‘Keep the Change’ looks at love in its own unique way

“Keep the Change” (2017 production, 2018 release). Cast: Brandon Polansky, Samantha Elisofon, Jessica Walter, Tibor Feldman, Will Deaver, Nicky Gottlieb, Gabe Rhodes, Dylan Rothbein, Dorsey Massey, Johnathan Tchaikovsky, Christina Brucato, Anna Suzuki, Sondra James. Director: Rachel Israel. Screenplay: Rachel Israel. Source material: “Keep the Change,” short film (2013). Web site. Trailer. It’s been said that love knows no bounds. But how widely are most of us willing to apply that notion? Does that include only the limited sorts of romantic circumstances with which we’re most familiar? Or are we capable of envisioning it on a broader scale, applying it to scenarios that aren’t neatly compartmentalized into tidy little boxes? For those who have special needs or who represent constituencies outside [...]

2018-03-31T00:45:18+00:00 March 31st, 2018|Comedy, Conscious Creation, Featured Post, Movie Reviews|

‘The Death of Stalin’ skewers unrestrained ambition

“The Death of Stalin” (2017 production, 2018 release). Cast: Steve Buscemi, Jeffrey Tambor, Andrea Riseborough, Michael Palin, Simon Russell Beale, Adrian McLoughlin, Jason Isaacs, Paddy Considine, Olga Kurylenko, Dermot Crowley, Paul Whitehouse, Paul Chahidi, Rupert Friend, Tom Brooke, Karl Johnson, Diana Quick, Gerald Lepkowski. Director: Armando Iannucci. Writers: Armando Iannucci, David Schneider, Ian Martin and Peter Fellows. Original Screenplay: Fabien Nury. Comic Book Source Material: Fabien Nury and Thierry Robin, The Death of Stalin. Web site. Trailer. When opportunity knocks, it may be tempting to pursue it with all the gusto we can muster. The rewards awaiting us can be incalculable. But what if such a quest prompts us to engage in questionable, almost Machiavellian behavior? Is the prize still [...]

2018-03-30T04:19:24+00:00 March 30th, 2018|Comedy, Conscious Creation, Featured Post, Movie Reviews|

‘The Party’ brings us face to face with our innate selves

“The Party” (2017 production, 2018 release). Cast: Patricia Clarkson, Bruno Ganz, Cherry Jones, Emily Mortimer, Cillian Murphy, Kristin Scott Thomas, Timothy Spall. Director: Sally Potter. Screenplay: Sally Potter. Web site. Trailer. Celebrations are supposed to be festive occasions, times for us to enjoy ourselves and recognize the accomplishments of others. They’re a good time to let our hair down, to open ourselves up to others and, one would hope, to have a good time. But sometimes we might expose our inner selves a little too much at these events, revealing more than we originally may have planned. So it is for the guests at the darkly satirical new comedy of ill manners, “The Party.” When Janet (Kristin Scott Thomas), a [...]

2018-03-31T00:46:33+00:00 March 9th, 2018|Comedy, Conscious Creation, Movie Reviews|

‘I, Tonya’ reveals the dual-edged sword of ambition

“I, Tonya” (2017). Cast: Margot Robbie, Sebastian Stan, Allison Janney, Paul Walter Hauser, Bobby Cannavale, Julianne Nicholson, Bojana Novakovic, Caitlin Carver, Mckenna Grace, Jason Davis, Ricky Russert, Anthony Reynolds, Lynne Ashe, Dan Triandiflou, Jan Harrelson, Luray Cooper, Maizie Smith. Director: Craig Gillespie. Screenplay: Steven Rogers. Web site. Trailer. Being the best at what we do is something to which many of us aspire. With great heart, tremendous determination, a plucky attitude and our own brand of innovation, we forge ahead as we strive to surmount that pinnacle of success. But is it possible for those efforts to be excessive or get out of hand? Under conditions like that, our aims may become skewed, perhaps even turning counterproductive, no matter how [...]

2018-01-31T09:15:55+00:00 January 3rd, 2018|Comedy, Movie Reviews|

‘The Disaster Artist’ skillfully unmasks hidden truths

“The Disaster Artist” (2017). Cast: James Franco, Dave Franco, Seth Rogen, Ari Graynor, Alison Brie, Jacki Weaver, Paul Scheer, Zac Efron, Josh Hutcherson, June Diane Raphael, Megan Mullally, Sharon Stone, Bob Odenkirk, Melanie Griffith, Bryan Cranston, Jason Mantzoukas, Andrew Santino, Charlyne Yi, Kelly Oxford, Tommy Wiseau, Greg Sestero, Judd Apatow, Kevin Smith, Keegan Michael Key, Danny McBride, J.J. Abrams, Zach Braff. Director: James Franco. Screenplay: Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber. Book: Greg Sestero and Tom Bissell, The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside The Room, the Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made. Web site. Trailer. Most artists would agree that they seek to garner acclaim by producing quality work, creations applauded for their many noteworthy attributes. But sometimes artists achieve notoriety [...]

2018-01-29T09:27:37+00:00 December 22nd, 2017|Comedy, Movie Reviews|

‘Three Billboards’ explores the lengths to which we’ll go for justice

“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” (2017). Cast: Frances McDormand, Woody Harrelson, Sam Rockwell, Lucas Hedges, Peter Dinklage, John Hawkes, Zeljko Ivanek, Caleb Landry Jones, Abbie Cornish, Amanda Warren, Sandy Martin, Clarke Peters, Malaya Rivera Drew, Kerry Condon, Samara Weaving, Darrell Britt-Gibson, Kathryn Newton. Director: Martin McDonagh. Screenplay: Martin McDonagh. Web site. Trailer. Seeking justice can be a slow, tedious process that severely tries one’s patience. The frustration that sets in can weigh heavily on those who want their wrongs righted, perhaps pushing them to take desperate measures. But, as understandable as those circumstances are, is the pursuit of such drastic steps truly warranted? Will they get the sought-after results? Or will they only compound matters, making things worse for all [...]

2017-12-29T07:12:35+00:00 November 29th, 2017|Comedy, Movie Reviews|

‘The Square’ urges us to live up to our intentions

“The Square” (2017). Cast: Claes Bang, Elisabeth Moss, Dominic West, Terry Notary, Christopher Læssø, Lilianne Mardon, Lise Stephenson Engstrom, Director: Ruben Östlund. Screenplay: Ruben Östlund. Web site. Trailer. What does it mean to truly care for one’s fellow man? Some would contend that it involves more than just paying lip service to the notion or writing a check to a beloved charity; rather, they would say, it entails getting actively involved in bettering the well-being of others. But are we genuinely equipped to engage in such an activity? And, if so, what exactly does it take? Those are among the questions raised in the unusual and provocative new Swedish satire, “The Square.” Christian (Claes Bang) is the respected curator of [...]

2017-12-20T09:56:48+00:00 November 29th, 2017|Comedy, Movie Reviews|