Fellow Movie Buffs

Tuesday, January 15, 2019


Watch this movie and you'll want to move to Australia and take up surfing. Honestly. The story, based on the best-selling novel by Tim Winton, is about two teenage boys who befriend Sando,  a worldly hippy. He introducing them to surfing and supplies them with their first surfboards. Sando is a former world champion and lives with a gorgeous Olympic skier who's recuperating from a major injury. He takes the two kids to remote and challenging beaches where they develop into accomplished surfers. There's a "Summer of '42" like romance which adds to the story.  The scenery is breathtaking and the surfing cinematography is spectacular--you'll feel like you're right out there surfing with them. I found it refreshing to watch a feel-good movie where nothing horrible happens.
4 out of 5 stars

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

"Mississippi Grind"

Another great performance by Ben Mendelsohn. In this road trip film, Mendelsohn plays the down on his luck Gerry, who teams up with a charismatic poker player (played by Ryan Reynolds) and travels across the South in an effort to turn his luck around. As luck would have it, Gerry loses one pile of cash after another, however the two of them persist on their quest to win a fortune. It's a gritty, slice-of-life "guy flick" that I thoroughly enjoyed. And I especially liked Mendelsohn's performance. What a versatile actor deserving more recognition. When I looked him up on IMDB, I was surprised to see he played King George VI in "Darkest Hour."
4 out of 5 stars

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

"Brigsby Bear"

One of those quirky, fun, and thoroughly enjoyable movies that totally fell through the cracks. A coworker recommended this one to me. When I heard the title I was a bit skeptical, but I'm glad I searched for it. The film is about a kid who's abducted at birth and raised in a completely closed environment. He grows up watching a tv show called, you guessed it, "Brigsby Bear". When he's taken into custody and released to his birth parents, the show continues to be a dominant part of his reality. I love heartfelt movies like this where just about everything in it goes right.
4.5 out of 5 stars

Monday, December 24, 2018

An MST3K Christmas movie double header

Here's a Christmas gift from me. Two absolutely awful holiday movies, made hilarious via comments by the crew. Both movies are streaming on youtube. However, if they don't work for some reason, do a search on youtube.com using the words "Santa Claus" and "MST3K" and they'll pop up. As I like to say in PC vernacular: Seasonal Salutations everyone!

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

"A Child's Christmas in Wales"

 I read "A Child's Christmas In Wales" every Christmas Eve. It's a time-honored tradition (along with watching the Queen's speech) that goes back to when my daughters were little and I think I've only missed reading it one or two times. I saw this special, narrated by Denholm Elliot, several years ago on CBC. It's a beautiful retelling of the Dylan Thomas classic. Hopefully this link will work. If not, do a search for it on youtube. Merry Christmas to all!
4.5 out of 5 stars

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

"The Angel"

Based on a true story, "The Angel" is the gripping saga of Ashraf Marwan, the son-in-law of President Nasser of Egypt. It takes place in the aftermath of the 6-Days War between Egypt and Israel. Ashraf, brilliantly played by Marwan Kenzari, negotiates with the Mossad to sell them state secrets. While he appears to be an Egyptian traitor, his ultimate goal is peace between the two countries. The movie is based on the best-selling novel, "The Angel: The Egyptian Spy Who Saved Israel" by Uri Bar-Joseph. I had never heard Ashraf's story, and I feel he deserves to be a household name.
4 out of 5 stars.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

"Into the Forest"

This loosely falls into the "Post Apocalyptic" genre, which is a favorite of mine. The story revolves around two sisters, brilliantly played by Ellen Page and Evan Rachel Wood. They live with their father in the middle of the woods, somewhere in the Pacific Northwest. When power outages mysteriously occur around the country, they have to fend for themselves. When their dad dies in an accident, they're totally on their own. While it's somewhat slow-moving, Or, "nuanced" as some critics like to say, it's a beautiful shot and acted drama, that will hold your attention right until the end. The movie is based on a novel, that I'll have to look for.
4 out of 5 stars.