Film & TV

The Story of Remarkable Teacher Pedro Santana Hits the Screen

Sandra Bertrand

With every encounter, the camera captures the magnetism of the man. Teaching in a Covid-free environment, he lights up the room with his smiles, kisses, and hugs. In the words of a colleague, “He always thought about the kid that was on the bottom.” But as one former student admitted, he “lets you know what he really thinks.”  “How are your grades?” became a familiar mantra to his charges.  He expected the best and to the amazement of his family, teachers, parents, and even nay-sayers, he got it.

‘Lapsis’ Paints a Picture of a Realistic but Grim Future

Ulises Duenas

While director Noah Hutton does a great job of illustrating the world he’s created through small scenes that show you how disingenuous the cabling company is and how desperate people are to make some extra cash, the film is still lacking. On one hand, Hutton replicates the dialogue and actions of human beings quite well. On the other, he does it so well that it becomes dull. The whole movie feels like a pilot to the miniseries.

A Chilling Cat-and-Mouse Game Ensues in ‘The Little Things’

Garrett Hartman

The performances are terrific, with Jared Leto giving a particularly superb performance as the  prime suspect, Albert Sparma. Leto creates an eerily charming antagonist who perfectly plays to the air of mystery, doubt, and confusion the film aims to create.  In typical noir style, the film offers no heroes -- which is utilized to serve the film’s theme on obsession and the nature of justice. Instead of conflicted characters who falter clearly behind the lines of right and wrong, these  characters always seem to be in the middle of the road.

New Film ‘PAINT’ Depicts the Underside of Creating Art

Sandra Bertrand

To be or not to be—an artist.  For anyone who’s ever pursued painting as a career—house painters excluded—you might want to think again.  There are enough cliches about the profession to fill MoMA’s walls: “You have to live miserably to be an artist.”  “We can’t edit our psyches.”  “I’m not a decent human being, I’m an artist.” “We show up late.” There’s more you’ve probably come to easily recognize, but the ones I’ve quoted are all in Michael Walker’s film, PAINT

Hollywood Veteran Dennis Dugan Tackles Modern-Day Romance in ‘Love, Weddings and Other Disasters’

Forrest Hartman

Dugan’s career has many highlights, including a much-loved acting stint as Captain Freedom on the TV drama Hill Street Blues. He has been even more successful in the director’s chair, with credits garnering more than $1 billion total. His directorial works include Problem Child (1990), Happy Gilmore (1996), Big Daddy (1999) and Grown Ups 1 and 2 (2010, 2013). For Love, Weddings and Other Disasters he tapped into his talent, not only writing, directing and producing, but playing the key supporting role of Eddie Stone.

City Dreamers: How Four Women Architects Took on the World

Sandra Bertrand

Based in Philadelphia, their projects have included campuses and museums here and abroad, such as the University of Pennsylvania, the Seattle Arts Museum, as well as the Sainsbury Wing of London’s National Gallery and the Nikko Hotel in Japan.  Revered as a teacher, Scot Brown's students and notables such as Frank Gehry and Rem Koolhaas petitioned to give her the prestigious Pritzker prize retroactively after Venturi unfairly became the sole recipient. The effort was denied. (She has said the petition is her prize, a better reward.)

Welcome to the Wonderful, Wacky World of Wes Anderson

Christopher Karr

Still, one is hard-pressed to think of a filmmaker who’s as absolutely singular as Wes Anderson, and even harder-pressed to think of a fanbase best described as completists. I’m not sure that a casual Wes Anderson fan exists. Once you twirl into his world, it’s easy to get lost there—drunk on his outlandish, affected aesthetics, dazzled by his constricted idiosyncrasy, baffled by his reinvention of what cinematic language can look like.

Sofia Coppola’s ‘On the Rocks’ Explores Complicated Family Dynamics

Forrest Hartman

On the Rocks is reminiscent of her 2003 directorial smash, Lost in Translation. That film told the story of an aging movie star – played by Bill Murray – facing a midlife crisis. For On the Rocks, Murray is back, but this time as a more-self-assured older man who volunteers to help his daughter, Laura (Rashida Jones), through a marital crisis. Murray plays Felix, a charming senior who still has a way with the ladies. We learn from Laura that he wasn’t a great dad.

Brazilian ‘Divine Love’ Depicts a Futuristic Take on Religion and Relationships

Ulises Duenas

In a 2027 version of Brazil, there is a new movement sweeping a country -- one of using unconditional love to become closer to God. Joana works in an office that organizes divorces. She is also a devout follower of the “Divine Love” movement and wholeheartedly believes that love can overcome anything if someone is a true believer. It’s interesting to see the clash of the bureaucracy her work involves and the humanity she displays when talking to clients.

A Lush Remake of ‘Rebecca’ Offers a Suspenseful Mind Game

Forrest Hartman

Certainly, fans of the Hitchcock film should enjoy this 21st century take on the tale, which is as dark and intriguing today as it was in 1938. The action centers on the relationship between a young, naive woman (Lily James) who is swept off her feet by Maxim de Winter, a charismatic widower with a massive English estate called Manderley. The two impetuously marry, but life is not as the young Mrs. de Winter had dreamed.

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