THE DIVINE ORDER REVEALS SWITZERLAND’S DIRTY LITTLE SECRET

Suddenly it turns out that Switzerland is not the superior progressive country we always thought it was! Screenwriter/director Petra Volpe has let us in on Switzerland’s dirty little secret in her new movie The Divine Order – women didn’t get the vote there until 1971! Impossible to believe, but TRUE. Switzerland’s patriarchal system kept women oppressed THAT long! Despite the timely subject matter, the movie, about small town women waking up to the desire for equality, is charming, sometimes funny, and quite likeable. The best part about it is it teaches men what they did and still do wrong. It’s a nice lesson to be learned.

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Posted by Janet on November 28, 2017

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Filed Under: Movies > Switzerland > The Divine Order > Women's Rights

THE DISASTER ARTIST: TRUTH IS FUNNIER THAN FICTION

Usually we recommend to filmgoers that they avoid reading too much about a movie before seeing it because it spoils the element of surprise. But “The Disaster Artist” is the exact opposite – read all you can about it ahead of time and it will be even FUNNIER. James Franco directed and stars and he does a bang-up job for a change. It’s about a very peculiar and eccentric aspiring filmmaker who happens to have enough money to make his own feature film and proceeds to do so without any experience. The resulting film is called “The Room” and has been described as one of the worst movies ever made and a cult classic. Knowing this twisted story is true makes it extremely entertaining.

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Posted by Janet on November 13, 2017

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Filed Under: James Franco > Movies > The Disaster Artist

DADDY’S HOME 2 – ONCE WAS ENOUGH

Sorry to say Daddy’s Home 2 is nowhere as entertaining as the first one – and the first one was merely tolerable. The idea of dad vs stepdad was interesting the first time around, despite the lack of subtlety and overacting by Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg. The second movie is like the first, but on STEROIDS. Bigger budget, worse script, cornier acting, and more special effects. Will Ferrell falls down a lot, but never gets hurt. Mel Gibson’s stereotypical character was a poorly written obnoxious bully – not a good comeback. Mark Wahlberg looked appropriately embarrassed much of the time – so did the audience…
(Above, Mel Gibson promoting the film on Good Morning America)

Photo Credit: AKM-GSI

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Posted by Janet on November 9, 2017

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Filed Under: Daddy's Home 2 > Mark Wahlberg > Movies > Will Ferrell

VICTORIA & ABDUL AND THE FLORIDA PROJECT ARE BOTH ENDS OF THE SPECTRUM

We were lucky to see two excellent movies last weekend and they couldn’t have been more different.
Victoria & Abdul is a crowd pleaser – surprisingly entertaining and humorous. There’s nothing funnier than the uptight English making fun of THEMSELVES. Beautifully written, and the visuals of the voluptuous royal lifestyle and the palace are breathtaking. It’s a very personal view of Queen Victoria and her odd friendship with an Indian servant. Heartwarming.

The Florida Project is not easy to like – the theater was more than half empty and several people walked OUT. It starts out with a joyful pack of young mischievous kids – their language is harsh and they know far too much for their ages. It becomes obvious that they live with family members on government assistance in a dreary motel in Orlando, Florida, not far from Disneyworld. My first thought: this is how the other half lives. These families struggled for life basics and their kids seemed doomed to repeat the same mistakes as their parents. It’s a painful dose of reality, but mesmerizing and heartbreaking and wonderful.

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Posted by Janet on October 2, 2017

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Filed Under: Movies > The Florida Project > Victoria & Abdul

CATHERINE DENEUVE SCORES AGAIN IN THE MIDWIFE

Anyone exhausted by the proliferation of summer action movies will probably enjoy the tranquility and social observations in the French movie The Midwife. It’s the story of two very opposite women thrown together by circumstances, who learn to appreciate one another. (Stories about women are always more introspective than those about men.) What a delight to see Catherine Deneuve as the free spirited self-indulgent ex-wife of Catherine Frot’s conservative character’s late father. We recall bumping into Catherine Deneuve a few years ago at the flea market in Hollywood. To say we were SHOCKED is an understatement. She looked beautiful (that skin!) and was happy and friendly as she browsed for amusing items to take back to friends in France. This wonderful film is not for those addicted to speed, but a treat for anyone interested in human behavior.

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Posted by Janet on July 23, 2017

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Filed Under: Catherine Deneuve > Movies > The Midwife

DUNKIRK WARNING: TOM HARDY’S FACE IS COVERED THROUGH THE ENTIRE MOVIE!

Let’s be honest – Dunkirk is a movie made BY men, ABOUT men, FOR men. (There’s nary a female onscreen except for a nurse who died immediately) If you like to watch men fighting and torturing each other nonstop – this is your ticket. Director Christopher Nolan apparently realized that he needed a little something to attract a female audience so he included Harry Styles for the young ones and Tom Hardy for adult women. Unfortunately Nolan put Hardy in a plane, wearing a full helmet and face/gas mask for his ENTIRE performance (what a waste!) so we got no satisfaction. We never got to know and feel for the characters, who appeared and died abruptly, – no backstories, no connections, no sentiment. In spite of all that, it was a well-made film with a haunting soundtrack. Just know what to expect before you buy a ticket.

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Posted by Janet on July 20, 2017

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Filed Under: Dunkirk > Harry Styles > Movies > Tom Hardy

“THE BIG SICK” WILL SURPRISE YOU IN A GOOD WAY

The mere IDEA of a romantic comedy makes us WINCE – picturing the same awkward silly scenes we’ve seen dozens of times with the likes of Katherine Heigl or Jennifer Aniston. For us, having not-so familiar actors like Kumail Nanjiani and Zoe Kazan makes a movie more relatable and believable. Experiencing the movie The Big Sick is like reading a very satisfying book – you love the characters and don’t want it to end. It’s smart, well-written, funny and serious- everything you hope for in a story.

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Posted by Janet on July 14, 2017

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Filed Under: Movies > The Big Sick

BABY DRIVER STAR ANSEL ELGORT: KISS YOUR PRIVATE LIFE GOOD-BYE!

Young girls have been hip to Ansel Elgort, 23, for a while now, but until this weekend he could walk down the street relatively unnoticed (despite being 6’4”) Baby Driver opens this weekend and that’s going to change EVERYTHING. It’s a teenage dream movie – great music, cool cars, action galore, and even a sweet romance. Ansel’s provocative role is destined to launch him into stardom a la Jennifer Lawrence. The baby-faced actor does have a real-life girlfriend – his high school sweetheart, who happens to be a ballerina. Somehow that makes him even more appealing. Anyway, Baby Driver is a movie that’s hard not to like, even if you are NOT a fan of action, like us….

Photo Credit: AKM-GSI

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Posted by Janet on June 29, 2017

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Filed Under: Ansel Elgort > Baby Driver > Girlfriend > Movies

WHAT WE LIKED ABOUT WONDER WOMAN

The opening scene introduces the island of fierce Amazons magically protected from men and the outside world. They’re supposedly dedicated to their own peaceful, loving society, but are incessantly and violently training to fight. (It’s the 1940’s – couldn’t they find a more scientific way to defend themselves?) The ridiculously sexy metal and leather costumes seemed over the top until one remembers that male superheroes are equally sexualized. Everyone on the Amazon island was cleverly trained to speak with the same light Israeli accent that gorgeous star Gal Gadot has. We LOVED the way Wonder Woman frequently questioned the morals and intelligence of war-mongering men she encountered when she left the island. And we LOVED her first shopping experience. But the relentless and numbingly monotonous fight scenes just kept interrupting. If an hour of explosive violence were cut out, it would be a better movie.

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Posted by Janet on June 13, 2017

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Filed Under: Gal Gadot > Movies > Wonder Woman

WE LOVE BRAD PITT, BUT HE’S NO CLARK GABLE

One of the main reasons to see Allied is the revelation that Brad Pitt is absolutely gorgeous in vintage 1940’s apparel. He is a dream walking in gabardine and bears more than a slight resemblance to Clark Gable. But sadly, without Gable’s charm! For whatever reason, Brad’s character is stiff and humorless. It’s an old-fashioned love story set during WWII, but while Marion Cotillard’s character is radiant and fun, Brad’s spy character almost never smiles. It’s a beautiful to look at tragic love story, but we never shed a tear. Something was missing…

Photo Credit: Pacific Coast News

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Posted by Janet on November 23, 2016

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Filed Under: Allied > Brad Pitt > Marion Cotillard > Movies

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    One of America’s Sweethearts is battling a serious drug addiction- not hers, but her best friend’s. Through the years these two have been stuck to one another like white on rice and her fame rubbed off on her pal. They’ve been roomies, have worked together on set, and even launched a business venture together. But all that success has come with a price. After years of being sober, the less famous friend has fallen HARD off the wagon and our gal doesn’t know what to do. She’s hosted an intervention, hired an addiction specialist, and even threatened to end the friendship, but nothing seems to work. What’s a girl to do?

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