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Beautiful Loser (2008)
Funny, moving, sweet, sad and real!
I also saw the film at the Philadelphia Film Festival and I agree with the other reviewers that there was a lot to think about in this film. It did take me a little while at the beginning of several scenes to figure out which set of characters I was seeing, the teenagers or the adults. But once all the characters were introduced, it was easy to follow. The film is beautifully shot. Where did the director find a corn field in LA? (where he said it was filmed) and I loved the soundtrack. The music was never cloying or over-used but fit the scenes thematically.
I liked the notion of the adults returning to their memories (good and bad) as we really do in life...remembering conversations, regretting actions or inactions, for what seems like FOREVER. The movie reminded me of the film Memento, because of the unusual "chronology" of events, but that only made the choices the characters make seem even more poignant. Great acting....it's hard to believe this film was made by a first-time director. Funny, moving, sweet, sad and real!
When Do We Eat? (2005)
Great soundtrack and great ensemble cast. All the characters in this dysfunctional family become sympathetic and "somewhat" likable by the end of the film. Director creates an interesting visual look with unusual special effects. Plot and character twists keep viewers guessing. Tension and action all compressed into one Passover night will be moving for viewers of all generations. Jack Klugman was a pleasure to see again, also Lelsey Ann Warren and Michael Lerner. Audience was laughing out loud at parts and obviously touched by other scenes. Mix of music was fascinating - old Jewsih favorites with a hip-hop and/or reggae beat and classical music. Smartly done!