Month: October 2017

The Staircase–A Fall to the Bottom

  The Staircase, about a cold case murder that is resurrected again and again, is a crime thriller rivaling James Patterson. Filmed by Academy Award-winning French filmmaker Jean-Xavier de Lestrade, we see a gripping courtroom drama, offering an intimate look at a high-profile murder trial and the family of the accused. Reminiscent of the groundbreaking “reality” series, An American Family, from the seventies, author Michael Peterson is arraigned for the 2001 murder of his second wife, Kathleen, whose body was discovered lying in a pool of blood on the stairway of their Durham,...

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Faces Places: A Journey of the Heart

The genius of Faces Places is the evocative themes of memory and loss, the ephemeral embedded in the permanent. Varda examines the fate of the working class, the meaning of friendship, the impact of mechanization on rural agriculture with a subtle grace and impish directorial hand.

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Beauty and the Beast – Be Our Guest

In this 2017 live action remake from the 1991 animated film, both by Walt Disney Pictures, we see the familiar and delightful eighteenth-century fairy tale by Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont.   Beauty and the Beast grossed over $1.2 billion worldwide, making it the highest grossing film of 2017 and the 10th highest-grossing film of all time. The cast for this “tale as old as time” is a dream one:  Emma Watson (“Hermione” from the Harry Potter films), Dan Stevens (“Downton Abbey”), the outstanding veterans Kevin Kline, Ewan McGregor, Stanley Tucci, Ian McKellen...

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Wind River — Chilling and Icy, Drifting in the Snow

A tense police procedural and neo-Western, Wind River opens on an icy, moonlit, Wyoming landscape. Writer, producer and director, Taylor Sheridan (the 2016 Oscar-nominated Hell or High Water as well as Sicario) has created another winner. A terrified Native American teenage girl is running in the snow, barefoot and bleeding.  She falls face down, gets up, and runs for six miles before dying from blood filling her lungs.  That chilling scene is the opening scene in the true story of Wind River. On the Wind River Arapaho Reservation we see the main character, Cory (played by Jeremy Renner), barely...

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