Friday, September 13, 2019


My View: Hustlers (2019) R When financial hard times hit a strip club, the crew of strip club employees decide to band together and turn the tables on their Wall Street clients. A lot of critics that were at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival were talking up how good Jennifer Lopez in the role of the ringleader of the crew (so even mentioned Oscar nomination) but I think Constance Wu, whose character Destiny is the center of the film, acts rings around Lopez’s Ramona. Wu is a force on screen and demands, even when Lopez is sharing the screen, that you pay attention to her character. Some of the film is very funny, especially a running gag that involves Lili Reinhart’s character, Annabelle. I enjoyed the film, though the last act did drag a bit and the film seemed a little too long. Still, go have a fun time learning how to steal rich guys blind from Romona, Annabelle, and Destiny.   My Rating: Bargain Matinee   Hustlers Website
My View: Official Secrets (2019) R True story of a British whistleblower (Keira Knightley) who leaked information on a spy operation that was designed to push the UN Security Council into sanctioning the 2003 invasion of Iraq. This is based on a true story of a whistleblower that saw something that her country (and the U.S.) were telling lies to start a war and the incredible sacrifices she endured to bring those allegations to light. Knightley gives an outstanding performance of the woman who dared to risk everything to let the world know that a conspiracy was afoot. The film is an earnest attempt to tell a story of one person against a system that tried everything to discredit a brave woman willing to take on the system.   My Rating: Full Price     Official Secrets Website
Indiefest: This is Not Berlin (2019)   Set in 1980s Mexico City, seventeen-year-old Carlos (Xabiani Ponce de Leon) does not fit it, whether it is his family or his school. His world changes when he is invited to a nightclub where discovers the underground nightlife scene. Other than the multi-layered performance of Xabiani Ponce de Leon, there is little to recommend this film. The film is one long orgy of music, art, and drugs as we watch Carlos think that he has found his place in the world, only to find out that the world isn’t what he thought it was. Be warned there is heavy drug use in the film and quite a bit of nudity. This is one of those films that having watched it for almost 2 hours, we know less about the characters in the film than when we first started it.   My Rating: Bargain Matinee
   This is Not Berlin Website 
Indiefest: Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice (2019)  PG-13 Documentary on one of the greatest voices of the 20th century. Linda Ronstadt trail-blazed a career that spanned everything from country to rock to folk to Spanish Language albums. I loved this film, mostly it doesn’t fall into the mistake that a lot of bio’s of musicians do, too many interviews and not enough music. This film does a great job of giving you lengthy segments of music followed by interviews with some of the most iconic singers of Ronstadt’s generation like Bonnie Raitt, Dolly Parton, Jackson Browne, Don Henley, and Emmylou Harris. The film lets Ronstadt do the narration and we get to see the wit and humor of Ronstadt’s personality. The biggest thing I took away from this film is how important family was and is to Ronstadt and how much her family influenced her music and her voice.   My Rating: Full Price     Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice Website
My View: The Goldfinch (2019)  R  A young boy named Theodore (Oakes Fegley) is taken in by a wealthy family after his mother is killed in a bombing at the Metropolitan Museum of the Art. Life is going to be a bumpy road for Theodore who desperately clings to the image of his mother. Some books are just meant to be books and nothing else. The Goldfinch is a bestselling Pulitzer Prizing winning book that has plenty of fans. The problem is that the storyline makes for a rather boring and almost unwatchable movie. The film never gets going after the first couple of minutes and keeps going back and forth between present-day and Theodore’s very messy childhood. The film never really lets us connect with Theodore and the bombing is never explained why or how it happened. The other problem is that other than Theodore’s surrogate father, Hobie (played by the brilliant Jeffery Wright), we don’t like any of the characters in the film, especially Theodore. Skip the movie and settle down with a good book, maybe even The Goldfinch.   My Rating: Full Price    The Goldfinch Website
Forgotten Film: The Young Philadelphians (1959) An up and coming lawyer, Anthony (Paul Newman) seemingly has a very bright future. Anthony is on the fast track for partner at his law firm, winning cases right and left and he has a fiancee (Barbara Rush) who loves him, His life is turned upside down when he takes the case of his best friend, Gwynn (Robert Vaughn) who has been accused of murder, a case that looks like a sure thing that Anthony’s friend is guilty. Anthony must decide to stay the course or break his comfortable ties and defend his best friend. While Newman gives his usual great performance, it's Robert Vaughn, in an Oscar-nominated role, that makes this film work as the flawed friend of Anthony who believes and trusts that his friend can get a not guilty plea against the odds.   My Rating: Full Price     The Young Philadelphians Info

Weird Credits: From the credits of Hustlers: Pole Trainer

Coming Soon to a Theatre Near You: Jojo Rabbit (2019)  PG-13   A young boy in Hitler’s army finds out that his mother is hiding a Jewish girl in their home. If anyone can make a comedy about Nazi’s and Hitler work, it’s the director of Thor: Ragnarok (2017), What We Do in the Shadows ( 2014) and one of my all-time favorite movies, Boy (2011), Taika Waititi.    Jo Jo Rabbit Website
Until Next Time!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.