‘American Empire’ takes a critical look at what has value

“The Fall of the American Empire” (“La chute de l’empire américain”) (2018 production, 2019 release). Cast: Alexandre Landry, Maripier Morin, Rémy Girard, Maxim Roy, Louis Morissette, Florence Longpré, Patrick Emmanuel Abellard, Pierre Curzi, Vincent Leclerc, Eddy King, Anoulith Sintharaphone, Ayana O’Shun, Kémy St-Eloy. Director: Denys Arcand. Screenplay: Denys Arcand. Web site. Trailer. We all have our priorities when it comes to determining what we believe has value. But what exactly are those determinations based on? Do they arise from rigorously scrutinized considerations, or do they stem from arbitrary, capricious, cursory examinations? Are they decided upon by consensus, or do they vary from one individual to another? And are they fixed or flexible, changeable as needs arise or forever rigid? Those [...]

‘Rocketman’ celebrates creativity unleashed

“Rocketman” (2019). Cast: Taron Egerton, Jamie Bell, Richard Madden, Bryce Dallas Howard, Gemma Jones, Steven Mackintosh, Stephen Graham, Charlie Rowe, Tate Donovan, Matthew Illesley, Kit Connor, Tom Bennett, Sharmira Harrower, Ophelia Lovibond, Celinde Schoenmaker, Rachel Muldoon. Director: Dexter Fletcher. Screenplay: Lee Hall. Web site. Trailer. The creative spark within each of us longs to be released. But that typically doesn’t happen until we give it the catalyst it needs to free itself, something we generally don’t supply until we recognize exactly what’s required for that to happen. Sometimes it even calls for elements and influences that we might ordinarily think would be highly unlikely for achieving success. Nevertheless, when these components come together, they can truly work magnificent wonders, a [...]

2019-06-14T06:28:59+00:00 June 14th, 2019|Conscious Creation, Drama, Featured Post, Movie Reviews|

‘Dogman’ unleashes one’s wont of personal power

“Dogman” (2018 production, 2019 release). Cast: Marcello Fonte, Edoardo Pesce, Nunzia Schiano, Adamo Dionisi, Alida Baldari Calabria, Laura Pizzirani, Aniello Arena. Director: Matteo Garrone. Screenplay: Ugo Chiti, Matteo Garrone, Massimo Gaudioso, Marco Perfetti, Giulio Troli and Fratelli D’Innocenzo. Story: Ugo Chiti, Matteo Garrone and Massimo Gaudioso. Web site. Trailer. Few among us would deny the attraction we feel for a sense of personal power. It enables us to direct our destiny and shape the existence we want for ourselves. But it also comes with a temptation, one that can easily get out of hand if left unchecked. And it carries consequences, especially if we misuse it in our dealings with others or our community. It’s an issue that the residents [...]

2019-06-04T16:22:09+00:00 May 7th, 2019|Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews|

‘Searching’ distinguishes what we know from what we think we know

“Searching” (2018). Cast: John Cho, Debra Messing, Sara Sohn, Michelle La, Joseph Lee, Alex Jayne Go, Megan Liu, Kya Dawn Lau, Ric Sarabia. Director: Aneesh Chaganty, Screenplay: Aneesh Chaganty and Sev Ohanian. Web site. Trailer. We can take comfort in knowing that certain aspects of our life are exactly as they seem to be. Or can we? Are we getting a clear, accurate picture of the people, places and things that make up our existence? Or are we falling prey to what we’d like to think we know about such elements of our reality? The result can be eye-opening – and disillusioning – as an anguished parent discovers for himself in the sizzling thriller, “Searching,” now available on DVD, Blu-ray [...]

2019-05-31T15:50:43+00:00 April 24th, 2019|Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews|

‘Diane’ examines the life unexamined

“Diane” (2018 production, 2019 release). Cast: Mary Kay Place, Jake Lacy, Estelle Parsons, Andrea Martin, Deirdre O’Connell, Glynnis O’Connor, Joyce Van Patten, Kerry Flanagan, Phyllis Somerville, Celia Keenan-Bolger, Ray Iannicelli, Marcia Haufrecht, Gabriella Rhodeen, Charles Weldon, Mary Fuller. Director: Kent Jones. Screenplay: Kent Jones. Web site. Trailer. How often do we take stock of our lives? In many cases, we don’t even ask the question, let alone engage in the act of doing so. But, if our lives seem empty or missing something, we might consider evaluating who we are, what we’re doing and where we’re headed while we still have time to do something about it. The process may be difficult, even painful, but the solution may involve something [...]

2019-05-24T15:19:21+00:00 April 21st, 2019|Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews|

‘The Best of Enemies’ chronicles the cause of change

“The Best of Enemies” (2019). Cast: Taraji P. Henson, Sam Rockwell, Babou Ceesay, Nick Searcy, Wes Bentley, Anne Heche, Bruce McGill, John Gallagher Jr., Nicholas Logan, Gilbert Glenn Brown, Caitlin Mehner, Mckenzie Applegate, Nadej Bailey, Kevin Iannucci, Charles A. Black, Dolan Wilson, Tim Ware, Ned Vaughn. Director: Robin Bissell. Screenplay: Robin Bissell. Book: Osha Gray Davidson, The Best of Enemies: Race and Redemption in the New South. Web site. Trailer. Many of us dislike change, but sometimes it’s positively essential, no matter how much we may dread it. However, if we approach it with an open mind, a willingness to examine why we resist it and a spirit of cooperation to see the process through, making alterations and adjustments need [...]

2019-05-19T22:02:00+00:00 April 16th, 2019|Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews|

‘Us’ forces us to take a look at ourselves

“Us” (2019). Cast: Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke, Shahadi Wright Joseph, Evan Alex, Elisabeth Moss, Tim Heidecker, Cali Sheldon, Noelle Sheldon, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Anna Diop, Madison Curry, Ashley Mckoy, Napiera Groves, Alan Frazier. Director: Jordan Peele. Screenplay: Jordan Peele. Web site. Trailer. Have you ever thought what it might be like to meet yourself? How we see ourselves can be an eye-opening experience, especially if what we observe doesn’t match our expectations. What we encounter could be significantly different from what we believe about our being, our attitudes and our behavior. But, on closer inspection, we may be surprised to see that it’s exactly who we are at our core, a scenario that gives us much to assess, some of [...]

2019-04-24T15:59:37+00:00 March 28th, 2019|Comedy, Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews, Sci-Fi|

‘Styx’ tackles morality on the high seas

“Styx” (2018 production, 2019 release). Cast: Susanne Wolff, Gedion Odour Wekesa, Felicity Babao (voice), Alexander Beyer (voice). Director: Wolfgang Fischer. Screenplay: Wolfgang Fischer and Ika Künzel. Web site. Trailer. When confronted with difficult situations, most of us probably do our level best to do the right thing. Were we to do otherwise, we’d likely have trouble living with ourselves, so earnestly taking steps to accommodate the circumstances often comes naturally, almost like a knee-jerk reaction. But what do we do when we’re faced with something particularly troubling, a scenario in which we’re up against seemingly impossible odds? Such circumstances push us to take a hard look at ourselves to see just how far we’ll go, a conundrum faced by a [...]

2019-04-21T17:30:40+00:00 March 20th, 2019|Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews|

‘Birds of Passage’ cautions us to consider what we create

“Birds of Passage” (“Pájaros de verano”) (2018 production, 2019 release). Cast: José Acosta, Natalia Reyes, Carmiña Martínez, Jhon Narváez, Greider Meza, José Vicente Cotes, Juan Bautista Martínez, Sergio Coen, Aslenis Márquez, José Naider, Yanker Díaz, Joaquín Ramón, Luisa Alfaro, Natalia Pinzón, Sebastián Celis, Alice Lebadie, Dennis Klein, Gabriel Mangones, Rosario Epieyú. Directors: Cristina Gallego and Ciro Guerra. Screenplay: Maria Camila Arias and Jacques Toulemonde Vidal. Story: Cristina Gallego and Ciro Guerra. Web site. Trailer. We all love it when we come up with what we think of as a great idea. We envision possibilities for success that meet, if not exceed, our expectations. But how often do we think through such notions thoroughly? Failing to do so can carry significant [...]

2019-04-01T10:01:58+00:00 March 11th, 2019|Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews|

‘Blame’ searches for the nature of underlying truths

‟Blame“ (2017 production, 2018 release). Cast: Quinn Shephard, Nadia Alexander, Chris Messina, Tate Donovan, Tessa Albertson, Marcia DeBonis, Luke Slattery, Owen Campbell, Geneva Carr, Sarah Mezzanotte, Larry Mitchell, Lily Houghton, Elizabeth Ann Howell, Carlyle Owens, Trieste Kelly Dunn. Director: Quinn Shephard. Screenplay: Quinn Shephard. Story: Laurie Shephard and Quinn Shephard. Web site. Trailer. Getting to the root of unethical or illegal behavior sometimes takes some doing. It may require considerable digging and ruling out what is initially looked upon as seemingly obvious. It might even involve traversing some highly unexpected paths to expose the culprits and their well-concealed misdeeds. There’s even the possibility that there may be more going on than meets the eye. So it is with life at [...]

2019-03-28T23:33:34+00:00 March 5th, 2019|Conscious Creation, Drama, Movie Reviews|