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The movie leaves no doubt in my mind, that the acting and story were superb. Food for thought and soul food. Father Flynn is a progressive gay priest who is trying to bring liberalism to a sedate Catholic school in the Bronx, circa 1960's. He is confronted head on by rigid disciplinarian, Sister Aloysius, who almost is looking to get him thrown out for his liberal views, and especially his rather close relationship with their first black student. Although it is inferred that he may be having sexual relations with Donald, the young black boy, it is never proved. Father Flynn puts up a strong front and attempts to fight the stubborn sister, but backs off in the end and is transferred to another parish. The verbal hyperbole is fascinating and stimulating. In the end Sister Aloysius is seen confessing to another sister that she has doubts about the whole incident and cannot sleep at nights. I am glad of that.
Men of Honor (2000)
Sharecroppers son becomes first black navy diver in history
Carl Brashear (Cuba Gooding, Jr.) was born to sharecroppers in the deep south. He joins the navy, whereupon he tells his father he will be back. The father gives him an old radio, and Brashear leaves on the navy bus. The Most valuable thing his unemotional father taught him was, "Never quit". After a recommendation from a white commander Powers Boothe), who admires his drive and guts, he gets sent to Navy diving school at Bayonne, NJ. He endures harassment from his pals in uniform and from his trainer, Chief Navy Master Diver, Billy Sunday (Robert De Niro), and from the commanding officer, called pappy, (Hal Holbrook, who "has almost as many loose screws as an old car". They all want to make him drop out, and the prejudice is quite fierce.The dangers of diving prove a further setback when he loses a leg due to an accident on board ship. Despite this setback, he tells his wife that he will train and achieve his objective, and with the help of Billy Sunday, (now both joined in commiseration in their sufferings), they train and he is able to become the first black Navy diver with his artificial limb despite the skepticism of a highly mocking and doubtful captain at the Navy Department hearing in Washington, DC to determine if he meets the criteria. An inspirational movie, showing that determination can overcome all odds.
Bonanza: Twilight Town (1963)
Little Joe enters a ghost town and experiences a town full of people who had died many years ago
The episode is a supernatural western episode, replete with values of love, family and gaining courage to fight for what you believe in. Little Joe is left for dead in the desert after having his horse stolen. He wakes up and sees a ghost town, Martinville, void of people one day, but the next day people are attending to his needs. Upon recovering his strength, he is not allowed to leave town, for the townspeople want to make him sheriff. A job which comes with a price: He must protect the town from a gang of marauders who have driven livestock out of town and terrorize the town at will. The men are afraid to fight, and Little Joe must restore their courage and protect their families. At the end, he leads the men into a cavalry charge with victory, Ben and his other sons having finally found him, Joe explains about the mysterious town. His father replies that the town has been deserted for many years, and the legend went that until they found a leader to free them from the marauders, and gain revenge for the sheriff that was slain, they will roam the earth. His father tells him though, that if a man believes in something, nobody can take that away. Everything vanishes like a bad dream, as tumbleweeds once again roam the streets of Martinsville with its memories and peaceful souls restored. There is much food for thought here, and acting is hypnotic.
Bonanza: The Last Haircut (1963)
A trio of tough cowboys come into town, and shoot one man for refusing to let one of their own take a haircut before everyone else.
This episode is excellent from start to finish. The acting is superb on all levels. Little Joe is the first to get out of his barber chair after waiting two hours, to give it up to a gunslinger (Perry Lopez) who threatens his life. He does so, but then a Mexican shows he can't be bullied, takes the barber chair and is killed. His son comes to stay with the Cartwrights until relatives call for him to live with them in Mexico. An interesting trial ensues, and the slick lawyer gets the murderer and gang freed. Later when Little Joe returns and fights the men involved in the shooting, he lets the barber shave Perry Lopez head bald, and throws him out into the street for everyone to see. They start laughing, and Lopez is seen holding his head and feeling like the bug that he is. What a perfect ending. Recommended as a must see
He Got Game (1998)
He Got Game
This movie was excellent, even though I am not a basketball fan. But the music and the story of a promising high school basketball player, who is being recruited by the top colleges for scholarships, and the bitter reunion with his prisoner father who accidentally killed his wife, and the boy's mother. The entire movie is a sort of reunion, and a soul searching for both the father and son. D. Washington and Ray Allen both give exceptional performances. The last scene of the movie has symbolism, in that while Washington is playing basketball in Attica, his son is playing in Big State university (Part of a deal by the governor to recruit the boy into his alma mater in exchange for lessening the father's remaining sentence), their actions are mirrored, and when Jake sends his ball skyward, it drops right in the lap of Jesus, where he takes the ball and finally smiles and accepts his father. I also see it as the ball being the North Star which led Jesus to Bethlehem, and guided his road to wisdom from then on. See it by all means.