Not So True Love Retrospective: Mistress America

By Morgan Roberts Brooke Cardinas (Greta Gerwig) is the most intriguing person in the world.  As one of the central characters of 2015’s “Mistress America,” Brooke is alluring with her joie de vivre and exciting life.  Yet, this film is more than just two women at different stages trying to figure it out, but it is Brooke’s love story with life and people. In 2015, … Continue reading Not So True Love Retrospective: Mistress America

Not So True Love Retrospective: The African Queen

By Joan Amenn Not only a great film, but a great adventure in filmmaking, “The African Queen” (1951) is definitely not a conventional love story. John Huston packed up his cast and crew and headed off to deepest Africa to film his adaptation of the C.S. Forester novel and mayhem pretty much ruled from there. The many trials and tribulations nearly eclipse the film itself, … Continue reading Not So True Love Retrospective: The African Queen

Retrospective: The Fellowship of the Ring 20th Anniversary

By Joan Amenn “A wizard is never late… nor is he early. He arrives precisely when he means to.” -Gandalf the Grey The twentieth anniversary of “The Fellowship of the Ring” (2001) arrives this weekend, precisely on time for its fans to start their annual viewing marathon of the trilogy as a whole. Evaluated on its own merits, “Fellowship” is a breathtaking achievement although at … Continue reading Retrospective: The Fellowship of the Ring 20th Anniversary

Retrospective: 20th Anniversary of Monsters, Inc.

By Joan Amenn Back when Pixar was still a relatively new up and coming animation studio, the plot of their fourth film being a “buddy movie” didn’t sound all that exciting. After all their first and third films had the same theme. But “Monsters Inc.” (2001) proved to be quite different from the rest and remains one of their best conceived and executed movies. From … Continue reading Retrospective: 20th Anniversary of Monsters, Inc.

The Women of Dune

By Joan Amenn **Caution: Spoilers, obviously** With “Dune: Part 2” officially announced and Hans Zimmer declaring he has more music left inside him (never doubted it for a minute), now would be a good time to take a deeper look at the women characters of the first film who represent the greatest strengths and weaknesses of “Dune: Part 1” (2021). As Lady Jessica, Rebecca Ferguson … Continue reading The Women of Dune

Time to Be Honest: Depression, Film And Me

“So, for how long have you been depressed for?” This was the question once posed to me by a counsellor during our first counselling session. “I dunno.” I shrugged in response. “Ever since I was a kid, I think.” It sounds like an exaggeration but to some extent, it’s true. In my life there have been two consistencies: depression and film. Both elements are so entwined in my life that it’s easier for me to recall the events of a film rather than the events of my life. Continue reading Time to Be Honest: Depression, Film And Me

Although uneven, The “FAST & Furious” Franchise also has fierce women

By Valerie Kalfrin Helen Mirren looks gleeful in her few moments in “F9: The Fast Saga.” “Get the e-brake for me, would you?” she says, driving a Noble M600 away from a London jewelry store with the cops hot on her tail. They want the emerald and diamond necklace she lifted moments earlier that looks oh-so-chic with her white outfit and zebra-patterned boots.  Vin Diesel, … Continue reading Although uneven, The “FAST & Furious” Franchise also has fierce women

Review: Luca, from an Italian American’s Point of View

Year: 2021 Runtime: 101 minutes Director: Enrico Casarosa Writers: Enrico Casarosa, Jesse Andrews, Simon Stephenson, Mike Jones, Julie Lynn (consultant), Randall Green (consultant) Actors: Jacob Tremblay, Jack Dylan Grazer, Emma Berman, Saverio Raimondo, Maya Rudolph, Marco Barricelli, Jim Gaffigan, Sacha Baron Cohen By Joan Amenn **Spoilers: The following is a discussion of major plot points for the film, “Luca.” If you have not seen the … Continue reading Review: Luca, from an Italian American’s Point of View

“Thelma & Louise” and the long road still ahead

By Valerie Kalfrin A Polaroid tends to fade over time. The one that Thelma and Louise took before their fateful road trip certainly didn’t survive, blown away in the wind. Yet that Polaroid selfie — indeed, their whole adventure — only grows richer and sharper after 30 years. It’s a snapshot in time that captures not just the way things are but how we’d like … Continue reading “Thelma & Louise” and the long road still ahead

Mental Health Awareness Month Retrospective: Girl, Interrupted

Year: 1999 Runtime: 127 minutes Director: James Mangold Writers: Susanna Kaysen (book), James Mangold, Lisa Loomer, Anna Hamilton Phelan (screenplay) Actors: Winona Ryder, Angelina Jolie, Clea DuVall, Brittany Murphy, Elisabeth Moss, Jared Leto, Jeffrey Tambor, Vanessa Redgrave, Whoopi Goldberg By Joan Amenn In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month and in light of Angelina Jolie returning to the screen in the upcoming “The Eternals”, this … Continue reading Mental Health Awareness Month Retrospective: Girl, Interrupted