Monthly Archives: October 2015

Highlights For Week Ending November 1, 2015

Highlights For Week Ending November 1, 2015

Thinking Cinema Goes To Austin!

Austin Logo Blue

My script, The Pacioli Factor, advanced to the second round in the competition at the Austin Film Festival. I am quite thankful, in that 8,627 scripts were entered and advancing puts me in the top 15%. This week I’ll attend the first half of the festival (when the writer’s workshops are held). There will be screenings throughout, so I’ll try to watch some films as well. Look for an update in this space next week.

 

Halloween Treat In McLean, Va.!

The Alden Theatre will host a special Halloween screening of 1928’s The Man Who Laughs on Saturday, Oct. 31, at 2 pm. Anyone who has seen a Batman comic will find Conrad Veidt’s smile eerily familiar. Based on a Victor Hugo novel, The Man Who Laughs also has deeply romantic elements. The result is a compelling story-and a remarkable film. Add composer Ben Model’s live, improvised score and film historian Bruce Lawton’s introduction, and you have a memorable way to begin your Halloween celebration.

For more details: http://mcleancenter.org/calendar/icalrepeat.detail/2015/10/31/1050/-/the-man-who-laughs

The Man Who Laughs

 

Film Review: Room

Film Review: Room

Lenny Abrahamson’s extraordinary film Room is the story of Jack (Jacob Tremblay), a five-year-old boy growing up under circumstances the rest of us would consider intolerably limited. Of course, children tend to accept the world before them if they have no basis for comparison and their parents don’t seem concerned. Jack takes it in strideContinue Reading

Film Appreciation: The Collector

Film Appreciation: The Collector

I write this in the middle of October, when horror movies and TV shows abound. They can have complicated plots and draw on all manner of elements from the supernatural. This week I watched a film that didn’t have any of that, but which has got to rank with the scariest movies I’ve ever seen.Continue Reading

In Captivity: List For Week Ending October 25, 2015

In Captivity: List For Week Ending October 25, 2015

Our list features films that have someone putting another person in captivity. That’s different from kidnapping, because none of these people are asking for ransom in the usual sense. Their motives are entirely different from a typical kidnapper. In the case of Raising Arizona, it’s the desire of an infertile couple for a child. InContinue Reading

Film Review: Jafar Panahi’s Taxi

Film Review: Jafar Panahi’s Taxi

I’ll admit to being confused by this film. Not the premise, just how it was ever made to begin with. Director Jafar Panahi has been in trouble with the Iranian government since he tried to make a documentary about their disputed election of 2009. He’s supposed to be under house arrest, and banned from makingContinue Reading

Film Appreciation: Roman Holiday

Film Appreciation: Roman Holiday

You may wonder how Roman Holiday can be included under a theme like Banned. It’s because of the man who conceived the idea for this film and also wrote the first draft of its script. I’m talking about Dalton Trumbo, the amazingly talented writer who was blacklisted during the entire decade of the 1950s. TrumboContinue Reading

Banned: List For Week Ending October 18, 2015

Banned: List For Week Ending October 18, 2015

Granted, there weren’t all that many surprises when I started taking a serious look at banned films. Most of the objections are due to excessive sex and/or violence in the films, but that’s not always the case. For example, China doesn’t allow films with time travel. According to the Chinese government, putting time travel inContinue Reading

Film Appreciation: Pride

Film Appreciation: Pride

Pride (2014) is the way you wish all movies about social issues could be-funny, relatable, and with great music. And darned if most of it isn’t based on a true story. It’s the UK, late in 1984. Mark Ashton (Ben Schnetzer), a young gay man, notices the police aren’t picking on him and his friendsContinue Reading

Film Review: Freeheld

Film Review: Freeheld

Good intentions don’t always mean good films. Peter Sollett’s film Freeheld is the result of seven years’ work by an army of talented people. I wish their approach to this story could have less reverence and more critical judgment. For all its high-toned pedigree, Freeheld comes off as an underachiever. The story is based onContinue Reading