“Yellowjackets”– “Lord of the Flies” meets Girls Club Soccer

Guest reviewer:  Karinne Gordon, writer and creative writing teacher Yellowjackets is a  complex and fascinating peek into the future, following a group of teen girls who are  survivors, flashing back and forth into their adult lives some 25 years later. The basic premise of Yellowjackets is that an elite girls soccer team, along with their handsome young coach and young assistants, is stranded in the Ontario woods, after their plane crashes on the way to a tournament. The series progresses with cuts between the past and the survivors’ present lives 25 years later....

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Happy New Year  Chinese Style –Year of the Water Tiger (February 1-15, 2022)

Happy New Year –Chinese Style!  The Lunar New Year begins with the first new moon that occurs near the end of January and ends on the fifteenth day when the full moon arrives. Lunar New Year is the single most important traditional celebration in East and Southeast Asian cultures. Over 2 billion people celebrate the Lunar New Year for a two-week period  with a dragon parade on the first or second day and a Lantern Festival on the last. Twelve animals comprise the Chinese calendar and zodiac, one for each month: the rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat,...

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“The Power of the Dog”–Bad Dogs Barking Loud

Guest Reviewer Densie Webb  (International Book Award finalist for When Robins Appear) This slow-spun Western, sparingly based on the novel of the same name by Thomas Savage, is set on a fictional sprawling ranch in 1920s Montana (filmed in New Zealand). Directed by Jane Campion, The Power of the Dog centers on the dysfunctional, co-dependent relationship of two brothers, played by Benedict Cumberbatch (of “Sherlock Holmes”, “Dr. Strange”, and “The Imitation Game”) as Phil and Jesse Plemons (of “Breaking Bad” and “Friday...

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“Being the Ricardos”–Making America Great Again

Academy-Award nominated Being the Ricardos  (2021) opens in the  the year 1939 with a handsome 22-year old Cuban singer named Desi Arnaz (played by Javier Bardem), touring the country with his orchestra.  After Lucille Ball (Nicole Kidman) and Desi fall in love and marry, Desi continues to have modest success on tour while Lucille struggles with bit parts in low-budget films.  After ten years trying to breakthrough to stardom, Lucille turns to radio, and with “My Favorite Husband”,  finds a popular medium for her comic timing.  CBS asks her to...

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“The Dressmaker”–Quirky Down-Under Drama

Based upon Rosalie Ham’s novel by the same name, The Dressmaker  (2015) gives us an opening scene in which  10-year-old Tilly Dunnage is being bullied by classmate Stewart Pettyman, the mayor’s son,  and a group of boys in Dungatar, a town in the  Australian outback. With little investigation she is sent away by police Sergeant Farrat (Hugo Weaving) for the boy’s murder. Twenty-five years later (1951) Tilly (Kate Winslet) returns to Dungatar after a highly successful career as a couturier working in Paris.  Presumably returning to care for...

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“The Lost Daughter”–Missing Mom

In her directing and writing debut  Maggie Gyllenhaal gives us  The Lost Daughter,  a courageous look at the “maternal instinct”… which isn’t. Leda Caruso (Olivia Colman), a college professor, is vacationing in a quaint Greek resort. Traveling alone with her books, she is enjoying a lazy day on the beach when she observes Nina (Dakota Johnson), a distracted young mother,who is not watching her little girl. When her daughter goes missing, Leda manages to find her. In a series of  flashbacks, a younger Leda (played by Jessie Buckley) has a troubled...

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