Film & TV

‘Blanquita’ Shows a Compelling Depiction of Victimhood

Ulises Duenas

Laura Lopez as Blanquita does a great job of portraying a character that has been through a life of trauma but does her best to fight through the difficulty of pursuing the case. She has strong resolve but does show weakness and doubt when things escalate and the danger rises. Alejandro Goic as Father Manuel also puts in a stellar performance as a priest who is tired of children’s suffering being swept under the rug. The film’s writing and direction go a long way in establishing a quiet, serious tone.

‘Living’ Depicts Bill Nighy in His Greatest Role – Oscars, Take Note

Ulises Duenas

There have been other movies in the past that explore a younger character’s reaction to their impending death, but this take is refreshing. Williams has had plenty of time to live a full life and has chosen to stay in the rut that’s been dug for him. The diagnosis is certainly sad news, but it doesn’t have the same tragic feeling as when a younger life in its prime is cut short. Williams’ quiet nature and dignity are the result of his long, uneventful life and seeing him become more of a free spirit is almost magical.

When It Comes to Gen-Z Appeal, Film Studio A24 Understands the Assignment

Ben Friedman

No film exemplifies these values better than this year’s Everything Everywhere All At Once. Starring Michelle Yeoh, the film follows a middle-aged woman running a laundromat who discovers the existence of a multiverse filled with thousands of versions of herself. It explores Asian-American identity and serves as a parable of the immigrant experience. Critically and commercially acclaimed, the film has proven an enormous success for A24 -- becoming the studio’s first film to gross over 100 million at the box office – and landing Golden Globe Awards for Yeoh and Ke Huy Quan.

The Golden Globes Are Back….What Now?

Forrest Hartman

It's hard to pinpoint why we’re here, but it does seem the cachet surrounding awards shows has decreased. This is true despite the fact that shifting distribution models have, arguably, made film awards more relevant than ever to the average viewer. Historically, one of the complaints surrounding movie awards contenders was that some of the most noteworthy pictures got outsized attention before most Americans could even see them. This remains true with select pictures, but things have improved.

‘Babylon’ Shows the Ultimate Depravity of 1920s Hollywood

Ulises Duenas

The absurdity of the scenes is often complemented by the portrayal of the characters who are deeply flawed human beings, and only have showbusiness as an outlet. Each character’s arc shows how someone’s humanity will clash with the hungry beast that is Hollywood, and Manny’s transformation in particular illustrates this. He becomes Americanized and swallowed by the system as he falls in love with Hollywood and adopts its shallow norms, while his cultural identity is slowly eroded away. 

‘Rickshaw Girl’ Tells an Interesting Coming-of-Age Story of a Bangladeshi Youth

Ulises Duenas

Naima’s family struggles to make ends meet and when her father becomes too sick to pull his rickshaw, Naima decides that the only way she can help bring in money is to find work in the big city of Dhaka. One of the film’s most interesting aspects is the authentic portrayal of life in Bangladesh -- from the bustling outdoor markets in the village to the frantic, crowded streets of the city.

From ‘White Christmas’ to ‘ Love Actually': Best Holiday Movies to Binge-Watch

Forrest Hartman

Next to warm eggnog and dazzling Christmas lights, few things can get one in the holiday spirit faster than a movie celebrating the season. That is, after all, why Hallmark has carved out a niche based entirely on the Christmas-movie genre. With this in mind, I’ve compiled some holiday favorites that look beyond Hallmark’s more-is-better approach. In short, all the following are great movies any time of year, but they play especially well in late December.

Adult Swim’s Weird, Wonderful Christmas Movie Is a Trip of the Senses

Ben Friedman

Adult Swim released its version of a Christmas movie, and it is as weird as one would suspect from the channel that airs Rick and Morty, The Eric Andre Show, and Smiling Friends.  Directed by Casper Kelly, Adult Swim Yule Log (aka The Fireplace) follows a couple who travels to an Airbnb for the holidays, only to discover their cabin has been double-booked by a group of stoner friends. Forced to board together, the two parties uncover a dark and mysterious presence that abides within the cabin.

‘Dragon Eats Eagle’ Waxes Poetic With a Preachy Message

Ulises Duenas

As the story moves along, Doug and Ralph become unwitting agents in the breakout of the coronavirus, which was orchestrated by fake Hillary to get rid of fake Trump after the 2016 election. It’s hard to tell what purpose Tucker and Ralph serve in the plot, since apparently, they don’t have any sway in the government despite being immortal and witnessing all the major events of American history. Since they have both been around for centuries, this is just an excuse for them to rant about the erosion of American values.

‘2nd Chance’ Documents Richard Davis’s Story of Bullets, Betrayal, and Consequences

Ulises Duenas

Bahrani’s skill as a storyteller comes through because in the first third of the movie, Davis comes off as a likable guy who wants to save lives and keep families together, but some dark truths are foreshadowed as the story develops. Davis’s character as depicted here slowly deteriorates, as interviews and events make him seem like he’s desperate to maintain his image as a savior.

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