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Author Archives: Peneflix

ROJO (SPANISH: ENGLISH SUBTITLES)

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“Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive!” Argentina. 1975. A home is stripped of its accessories, by disparate individuals; a metaphor for the ultimate disappearance of Argentines with left wing political ideals, leading to the “Dirty War” (1976-1983) a United States-backed military coup d’état, (overthrew Isabel Peron) clandestinely supporting state terrorism; a murky blot ... Read More »

ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD

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Quentin Tarantino’s mellowest, most nostalgic, tempered film to date; bludgeoning bloodshed of “Inglorious Basterds”, “Django Unchained”, “The Hateful Eight”, replaced by an homage to 1969 Hollywood; filmed in 35-millimeter celluloid, focusing on the waning stardom of “Rick Dalton” a nascent cowboy and his stunt man “Cliff Booth”; Leonardo DiCaprio as “Rick” and Brad Pitt, “Cliff”, are at their classic, professional ... Read More »

THE FAREWELL (ENGLISH/CHINESE)

The-Farewell

Rarely does a film generate benevolent happiness, sweetness, witnessing a family’s love and concern for a precious matriarch; Zaho Shuhzen is dazzling as “Nai Nai” (grandmother), unaware of her fatal stage 4 lung cancer, she devours life and living with staggering, stunning greed; she is an extraordinary tonic, a canyon of care; her granddaughter, “Billi” (Awkwafina, “Crazy Rich Asians”) an ... Read More »

SUPER 30 (HINDI: ENGLISH SUBTITLES)

SUPER 30

Do not give this film short shrift because of its Bollywood genre. Here is a movie for whoever has been electrified, inspired, challenged, encouraged by an instructor, educator; a teacher whose magnetism moves mountains, drives one to excel, explore unknown, untethered avenues, resulting in lifelong quests in fertile fields,  perpetually nourishing the brain, beyond boundaries, beyond one’s own expectations; its ... Read More »

MARIANNE & LEONARD: WORDS OF LOVE

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At times, achingly tragic, pervasively poignant, Marianne Ihlen (1935-2016) and Leonard Cohen’s (1934-2016) love saga is enchantingly directed by Nick Broomfield; it sears to the soul a destined pairing, even when shattered, but never severed, resonating forever in the lyrics of “So Long, Marianne”. Historically the “muse” is the dynamite, explosive, freeing the artist’s vision, blasting blocks, blinding the core ... Read More »

MAIDEN

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Yearly, we watch Oscar winners waving the 8.5 pound statuette, extolling the platitudinous “follow your dreams”, “actualize your potential”, “if I can do it, so can you”, aphorisms. “Maiden” directed by Alex Holmes tips the scales as an exhilarating, galvanizing documentary; its ingenuity, Draconian ambition, heart-arresting filmmaking, stuns with the story of Tracy Edwards, who realized her dream in 1989, ... Read More »

OPHELIA (ON DEMAND) & IN THEATERS

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“Hamlet” is William Shakespeare’s (1564-1616) longest play and possibly, most well known; pungent with murder, madness, deceit, witchcraft and doomed romance, it has mastered time’s vanquishing test with inimitable longevity. Director Claire McCarthy and writer Semi Chellas have given the vastly ignored, drowned “Ophelia” a contemporary “Me-too” spin with a Cliff Note scenario, she is the only one of tangible ... Read More »

TONI MORRISON: THE PIECES I AM

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A documentary, that even if her novels escaped your literary library, must be seen and applauded. Poignantly, and with refined grace, director Timothy Greenfield-Sanders, gifts viewers a portrait of eminence, defying conventions, stereotypes, “Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am” is saturated with a presence so dazzling, compelling, that if she hadn’t written a word, her personality alone would captivate your ... Read More »

MIDSOMMAR

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Beware of succumbing to the thought that director Ari Aster’s (“Hereditary”) “Midsommar” is in any way reminiscent of Shakespeare’s, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”; a plot dredged from the macabre, desolate level of Aster’s imagination; four unsuspecting victims are lured to Sweden’s Midsummer Festival, (pre-Christian, pagan solstice celebrating life and love) by the insouciant “Pelle” (Vilhelm Blumgrer), a fellow graduate student; ... Read More »

WILD ROSE (WRITEN BY NICOLE TAYLOR, DIRECTED BY TOM HARPER)

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“Rose-Lynn” is a spitfire, the freest spirit you’ll meet on 2019’s screen; a Scottish lassie, with an exhilarating voice, bombastic personality, quixotic, a filter-less force, a convicted felon; she is depicted with inconceivable dexterity, by Jessie Buckley; she flies from jail to her boyfriend, than arrives at her mother’s home, “Marion” (poignantly beautiful, Julie Walters) who’s been caring for her ... Read More »

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