Monthly Archives: February 2013


Amour – 7.7

2013-02-24T23:07:38+00:00February 24th, 2013|Reviews|

An unflinching look at old age in almost documentary mode. The performances are impeccable, and I was even more impressed by Jean-Louis Trintignant than the Oscar-nominated Emmanuele Riva. With scarcely a plot, this is more a portrait, sad or heartwarming depending on your viewpoint. For those of us with aging parents, it is certainly as [...]

The Impossible – 8

2013-02-16T02:31:08+00:00February 16th, 2013|Reviews|

I was expecting a mawkish story of a family reuniting after being tossed asunder by the 2005 Asian tsunami, but I got so much more. Yes, the "Bennett" family story was there, but it shared the screen with a more macro vision, of the loss and human tragedy suffered by thousands of others. In a [...]

Top Ten 2012

2013-02-06T19:30:14+00:00February 6th, 2013|Essays|

1. A Separation and Amour. Every year, it seems, there is a critical favorite that avoids the smaller cities until the deadline for my list has passed. Last year it was A Separation, which opened in 2011 but was far and away the best film I saw in 2012. This year it is Amour, which [...]

The Invisible War – 7

2013-02-02T17:03:23+00:00February 2nd, 2013|Film Festival, Reviews|

I can't say I rate this highly as a film - there was way too much of one woman's story, for instance, and too much of that was a side issue - but the overall thrust was compelling, so much so that it has already brought change and will, one hopes, bring more. The regularity [...]

Greenwich Village: Music that Defined a Generation – 6.5

2013-02-02T16:55:51+00:00February 2nd, 2013|Film Festival, Reviews|

Perfectly pleasant if forgettable scrapbook of memories from the '60s: Peter, Paul & Mary, Phil Ochs, Buffy Ste-Marie, Judy Collins, Don McLean, John Sebastian and many more. If you hadn't been there, however, I'm not sure what, if anything, the movie would have meant to you. Plus, it featured annoying cartoon flashes between scenes and [...]

A Royal Affair – 7.5

2013-02-02T16:50:57+00:00February 2nd, 2013|Film Festival, Reviews|

The title and the opening scene give away all suspense, so what we are left with is a Danish Lincoln, which undoubtedly means more to the Danes than us Yanks. The costumes are nice, but can't compare to recent dramas from the French court. It's fun to meet actors we've never seen, although Queen Caroline [...]

One Mile Above – 2

2013-02-02T16:44:48+00:00February 2nd, 2013|Film Festival, Reviews|

There is not a single scene in this film from Taiwan that is either original or credible. The acting is amateurish and the story has the sophistication of a yak. One complaint of many: time after time our hero is thrown into a treacherous situation - wild dogs attacking, crashing off a hillside, wrecking his [...]

Boucherie Halal – 7

2013-02-02T16:38:42+00:00February 2nd, 2013|Film Festival, Reviews|

There is a story, but mainly this is a feature-length indictment of Muslim culture and, indirectly, the peril of non-assimilation, in this case into Canadian society. Wives are abused, treated as chattel, and sons are in thrall to hard-line parents. The "spiritual leader" ruins everyone around him and is finally arrested, symbolically, for sending money [...]

Sex After Kids – 6.5

2013-02-02T16:25:58+00:00February 2nd, 2013|Film Festival, Reviews|

The movie's title and opening suggest a one-joke plot, but it turns out that the film is not really about sex, or kids, but about intimate relationships and the difficulty thereof. Conspicuously covering the waterfront, we are given a straight couple, a gay couple, an interracial couple, an older couple, a single mom, a single [...]