Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Movie Mom™


New in Theaters
  New to DVD

Tusk
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for some disturbing violence/gore, language and sexual content
Release Date:
September 19, 2014

 

The Fault in Our Stars
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, some sexuality and brief strong language
Release Date:
June 6, 2014

This is Where I Leave You
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language, sexual content and some drug use
Release Date:
September 19, 2014

 

Neighbors
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for pervasive language, strong crude and sexual content, graphic nudity, and drug use throughout
Release Date:
May 9, 2014

The Maze Runner
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for thematic elements and intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action, including some disturbing images
Release Date:
September 19, 2014

 

Think Like a Man Too
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for crude sexual content including references, partial nudity, language and drug material
Release Date:
June 20, 2014

Christopher Orr on the Coen Brothers’ “Miller’s Crossing”

posted by Nell Minow

One of my favorite critics writes about one of his favorite movies in The Atlantic: the highlight of Christopher Orr’s outstanding series on the Coen Brothers‘ films is his essay on Miller’s Crossing. Whether you’re a fan of the Coens or of this film or not, Orr’s essay is a pleasure to read for its deep engagement with the film and lucidity of prose.

Miller’s Crossing is an aesthetic pleasure of the highest order on nearly every level. Begin with its almost intolerably sumptuous cinematography, with reds and greens so deep one is in danger of falling into them. This was the last film that Barry Sonnenfeld shot for the Coens—and one for which he persuaded them to use long lenses instead of the wide-angle variety they had favored—and no one involved has mustered a better-looking work since. The production design by Dennis Gassner is comparably extraordinary: the long, long oak rooms with their endless oriental rugs and all the furniture seemingly tucked into one corner.

And did I mention the score? It is not only the best work Carter Burwell has done for the Coens (or anyone else), it set a model that he would later follow for his almost-as-good scores for Fargo and True Grit: taking a traditional piece of music with some culturally relevant connection and using it as the central motif of the broader arrangement. In this case, it was the Irish ballad “Limerick’s Lamentation.” (It’s usually played on a fiddle, I think, but here’s an interesting version on a hammered dulcimer.) Burwell’s score has lived on since: It was used for the trailer of the (astonishingly bad) Melanie Griffith vehicle Shining Through as well as that of at least one other 1990s movie I can’t quite recall at the moment. [Update: It came to me after publication that the trailer I was thinking of was for the 1995 movie Powder. In addition, I was reminded that the score was used in the trailer for The Shawshank Redemption(!) in 1994.] It also served, as I recently discovered, in an ad for Caffrey’s Irish Ale. It is one of the truly great film scores of the last 30 years.

YouTube Preview Image

New on ABC: Black-ish

posted by Nell Minow

One of the best new shows of the year is Anthony Anderson’s “Black-ish.”  Anderson plays Andre “Dre” Johnson has a great job, a beautiful mixed-race doctor wife, Rainbow (Tracee Ellis Ross), four kids, and a colonial home in the mostly-white suburbs.  But now that he has given his children a better life, he worries that they are so assimilated into upper middle class white culture that they are losing their identity as African Americans, that they are only “black-ish.”  

The people behind the show have prepared some discussion materials for church and school groups and families.  If you’d like a copy, send me an email at moviemom@moviemom.com with Black-ish in the subject line.

The Real Story: Tracks and Robyn Davidson’s Long Walk Across Australia

posted by Nell Minow

Mia Wasikowska plays real-life adventurer Robyn Davidson in “Tracks,” based on the 1980 international best-seller about her 1700-mile walk across Australia with four camels.

A thoughtful interview with Davidson in The Australian describes her:

Davidson is an enigma. With her patrician air, prim frock and cut-glass English accent (she’s spent most of her life in London), it’s difficult to envisage her as the young woman who killed rampaging bull camels in the Australian desert, fought off rats nestling in her hair during a hellish journey with the Rabari nomads of northwest India, became a crack shot with a Savage .222 rifle, and crossed glaciers near her home in the Himalayas. She’s worked as an artist’s model and dealt blackjack in an illegal gambling den, squatted in houses and taken LSD, once having an “exquisite trip where I was Titania from A Midsummer Night’s Dream”. Despite this big, adventurous life, she has described herself as “basically a dreadful coward”.

She’s whip-smart, can quote Montaigne, Levi-Strauss, Nietzsche and Novalis with the best of them, and slips easily, during our chat, from the plight of nomadic people and the slippery nature of time in a desert, to metaphysics and madness.

There’s an other-wordly, ascetic air about her: she’s described herself as a kungka rama-rama (“crazy woman” in Pitjantjatjara) and a “sausage of angel and beast”, as Chilean poet Nicanor Parra puts it. She loves a motley collection of things – silence, deserts, crows, dogs, stars (she can roll the latter off her tongue: Aldebaran, Sirius, Corvus…). I’m struck by her face, all serene planes and curves and wide Slavic cheekbones; at 62, it remains a miracle of excellent natural design. “It helps to have good scaffolding,” she concedes later during a photo shoot at Bondi, where she poses reluctantly for the camera, framed by a big blue sky and a quietly heaving sea.

Davidson told The Scotsman why she wanted to walk across the desert.

“Why? Why? Why?” Davidson laughs. “The thing that Mia said to me was that no man would be asked that. She’s absolutely right. But then perhaps if I’d been a man people wouldn’t have been so interested in the first place. Who knows? But I think that anyone who steps outside of a boundary or a cliché, it disturbs something in the culture at large so the question is, why did she do it? What does it mean that we didn’t?”

“My sense of myself is that I was a rather unformed kind of person trying to make myself up out of bits of spit and string,” is how she once described it. “Some instinct – and I think it was a correct one – led me to do something difficult enough to give my life meaning.”

Here Davidson and Wasikowska talk about the journeys they took.

YouTube Preview Image

And here is an interview with Davidson and National Geographic photographer Rick Smolan, played by Adam Driver in the film.

YouTube Preview Image

Smolan’s magnificent photos appear in From Alice to Ocean: Alone Across the Outback.

Copyright Rick Smolan and Against all Odds Productions

Copyright Rick Smolan and Against all Odds Productions

Smile of the Week: The Dancing Traffic Light

posted by Nell Minow
YouTube Preview Image
Previous Posts

Christopher Orr on the Coen Brothers' "Miller's Crossing"
One of my favorite critics writes about one of his favorite movies in The Atlantic: the highlight of Christopher Orr's outstanding series on the Coen Brothers' films is his essay on Miller's Crossing. Whether you're a fan of the Coens or of this film or not, Orr's essay is a pleasure to read for it

posted 3:53:09pm Sep. 23, 2014 | read full post »

New on ABC: Black-ish
One of the best new shows of the year is Anthony Anderson's "Black-ish."  Anderson plays Andre "Dre" Johnson has a great job, a beautiful mixed-race doctor wife, Rainbow (Tracee Ellis Ross), four kids, and a colonial home in the mostly-white suburbs.  But now that he has given his children a bett

posted 10:20:50pm Sep. 22, 2014 | read full post »

The Real Story: Tracks and Robyn Davidson's Long Walk Across Australia
Mia Wasikowska plays real-life adventurer Robyn Davidson in "Tracks," based on the 1980 international best-seller about her 1700-mile walk across Australia with four camels. A thoughtful interview with Davidson in The Australian describes her: Davidson is an enigma. With her patrician air, prim

posted 3:51:08pm Sep. 22, 2014 | read full post »

Smile of the Week: The Dancing Traffic Light
[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SB_0vRnkeOk[/youtube]

posted 8:00:15am Sep. 22, 2014 | read full post »

TrueSpark: Teaching Children and Teens About Character With Quality Films
I am honored to serve on the advisory committee for TrueSpark, which provides quality films and curricula for schools at no cost to use in teaching character. [iframe width="420" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/akEWIRfjnxk?rel=0" frameborder="0"] Parents and teachers who want to lear

posted 8:22:33pm Sep. 21, 2014 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.