Pixar’s latest offering, “Onward,” is more than just your normal magical animated film; it’s a touching tale of brotherly love that deals with grief, learning to believe in yourself, and the awkwardness of your teenage years. Directed by Dan Scanlon, who previously worked on “Monsters University” (2013) for the studio, the movie feels both cleverly unique and markedly Pixar. “Onward” is the story of brothers Ian and Barley, elves who live in a world in which modern technology has replaced magic long ago. It resembles our normal world, but populated by magical creatures from sprites to cyclops. While older brother Barley is obsessed with the magical past and the game Quests of Yore, Ian is just trying to celebrate his 16th birthday and not make a fool of himself in front of his classmates. When a special birthday gift offers Ian the chance to meet the father who passed away while he was still a baby, the two must go on a real quest of their own.
Joan gives us a list of her favourite romances from horror for Valentine's Day! 1. “Bram Stoker’s Dracula” (1992): A horror story based on eternal love complicated by the side effects of eternal life. Great art direction and Richard E. Grant is awesome as a psychologist stumped by patient Renfield’s obsession with flies. Why I love it: Gary Oldman in blue tinted shades indulging in absinthe. 2. “Crimson Peak” (2015): When a tall, handsome stranger (Tom Hiddleston) professes his desire to take aspiring author Edith Cushing (Mia Wasikowska) away to his family mansion, what could possibly go wrong? Gothic and darkly beautiful, this is a romance that only Guillermo del Toro could tell and Jessica Chastain nearly walks away with the film as the dominating, manipulative Lucille. Why I love it: The candlelight waltz with Tom Hiddleston.
It is sadly not an uncommon story. Especially in the United States. “Unarmed Black Man Killed by Police.” Trayvon Martin. Eric Garner. Philandro Castile. Michael Brown. Ryan Coogler’s directorial debut, “Fruitvale Station” (2013) took an intimate look at the life and murder of one young man named Oscar Grant III. The film starts with actual cell phone footage from the train platform minutes into the new year. You see the bystanders calling out police for accosting a group of men, Grant among them. There’s a scuffle. And a bang.
The 2020 Independent Spirit Awards nominations have recently been announced with Roger Eggers "The Lighthouse" and Benny Safdie and Josh Safdie's "Uncut Gems" being nominated for five awards including Best Director. The other big films to receive multiple nominations also include Alma Har’el's "Honey Boy" and Music Box’s comedy “Give Me Liberty”. Out of the... Continue Reading →
In Greek mythology, Cassandra was blessed with seeing true prophesies but she was cursed with never being believed. She foresaw the Greek soldiers hiding in a wooden horse but the Trojans stopped her from hacking it open. She was forced to watch the destruction, knowing it could have been avoided if only they'd have listened. Such is the fate of teacher Harriet Wilson (Octavia Spencer) in "Luce" (2019). She sees the warning signs about one of her students, Luce, but is completely dismissed by his parents and other teachers.