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Monthly Archives: October 2020

FINAL FILMS & 56TH CIFF WRAP-UP

Because of the advantage of screening from home I was able to pass the 40 plus mark; the last two days were a blitzkrieg : SHORTS: STEP INTO THE RIVER (CHINA/FRANCE). An animated film beautifully conveying acceptance, bullying, sending a strong message to children and adults.  FOUR STARS!!!! COMRADS (CHINA). Hong Kong uprising of 2019 is an intimate portrayal of ... Read More »

56TH CHICAGO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL MARCHES TO ITS CONCLUSION; SWEAT (POLAND, SWEDEN) (GOLD HUGO, BEST FILM)

This film would not have been my choice, “New Order” or “Tomorrow, the World!” were far superior; but “Sweat”, which also took the award for Best Art Direction, spoke to the pervasive narcissism saturating social media in today’s milieu: ubiquitous sharing, from morning through evening, following gorgeous exercise guru “Sylvia Zajac” (Magdalena Kolesnik) motivating her fitness fans, walking her dog, visiting family, shaming her stalker, culminating in her ... Read More »

56TH CHICAGO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL UPDATE

MEMORY HOUSE (BRAZIL). Haunting in its meanness, baseness, ugliness, the purist depiction of “man’s inhumanity to man” splayed upon the screen, in recent “memory”. There is not one redeeming characterization in its entirety; evil blooms exponentially with each generation. TWO STARS!! KUBRICK BY KUBRICK (FRANCE, POLAND) ( ENGLISH, FRENCH, ITALIAN). By watching this insightful documentary, director Gregory Monro’s unveiling of ... Read More »

VIRTUAL 56th CHICAGO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL CONTINUES

Soars in intelligence, intrigue and imagination: GAZA MON AMOUR (ARABIC). Two beautiful, simple souls shimmer with goodness, kindness; destined to be united, rising above the restrictiveness of their state.  Ending, romantically with Puccini’s, Musetta’s Waltz from La Boheme. THREE STARS!!! NIGHT OF THE KINGS (FRENCH). Hypnotic, mystical, magical film, focusing on one night, in a prison, run by inmates; the ... Read More »

VIRTUAL CHICAGO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL

Skipping negativity, focusing on positivity. The plusses of viewing from home: no dress code, heathy cuisine, seat is permanent, unrestricted bathroom breaks; viewer determines the genre and the time to watch.  Now in its fifth day, here is a wrap-up of movies seen: APPLES (GREECE). A simple, poignant tale of an amnesiac; beginning and ending with a bouquet of flowers; ... Read More »

THE HAUNTING OF BLY MANOR (NETFLIX)

The treasured unknown, a plague of confusion; riveting intelligence reverberates at the core of this stunning interpretation of Henry James’s “The Turn of the Screw”; demanding a malleable, pliable intellect, “The Haunting of Bly Manor” guarantees troubling, taunted dreams, questioning the unseeable, but tangible nonetheless. For those who have experienced Déjà vu, possess a “sixth sense”, second sight, or share the attributes of Macbeth’s witches, an inexplicable clairvoyance, your receptiveness will be ... Read More »

YELLOW ROSE (IN THEATERS)

A nimble and poignant portrait; “Yellow Rose” is a metaphorical, exquisite tale of a seventeen-year-old undocumented, talented young woman, “Rose Garcia” (inimitably gifted Eva Noblezada) whose mother, “Priscella Garcia” (Princess Punzalan) has been ferreted out by Immigration and Custom Enforcement and desolately returned to the Philippines, leaving distraught, but enterprising Rose to discover a path of survival, undetected by I.C.E.; ... Read More »

MURDER MOST FOUL

Always a sleuth advocate: “Columbo”, “Kojak”, “Cagney & Lacey”, “Remington Steele” satiated by a weekly dose of mystery, murder and mayhem, my thirst for the macabre has grown exponentially through the years. Here are some suggestions guaranteed to quench one’s appetite for an enigmatic, inscrutable conundrum: “AMERICAN MURDER: THE FAMILY NEXT DOOR” (Netflix) director Jenny Popplewell’s true crime documentary focuses ... Read More »

THE COMEY RULE (SHOWTIME)

Tuesday evening the world witnessed, Live, the nadir of American politics: slaughter of civility, denigration of a morality we should expect and categorically deserve from our leaders; instead, like the murder of George Floyd, the supposed head of the free world and his challenger failed the populace, shocking with stunning vituperative, scurrilous verbiage, murdering decency: an amoral bully, pledging not ... Read More »

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