Ben's swimming, his unshaven face, regularly flashing in the frame and radiating indifference to everything around him. This is so symbolic! His sour and unhappy face that we keep observing for the whole hour and a half is accompanied by the same sour indifferent mood of the film. It is possible that Affleck was interested in this role and even needed it, given his problems with alcohol, but it can hardly be called a solid contribution to his acting career as well as to cinematography in general. This movie also will be clearly lost in the director’s portfolio. Perhaps this is some kind of intermediate leap for O’Connor, and he needs it to gather his strength and give out something stronger, more sticking and more original. To add to the above mentioned, this film, completely devoid of originality and using all the old tricks, is simply lost against the background of American past sport films work. There is not a single fresh thought and it will be hard for me to recommend it to any fans: be they Affleck's fans, O’Connor’s work followers, lovers of dramas or any basketball devotees.
This movie has got to be NOT your regular 'run-of-the-mill' sort of thriller.
It is fresh, it is bold, it is creepy. With all these boxes ticked off, the director (Lorcan Finnegan) presents us with a fast-paced intellectual and psychological run, daring the audience to merge in a more complete a manner with the story arc.
Vivarium begins with a young couple (Tom and Gemma) who is drawn to a new housing development (named Under) by an eccentric character called Martin, who is seemingly enthusiastic in promoting Yonder. While inspecting the house with the couple, Martin disappears - and strange events begin unfolding, with the couple being drawn centre-stage of the mysterious circumstances evident throughout the movie.
This is one of the few thrillers that would, undoubtedly, leave you cringing in your seat!
A feature film with epic performances, brilliant camera work, and a nightmarish tale to boot. This is definitely one which brings about a fresh angle to the horror genre of recent years - and you could definitely count on Elijah Wood's amazing depth and complexity in advancing a character that you would feel a strong connection to.
The story starts from a journeying youngster Norval Greenwood, portrayed by Elijah, who is responding to his estranged father's letter - a man whom he had never met before. It is a moment of discovery for the two of them, though several instances of bizarre behaviour of his father trails deep into Norval's psyche. And then, the drama unfolds quite rapidly, whereby his father's past catches on to him, unraveling a chain of events that tugs a sensation of creepiness to the audience.
Come To Daddy is brilliantly expressed, catalysed by its state-of-the-art cinematography. However, this is a movie for mature audiences, and they would not be left disappointed.
Golden Teacher Films Tyler Chandler – Filmmaker Nicholas Meyers - Writer
Cast Adrianne Herself Tyler Chandler Himself Nicholas Meyers Himself Rick Doblin Himself Rosalind Watts Herself Ingrid Pacey Herself Trevor Millar Himself Gabor MateHimself Mark Haden Himself Garyth Moxey Himself Mark Howard Himself Robyn Howard Herself Geoff Acres Himself Gary Cook Himself Patrick Fishley Himself Maud Lundestad Herself Chor Boogie Himself James Jesso Himself Paul Stamets Himself
“The question is not why the addiction but why the pain”. Gabor Mate
This documentary from Vancouver Canada follows the course of Adrianne, who starting taking opiates and other substances as a teen. She was in mental pain with anxiety and depression, and first looked to alcohol and cocaine to alleviate this. With alcohol being the gateway, she descended into addiction with the frequent use of Fentanyl, rendering her homeless a few times. In fact, Adrianne was playing Russian Roulette every she took it. She had been a bright student at school with a dream to study Law until the “black dog” of depression and anxiety overtook her life.
Adrianne became suicidal after years of medication - both prescription and illegal. In desperation, she turned to underground healers to alleviate her depression, anxiety and opiate addiction with illegal psychedelic medicine such as psilocybin – more widely known as magic mushroom. She later managed to participate in a psilocybin trial with gradual success. She underwent Ibogaine therapy for her opiate addiction. Ibogaine comes from the root of the Iboga plant found in Gabon, Africa - a plant used for several centuries for medicinal and ritual purposes. Ibogaine is legal in Canada and is used to treat patients with depression, anxiety and addictions under strict therapeutic supervision and monitoring.
The way to recovery was not a day in the park for Adrianne. She gradually overcame the darkness, self-hate and the childhood trauma that had led her to addiction as a teen. It was a hard journey – a journey that led to self-compassion, self- knowledge, and the courage to confront her emotions. In her words: “The best way to love yourself is to be yourself. Care about yourself so that you make better choices. Get to know yourself. Only a short time you have with others.”
Dosed is a very powerful documentary aiming to promote the benefits of plant based therapy for mental health and addictions, as opposed to the more traditional modes.
HONEYLAND FILM TO PAY ATTENTION TO website review by Elice Thomas
This film is of particular interest to me as my grandfather on my mother’s side was Macedonian, but unfortunately I have no link to that side of my heritage. Following these two families living in the north of Macedonia was like watching something from another world – a world far removed from my own. Yet that world still holds a significant link for me. Quiet and pensive, this movie acts less like a film and more as a silent observer, shadowing two, very different, families: Hatidze Muratova and her dying mother Nazife (as themselves), and the Sam family of mother and father and too many children (as played by themselves). Hatidze is one of the last women beekeepers in Europe, and her traditional methods are threatened when the Sams become her neighbours and take over the beekeeping business. It is a sombre and almost anachronistic look at a way of living which straddles two periods – that of the Indigenous Macedonians, and the modern 21st century.
“Honeyland” is a simple film. I immediately noticed the lack of music, and this, coupled with the organic way the story unfolds, made me pay attention. It allows the people within the story to speak for themselves, without embellishment or hand-holding. We as the audience are not told what to think. Instead, events play out and we are left to make up our own minds about these characters. However, this isn’t a movie in the usual sense. There is no script or overarching plot. These are real families going about their lives, except that cameras are involved. This does mean that sometimes I couldn’t keep up with what was going on, as some scenes do feel disjointed or unclear, such as why the father is desperate for money or why he doesn’t heed the advice of Hatidze, who, up until a certain point, had been a great neighbour to his children. For the most part this criticism falls by the wayside as it isn’t important to the big picture.
This film takes its time in telling its story. Beautiful landscape shots of the Macedonian countryside and pensive close-ups of the small village these families live in tell as much of a story as the families themselves. It is only an hour and a half in length, and in this time there is no exciting climax or terrible retribution for the characters. On the surface, it can seem like nothing much happens at all. However, the interactions between these two different families speak of many small, but significant, conflicts, not to mention the fears and hopes of the main characters. I particularly enjoyed the moments between Hatidze and one of Hussein’s sons, as he learnt how to beekeep in a sustainable way, or accompanied her on a hike to a wild beehive. While the Sam family overall, and particularly Hussein, is portrayed as a noisy and uncaring interruption to the idyllic village, his son portrays the defiance and thirst for knowledge of the younger generation. His frank curiosity against Hatidze’s much older wisdom and quiet demeanour is a delight to watch, and made me smile on more than one occasion. I highly recommend “Honeyland”. A wonderful and thought-provoking film, it delivers a heart-warming and relatable story in its own quiet, careful way.
AFFFF 2020: HOW TO BE AN ASTRONAUT website review by Elice Thomas
HOW TO BECOME AN ASTRONAUT
I wasn’t prepared for how poetic this documentary on becoming an astronaut would be. Thomas Pesquet is as romantic about space as he is talented, and following his journey over the one year before rocketing out into space was incredibly interesting. He is the youngest French astronaut to be chosen for a 6-month mission on the International Space Station, alongside
American Peggy Whitson and Russian Oleg Novitskiy. Over the course of this documentary it becomes very clear just how much physical, mental, and emotional energy these astronauts put themselves through, just for a glimpse of the Earth from space. It’s incredibly uplifting. As Thomas says, these aren’t people who seek fame or medals, but the ever-constant, never-satiated pursuit of knowledge and meaning, and the answer to the question, “How far can humanity go?”
The documentary splits the journey up into “acts”, so to speak, using Thomas’ words as chapter titles covering the many different facets of astronaut training. My favourite was “The other side of the mirror”, when Thomas meets with an apnea instructor to learn breathing and meditative techniques in case he meets with high-stress situations while deprived of oxygen. I’ve always been fascinated by the deep ocean, so I especially enjoyed hearing about the similarities between the emptiness of space and the darkness of the deep sea. The film covers many different aspects of a future astronaut’s training, not just space-related but also the impact it has on their mental state and their friendships. I have a newfound respect for the discipline they commit themselves to, considering how wide-reaching it has to be. I appreciated the acknowledgement that Thomas gave to the wider team around him, for, as he says, he never feels like things are beyond hope when he has thousands of experts back home supporting him.
One of my favourite quotes in the film, from Thomas, is that “Our generation never had the Moon landing to remember. Instead, we look ahead to the future, and to Mars”. It’s a poignant and optimistic reminder that things will always be changing, but always for the better.
It’s unfortunate that the documentary ends so abruptly. Rather than accompanying Thomas to the big day we’ve been counting down to, we instead see him last in Normandy, where his grandparents originated. After all of the suspense and sacrifice we as the audience follow him through, it would have been satisfying to see Thomas leaving Earth, maybe with a final, poetic message for his family. Conversely, even some footage of him in the ISS, playing his saxophone as he promised he would, would have rounded off the documentary and the journey. Apart from the ending, though, I was moved almost to tears by the words of these astronauts, and the sacrifices they make. This was a poignant and heartfelt film, and I’m glad I watched it.
Captivating romantic crime drama where two complete opposites decided to meet after chatting on Tinder, each got they own reason Angela who is criminal defense attorney needs someone to talk to as she had a bad day, Eanest who works as a guard for Costco wants to meet a female for good times and maybe more. The dinner conversation doesn’t take them very far, as Angela presents herself as a cold, obnoxious woman, who knows it all . Eanest being a kind and naive man doesn’t count on getting lucky with Angela, and is taking her home. They get pulled over by a white cop for a minor traffic violation who takes law into his own hands. The tension between officer and Eanest, and then Angela gets out of control and gets Angela wounded, and the cop dead.
Angela commands Eanest to get in the car and keep driving, as she makes him believe that once he becomes states property they will through away the keys, as there is no faith justice system especially if you are black. They have little money , and no plan except just to keep driving. The video of the incident goes viral, and just about everybody who is anybody recognizes the couple. To their surprise this video works in their favor and people are willing to go out of their way to help couple escape the justice system. During the trip those two strangers who probably would have never given each other a second chance, got an opportunity to get to know one another and fall in love, Angela for first time was able to reveal her secret which been haunting her, be able to feel what’s love is and give back. Eanest on the other side learned how to be a stronger man to make decisions. For this couple in love nothing matters any more, but the fact that they have found each other and they are making a legacy for others to follow. Trust no one, enjoy the little things, sun, scenario, wind. Don’t wait for tomorrow to do what you been wanting to do all your life. Get outside your comfort zone!! Love life and it will love you back.
AFFFF 2020: THE SWALLOWS OF KABUL website review by Elice Thomas
THE SWALLOWS OF KABUL
I knew not to expect a light-hearted film when I first started watching “The Swallows of Kabul”. I had very little knowledge of Kabul, but knew that it had been a dark period in Afghan history. Needless to say, I was not prepared for the emotional onslaught that this film thrust me through. It doesn’t hold back on painting the absolute truth on what life was like under the rule of the Taliban. Prepare to be confronted with the horror of humanity.
“The Swallows of Kabul” follows the journeys of two women living in Kabul with their respective partners: the older Mussarat (Hiam Abbass), who has been diagnosed with cancer, and Zunaira (Zita Hanrot), a young and striking woman who aspires to be a teacher and artist in a world free of the Taliban presence. Mussarat’s husband, Atiq (Simon Abkarian), runs the local women’s prison, and has learnt to take a unemotional, cynical view of the world. Zunaira’s partner, Mohsen (Swann Arlaud), has not yet been trodden down by the Taliban’s rule, but finds it increasingly harder not to internalise their beliefs, especially toward women. Both women, and their partners, find their lives intertwined over time as the story reveals more and more of the harsh truth of this city. The ending is an optimistic one, but at a staggering cost of much pain and sacrifice. What stood out to me the most in this film were the long, lingering moments when the story took a breath. Whether it was a shot of Kabul on another hot, sunny day, or of Zunaira as she lay on her bed, breathing deeply, these moments provided clarity and reconciliation between all of the heavy commentary and horrific acts being played out. On the other hand, a few moments stood out to me which drove home those horrific acts, and the terrifying, pitiless brutality of the lives of these families. In these moments I cried unashamedly for the loss of joy and life, and anything worth living for. The film balances the heavy-hitting with the more playful and light-hearted scenes in a wonderfully clear-sighted way, although the playful scenes are few and far between, as befitting the period.
No review of the “The Swallows of Kabul” can go without mentioning the beautiful, watercolour art style by which it is animated. This style lends the lacklustre Afghani land an elegance, and brings out the subtle contrasts in the burnt hues of Kabul’s colour palette. One scene can be packed with so much detail that I almost felt compelled to pause the film. Despite the awful acts being suffered upon them, one beauty in all the tragedy is Kabul itself, devoid of people. The art style is simple, combining basic solid colours with few lines, yet only a few lines are needed to capture the emotions these characters experience. Paired with the evocative animations is superb voice acting work. I was left aching for these people, who became as real to me over two hours as my own friends and family.
I highly recommend “The Swallows of Kabul”. While it will leave you in tears, and confronts you with the worst of humanity, ultimately it is a story of redemption and hope, and optimism despite everything.
IT MUST BE HEAVEN FILM TO PAY ATTENTION TO website RATE: 8/10
“It Must Be Heaven” by Elia Suleiman is quite a funny and poetic film about Palestine without political propaganda and with a director who plays the main part.
He plays himself in the film - or rather, he plays a curious observer who almost does not react to what is happening around.
The filmas I menntioned devoid of any propaganda and takes place in Nazareth, then in Paris and in New York coming back to Nazaret. The story in the nushell: the director is travelling around the worl and trying to find funding for his new film.
The film starts with the large religious procession with candles and in formal robes that goes up the steps to the mysterious treasured gates, singing a hymn. We have no idea what is going on.
There is a bishop at the head of the procession who knocks on these gates and ceremonially orders them to open.
But the doors remain locked. Moreover, a mocking voice behind teh closed gates replies that he is not going to open.
Then the bishop takes off his headdress, rolls up his sleeves and prepares to break the door ...
A new film by Elia Suleiman “It Must Be Paradise” takes off from this startling scene, absurd and metaphorical at the same tim.,
Such strange introduction plus the title of the film promises that the picture about "getting to heaven" is not so simple.
Suleiman is a unique filmmaker.
It is not only because it has a specific, deeply personal style and cinema language, combining silent comedy and social drama.
It can not be compared with anything I have seen so far. Suleiman is probably one of the most famous and titled Palestinian director. A native of Nazareth, a Christian Israeli city with a predominantly Arab population, determines his nationality.
In 1996, his Chronicle of Extinction won the prize for the best debut in Venice. In 2002 Divine Intervention won the jury prize in Cannes. At the same time, he is extremely far from the fighters of the invisible front, who remove politically charged pamphlets about the Israeli occupiers and the suffering of the Palestinian people.
His screen image itself contradicts this. Suleiman is not religious (and closer to Christianity than Islam), who eagerly drinks, considers women indifferently, and includes Leonard Cohen in the soundtrack with pleasure.
But most importantly and it is all in contexts, on the screen or beyond, he keeps himself aloof and keeps his distance, not wanting to merge with the crowd.
Suleiman, the same as the other Palestinian filmmakers, collects a budget for his ascetic world-famous paintings (France, Germany, Canada, Turkey and Qatar have invested in It Must Be Heaven), but does not engage in propaganda, remaining highly artistic.
Palestine interests him in much the same way as the first crusaders or Zionists. For him, this is a state of mind, the Promised Land, an unattainable paradise that still does not really exist.
At the same time, Jews, Arabs, and in the new film - also the French, Japanese, Americans and Mexicans, lead an equally sad and funny existence, as if not noticing how similar in essence.
Suleiman’s films are deprived from a straightforward plot, they are composed of expertly verified and directed episodes somehow bind together. In the center of each episode thee is the director himself, who is also a performer; he is a fragile and poorly shaven elderly man with an astonished look and an awkward half-smile, with a straw hat and glasses.
But is he really in the centre? He is more acting like an observer who remains the main character.
No matter what happens, he does not react and is silent to what happens wround him. People though see him and talk to himD.
YOu should really decide for yourself whether to see a silent movie in this homage or an ironic comment about the state of the world, which is better not to intervene.
Something is happening, God knows what in this world...
However, each of the scenes is recognizable, no matter who is present there.
Father and son: there are Suleiman's neighbors in Nazareth ; they are sitting on the neighboring balconies, apathetically cursing each other with the last words.
Two menacing Muslims demand compensation from a waiter in a restaurant for feeding their sister chicken soaked in white wine: a woman should not touch alcohol!
A Japanese couple in Paris looks expressively at a Palestinian gentleman and asks if he is Bridget? Hehe - aparently he is not :)
The ambulance stops at the clocheard lying on the sidewalk and unexpectedly generously presents it with a multi-course dinner.
Femail activist in New York Central Park, wearing angel wings, shows her bare chest, painted in the colors of the Palestinian flag.
These are Halloween days; on a nearby street death, holding a scythe under his arm, devours a burger with an appetite.
The taxi driver, crossing the Brooklyn Bridge, discovers that the Palestinian is lucky and comes in unexpectedly unbridled delight. “A trip at my expense, I adore your Karafat!” - the black healthy man exclaims joyfully. In this small episode, the whole essence of Western support for Palestine is sarcastically condensed.
The only thing that does not change from city to city, from country to country is the equally silent and unperturbed repressive institutions: the police, always harassing or searching someone, even guarding so that it’s uncomfortable to look at it. In one scene there are three gendarmes on monowheels chasing a man with a bouquet of flowers. He steals them like a murder weapon, runs away and throws them under a parked car. We can involuntarily recall the famous Banksy graffiti on which a street extremist throws not a grenade, but the same bouquet of flowers.
Suleiman's cinematography is the same peaceful protest against aggression sewn into the basic program of modern mankind.
This makes him akin to the antipode film (and, at the same time, his closest relative) - “Synonyms” of the Israeli Nadava Lapida, where a resident of the same state sought refuge in the same city of Paris, with the same varying success. Only the hero Lapida tried to escape from his identity, and Suleiman, on the contrary, could not catch up with it.
The plot is revealed closer to the finale.
From his native Nazareth, Suleiman goes to Paris and New York for a reason, and in search of funding for the next film. “Comedy on a peaceful Arab-Israeli settlement?” LOL :)
It's already funny, good luck! - it indifferently stands up the American producer.
The Frenchman, refusing the director, is more correct: “We respect you very much, and your project is wonderful ... but understand it correctly, it’s somehow not too Palestinian! As if this could happen in any country. ”
Drama "Monos" was released to Australian Film Distribution list adding a rich variety to the cinema repertoire.
This amazing picture was appreciated not only in Berlin and at Sundance Festival, but also at many festival across the world. Alejandro Landes received the prize for best directing at many of them.
From the first minutes the film creators let us know the majotr message: we will learn more about savage teenagers who are trained under the leadership of the person from a certain gorilla organization (fully or partially: but definitely, military).
There are no peaceful goals that are being pursued - it is understandable clearly because of the armory in hands of teenagers and because there is a hostage in their camp.
What will all this lead to?
It is impossible to predict as you start watching the film, and this can be attributed to the undoubted advantages of the picture! It is simply superb!
Take just the choice of locations and atmospheric musical accompaniment! They are pure delight indeed.
What are there mountains and ruins wrapped in clouds, living in which is more like another component of the plan for the survival of heroes than a full-fledged housing with a claim to comfort. The characters unfold among the breathtaking scenery and the Spartan setting, with the starting point being ... the cow. However, we can do without details.
What is happening on the screen causes a storm of emotions in your soul. It is all due to the fact that in front of us are children and it looks disturbing what they know and how they act having that knowledge in hands.
They are children who were gutted mentally in order to subsequently forcibly stuff the complete opposite of more appropriate things: games, walks, going to the movies with friends and more peaceful encounters all teenagers do...
Yes, sometimes this is what causes disruptions of varying severity, yes, sometimes "children" in the best meaning of that word wake up inside of them anyway, but the conflict that flares up inside resembles a fire that cannot be put out.
This fire will burn them out to the very end and to the group. It is their power in a good and bad way.
We see mountains, ruins, viscous mud - not all that awaits the heroes.
Alejandro Landes sends them to the South American jungle: the most important stage for the development of a society divorced from the world, in which everyone has a specific role.
“Monos” due to the redeployment of child-soldiers can be easily divided into two logical parts: primarily according to the visual appearance of its heroes.
Of course, everything is not limited to just one picture/visual, so we are watching the further transformation of the characters, noting the growing degree of cruelty, twists and turns of their characters, uncompromisingness and the thirst to rule over the immediate environment.
Conditions do not seriously affect basic desires, which is why we see opportunism and self-esteem as our own significance against the background of a deadlocked future.
When viewing, you catch yourself on various thoughts that go beyond the picture frame.
The point is not in that it is South America, not that thy are lost children, doomed to become cannon fodder when a corresponding order from above arrives.
Our world is rolling into the abyss, and some people cease to be humans.
The foundations are changing, generally accepted rules are being replaced by more convenient for specific people or systems - the list goes on and on, without forgetting about terrorism, the environment and much much more.
This is true, but at the same time, there is no reason to dive into the well of depression and disappointment.
The American writer Henry Miller owns the words that are relevant in this case: "Chaos is the name we give to an order that we do not understand". We have the right not to accept this chaos, we have the right to do something for the desired changes, however, no one is immune from adapting to a new reality by coincidence.
This is also true. In this case, nothing should interfere with enjoying life, no matter what the surrounding conditions are...
LITTLE WOMEN FILM TO PAY ATTENTION TO website RATE: 10/10
The new adaptation of the novel "Little Women" received 6 nominations for the Oscar. It was singled out as a contender for the title of best film of the year. The picture, despite of its familiar plot, intrigues with a non-standard approach to the chronology of events. It also draws attention to the impressive cast, which brought together representatives of different generations of talented actors.
The film tells the story of the four sisters played by Saoirse Ronan, Emma Watson, Florence Pugh and Eliza Scanlen. They grew up in a close-knit family, united on the backdrop of the events of the American Civil War. Although the main characters were brought up in the same house, the characters and aspirations of the sisters formed in totally different ways. The film alternates events from the youth of all four girls and shows how their lives were changed over several years, dispelling or fulfilling the dreams of each of them.
The "Little Women" by the writer Louise May Alcott became a classic in literature, which was repeatedly transferred to the big screen. In the 1980s, Japan broadcast anime based on the book, and in 1994 a quite successful film was released, in which Winona Ryder, Susan Sarandon and Christian Bale starred. In addition, there are a couple of lesser-known films and serials that convey the events of the book.
It would seem to many: why waste time on the next film adaptation, the decoupling of which is known in advance? Nevertheless, the director Greta Gerwig (who made her debut three years ago with the drama "Lady Bird") found several tricks that completely revived the novel of 150 years old. This is not only due to an impressive cast, joined by Meryl Streep, Laura Dern, Timothy Chalamet and even Louis Garrell.
Greta Herwig managed to set up relevant and emotional accents in the old material, making it interesting again. It is worth saying right away that this by no means is a radical feminization of the era of romanticism (as, for example, in the "Dickinson" series).
All the characters of the new film behave in accordance with the manners of that time, but in no case picking up modern trends. As for the topic of the feminine part discovery, this is what the novel is all about, so no extra plot additions appear in the film. The picture only represents the story of the expectations dictated by the society, and shows what the heroines really strive for, without denying family values.
"Little Women" was rightly nominated for an Oscar in the category of Best Adapted Screenplay. This is the merit of the same Greta Gerwig, who changed the chronology of the events of the novel: first, the film shows the life of adult sisters, and then shows episodes of seven years ago jumping backwards and forward several times.
So Gerwig creates a new intrigue by comparing characters from the past and present, as well as understanding what decisions have become decisive for them. Color correction of frames helps to navigate in numerous flashbacks, which indicates the special atmosphere reigning in a carefree period of youth in warm colors.
Curiously, at the end of the film, Gerwig allows himself a little liberty in the line of Joe's character (her role is played by actress Saoirse Ronan). Gerwig hints that Joe has become the literary embodiment of writer Louise May Alcott. Therefore, the director barely subtle bifurcates the finale, showing what choice in the book Joe will make, as well as what life compromise Alcott will come to in real life.
Of course, to film such a large work, and even supplemented by the director's vision, you need at least two hours (even a little more). Whether they fly by quickly or not depends on the willingness of the viewer percieving the story of the growing up of four heroines.
In fairness, it is worth noting that the creators of the movie are trying hard to extract from the picture everything that can inspire boredom. Dialogs are often brightened up by camera work, thanks to which you can feel the emotional mood of the scene. Actors convey the charming features of their characters, and the design of the locations and costumes immerses you in a cozy home world.
Finally, instrumental soundtrack of a talented composer Alexander Despl, nominated for an Oscar for best music for this film, helps to capture the right atmosphere.
10/10 from me!
TRANSITIONS FILM FESTIVAL 2020: I AM HUMAN website RATE: 6/10
I AM HUMAN is a full length documentary. with the focus on human brain and technology. It follows a breaking trough technological solutions to assist three people with different sicknesses to become at least partially functioning and close to normal humans. The implanted technological devices in their brain can apparently change the way they even think. The implants modern technology is incredible and it is taking place now. It also reminds us how human life is fragile and how often we take our own good health for granted. It is quite a thought provoking film.
'Escape And Evasion' is a careful review of a soldier's coping of PTSD, tangentially drawn from a recent Australian engagement in a conflict in South East Asia.
The protagonist is Captain Seth, part of a guerrilla team sent out to the jungles of Burma (Myanmar), and a series of untoward events unfold within a short period of time, splitting the paradigms that govern rationality and insanity for all members of the team. It then flows into a tale of mystery, a classic good ol' whip of 'whodunnit' that elevates the viewer's level of adrenaline as the movie progresses.
'Escape And Evasion' does well in its cinematography and phasing into the scenes which depicts the backstory of Seth, with a fresh view of a soldier's life in contemporary times, quite unlike any movies till date. We see Seth's current struggle back at his home in Australia, and we are also presented with a recent dark past, one which he would like to be kept hidden, especially from himself.
Director:Sean Hanish, also known for his direction of Return to Zero and Sister Cities.
Writer:Dmitry Portnoy. Attending Pepperdine Law School (Malibu, California) Portnoy worked with Judith Wood as one of a number of interns.
Saint Judy is a biopic, released in March 2019, telling the story of the real life Attorney At Law, Judith L. Wood (Michelle Monaghan). It explores Judy’s legal battle to change U.S. policy in relation to approvals for immigrants and refugees seeking asylum, and her eventual victory. The real Judith L. Wood appears in cameo at the conclusion of this film. A successful attorney and public defender for 10 years practicing in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 2003, Judy resigns and moves to Los Angeles. The reason for this relocation is to enable her son Alex (Gabriel Bateman) to spend more time with his father Matthew Robinson (Peter Krause) following their divorce and the subsequent shared custody.
Judy’s new employer in L.A., Ray Hernandez (Alfred Molina, who is also an executive producer of the film) runs the Immigration Law Office. Ray informs Judy on her first day of his “quick fix” approach i.e. get the paper work done, signed off and return the refugee to their native country in minimal time. In addition, he states as a priority “all staff are to record every minute of time spent assisting their clients” for the dollars to roll in. This heartless attitude astounds Judy, leaving her shocked, and frustrated.
After a short stint Ray fires her for non compliance and Judy opens her own business in immigration law, dedicating her life to helping people without a voice and without a fee.
The film predominantly focuses on Judy’s most famous case, that of Asefa Ashwari (Leem Lubany) a Muslim teacher who had educated young girls in her native country, Afghanistan. On one occasion Asefa, along with another teacher, takes her young students for a walk through the village as a public display of women’s rights. Seen as a political demonstration, a “Crime against God” and a dangerous threat to the Afghan way of life, Asefa is reported to the Taliban, imprisoned, tortured and raped.
Asefa awakes in a hospital in Pakistan, where she discovers she had been taken with the help of her friends. From there she manages to flee to America.
Judy finds Asefa in Mira Loma Detention Center where she has been incarcerated for 12 months, drugged and unable to be questioned. After a bureaucratic conflict Judy with the aid of expert medical intervention is able to ensure Asefa is drug free. After recovery, Judy is then able to hear of Asefa’s plight.
Subsequent to a number of lengthy hearings, Judy is finally able to have the case heard by The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, the largest of the thirteen courts of appeal in the federal court.
Finally, mission accomplished, Asefa’s appeal for asylum is granted and the U.S. law for immigrants seeking asylum in the United States is changed forever. Considered a saviour by those fighting for asylum status in the USA, Judy earns the title of Saint because of her relentless dedication and altruistic passion for people’s rights. She is famous for her tireless work on human and refugee rights for over 30 years. “A person with a broken spirit is why I fight,” Judy once said. She is undoubtedly a true crusader for justice.
I had not heard of Judy prior to watching this movie. I found the film thought provoking and inspirational. It’s certainly a story that had to be told.
Saint Judy was nominated for an LA Muse award at the Los Angeles Film Festival in 2018, Best International Film at London Raindance Film Festival 2018, and a Mind the Gap award at Mill Valley Film Festival 2018. Michelle Monaghan was nominated for Best Performance at London Raindance Film Festival 2018.
Drama based on the true story, Mark Ruffalo as Robert Biliott plays a defence lawyer who has just recently become a parnter in the law firm ,which are specialising in envoromental issues, company directors/lawyers rub sholders and have fine dinning with the top manufaturing companies who they are about to sue and revela the real faces.
Just after becoming a parner in the law firm Mark Ruffalo gets a visit from a farmer who has been neighboring with Mark’s grandmother in West Virginia, whom Mark had known as a child, the farmer gives Mark boxes of the DVD vidios to show that something is not right in the waters running on his farm, those waters are doing his cows harm.
With a huge curiosity Mark visits the farmers farm and witnessings the ugly truth of a non curable desease in animals, whom farmer has been berrying one by one. The farmer has runed out of options as EPA and all the manufaturing companies are hidding the truth so well, that it took Mark 12 years of his career to reveal the ugly truth and proof it.
I had chills and goose bumps watching this movie, as the the chemical product which were/is used in manufacturing TEFAL cookware, in our beauty products, hugine producs and many other products, the waste was damped into the the neighboring drinking waters which made all the cows die and go crazy prior, most town residents are diagnosed with some sort of non curable desease, cancer, baby deformations.
This movie reveals chemical crime, to which all the authorities such as EPA, indepandant Bio labs, medical staff were given little information and if anybody would raise questions that person would no longer be walking. You just did not stick your nose in to somebodys business.
In my eyes Mark Ruffalo is a hero, who has stood up to big companies, he had made a lot of sucrifieses in his life, even had put in jeopardy his own life and carrer, and potentially his family.
All he wanted was to proof and make those giants liable for peoples sufferings and make public aware what is exactly in the water and the products we consume on a daily basis.
Mark Ruffalo was able to get the financial compensation to the victims in the town, the case is still going on, needless to say the TEFAL are still producing the non stick cookware, and adding chemicals to our hugine products without warning that it can harm your body. That movie made me think twice and revise my cookware products and products I use for hugine. This chemical is now present in everyone of us, who knows what long term affect it will play in our humans.
Once again we see that money got the power and plays a dominant part in everyones lifes, where you can buy just about anything.
If you have never heard of Miss Fisher then the movie is certainly not the place to start. Unless of course you are suffering from insomnia and could do with an hour or so of shut eye. Only die-hard fans of the TV series would be forgiving of this fizzler.
The movie set in the 1920s begins with Miss Fisher freeing a young girl named Shirin out her unjust imprisonment in Jerusalem. From there the story plods along until the first murder occurs and Miss Fisher ends up a suspect. Miss Fisher must dangerously set out to clear her name, and begins to unravel the mysteries behind an ancient jewel and the truth behind what happened to Shirin’s tribe. The movie jumps around between three locations – Melbourne, London, and Morocco. The dull plot never manages to spring to life and at times was hard to follow, not because it’s overly complicated but more so due to its inability to create any suspense or drama. I wish I can tell you more about the plot, but I spent most the movie cringing and losing interest.
The drawn out dialogue and gags that miss the mark are only the start of problems. Miss Fisher’s glitzy wardrobe and opulent locations are not enough to disguise the cheap special effects and bland cinematography. Miss Fisher and the Crypt of Diamonds looks and feels cheap, making it one of the most painful movies I have endured in a long time.
It’s clear to me that Claire Murray’s story is one that needs to be told. The refusal of medical professionals to give her a second chance at a liver transplant, based solely on the fact that she relapsed into drug use, highlights a prejudiced neglect that needs to be examined. Psychotherapist Shireen Narayanan’s dramatized documentary Wild Butterfly brings to light the story behind Claire’s heart-wrenching end in a Singaporean hospital, and the stepping stones that led her there. Unfortunately, this documentary left me with a lot of questions. The choice to over-dramatise Claire’s life pulled the focus away from the facts, instead reminding the audience at every possible moment, in every shot and edit, that this is a tragic and unjust story. Her story is unjust, and that fact should be allowed to prove itself through the self-evident things that happened in Claire’s life – being bullied and sexually assaulted, feeling no retribution for those wrongs done to her, and then being refused the waitlist when her first liver transplant failed. Rather, this documentary shoves a very emotional point of view in the audience’s face every chance it gets. The only perspectives we receive are from Claire’s parents, her counsellor, and her aunt. While it’s important to hear from those closest to Claire, I would have preferred to also hear from other sources, such as her doctors, the police officer assigned to her case, and her friends. Did Claire have friends growing up? Did she talk to anyone after being assaulted? What drove her to taking drugs, and, in particular, heroin? How old was she when she began taking drugs? What sort of help did she receive throughout her ordeal? The film relies on heavily-edited shots and stereotypes to elicit forced empathy in the audience. What’s more, some important events in Claire’s life are brushed over. In particular, the fact that Claire’s mother took her daughters away. Val admits that this sent Claire into a downward spiral but little more is said about it. However, the documentary isn’t without its positives. It highlights a narrative that needs to be more widely known. Public opinion turned against Claire and her family when they heard that she was a drug user, but in the future this film will hopefully change people’s minds and put more pressure on the Australian medical community to put aside their prejudices and investigate all possible causes to a life-threatening condition. Claire deserved better, as does anyone who finds themselves with a crippling addiction. Wild Butterfly is an important film to showcase for anyone who has been ignored or had their suffering minimised.
THE INVISIBLE MAN FILM TO PAY ATTENTION TO website review: Jo Malone and Misha Marchev
What do you get when you cross a sociopathic narcissist with a brilliant scientist specialising in optics? The Invisible Man, of course. Based on the H.G. Wells novel of the same name, the line between illusion and reality becomes blurred as it tells the story of Cecilia’s (Elisabeth Moss) attempted escape from the physical, emotional and mental prison cleverly constructed by her controlling partner, Adrian (Oliver Jackson-Cohen). The psychological game that ensues is cleverly enhanced with brilliant camerawork, suspenseful visual aesthetics and sound to keep you constantly guessing, rather than your typical blood-and-gore horror.
As Cecilia tries to settle into a normal routine while living with her childhood friend, James (Aldis Hodge), she is plagued by memories of her past and struggles to overcome her fears of Adrian’s vengeful mind. After hearing of Adrian’s death and the inheritance he has left for her, she finally begins to move on with her life. However, Cecilia is afflicted by a series of strange occurrences, causing her to doubt the truth of Adrian’s death as she feels his presence all around her. Questioning her own sanity, an invisible tug-of-war ensues between Cecilia and her mental captor. Her paranoid projections quickly begin to manifest into her physical reality, and as Cecilia starts losing her grip, her friends and family begin to seriously question her state of mind. Adrian’s stronghold on her life begins to unravel, and the parallel realities that exist between Celia and her external environment diverge more and more rapidly as her mental health declines further. Desperate to prove she is not crazy, Cecilia attempts to expose Adrian as the one responsible for her torment. Rapidly losing trust from those closest to her, Cecilia realises that she must take matters into her own hands to reclaim her power. An excellent psychological thriller, The Invisible Man is a stark reminder of the power of the hidden hand that manipulates the minds of the masses. This includes you!
Undertow is an achievement in Australian filmmaking. A bewitching, sensual thriller, this movie isn’t afraid to take it slow. That being said, the premise is established early in the story – photographer Claire (Laura Gordon) suffers a brutal miscarriage, and soon after catches her husband (Rob Collins) lying about his whereabouts when she sees him at a motel in the company of a young woman (Olivia DeJonge). The pace of the story then slows considerably, but it’s not a painful change of pace. Rather, the film slowly dives into a world that seems ordinary on the surface, but becomes increasingly more discomfiting the deeper we’re taken. It’s almost leisurely, the build toward the climax. It lulls you into a false sense of normalcy. There are no mad twists or horrifying skeletons in this story, only a steady, inescapable fall into unreality – the subtle thriller. Captivating shots of the Surf Coast further draw out the story, often echoing the emotional maelstrom that Claire is caught in. When the climax finally hurtles home, it does so with all the power and inevitability of a wave against a cliff. It’s a climax that will leave you feeling disconcerted, as the suffering and trauma of not only Claire but Angie too comes to a devastating conclusion. Rounding off this feat of filmmaking art is the score, which serves to underline the thick, sexual tension and gradual duplicity of Claire’s world. Be warned, this is an overtly sexual film. Director Miranda Nation does not hold back or censor her creation. Undertow is beautiful and satisfying and poetic. As Nation’s debut feature film, it deserves its place as a spearhead for this year’s International Women’s Day as it explores conflicts borne of miscarriage, jealousy, duplicity and the unattainable image of the “independent woman”.