Thursday, April 30, 2015

Shirley Valentine




Shirley Valentine is a 42 year-old Liverpudlian bored housewife whose life and initially enriching marriage has settled into a narrow and unsatisfying rut, leaving few real friends and her childhood dreams unaccomplished. When her flamboyant friend Jane (Alison Steadman) wins a trip for two to Greece, Shirley uncharacteristically puts herself first and accepts her invitation. -Wikipedia

Directed by Lewis Gilbert
Produced by Lewis Gilbert
Screenplay by Willy Russell
Based on Shirley Valentine a play by Willy Russell
Starring Pauline Collins, Tom Conti, Alison Steadman, Julia McKenzie, Joanna Lumley
Music by Willy Russell
Dinematography Alan Hume
Edited by Lesley Walker

Released in 1989
Run time 108 minutes

Friday, April 24, 2015

Harlem Rides the Range


Bob Blake (Herb Jeffries) and his sidekick Rusty (Lucius Brooks) are two cowboys riding across the countryside in search of adventure. They come across a ranch where it appears a murder has taken place but they find the victim of the crime, Jim Dennison (Leonard Christmas), still alive. Dennison is hiding in fear of his life after what had taken place at the ranch. Bob sees a picture of the rancher’s daughter Margaret (Artie Young) and falls in love at first sight; he cannot stop talking about how beautiful the girl in the picture is. Bob drops a glove when he leaves the ranch, which causes problems later. -Wikipedia

Herbert Jeffrey (Jeffries)

Directed by Richard C. Kahn
Produced by Richard C. Kahn, Alfred N.Sack
Written by F.E. Miller, Spencer Williams
Starring Herb Jeffries (Jeffrey), Lucius Brooks, F. E. Miller, Artie Young, Clarence Brooks, Spencer Williams, Tom Southern, Leonard Christmas, Wade Dumas, John Thomas, The Four Tones

Released 1939
Run time 56 minutes

The Madwoman of Chaillot





The story is of a modern society endangered by power and greed and the rebellion of the "little people" against corrupt and soulless authority.
A group of four prominent men, The General (Paul Henreid), The Commissar (Oskar Homolka), The Chairman (Yul Brynner) and The Prospector (Donald Pleasence) discuss how they can increase their fortunes. The Prospector tells them that there is oil in the middle of Paris and they resolve to acquire the rights with or without the consent of the people of Paris. Countess Aurelia (Katharine Hepburn), the "madwoman" of the title, learns of this plan to drill for oil under the very streets of her district from Roderick (Richard Chamberlain) an activist and The Ragpicker (Danny Kaye). She enlists the help of her friends, a motley crew of "little people" who include the "madwomen" of neighbouring districts, Constance, the Madwoman of Passy (Margaret Leighton), Gabrielle, the Madwoman of St. Sulpice (Giulietta Masina). A trial takes place in the Countess' cellar presided over by Aurelia's friend Josephine (Edith Evans), the Madwoman of La Concorde as judge and the Ragpicker as the lawyer for the defense. -Wikipedia

Directed by Bryan Forbes
Produced by Ely A. Landau, Anthony b. Unger
Written by Edward Anhalt, Maurice Valency, Jean Giraudous
Starring Katharine Hepburn, Paul Henreid, Oskar Homolka, Yul Brynner, Richard Chamberlain, Edith Evans
Music by Michael J. Lewis
Cinematography Burnett Guffey, Claude Renoir
Edited by Roger dwyre

Released 1969
Run time 132 minutes

מתי אוכלים?מתי אוכלים?מתי אוכלים? ?When Do We Eat



When Do We Eat? is the story of a dysfunctional Jewish family's Passover Seder. This is the family's first Seder in three years and the tension is high. Before the Seder, Zeke (Ben Feldman) slips his father (Michael Lerner) a pill that he believes to be a combination of ecstasy and LSD. As the night continues, the family releases secrets that cause fights but bring them closer in the end. -Wikipedia

Directed by Salvador Litvak
Produced by Horatio C. Kemeny
Written by Nina Davidovich, Salvador Litvak
Starring Michael Lerner, Lesley Ann Warren, Jack Klugman, Shiri Appleby, Mili Avital, Ben Feldman, Adam Lamberg

Released 2005
Run time 93 minutes

Inherent Vice





In 1970, Shasta Fay Hepworth (Katherine Waterston), visits the rickety beach house of her ex-boyfriend Larry "Doc" Sportello (Joaquin Phoenix) in Gordita Beach, a fictional town in Los Angeles County. Doc also happens to be a private investigator and hippie/dope head. Shasta tells him about her new lover, Mickey Wolfmann (Eric Roberts), a wealthy real estate developer. She asks Doc to help prevent Mickey’s wife (Serena Scott Thomas) and her lover from having Mickey abducted and committed to an insane asylum. -Wikipedia


Thomas Pynchon that's all that needs to be said. ~Mike

Directed by Paul Thomas Anderson
Produced by JoAnne Sellar, Daniel Lupi, Paul Thomas Anderson
Written by Paul Thomas Anderson
Based on Inherent Vice by Thomas Pynchon
Starring Joaquin Phoenix, Josh Brolin, Owen Wilson, Katherine Waterston, Reese Witherspoon, Benicio del Toro, Jena Malone, Joanne Newsom, Martin Short, Jefferson Mays
Music by Jonny Greenwood
Cinematography Leslie Jones

Released 2014
Run time 149 minutes



Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Maslow and Self-Actualization




In this interview, Abraham Maslow, founder of the concept of Self Actualization, discusses what he found when he set out to study psychological health rather than pathology in humans. His study of a select group of exceptional people led to his theory of the actualized personality. In the first part Maslow describes the characteristics he found among his healthy subjects on the dimensions of honesty, humor, social awareness, efficient perception, freshness of appreciation, the peak experience and ethical awareness. In the second part he talks about the dimensions of freedom, creativity, and trust, among others.

Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs. -Wikipedia

Excellent interview with Maslow. Shot in 1968 and restored in 2007. It may be old and look old but the content is as relevant today as it was in 1968. ~Mike

Monday, April 13, 2015

#RepublikTwitter





Sukmo (Abimana Aryasatya), a student based in Yogyakarta, spends much of his time on the computer, especially on Twitter. He falls in love with another user, Hanum (Laura Basuki), a beautiful journalist whom he has never met face-to-face. Sukmo considers the internet his main way of life, while Hanum finds it an escape from her daily schedule. Finally Sukmo decides to go to Jakarta with his friend Andre (Ben Kasyafani) and meet Hanum, but is stunned by her beauty and, when he sees her speaking to another man, leaves without introducing himself to her.
Before Sukmo can return to Yogyakarta, he is met by Kemal (Tio Pakusadewo), a businessman who is helping politicians better use Twitter during their campaigns. With the help of Andre and his girlfriend Nadya (Enzy Storia), Sukmo rises to Twitter stardom and becomes a powerful voice in the political campaigns. With his newfound status, Sukmo is able to approach Hanum and they begin seeing each other. -Wikipedia

Part love story and part discussion of the power of social media. ~Mike

Directed by Kuntz Agus
Produced by Ajish Dibyo, Faizan Zidni, Isaac Zikri, Eva Fadillah
Written by E.S. Ito
Starring Laura Basuki, Abimana Aryasatya, Enzy Storia, Ben Kasyafani, Tio Pakusadewo
Cinematography Ujel Bausad
Edited by Aline Jusria, Bayu Sulistyo

Released in 2012
Run time 90 minutes

Friday, April 10, 2015

The Hundred Foot Journey




The Kadam family ran a restaurant in Mumbai. The second-oldest son, Hassan (Manish Dayal), was being groomed to replace his mother (Juhi Chawla) as the restaurant's main cook. However, a mob attacks and firebombs the restaurant over an election dispute. Papa Kadam (Om Puri) and his family evacuate the guests, but Mama is killed. Seeking asylum in Europe, the family first settles in London, where their residence proves ill-suited for a restaurant. They depart for mainland Europe. -Wikipedia


Nas Time is Illmatic



Nas Website

Nas: Time Is Illmatic is a 2014 documentary film directed by One9 and produced by One9, Erik Parker and Anthony Saleh. The film recounts the circumstances leading up to Nas' 1994 debut album Illmatic. Released on the 20th anniversary of Illmatic, the film includes interviews with Nas, his brother and father, and figures from the East Coast hip hop scene. Nas: Time Is Illmatic premiered during the opening night of the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival, on April 16, 2014. The project received a grant from Tribeca All Access and additional funding from the Ford Foundation. -Wikipedia

An excellent and insightful documentary. ~Mike

Released in 2014
Run time 74 minutes extra interviews in special features.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Paheli




The movie is narrated by two puppets, voiced by Naseeruddin Shah and his real-life wife Ratna Pathak Shah. Enthusiastic young Lachchi (Rani Mukerji) is to be married to Kishan (Shahrukh Khan), the son of the rich merchant Banwarlal (Anupam Kher). Kishan is a dutiful son who honors his father's wish to start a new, far-away business on a predetermined auspicious date, which happens to be the day after the wedding ceremony. On the wedding night, Kishan turns away from his wife to finish his bookkeeping, and in the early morning hours sets off on a business trip that is to last five years. Lachchi is devastated; Gajrobai (Juhi Chawla), her husband's sister-in-law, consoles her, empathizing on the grounds that Gajrobai's husband Sunderlal (Sunil Shetty) has also disappeared. The next day, a ghost appears, having taken Kishan's shape and voice because of his own attachment to Lachchi. -Wikipedia

Directed by Amol Plaekar
Produced by Gauri Khan
Screenplay by Sandhya Gokhale
Story by Vijayadan Detha, Sandhya Gokhale, Amol Palekar
Starring Shah Rukh Khan, Juhi Chawla, Rani Mukerji, Anupam Kher, Amitabh Bachchan, Sunil Shetty Rajpal Yadav
Narrated by Naseeruddin Shah
Music by M.M Kreem, Aadesh Shrivastava
Cinematography Ravi K. Chandran
Edited by Amitabh Shukla

Released in 2005
Run time 141 minutes

원스어폰어타임 Wŏnsŭ ŏp'on ŏ t'aim (Once Upon a Time)



Trailer Unavailable

The film is set in Seoul, 1945, during the final days of Japanese rule. Kanemura is a well-connected con artist who makes money by selling ancient Korean artifacts to wealthy Japanese collectors. His eyes are set on Haruko, a beautiful jazz singer in a downtown nightclub; unbeknownst to anyone, Haruko has been moonlighting as "Haedanghwa" ("Rugosa Rose"), a cat burglar who has carried out a succession of high profile thefts. She is also pursued by Yamada, a colonel in the Japanese military police, who is jealous of Kanemura's affections towards her. The owner of the nightclub and his chef, Hee-bong, secretly work for the Korean independence movement. Wikipedia

Directed by Jeong Yong-ki
Produced by Kang Hyun-woo
Written by Cheon Seong-il
Starring Park Yong-woo, Lee Bo-young
Cinematography Moon Yong-sik
Edited by Kim Sun-min

Released in 2008
Run time 110 minutes



반가운살인자 Pan'gaun sarinja (Happy Killers or Happy Murderer or Murder)



Jung-min is the new detective assigned to a neighborhood where a serial killer commits murder every rainy Thursday. Laidback and blundering at his job, Jung-min is actually secretly studying for a civil servant exam to get away from his boss who's always picking on him. Every day, residents protest outside the police station, shouting that the police should make up for the falling apartment prices and catch the murderer. To make matters worse, Jung-min's mother who happens to be the president of the women's association is leading the protest. He vows to catch the killer this time in order to save his dignity as a detective and a son. However, his elaborate plans are upset by the appearance of Young-seok, the neighborhood unemployed bum. Because of the reward for the killer's capture, Young-seok is trying to catch him well, and his natural detective skills lead him to always arrive at the crime scene one step ahead of the police. Furthermore, he criticizes every little thing that Jung-min does and is a royal pain in the neck. Jung-min absolutely cannot let Young-seok solve the case and take away his chance of a lifetime, so a rivalry forms between the two as they both race to catch the killer. -Wikipedia


Directed by Kim Dong-Wook
Produced by Kim Hyun-shin, Eo Ji-yeon
Starring Kim Dong-Wook, Yu Oh-seong, Shim Eun-Kyung, Ji-ru Sung
Music by Lee Hyeong-ju, Gang Hak-seon
Cinematography Lee Ki-won
Edited by Kim Chang-ju, Steve M. Choe

Released in 2010
Run time 107 minutes



Galaxy Quest




The film follows the cast of a once-popular television space-drama series called Galaxy Quest. The fictional series starred Jason Nesmith (Allen) as the commander of a spaceship called the NSEA Protector, Alexander Dane (Rickman) as the ship's alien science officer, Fred Kwan (Shalhoub) as the chief engineer, Gwen DeMarco (Weaver) as the computer officer and Tommy Webber (Mitchell) as a precocious child pilot. Guy Fleegman (Rockwell) played an unnamed security officer, who was quickly killed off in his only appearance on the show.-Wikipedia

This is a great parody of Star Trek and television actors. Just a lot of fun with an outstanding cast. If you haven't seen it you should. ~Mike

Directed by Dean Parisot
Produced by Mark Johnson, Charles Newirth
Screenplay by David Howard, Robert Gordon
Story by David Howard
Starring Tim Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Alan Rickman, Tony Shalhoub, Sam Rockwell, Daryl Mitchell
Music by David Newman
Cinematography Jerzy Zielinski

Released in 1999
Run time 102 minutes



Thursday, April 2, 2015

Suwingu Gâruzu (Swing Girls)




A tale of delinquent and lazy school girls. In their efforts to cut remedial summer math class, they end up poisoning and replacing the schools brass band. -IMDB

A lot of fun and great music. -Mike

Directed by Shinobu Yaguchi
Written by Shinobu Yaguchi, Junko Yaguchi
Starring Juri Ueno, Yuta Hiraoka, Shihori Kanjiya
Music by Hiroshi Kishimoto, Mickie Yoshino 
Cinematographer Takahide Shibanushi

Released in 2004
Run time 105 minutes


Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Nobody's Perfect



NoBody's Perfect is a 2008 feature documentary produced and directed by Niko von Glasow. The film won the German Film Award for Best Documentary Film at the Deutscher Filmpreis in 2009, and has gone on to receive worldwide acclaim, resulting in a powerful campaign for the victims of thalidomide.-Wikipedia

Thalidomide Wikipedia link

Very Young Girls



Very Young Girls (2007 Showtime), directed by David Schisgall and Nina Alvarez, is a documentary and exposé of human trafficking that follows 13- and 14-year-old African-American girls as they are seduced, abused, and sold on New York’s streets by pimps; while being treated as adult criminals by police. The film follows the barely adolescent girls in real time, using vérité and intimate interviews with them as they are first lured on to the streets and the dire events which follow. The film also uses startling footage shot by the brazen pimps themselves, giving a rare glimpse into how the cycle of street life begins for many women. -Wikipedia

Girls Educational & Mentoring Service Here

Young girls as fetish in our consumerist society. This is a very disturbing documentary about the exploitation of female children in New York. Young girls are not the only ones; boys, women and men are also exploited, though not the subject of this documentary. We must see these documentaries to know in a real sense that this is taking place every day. ~ Mike

Directors David Schisgall, Nina Alvarez

With Mia Guzman and Rachel Lloyd

Showtime release 2007
Run time 84 minutes

Seeking a Friend For the End of the World




The film opens with a radio announcement that a space shuttle mission to destroy an asteroid on a collision course with Earth has failed. The world has three weeks until impact, at which time humanity will be wiped out. Dodge Petersen (Steve Carell) and his wife Linda (Nancy Carell) listen to the broadcast from the side of the road. After Dodge has an uninterested response, Linda looks at him in abject disgust and flees the vehicle without saying a word.
Dodge returns to his near-empty New York City workplace the next day, where he sells insurance. While everyone around him has reacted differently—from suicide to constant drugs to guilt-free sex—Dodge's life has not changed at all. He does not stop going into his meaningless job until one of his friends leaps to his death. -Wikipedia

Written and directed by Lorene Scafaria. Who has an impressive theatre and film history so far, as stated in the Wikipedia entry. I think we'll be seeing more wonderful stories from her. 
This is a very sweet love story with impending doom. The beginning scene is very funny and perfectly played by Nancy Carell. Steve Carell plays the "fish out of water" unfortunately a typical part for him. Though his particular subtle humor is very funny and likable. Keira Knightley, who always delivers a stellar performance, as the woman who brings him out of his shell, somewhat of  a standard roll for female support cast. There is a certain amount of electricity between the two and that keeps the movie moving along. The supporting cast is fantastic and plenty of cameos. 
The special features commentary is hilarious. ~Mike

Directed by Lorene Scafaria 
Produced by Steve Golin, Joy Gorman, Mark Roybal, Steven M. Rales
Written by Lorene Scafaria
Starring Steve Carell, Keira Kinghtley, Adam Brody, Derek Luke, William Petersen
Music by Jonathan Sadoff, Rob Simonsen
Cinematography Tim Orr
Edited by Zene Baker

Released in 2012
Run time 101 minutes