The Dallas Buyers Club

I have no idea what “The Academy” looks for or expects from someone when they select “The Best Actor” or the “Best” of anything. I have never been good at guessing who they will so honor; but somehow Matthew MacConaughey has put himself in their faces with his performance in “The Dallas Buyers Club”. No one could fault what he does to bring to life a dying man. His recognition this time will have nothing to do with his looks or his body. This is about his skills and how he uses them. And, he is not the only one in the cast who comes to life through a real, powerful, and deeply disturbing story. It isn’t pretty, and neither is he. … more »

THOR!

Four older people like me were in line at the ticket window. They bought tickets for “Last Vegas” and went on ahead. The very young man selling the tickets looked up. I am certain he thought I was either going to see “Last Vegas” or “Bad Grandpa.” When I said: “THOR! In 3-D”. He smiled and said: “Way to go.” So, I went to see THOR in 3-D.

There were two other people in the theater, but it was only 1:30 in the afternoon. They were my age as best I could tell in the darkness. Something had changed since my “Marvel Comics” days, but then so have I. The film was a lot of fun, and once I remembered it was MARVEL and stopped trying to make something of the great struggle between good and evil, light and darkness, I began to laugh. … more »

Twelve Years a slave

Just days after Ryan Ferguson was released from captivity after serving ten years for a crime he did not commit, seeing Twelve years a slave was a brutal and discomforting experience reminding me that we have a long way to go with improving our justice system. I could not help but see some similarity between a prosecutor who withheld evidence at a murder trial to improve his chances at re-election and those who sold the innocent Solomon Northrup  taking his freedom. Then, as the screen tells it at the end:  there was no one to testify against them in pre-civil war Washington.

“I want to apologize for the way I look. I’ve had a difficult time the last few years.” he says, standing before a grandchild he has never seen named “Solomon.” No one around me in the theater moved, and as the screen went to black, there was not a sound as we gathered up our things to leave in a silent procession home. … more »

The Butler

It has taken me some time to get in a theater to see The Butler because I decided to read Will Haygood’s book first. In retrospect that may not have been a good plan for putting the film in a positive position. If you don’t read all of these comments, my suggestion is that you get the book and forget the movie, but do one or the other.  Perhaps my imagination is simply more lively that Lee Daniels; but after two weeks with the book, the time in the theater would have been better spent taking a nap.

I expected more. Perhaps it was because the timed release of the film coincided with the events in this nation 50 years ago: the March on Washington, Selma, and a bombing at a Baptist Church in Birmingham that still can bring tears to my eyes. … more »

Planes

If either of them could write, I would have my two grand-nephews review “Planes.” There are other ways of communicating however with which they are familiar thereby reviewing by their behavior the movie: “Planes”. They had been begging to see “Planes” since they saw its previews three weeks earlier at our viewing of the film “Turbo.” For the first 15 minutes in the theater, they were glued to the screen along with about 600 other children between 4 and 10 years of age. I was the oldest person in the theater! It was the preview time however, and I was amazed at how many animated moves will soon be available for them to see. (What ever happened to real human actors?) As the previews went on and on, the murmuring in the audience increased. … more »

Elysium

When I looked at my watch, I had been sitting there for about 90 minutes. If I look at my watch during a movie, it is a bad sign. I had forgotten to check the running time for this film before I sat down, but I knew that I was running out of more than time and that this film was running out of everything. After about thirty minutes of percussion I noticed that there was no music, just a lot of percussive sounds coming from an orchestra whose musicians must have been more bored than I was. There was a lot of noise, and I knew I would not go home with any tunes running through my head. But after all, it’s an action film right? … more »