In July I founded the Minnesota Film Critics Alliance and one of the best parts of doing so has been connecting with really talented people.
One of them is Ruth Maramis, who reviews films at FlixChatter. Her movie-related work doesn’t end there, though.
Maramis was also an executive producer and the writer for the short film “Hearts Want.” Since its release, the picture has picked up recognition from several film festivals.
Continue reading “A Minnesota-made movie: ‘Hearts Want’ review”
OK, I can handle the teenage angst, but when pseudo-intellectual babble is poured on top, it becomes too much.
“Chemical Hearts” centers on the character Henry (Austin Abrams), a senior who becomes the editor of the school newspaper in his final year. As the fall semester gets started, he meets a new student, Grace (Lili Reinhart), who joins the newspaper team.
Grace walks with a cane, as she has an apparent leg injury and keeps to herself for the most part. Henry, though, wants to get to know her and as time goes on, begins to form a relationship with Grace. However, she’s still dealing with trauma from an event in her past.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Chemical Hearts’ hindered by screenplay”
“Cold War” is a movie about trying to escape, but it’s certainly not escapist entertainment.
The picture tells the story of a singer, Zula (Joanna Kulig), and a composer, Wiktor (Tomasz Kot). Zula and Wiktor find themselves as part of a government funded music group in Poland, which is tasked with giving pro-Stalin performances.
The two soon find themselves in a romance, but they’re also in the Soviet Union during the Cold War, making things difficult. As a result, the two consider fleeing Poland. However, the power of the government and life in general throw a lot of issues at the couple.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Cold War’ is a captivating romantic drama”
Like the very paintings featured in this movie, “Portrait of a Lady on Fire” is a true work of art.
Noemie Merlant portrays Marianne in this film, a young woman who arrives in a secluded area of France to work on a portrait for a family. Marianne soon learns that a woman, (played by Valeria Golino and only known as The Countess), her employer, wants a portrait of her daughter Heloise (Adele Haenel), who’s arranged to be married.
Heloise, though, has no interest in going through with the marriage and refuses to pose for a portrait. In an effort to connect with her, Marianne begins to take walks in the scenic coastal areas of France with Heloise and the two begin to connect. From there, the relationship only grows as the two understand each other more and a romance blossoms.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Portrait of a Lady on Fire’ burns bright with quality”
Director Sebastian Lelio had some experience going into this project, since “Gloria Bell” is actually a remake of his own 2013 Chilean film “Gloria.”
Gloria, played in the American version by Julianne Moore, is a woman who frequents disco dance clubs in Los Angeles on a regular basis. Having been divorced for about a decade, Gloria visits the clubs and mingles with some of the guys there, with the hope of maybe sparking a new relationship in mind.
During one of her outings, she meets Arnold (John Turturro), another divorcee who’s also looking for a new relationship. The two hit it off and begin dating each other. However, they find out that they might not be the most perfect match.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Gloria Bell’ glows thanks to Julianne Moore”
“Downhill,” aka, “Marriage Story: On Ice.”
This movie taking place at a ski resort in Austria follows a family of four on vacation. The family includes the parents Billie (Julia Louis Dreyfus) and Pete (Will Ferrell), and their two sons Finn (Julian Grey) and Emerson (Ammon Jacob Ford). The family appears to have some stress from vacation traveling, but seem to be ready for a pleasant trip in Europe.
However, the situation gets rocky when a controlled avalanche to provide more snow on the slopes causes a sequence of events that results in a rift between the married couple. The rest of the trip explores their drama as they navigate the rest of their vacation.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Downhill’ enjoyable thanks to mix of drama, dark comedy”
This is a series called “Best of the Decade.” It’s a list including 10 movies that I found to be the best in a specific genre from 2010-2019.
Several great romantic relationships were brought to the big screen over the past decade, with some getting more attention than others. Here were my favorites.
Continue reading “Best of the Decade: Romance”
“The Sun is Also a Star.” The North Star is also a star. And now I just miss the North Stars.
Anyway, there’s a movie to review. “The Sun is Also a Star” is the latest romance film based on a young adult novel. Of course, the movie follows two young adults, Natasha (Yara Shahidi) and Daniel (Charles Melton). Natasha is a Jamaican whose family is about to be deported back to Jamaica by the U.S. Government, while Daniel, whose family immigrated from Korea, is preparing to apply for college.
One day, through a chance encounter, the two meet and after talking, find out that they have differing opinions. Daniel believes in fate, destiny, and thinks that the universe brought them together. Natasha is much more of a skeptic, to the point where she doesn’t believe in fate or love. To convince her, Daniel suggests they spend the day together to prove who’s right and see if they fall in love.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘The Sun is also a Star’ is only a two star movie”