Posted in: Review

Courageous Warriors: Beauty From the Ashes

The bad news came quickly. It was breast cancer. It was Stage 4.  And, the doctors told her, she was not a candidate for radiation, or chemotherapy. So what can you do, the woman asked. “They told me they could keep me ‘comfortable,’” she remembers. That patient survived breast cancer, though, as did all the […]

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Killing the Shepherd

If you want to save a species from extinction, kill it. That’s the counterintuitive, but intriguing, idea behind the documentary Killing the Shepherd. Set in an impoverished section of Africa, it first lays out two real-life, and truly disastrous scenarios about our vanishing wildlife. In the first, there are no rules or regulations on big-game […]

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Inheritance, Italian Style

The Parlazzis would like to invite you to a big family dinner. Hope you like resentment. It’s the main course – and getting served up with sides of greed, anger, lust and depression. That’s the set up to the comic melodrama Inheritance, Italian Style which reunites a big, squabbling clan of Sicilians to divvy up […]

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American Insurrection

When fascism was on the rise in ’30s Europe, Sinclair Lewis wrote a novel about a dystopian, dictatorial America, sarcastically titled It Can’t Happen Here. In American Insurrection, it already has. That title, a new one, is misleading, although commercial. (The movie was originally called The Volunteers.)  Before the film even begins, an election has […]

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Vietnam: Fast Forward

What’s the first word that comes to mind when you think of Vietnam? The Vietnamese themselves know what it is. “War.” And around the world, especially in the West, the dominant images people have of Vietnam are of bombing raids, smoldering villages and, perhaps, helicopters departing an evacuated U.S. Embassy. The documentary Vietnam: Fast Forward, […]

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Outlier

“I’m only doing this for your own good.” Most of us first hear, and learn to distrust, those words as children. This is for my own good? Eating liver, sitting through Sunday school, going to this crummy sleepaway camp? No thanks. The line can be infuriating coming from a parent. It’s terrifying coming from a […]

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Lotawana

Forrest has gone adrift – literally. Unsure of where he’s heading in life, he’s decided to head nowhere. Retreating to a small sailboat on a big Missouri lake, he meanders, living off his small savings and whatever catfish he can catch. And then he meets a pretty young woman, Everly. And things take a new, […]

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Implanted

Imagine that little voice from Google Maps lives inside your head. Except, instead of telling you when to turn left, it tells you everything. Go to sleep, Wake up. Eat lunch. Kill that man. Wait, what? That’s the idea behind Implanted, a smart movie from director Fabien Dufils that deftly mixes plausible science-fiction with Bourne […]

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Seeding Change: The Power of Conscious Commerce

Can a company do well by doing good? According to Seeding Change: The Power of Conscious Commerce, the simple answer is “Yes.” But the way there is a bit complicated. It involves dealing with your suppliers honestly. Respecting the environment, at every stage of the process. And then putting some of your profits to work […]

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Overrun

Overrun is an action movie that gets one thing very right. It takes its filmmaking seriously. It doesn’t take itself seriously. Perhaps that’s because a lot of the people making it – behind and in front of the camera – are veteran stunt players. They still remember being kids at recess, and showing off their […]

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We Had It Coming

We Had It Coming is a film full of lonely places. Wide stretches of empty Canadian highway. No-name motels with equally anonymous occupants. Places you pass through, without looking, without caring. People you don’t really see. We Had It Coming demands we look, though. Look into the eyes of women, especially – women pushed around […]

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Camp Wedding

Having a wedding can be a scream. A tongue-in-cheek tribute to old slasher films, Camp Wedding revolves around Mia – which is only fitting, because she thinks the whole world should revolve around her. A bridezilla on a mission, she’s planned a special destination-wedding for her nuptials. The only problem is, the destination she’s picked […]

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When Today Ends

Every day, more than 3000 high school students attempt suicide. When Today Ends is the story of three of them. The suicide crisis among young people is a mental-health epidemic, and one that many novels and movies – like television’s controversial 13 Reasons Why – have explored. Michael Leoni, who directed and wrote this film, […]

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6:45

Screams like old times… The horror film 6:45 uses what had been a fresh story-telling gimmick when Groundhog Day did it, but lately has begun to go a little stale: The time loop. Think Source Code, The Final Girls, Edge of Tomorrow, or Happy Death Day. The template is easy: Oh no, someone’s trying to […]

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Caged

Sometimes the scariest thing of all is nothing. Literally. No person to talk to. No books to read. No changes, no surprises — nothing. Because that’s what solitary confinement is. And that is why it drives people mad. It’s also the story behind Caged, a taut new film that’s part character study, part mystery, part […]