Film & TV

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.

Sacha Baron Cohen Returns With Usual Cringe-Worthy Antics in ‘Borat’ Sequel

Forrest Hartman

We learn at the start of Subsequent Moviefilm that the fallout from the first Borat movie has landed him a prison sentence marked by years of hard labor. He is released, however, when the leader of Kazakhstan offers Borat (the country’s best-known journalist) an opportunity to travel to America with a gift for Vice President Mike Pence. You see, the Kazakhs have learned that President Trump has an affinity for authoritarian leaders, and they hope to foster the same type of friendly relationship the American president has with Vladimir Putin.

‘Love and Monsters’ Is Frightfully Fun

Forrest Hartman

Love and Monsters may not become a classic, but it’s a truly great time. It’s scary enough to work as a Halloween film, romantic and funny enough to transcend the horror genre, and written with both an edge and wit. Writers Brian Duffield and Matthew Robinson deserve significant credit because – while genre-crossing films are sought after – they don’t always work. But Love and Monsters succeeds exceptionally well.

‘The War With Grandpa’: A Sweet but Painfully Unrealistic Family Movie

Forrest Hartman

De Niro and Thurman are too good – and too famous – to be in a picture like this. The same can be said for Christopher Walken, who appears in several scenes as one of Ed’s buddies. These actors elevate the movie to a degree, and I admittedly laughed, probably more than I should have. That said, The War With Grandpa is not objectively good. It mixes TV comedy plotting with an A-list cast and thematic elements that are slightly disturbing.

Why ‘My Octopus Teacher’ Is the Best Film of 2020

Christopher Karr

The story is so straightforward, and yet the complexities multiply. The documentary details a relationship so unexpected and curious and unfathomable. It sounds ridiculous, but this masterpiece shows how one man (Craig Foster) manages to establish a genuine friendship — a kind of love affair, really — with an octopus in the waters of a kelp forest at the tip of Southern Africa. At first, Foster is just as astonished as the viewer. After all, he didn’t venture into the water seeking a new friend. Who would?

La Magnani: Italy’s Legendary Actress Gets Her Due

Sandra Bertrand

Magnani’s men had much to say about working with her. The writer/directors: “You had to accept her ideas or refuse them—she was incredibly inventive.” (Luchino Visconti). “She had the fear of a little girl, overcompensating with anger.” (Federico Fellini). “She was beyond convention as no one I’ve ever known” (Tennessee Williams). It was Williams who dubbed her “The Tigress of the Tiber” according to John Lahr’s 2014 biography of the playwright.  

Why Italian Cinema Is Starting to Glamorize the Mafia

Dana Renga

It’s long been common practice in Hollywood to cast conventionally attractive actors as sympathetic criminal antiheroes. Humphrey Bogart in King of the Underworld,  Al Pacino in The Godfather trilogy and Denzel Washington in American Gangster are just a few examples. However, this practice is a relatively new phenomenon in Italy. In Italian films from the 1960s and 1970s, Italian gangsters were depicted as shady and charmless.

‘Mulan’: A Successful, Live-Action Version of the Disney Classic

Forrest Hartman

Although Mulan is thematically interested in big ideas, including character and equality, it is also a fine fantasy film filled with beautifully crafted martial arts sequences. The director’s  previous directorial efforts – including the wonderful 2002 drama Whale Rider – demonstrate her ability to build empathy for characters, but they don’t hint at the level of skill with which she tackles action. Some of the battle sequences in Mulan are reminiscent of pure martial arts movies.

'Most Wanted' Reinforces the Significance of a Free Press

Forrest Hartman

Hartnett paints Malarek as a hard-charger who will stop at nothing to get his story, and viewers watch that story unfold as each new detail emerges. The nonlinear structure is complicated, but easy enough to follow thanks to writer-director Daniel Roby’s straightforward style. Roby presents the action simply, letting his actors drive the emotion and his camera go where it needs in order to keep us tuned in.

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