Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Movie Mom™


New in Theaters
  New to DVD

Wish I Was Here
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language and some sexual content
Release Date:
July 18, 2014

 

Heaven is for Real
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG for thematic material including some medical situations
Release Date:
April 16, 2014

Boyhood
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language including sexual references, and for teen drug and alcohol use
Release Date:
July 18, 2014

 

Sabotage
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating:
Rated R For strong bloody violence, pervasive language, some sexuality/nudity and drug use
Release Date:
March 28, 2014

Planes: Fire & Rescue
Lowest Recommended Age: Kindergarten - 3rd Grade
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG for action and some peril
Release Date:
July 18, 2014

 

Transcendence
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for sci-fi action and violence, some bloody images, brief strong language and sensuality
Release Date:
April 19, 2014

The Memory Book — This Saturday on the Hallmark Channel

posted by Nell Minow

hallmark-channel-movie-the-memory-book-2A budding, young photographer stumbles upon an old photo album chronicling the ideal romance of a happy couple. Intrigued by their love and unable to find her own “true love,” she sets out to find the couple and figure out if true love really exists.  The film stars Meghan Ory (“Once Upon a Time,” “Intelligence”), Luke Macfarlane (“Brothers and Sisters”), Adrienne Barbeau (“Maude,” “General Hospital”) and Art Hindle (“Paradise Falls”).

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Interview: Michael Rossato-Bennett of “Alive Inside”

posted by Nell Minow

Michael Rossato-Bennett agreed to spend one day filming Dan Cohen’s remarkable music therapy work with people struggling with dementia. He ended up spending three years there and the result is “Alive Inside,” an extraordinary documentary about the power of music to reach the human spirit, even when words and memories are gone. And it is also about the devotion of those who care for these people, those who work so hard to reach what seems unreachable. He spoke to me about making the film and about the work that is being done to expand these programs.

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What is it that makes this film so powerful?

It’s so profoundly touching. People that are gone in one part of their being and yet absolutely profound in another. And that’s why I think this is a film that is meant to be seen with other people. I think by accident I’ve shown something that no one has ever seen before. These are people who don’t have any of their personalities, any of their memory, of their mind, they’ve basically lost the ability to lie. So you just see these pure human souls. And these pure souls are living in a world where they’re basically starving for the stuff that makes people alive, connection and music.

And then we brought the one-two punch, we brought music and we brought us. And we said, “Show us who you are. Listen to this music from when you were young and we are going to be here and watch you.” And these people just were like, “Oh my God! This is the music of my soul and you are here with me!” And they woke up. And to experience another person waking is an odd and indescribable experience. Like when you see your child take its first step or see your baby crying, there’s nothing you can do it just cuts into the core of your heart. We are showing people who are lost to themselves and lost to the world and then giving them this miraculous elixir of life that’s called music. And to see them discover the core of what they are and have that bloom in front of our eyes is a gift because that’s who we are, you and I, we’re not like our jobs, that’s not the people we are. That’s what we do to make a living or whatever but the people we are, are the people who deeply love. You know, in the moment of our deepest love, that’s who we are and those are the things that when you go into yourself and say, who am I? What am I? Those are the things that are real and you just sit there and resonate. And I think music is the perfect vehicle to awaken that for all of us. Anyway this is just a huge opportunity to make a difference for a sleeping population and heal ourselves in the process. And I think we’re in desperate need of healing as a people and that’s perhaps why this movie is getting such a good reaction.

As a filmmaker, you had this great gift of the look of coming alive on people’s faces when they heard the music.  You also had archival footage.  Was that real film of these people or was it just intended to evoke the feeling of their pasts and their memories?

It’s a mixture of both.  Some is their home movies and some of it was footage that we found that describes moments that we were told happened in their lives. So it’s either their actual footage from their life or it’s illustration of things we were told about them.

This film made me conscious of my own memory.  I remember one day just walking around in total awe looking at all the people around me, all these elders in these nursing homes and I realize that inside each one of them, that they play for themselves, that is a kind of movie of them with their wives and their kids or their dogs or their friends.  It kind of overwhelmed me this idea that we all have a movie playing in our heads.

You had some people in the movie were dealing with diseases other than dementia.  Tell me a little bit about what the music therapy can do for other kinds of illnesses.

Music therapists have known about the power of music for years. This environment is to some degree a desert of the soul.   Steve was a man with multiple sclerosis.  All he can do is speak listen.  I was literally aghast that no one thought to bring him his music in eight years since he was first hospitalized. If that’s the case, what are we thinking? We certainly need to rethink what we’re doing especially when it had such a profound effect on him.

Music is one of the most profound human creations that we’ve got and its wisdom is phenomenal. I personally believe that music is a precursor to religion. Together we existed in community in rhythm and melody, it thought is that we are together and that we are one and that we vibrate and that the world vibrates. It’s a preverbal expression of everything good we’ve ever expressed.

It’s actually very sad about our state of music right now; you know all music today is quantitized. It means computers put it on micro beats so it doesn’t have human beats.  It’s like robot music.  And a majority of the artists are now auto-tuning their voices.  It is pretty, but it is less human.  It’s like Photoshopping for the ears.

Has working on this film affected your thoughts about your own music?

I never liked the music of the 40′s or 50′s but now I just listen to it through their ears. It literally brings tears to my eyes.   I’m building an app to be a tool for young people. So that a young person could interface with an elder and help them find their music but at the same time get to hear.  So these young people will get to hear this phenomenally profound music, like the music of the Andrews Sisters or Louis Armstrong or Nessun Dorma by Pavarotti.  I think that’s one of the pinnacles of human music.

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What do you want this movie to accomplish?

What I really want this film to do is to inspire people to create connection.  I see this world as a place going more and more individualistic, creating divisions and isolation in many people’s life. We are more connected than ever now with all these phones and everything but we’re not really connected and we’re tweeting each other and Facebooking each other but are we really connecting? How profound are we emotionally? How profound are we musically? How profound are we as dancers? These things are being discarded.  I get it that we are moving forward and we are discovering new things you we can’t get there from here and we will become different beings. We have always evolved but we spent half a million years creating music and I think it has lessons for us.

Movies’ Greatest Mirror Scenes

posted by Nell Minow

Anne Billson has a great piece in The Telegraph on mirror scenes in movies, from the Marx brothers clowning in “Duck Soup” and the shootout in “The Lady from Shanghai” to Elizabeth Taylor scrawling on the mirror with lipstick in “Butterfield 8.”

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And here’s Woody Allen’s tribute in “Manhattan Murder Mystery.”

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How Do Movies Show Time Passing?

posted by Nell Minow

Someone once said that movies are “pieces of time.” A few take place in “real time.” Alfred Hitchcock’s experiment, “Rope,” unfolds in just the time it takes us to watch it, all in what appears to be one seamless shot. But others take place over days, weeks, years, even generations.

Slavko Vorkapich was the Hollywood pioneer who established the cinematic language of the passage of time. Whenever you see calendar pages falling or clock hands turning, that is his influence.

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I was honored to be included in Criticwire’s survey asking film critics about their favorite depictions of the passage of time in movies. Watch a year pass in “Notting Hill.”

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I wrote about the clever way they showed each school term passing in Bing Crosby’s 1960 film “High Times,” directed by Black Edwards, in 101 Must-See Movie Moments.

And watch many years go by and a marriage disintegrate in “Citizen Kane.”

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Previous Posts

The Memory Book -- This Saturday on the Hallmark Channel
A budding, young photographer stumbles upon an old photo album chronicling the ideal romance of a happy couple. Intrigued by their love and unable to find her own “true love,” she sets out to find the couple and figure out if true love really exists.  The film stars Meghan Ory (“Once Upon a T

posted 8:00:57am Jul. 24, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: Michael Rossato-Bennett of "Alive Inside"
Michael Rossato-Bennett agreed to spend one day filming Dan Cohen's remarkable music therapy work with people struggling with dementia. He ended up spending three years there and the result is "Alive Inside," an extraordinary documentary about the power of music to reach the human spirit, even when

posted 3:58:01pm Jul. 23, 2014 | read full post »

Movies' Greatest Mirror Scenes
Anne Billson has a great piece in The Telegraph on mirror scenes in movies, from the Marx brothers clowning in "Duck Soup" and the shootout in "The Lady from Shanghai" to Elizabeth Taylor scrawling on the mirror with lipstick in "Butterfield 8." [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VKTT-sy0aLg

posted 8:00:51am Jul. 23, 2014 | read full post »

How Do Movies Show Time Passing?
Someone once said that movies are "pieces of time." A few take place in "real time." Alfred Hitchcock's experiment, "Rope," unfolds in just the time it takes us to watch it, all in what appears to be one seamless shot. But others take place over days, weeks, years, even generations. Slavko Vorkap

posted 8:00:40am Jul. 22, 2014 | read full post »

Boring TV Makes You Fat
A new study finds that boring television leads to mindless snacking and that leads to putting on pounds. So, watch programs that excite and engage you. Or, if the show is boring, turn off the television.

posted 8:00:05am Jul. 22, 2014 | read full post »


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