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New in Theaters
  New to DVD

Deadpool
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for strong violence and language throughout, sexual content and graphic nudity
Release Date:
February 12, 2016

 

Spectre
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of action and violence, some disturbing images, sensuality and languag
Release Date:
November 6, 2015

Hail, Caesar!
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for some suggestive content and smoking
Release Date:
February 5, 2016

 

Grandma
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language and some drug use
Release Date:
August 21, 2015

The Choice
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for sexual content and some thematic issues
Release Date:
February 5, 2016

 

99 Homes
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language including some sexual references, and a brief violent image
Release Date:
October 2, 2015

New in Theaters

grade:
B+

Deadpool

Lowest Recommended Age:
Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for strong violence and language throughout, sexual content and graphic nudity
Release Date:
February 12, 2016
grade:
B+

Hail, Caesar!

Lowest Recommended Age:
High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for some suggestive content and smoking
Release Date:
February 5, 2016
grade:
B

The Choice

Lowest Recommended Age:
Middle School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for sexual content and some thematic issues
Release Date:
February 5, 2016

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New to DVD

pick of the week
grade:
B+

Spectre

Lowest Recommended Age:
High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of action and violence, some disturbing images, sensuality and languag
Release Date:
November 6, 2015
grade:
B+

Grandma

Lowest Recommended Age:
Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language and some drug use
Release Date:
August 21, 2015
grade:
B+

99 Homes

Lowest Recommended Age:
Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language including some sexual references, and a brief violent image
Release Date:
October 2, 2015

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Deadpool

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong violence and language throughout, sexual content and graphic nudity
Movie Release Date:February 12, 2016
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong violence and language throughout, sexual content and graphic nudity
Movie Release Date: February 12, 2016

Copyright 20th Century Fox 2016

Copyright 20th Century Fox 2016

Frankly, exhuberantly nasty — in the nicest possible way, Deadpool is not your father’s superhero. That is, unless your father is more like “Who’s your daddy?” all snarky wisecracks, 90’s pop culture references, and joyous mayhem.

Deadpool is the po-mo superhero, so self-aware he knows he’s in a comic book, or now, a movie. A riotously funny opening shot takes us in exquisite slow-motion through an in medias res freeze frame that teases and reveals where we are — not just geographically and narratively but the world we are in. Suspended in air are elements of violence and chaos and also a copy of the Sexiest Man Alive People Magazine with Deadpool portrayer Ryan Reynolds on the cover. Oh, and the song on the soundtrack is not the kind superhero fanfare we might expect. It’s the syrupy “Angel in the Morning.”

And then we see the opening credits. Instead of the actual names of the people on and off screen we get their descriptions, telling us that the filmmakers will both meet and subvert our expectations for a comic book movie. We will see: God’s fool, a moody teen, a wisecracking sidekick, a British villain, a CGI character, and a gratuitous cameo. And the movie is produced by “asshats,” directed by “a stupid tool,” and written by — the real heroes of the film (there are some benefits to having final say on the script).

A big, crazy battle on a bridge is underway but Deadpool pauses to tell us his story, starting with a very crude reference to another comic book hero to explain how he got his own movie, and then taking us back to his pre-superhero days, when he was just Wade after his days in Special Forces, when he was an Equalizer-style hired gun with a very bad attitude.

A bunch of bad attitude types congregate at a bar run by Weasel (T.J. Miller), the closest thing to a friend Wade has, which doesn’t keep him from betting on Wade in the “dead pool,” a running tally of odds on which of the colorful, trigger-happy local denizens will die first. Wade meets Vanessa (Morena Baccarin of “Gotham”), who speaks his language — tough, twisted, and funny. Their one-upsmanship on who had the worst childhood is topped by a hilarious montage of holiday and season-related sexual situations. As Wade tells Vanessa, they are two jigsaw puzzle pieces who don’t fit in anywhere else but fit together just right.

But then Wade gets Stage 4 cancer. It seems hopeless until a man approaches him with the possibility of a cure that will make him better than before. Ajax (Ed Skrein) has a mad-scientist lab/hospital that tortures people until they either die or mutate into superheroes. Wade comes out of the process invulnerable, strong, covered with burn-like scars, and very, very angry.

First time director Tim Miller has a background in animation and special effects, and it pays off in his handling of the action sequences, which would be enough to sustain a lesser comic-book film on their own. But what he really captures here is the charm of the anti-hero who spouts off a kaleidoscope of 90’s pop culture references fit for a crit lit symposium panel as he skewers the bad guys (often literally), mashes on his elderly blind roommate (Leslie Uggams! Thank you!), and is genuinely sweet with Vanessa. This is a great fit for Ryan Reynolds, who, People Magazine notwithstanding, is best when he is not trying to be conventionally heroic (no more mention of Green Lantern, please, ever, and the same goes for romantic comedies like “Just Friends”). He is better when he’s bitter. And certainly much more fun for us.

Parents should know that this movie has extensive comic-book style violence, including torture, with graphic and disturbing images. Characters use very strong and crude language and there are vulgar sexual references and explicit situations, along with references to drug use.

Family discussion: What makes Deadpool an anti-hero? When is he willing to accept help from others?

If you like this, try: the X-Men and Avengers movies and “Guardians of the Galaxy”

Interview: Marilyn Meberg from “Women of Faith”

posted by Nell Minow

Copyright Women of Faith 2016

Copyright Women of Faith 2016

Marilyn Meberg knows how to make everyone feel like an old friend. Counselor, author, and part of the Women of Faith tour of inspirational events, her kindness and warmth are illuminated with a wonderful humor, all grounded in a deep and abiding connection to the divine. It was a great pleasure to speak to her about this final tour of the group that has spoken to hundreds and thousands of women for the last twenty years.

By Experience and Fathom Events will present the farewell Women of Faith event on Thursday, February 18, 2016, at 7 p.m. local time nationwide, with an encore presentation Saturday, February 20 at 12:55 p.m. local time also nationwide and on Thursday, March 3rd at 7 p.m. local time nationwide. The film takes audiences on the historic journey of the Women of Faith movement and showcases how this extraordinary group has influenced the lives of more than five million women. It’s called the Amazing Joyful Journey. And it was a great pleasure to speak to Marilyn Meberg about what that journey has meant to her.

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“I’ve been with Women Of Faith for 20 years as we all have. They just decided to call some of us out of retirement in order to have a farewell tour.”

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She got started speaking when she was still a teenager. “I was a motivational debater in high school and did some speaking in college, too. Then I got married at 22 and started speaking with Christian women’s clubs and then various churches and retreats, so it’s been a very rich life. For some reason God thinks that I have a message that he’s put on my heart and mind and it’s been a pleasure to do that which I’ve been doing with Women of Faith.”

Meberg is known for bringing a sense of humor to her speeches, and she does it for a reason. “Humor is a door into peoples’ consciousness. They’ll listen to you if you can make them laugh. Once they laugh and you say something meaningful they say, ‘Oh, that’s another way of looking at it.’ My first book is called Choosing the Amusing. It’s how we look at life. We can look through a lens of despair — we all have despairing things in our lives. Or we can change our attitude and we can change how we see things. Of course the best lens is to say, ‘God is in control and God is love.’ Yes, you will have trouble on this earth but find something funny, find something lighthearted, something that can give you a giggle and that can get you through the hard times.”

She told me about a memory that still makes her laugh. “When our little boy he was on a pacifier and I felt like it was time for him to get off the pacifier but he didn’t seem to agree with me. He wanted his old pacifier which was rubbery and he rejected his new pacifier, so I decided to break it in. So one day I’m busy working on it, the doorbell rings, I go to the door, and there is a man who wants to sell me something and he stares at me and then he said, ‘Lady, I don’t know what you’re doing but I think your kid is going to be okay.’ And he went on out the door, and I thought, ‘That was nervy, what right did he have to do that?’ I was engaged into a private thing here! I could have been embarrassed and I wasn’t. I could have been the mad because he had no right at my door. But I thought it was funny and I have had a lot of giggles with that in the years since then. You don’t laugh your way to a funeral, because that would be denial and in many cases it would be inappropriate but you’re able to have room in your insides to know that you can lighten your spirit. Why? because God cares. Why? Because He cares. What goes on may not always be the best but it can be made much better when we see through a lens of humor. That is the very thought at my bottom line.”

She spoke about how she and her husband were able to find something to laugh about even as he was dying. “My husband was extremely funny. One of the things that drew us together was in fact was our wacky humor. I’ve been coloring my hair since I was 16 and when I turned 45 I asked Kenneth, ‘What would you think if I let my hair go?’ He said no. So shortly before he died, I said, ‘Babe, you know you’re going to leave me,’ and he said, ‘Yes.’ I said, ‘Well, don’t you think maybe I have to let my hair go after you’ve gone?’ He said, ‘Yes, but I think you should wait until after. I think you also you could get mileage out of letting your hair go after I’m gone.’ I said, ‘What do you mean?’ He said, ‘Well, how long does it take to grow out?’ ‘No idea. Don’t know what’s under there.’ He said, ‘Okay, here’s the deal. After my service don’t go out until the hair is grown out. People will look at you and say, “Have you seen Marilyn? Bless her heart, her hair turned white after her husband died because they were so close.” So I was like, ‘You rascal!’ and that’s exactly what I did, I let it go and when a friend that we had not seen in a year came to see me for lunch, she was like, ‘Oh no Marilyn,’ and so I said, ‘Oh Ken, you were so right thank you so much.’ I could play that for a while; humor does help.”

She had some concerns about how the immediate personal connection of the live tour could translate to film. “We thought: How are you going to make a movie that commemorates 20 years of ministry with Women Of Faith. We were afraid to be corny. But oh my word! They previewed it for us last week and I was so proud and so moved. Women of Faith has been about stories. Tell the story and it resonates to people. You know Jesus talked in parables, he told stories, why? Because you don’t get bored out of your mind hearing someone’s story. When you tell your story and God became a reality to you in the middle of your story that’s moving to people. So what this movie is about is the six of us, with Women Of Faith. We thought, ‘Oh no don’t let it be embarrassing,’ and it wasn’t. It was moving it was uplifting, and very tender. And I won’t tell you the ending of it, but for those who are acquainted with a Women Of Faith, Mary Graham who has been unable to be with us this past year shares the reason. She narrated the whole thing from the comfort of her living room so they put the movie together based on her narration which was flawless, so sweet and kind and then we concluded the movie with her story. I didn’t expect that to be so we were all pretty undone emotionally but it is just upbeat, it’s sweet, it’s kind, is encouraging. And for 20 years having done this, to go out on that note, we feel very very honored and pleased.”

The most meaningful responses she has seen to their tour is from those who “have found the realization in their heart that the God who created them has not lost sight of who they are, where they are, and what’s going on in their lives. And they have had a reminder that it is possible to notice God in a very personal way. The personal way is Jesus, the son of God and what he did to make it possible for us to have access to God in a personal way.”

She is comforted by favorite Bible verses: “God said, ‘I will never leave you or forsake you,’ that’s in Isaiah and when he says in Psalm 63 “Oh my God, you are my God I thirst for you, my soul thirsts for you my, whole body longs for you in a parched and weary land where there is no water.’ There is water with Jesus, there’s water in worshiping him, there is water anointing him and He is never ever going to leave you starving and parched and alone.”

Beliefnet’s Movie Love Quotes Quiz

posted by Nell Minow

Check out this great quiz about great movie love quotes! If you beat my score (18), let me know!

Trailer: Screenagers, a Documentary About 21st Century Kids and Their Devices

posted by Nell Minow
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Every parent should see “Screenagers,” which explores the unprecedented challenges families face over social media, video games, academics and internet addiction. Insights from authors and brain scientists provide a context for thoughts about how to best empower kids to navigate the digital world.

Previous Posts

Deadpool
Frankly, exhuberantly nasty -- in the nicest possible way, Deadpool is not your father's superhero. That is, unless your father is more like ...

posted 3:58:24pm Feb. 08, 2016 | read full post »

Interview: Marilyn Meberg from "Women of Faith"
Marilyn Meberg knows how to make everyone feel like an old friend. Counselor, author, and part of the Women of Faith tour of inspirational ...

posted 3:55:38pm Feb. 08, 2016 | read full post »

Beliefnet's Movie Love Quotes Quiz
Check out this great quiz about great movie love quotes! If you beat my score (18), let me know! ...

posted 8:00:59am Feb. 08, 2016 | read full post »

Trailer: Screenagers, a Documentary About 21st Century Kids and Their Devices
[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LQx2X0BXgZg[/youtube] Every parent should see "Screenagers," which explores the unprecedented challenges families face over social media, video games, academics and internet addiction. Insights from ...

posted 8:00:20am Feb. 08, 2016 | read full post »

The People and Movies That Inspired "Hail, Caesar!"
The Coen brothers love old movies, and we see evidence of that in many of their films, including "Barton Fink," about a hapless playwright who come to Hollywood to write movies in the 1940's, and with their remakes of the heist films "The ...

posted 3:57:20pm Feb. 07, 2016 | read full post »

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