A Sampling Of Toxic Relationships In Film

Over time we’ve been blessed with a lot of many amazing couples on screen. Sometimes, the film is incredible, but the relationship? Not so much. Depending on the film, the toxicity of the coupling can accentuate some of its intentions, other times, it’s not even recognized as such. I think the sense of awareness for the subjects makes a real difference. There are a lot of ways to look at toxic relationships in films, and these are several that should get attention, but as you’ll see, it’s for differing reasons. Continue reading A Sampling Of Toxic Relationships In Film

Retrospective Review: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

ove is messy. Life is even messier. Sometimes the hurt is too much. There are moments, after watching this film, where I wonder, would I want to forget? Would you? It would sure be easier. Or is it?

In the case of Joel and Clementine, in the “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” (2004) nothing is simple, everything is messy, but ultimately (despite its surreal- dream-like sequences) it is also an honest appraisal of love in its many forms. Continue reading Retrospective Review: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Best Actress of The Decade, Entry No. 5: Amy Adams

To celebrate the last decade 2010-2019 we are counting down the best actresses and discussing some of their most notable and memorable performances of the last decade. With the help of Film Twitter, the ITOL team have selected 50 actresses. Entry No. 5 is Amy Adams, and writer Kristy Strouse discusses her favourite performances by Adams over the last decade. Continue reading Best Actress of The Decade, Entry No. 5: Amy Adams

Best Actress of the Decade, Entry No. 20: Rooney Mara

To celebrate the last decade 2010-2019 we are counting down the best actresses and discussing some of their most notable and memorable performances of the last decade. With the help of Film Twitter, the ITOL team have selected 30 actresses. Entry No. 20 is Rooney Mara, and writer Kristy Strouse discusses her favourite performances by Mara over the last decade. Continue reading Best Actress of the Decade, Entry No. 20: Rooney Mara

Best Actress of the Decade, Entry No. 21: Jennifer Lawrence

To celebrate the last decade 2010-2019 we are counting down the best actresses and discussing some of their most notable and memorable performances of the last decade. With the help of Film Twitter, the ITOL team have selected 30 actresses. Entry No. 21 is Jennifer Lawrence, and writer Kristy Strouse discusses the actress and her work over the last decade. Continue reading Best Actress of the Decade, Entry No. 21: Jennifer Lawrence

Retrospective Review: Gremlins

We all know the rules, and instructions can be important: No water, no bright lights, and no eating after midnight (though, when does that one- end?). If you break these very important details, you’ll take an adorable fuzzy creature and trade it with a hellion set to ensue chaos and eat everything in sight.

Of course, I’m talking about “Gremlins.” (1984) Continue reading Retrospective Review: Gremlins

Retrospective Review: Take This Waltz

“Take this Waltz” (2011) has the main character’s story undone slowly, with a meditative and varied look on relationships. There is a lot of restraint with the film, and its patience is where it flourishes, because it allows a deeper engagement with the subjects and the questions that it creates.

Margot (Michelle Williams) and Lou Seth Rogan are a married couple, distant at times, but with their own cute comforts and familiarities. There’s a sadness to Margot even though their life seems to be good. They are both writers, him a cook crafting a chicken recipe book, and her a writer of pamphlets for tourist locations. Continue reading Retrospective Review: Take This Waltz

Retrospective Review: Little Women

Watching “Little Women” (1994) is sort of like coming home. Regardless of the period (1868 I believe) or place, the film reinstates a level of comfort felt when I saw the movie as a child. How I perceived the movie changed as I grew older, but watching it was a yearly viewing for me. Another tether? I felt innately like Jo (Winona Ryder), trying to find my own truth, regardless of societal or gender constraints, and just wanting to write.

Gillian Armstrong’s 1994 film that adapts Louisa May Alcott’s novel, portrays the March family, especially the four March girls, in a way that’s maintained credibility and resonance over the years. The adaptation is loyal in the sense that these characters are portrayed with the same warmth as they are read. Continue reading Retrospective Review: Little Women

ITOL Top 50 Films of the Decade, Entry 29: High Life

Claire Denis’ experimental sci-fi “High Life” (2018) is utterly bizarre- yes, but it’s also a reclusive and powerful picture. It’s a difficult film to quantify, and yet, despite its space odyssey setting, it really gets down to the meat of humanity. It’s more about relationships and isolation than it is about the exploration of black holes, or scientific experimentation.

Yes, that’s where it starts. As we eventually learn this ship once contained a group of previously death row inmates (including Mia Goth and André Benjamin) who were given the choice to be used as lab rats on a suicide mission. It gives you more time, and it may potentially help society find an alternative energy source, so it seems like an easy choice, right? Continue reading ITOL Top 50 Films of the Decade, Entry 29: High Life

Leia Organa: The Hero We Needed

The loss of Carrie Fisher is still stinging, but we were given a legacy that some could only hope to leave behind. She was someone who was frequently active in her work as a mental health advocate, taking her own experiences to help others. She was passionate in her stances, humble and humorous in her flaws, and…a fighter. She was also a talented writer, and unapologetically open. This role is definitely the one most thought of, but she did a lot more in Hollywood, in front of and behind the scenes.

I first saw the original “Star Wars Trilogy” when I was 5 years old. This was the early 90’s before we got the prequels or the extended universe. These films had a near-permanent place on my television. This story, taking the very relatable good versus evil premise and creating this fantastical franchise, would be nothing without the characters that live within. All the main heroes were inspirational to me, but Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) especially stood out. Continue reading Leia Organa: The Hero We Needed