Change Your Image
Upload An Image
Crop And Save
Censored Voices (2015)
Better Late Than Never
Soldiers were tape recorded 1-2 weeks after the 1967 war in Israel ended. These voices were originally censored. We are fortunate that the perspectives of these soldiers were not lost forever. Now they are preserved for the historical record. It was amazing to see some of the soldiers listening to their own voices, all these years later, with tears in their eyes.
War is hell. Anyone who thinks it delivers some kind of heroic glory is fooling themselves. This film contributes to the documentation of reality. It reminded me of the film Winter Soldier, in which Vietnam vets speak about their experiences.
Hacking Democracy (2006)
More Important Than Ever to See This Film
This film came out 12 years ago yet the problem still exists and the situation is probably worse than ever!
I will be telling people to look for it. I found it at my library.
Rembrandt's J'Accuse...! (2008)
Learn about art history
If you're wondering whether or not to become an art historian, watch this film to help you make the decision. You will either be inspired or realize that art history is not for you. Greenaway examines Rembrandt's painting to such an intense degree that it can seem ludicrous or amazingly astute. He identifies 34 so-called Mysteries about the painting and explains his theories about these mysteries.
I personally found many of his theories far-fetched but was fascinated that someone would go the extent that he went in analyzing a single painting.
The Outer Limits: Expanding Human (1964)
Compare to other Outer Limits episode
Similar concept as season one episode titled The Sixth Finger. Someone trying to speed up evolution and discovering the consequences. Interesting to take that same general concept and take a different approach to it. This episode is a more modern approach while the earlier episode feels like the approach in an earlier time in history.
Scary and confusing: Caused nightmares
This film has a sweet and beautiful ending to the story. But for most of the time before that, it was scary and confusing. The skeletons and verbally aggressive family members were overwhelming and caused nightmares. A child would have to be pretty secure to not be frightened by this film. I'm surprised it has gotten so many accolades.
Serious version of But I'm a Cheerleader
Sweet teenage girl gets caught kissing her girlfriend and is sent to a Christian gay conversion camp. The film But I'm a Cheerleader had a comic perspective on this situation but this film Miseducation takes it seriously. Seemed like a realistically awful situation. Fortunately the girl makes some friends at the camp but they all suffer under the pressure to change their orientation. The film shows that this is emotional abuse. The acting of all the teens is excellent.
WOW Sci Fi Punk Extravaganza
Just saw premiere at SF Film Festival. Was not sure what to expect. Am so glad I gave it a chance. If you like John Cameron Mitchell's previous films, you will probably like this one too. It's different and out of this world. Three punk kids who think they are pretty cool in 1977 England get their minds blown by some aliens and those aliens want a cultural exchange too. It's wild and laugh out loud funny. This film cannot be described, it has to be experienced....
This film reminded me of an earlier film called Liquid Sky, also very strange but cool combination of punk and science fiction.
Dolores Huerta co-founded the United Farmworkers with Cesar Chavez. You probably have heard of Chavez but may not know of Huerta. She really did as much work or more than Chavez and did not get enough credit for her contributions. She deserves this documentary about her life. I learned so much more about her than I already knew. Her family's sacrifices are explored as well as her accomplishments and activism that went beyond the Farmworkers Union when they failed to elect her as President after Chavez died.
Much better than I expected
Wow, this documentary was impressive. I knew nothing about Chavela before seeing this film and it was an eye-opener.
I agree with another reviewer who said the film focuses more on her life than on her music. I also agree that I would have liked more on the music, but the film will lead me to search out more of her music. This film is the only thing that would give such an in depth look at her life.
The passionate intensity and exquisite pain of her approach to singing reminded me of Edith Piaf.
Hell in the Pacific (1968)
The best and worst of mankind
This film shows the masculine drive to compete and persevere in proving one's alpha status to the point of absurdity. They are willing to torture each other to boost their own egos. As a woman watching this film, the whole first part was a shining example of the worst of the male gender.
Two women would more likely immediately recognize that since there's no one else there, they would benefit from collaborating and sharing resources. I'd like to see a female version of this film. There is no way that two females would keep up the hostility for as long as these two guys did. I suspect two women would either make friends quickly or if one of them remained hostile for awhile, the other would make a real effort to win her over and convince her to become friends as soon as possible.
On the other hand, the best of mankind was also on display, in that they did eventually figure out how to work together despite the lack of communication.
But again, I couldn't help imagining that two women would have quickly realized that they needed to teach each other to speak a bit of each other's language, and at the very least, said "my name is .........." which these guys apparently never got around to...
This is a classic film which I recommend but could be put in a time capsule to show some of the reasons why the human species becomes extinct, which it probably will, given the inability of men to make peace and keep the peace....
The Lovers (2017)
No real love here
I expected to enjoy this film because of the lead actors and the overall concept.
However, it turned out to be a disappointment. They all seemed so emotionally immature and all seemed to have such superficial relationships. The word "lover" did not really apply to any of them. The son had the most depth of feeling and the poor guy was obviously unloved too and trying to find something more with his girlfriend.
I felt sorry for every single person in this film. They all seemed pathetic. I'm not sure if that's what the writer meant to convey but I certainly did not enjoy this film. I think that none of these people knows what love is or how to give love or be loving. They're all just going through the motions and pretending they feel things they don't seem to feel.
I am so grateful that I have such a different experience of love and know what it is....
The Babushkas of Chernobyl (2015)
Documents the best and worst of humanity
Truth is stranger than fiction. This documentary is a well-edited tight 70 minutes of profound shock and awe. I was left speechless and the impact went straight to my nonverbal subconscious. I dreamed all night about being one of the babushkas. Existential and experiential philosophy.
The Chernobyl disaster was described in vivid detail in the book Voices from Chernobyl, which I also highly recommend. This film shows how some people still living there managed to survive. Mother nature is greater than the force of radiation, the earth continues to grow and living things flourish.
I salute the courage of the people who went there to see it for themselves and gave us the gift of seeing it without having to take the risks of going there...
Stella Maris (1918)
One of the best silent films
If you are not familiar with silent films, and not likely to see many of them, see this. It is one of the best.
I have the following reasons for putting this film on my top ten silent films: 1. Mary Pickford plays two completely different characters, both excellent performances. 2. Coming out in 1918, at the time of WWI, this film has the poignant subject matter of a girl sheltered from awareness of the cruelty of the world, who later discovers the truth about war and poverty and violence.
In less than an hour and a half, we see the joy of love and the pain of human existence. An existential nutshell... Enjoy....
Miss Lulu Bett (1921)
One of the best silent films
Miss Lulu Bett is on my list of top ten silent films. Classic must-see.
This film documents the life of single women doomed to be servants of their families until they are able to escape by marriage. Coming out in 1921, it shows the ways women's lives were constrained within the home. Interesting to see how the privileged wife and the privileged mother treat the single woman like a slave, treating her no better than the man of the house. Their attitude is so condescending and cruel. They show no compassion.
Unfortunately, these attitudes are not completely outdated today nearly 100 years later.
Tsuma yo bara no yô ni (1935)
Title is deceptive
For years I avoided seeing this film because I thought the title implied it was a sexist drama about women forced to be submissive. Finally seeing it now, a more accurate title would be More than One Way to be a Wife. This short film (approximately 75 minutes) conveys more about relationships than most American films do in two hours. And it is still relevant, now 82 years after it was released. How many current films will still be relevant in 82 years? Not many.
I highly recommend this film to anyone interested in marriage and relationships and in the misunderstandings that can occur when people are not honest with each other about who they are and what they need to be happy in life.
I will not reveal more about the plot, just let it unfold and see for yourself....
Marie Curie (2016)
Personal life plus two Nobel prizes: Can a scientist have it all?
I just saw this film at the San Francisco Film Festival. I already knew about Madame Curie's scientific achievements so I was interested in the personal aspects that this film revealed.
The sexist aspects are relevant today. A woman tries to get recognition for her scientific achievements but is thwarted almost every step of the way. Nevertheless, she persisted....
It's a beautiful film, the cinematography is excellent. It's got an artistic feeling that I didn't expect from this period piece.
Marjorie Prime (2017)
Holograms at Home
Wow, I just saw this film at the San Francisco Film Festival and it blew my mind, as we used to say.
Very powerful story that sneaks up on you and by the end takes you further than you thought it would at the beginning. Intense if you have experienced deaths in the family or just aging and loss of memory. Some people in the audience openly sobbing or sniffling by the end.
Takes you on an almost psychedelic mental journey, if you are open to it and allow yourself to contemplate your own relationships. Felt therapeutic and mind-altering. I was definitely in an altered state as I stumbled out of the theater. The future felt close at hand....
I'm still a bit stunned as I write this. Kudos to the writer/director and all the actors.
Life, Animated (2016)
I just saw this film at the SF Film Festival.
This film gives you an up close and personal experience of having someone in your family develop autism at a young age after seeming to be fine for their first few years of life. They have home movies that show him playing normally and interacting with the family. Then you see the changes in him and see what it's like to take a child to doctors and try to figure out what's wrong and how to help him.
This would be a heart wrenching tale except that this child develops an interest in Disney movies and the parents finally realize that these films are a way to connect with him. His life is entirely changed by that recognition and over time you see him at age 23 able to be an independent young adult.
The animation in the film is wonderful. The young man becomes a storyteller too, inspired by the Disney stories. This is a different kind of Disney film but I predict it will last for eternity alongside all the other Disney classics.
Kudos to all involved!
The Man Who Knew Infinity (2015)
excellent historical drama
Just saw this film at the SF Film Festival. I thought it was excellent. Why? It combines various levels of entertainment: the intellectual mathematics involved and the realities of academic competition; the historical and cultural conflicts between Indian and English traditions, attitudes, biases, and beliefs; the emotional love/friendship between men, between men and women, and between children and parents; and inhumanity towards other humans: warmongers vs. pacifists, religious vs. non-religious, individuals vs. groups, misunderstandings and lack of emotional intelligence in so many ways.
I comprehended very little of the mathematics involved but that did not matter and did not change my overall appreciation for the story and all the levels involved.
Kudos to all who created this film. The writing, the acting, the cinematography, the direction, all excellent...
Amazing survey of the best and the worst of the Internet
I just saw this film at the SF Film Festival. I thought it was excellent. It was far better than I expected. I am not a tech person and assumed I would not really appreciate the subject matter. I only went to see it because I usually enjoy Herzog films and figured I would give it a chance.
Wow, it kind of blew my mind to see the range of material that was covered. I was quite impressed that he managed to cover such a large canvas and each segment was fascinating. He created 10 segments, each focusing on a different perspective on tech. I really liked the fact that he started from the beginnings of the Internet and interviewed many of the earliest key people involved. This record of their experiences makes the film an invaluable document of history.
I also really liked the fact that he confronted some of the very serious problems that the Internet has created in our world and didn't just focus on the wonderful aspects.
Definitely check out this film, whether you love the Internet or hate it, there is great stuff here to ponder....
A Bright Shining Lie (1998)
Compare with Go Tell the Spartans and Court-Martial of Billy Mitchell
This film is interesting in comparison with Go Tell the Spartans, which came out 20 years earlier in 1978. The earlier film starred Burt Lancaster, who is less than gung-ho, unlike Paxton in Bright Shining Lie.
What is similar in both films is the way both men begin to realize that what is really happening on the ground in Vietnam is quite different than what the administration is telling the public and the administration refuses to hear the truth from the soldiers on the ground, giving orders that actually get soldiers killed.
Paxton's character just keeps upping the ante, refusing to back down, insisting that he can somehow win this war and work around the military leaders. Lancaster gives up on fighting the military leaders and just stays with his men in the field.
In Court-martial of Billy Mitchell, Gary Cooper is another gung-ho soldier in an even earlier time period, the 1920's, just after World War I, when airplanes were new to the military. He wants to create an entire Air Force, which both the Army and Navy think is unnecessary. He somehow predicts a future when the USA's fleet at Pearl Harbor is attacked by bombs from Japanese airplanes (how did he guess that?) and foresees the need for a modern air force. He is willing to sacrifice his military career to get that message across. Again, a fascinating film in which the top military leaders refuse to listen to the soldiers in the field (this time in the air vs. on the ground) and these soldiers die because the leaders refuse to listen.
These three films certainly show that the military is a pretty bad place for soldiers whose lives may be unnecessarily sacrificed by the commanders who refuse to listen to the people actually fighting the war.
Red Light (1949)
Unintentionally funny religious noir
This film was memorable in ways that the director probably didn't intend it to be.
George Raft's performance is over the top, in a good way. He doesn't hold back his anger with the church yet shows his inner conflict by donating money and praying at the altar. That's the serious part. And Raymond Burr is seriously evil.
But many other scenes cracked me up with laughter. All the scenes with the Bible, the guy who comes back after the train scene, and of course the ending which was spectacular in a hilarious way. The phrase "24 hour Service" will always remind me of this film... In fact, that should have been the title...
This film is worth seeing because it is so unusual for a noir picture to combine the serious with the humor and the religious themes. And the cast has plenty of interesting characters....
Beats of the Antonov (2014)
I greatly enjoyed this film. I was first interested in it to hear the music, which has a great beat that inspired me to get up and dance.
I ended up paying attention to the story of the people involved and learned a lot about Sudan. In the U.S. it is not often understood that the people there are Africans fighting against people who want them to reject African culture and embrace Arab culture. They are all Muslims, but the Arabs are racists who think of blacks as just slaves. The refugees whose villages have been destroyed and their children killed feel the injustice and see the truth behind the lies of government officials. The clarity of their experience is vivid and the film gave me the kind of insight that I have never gotten watching the news.
Thanks to the filmmaker for bringing these beautiful and intelligent people to the world's attention. I hope their culture is not destroyed...
Night Moves (2013)
Better than I expected
To appreciate this film, you have to be prepared for the work of Kelly Reichart, whose films tend to be slow-moving and thought-provoking. You have to be in the mood for that type of experience. For this particular film you also have to be prepared for an emotional reaction to the story of several people who take political action, violent action, and suffer its human costs.
Anyone who was young during the 1960's and 1970's will remember what it was like to debate those political issues. We all had to decide whether we were willing to take action in which someone might get hurt. Or in the jargon of Star Trek, does the life of one outweigh the life of many? It's a question we still grapple with today.
If you are willing to confront those questions, and your own answers, this film will interest you. If you don't like to think about such things, skip this film and watch something more superficial.
The Color of Fear (1994)
I saw this film many years ago and it stands out in my memory as one of the best documentaries I've ever seen.
I saw it as part of a group discussion on racism and it was a great starting point for discussion after the film. These issues are so complicated and the film shows ways to express mixed feelings, fears, concerns, etc.
It's sad to find that so few people have written reviews of this film. It really should be quite well known and used in all adult organizations.... It's probably too advanced or mature for children and young people but perhaps by college age people could relate to it.
Thinking about this now makes me want to find a copy of it and buy it to show everyone I know!