Film Review: The Constitution

CONSTITUTION

SEEFest 2017: Cross-Dressing, Cruelty to Critters and Constitutional Rights in Croatia The 12th annual South East European Film Festival kicked off with a gala screening at the Writers Guild Theater in Beverly Hills of writer/director Rajko Grlić’s The Constitution, a stellar must-see movie full of humor and humanity that set the tone for this filmfest.  I say that because sometimes cinefiles “suffer” through specialty cinema (especially those Continue Reading...

Judge Neil Gorsuch Is a Dick

GORSUCH

The confirmation hearings for any presidential nominee are just pantomimes of democracy, with everyone going through the motions and nothing really being learned.  It's even worse for Supreme Court justice hearings, where the party of the president who did the nominating pretty much just finger fucks the nominee while the opposing party tries to get the nominee to express an opinion on any goddamned issue and the nominee repeatedly says, "No, go Continue Reading...

Film Review: The Great Wall

WALL

Not So Great: Oh! How the Mighty Have Fallen Aside from some stunning cinematography, special effects and scenery, this U.S.-China co-production lensed, according to IMDB.com, on location in Qinqdao and New Zealand (!) is more about cashing in on the growing international audience of the PRC and USA.  The use of Real 3D and IMAX 3D is what The Great Wall is really all about - not a story or, heavens’ forbid, character development - although to Continue Reading...

Selling Purim to Progressives in the Era of Trump

SONY DSC

It has been my custom to reproduce this “Selling Purim to Progressives” post occasionally on Purim.  The last time was in 2015, when we were in the midst of the Iran negotiations. Well, since then the world made a deal with Iran.  Trump may say that it's a lousy deal, but he doesn't plan on changing it soon, certainly not to Bibi's liking.  And as for the guy who's running Trump, forget about it; Putin is telling Bibi to move on. That's the Continue Reading...

Random Observations on Trump’s Speech to Congress Last Night

TRUMP

1. Let's get this out of the way up top: President Donald Trump's exploitation of Carryn Owens, the widow of Ryan Owens, a Navy SEAL who died in a fuck-up of a raid in Yemen, induced the kind of nausea you usually feel when you accidentally catch a glimpse of a pus-draining video.  While anonymous "senior officials" (who could be Trump - really) argue over whether or not any decent intelligence was gotten from the raid (spoiler: they didn't), Continue Reading...

Film Review: Do Not Resist

Outrage In Missouri Town After Police Shooting Of 18-Yr-Old Man

The Post-9/11 Iron Heel of the State The chillingly named Do Not Resist, which won the Tribecca Film Festival’s Best Documentary Feature award, opens with a tense demonstration shot at Ferguson, Missouri in 2014 only 10 days after the fatal police shooting of Michael Brown, an African American youth not carrying any weapons.  The footage shows heavily armed, helmeted officers with body armor, shields and Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Continue Reading...

Film Review: The Salesman

SALESMAN

Life of a Salesman: Is This the Enemy? Asghar Farhadi may be to Iran’s screen what Arthur Miller was to the American stage.  His 2011 A Separation, a searing account of an Iranian couple’s divorce, won the Oscar and Golden Globe for Best Foreign Language Film.  A Separation’s script also scored Farhadi a nomination for the Best Writing, Original Screenplay Academy Award.  Now, the writer/director’s newest feature, The Salesman, is again in Continue Reading...

Film Review: Collateral Beauty

collateral

Framing Philosophy: Good Grief! With its theme of inconsolable grief and how to cope with it, director David Frankel’s (Marley & Me, The Devil Wears Prada) Collateral Beauty has the kind of story one usually experiences in low budget indies by filmmakers such as Jim Jarmusch.  But this is a New Line Cinema, Village Roadshow Pictures, et al, feature being distributed by Warner Bros. with an A-list cast, written by Allan Loeb (the Continue Reading...