Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Movie Mom™


New in Theaters
  New to DVD

Fury
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for strong sequences of war violence, some grisly images, and language throughout
Release Date:
October 17, 2014

 

Moms' Night Out
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG for mild thematic elements and some action
Release Date:
May 9, 2014

St. Vincent
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 For mature thematic material including sexual content, alcohol and tobacco use, and for language
Release Date:
October 17, 2014

 

Earth to Echo
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG for some action and peril, and mild language
Release Date:
July 3, 2014

Dear White People
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language, sexual content and drug use
Release Date:
October 17, 2014

 

Snowpiercer
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for violence, language and drug content
Release Date:
July 2, 2014

‘Swing Vote’s’ inspiration?

posted by Nell Minow

Great Man Votes.jpg“Swing Vote,” starring Kevin Costner, opens this week. It stars Kevin Costner as a slacker whose vote will decide the outcome of a Presidential election. There’s nothing in the credits to indicate any connection to an earlier movie, but it sounds a lot like a 1939 film starring John Barrymore called “The Great Man Votes.” Both are about men who drink a lot and have young daughters who love them and want them to do better. And Barrymore’s character, like Costner’s, through a technicality, has the deciding vote in an election. It’s worth seeing for Barrymore’s performance — Garson Kanin, who directed, said that Barrymore was so out of it he needed cue cards — then a rarity — even if the only thing he had to say in a scene was “No,” but that he was able on command not just to cry but to determine whether the little tear would come before or after the big one.

The Language of Film

posted by Nell Minow

Michael Wohl has a great introduction to the language of film — the way different kinds of shots and camera movements help to tell the story. This is an outstanding resource for anyone who wants to understand the way that movies communicate with us — not just what is going on but what the characters are thinking and how their environment and the perspective of each frame helps us to understand their stories.

Comic-Con 2008 (Red Sonja, The Rock, Spike’s Scream Queens)

posted by Nell Minow

IMG_5765.JPGAn Elvis impersonator in a “Star Wars” storm trooper outfit with a lot of bling (think “This is Elvis” vintage) was about to introduce Superman surrounded by a bevy of Princess Leias in the harem girl outfit. I love Comic-Con. It is
a thrilling and hilarious place to be. The sensibility is completely endearing — a mastery of arcania with the wicked but not snarky humor, self-deprecating and ironic but always generous and confident and enthusiastic. It is, above all a very, very happy crowd. Even these Klingons were friendly. IMG_5780.JPG
“This is the week I live for all year,” a woman sitting behind me confided to someone she had just met. We were waiting for a panel discussion of the forthcoming “Red Sonja” movie that should erase all memory of the 80’s version. “No mullet!” promised star Rose McGowan, in an emerald green strapless Dolce and Gabbana dress designed to make fanboys’ knees melt away. Also on the panel, “producer” Robert Rodriguez (no longer a DGA member so not the director of record) and director Douglas Aarniokoski. Rodriguez re-enacted the spit-take he did when McGowan told him she had been sent the script. Robert E. Howard had been one of his favorites since he bought his first Conan book at age 10.
I also went to a panel about the new “Race to Witch Mountain” with Duane “The Rock” Johnson and director Andy Fickman who, like many who appear here, was happy to authenticate his fanboy cred — “This is my 10th Comic-Con and the first one where I didn’t have to buy a ticket. I was here when I was a kid and spent $300 for what I was assured was a mint copy of the Roger Corman ‘Fantastic Four’ but when I got it home it was Dolph Lundgren’s ‘The Punisher!'” Needless to say, with this crowd, this was a line that killed.
I also attended a panel on the forthcoming “Quantum Quest,” a NASA-affiliated sci-fi movie for kids with the voices of everyone from old and new Captains Kirk William Shatner and Chris Pine to Neil Armstrong, Mark Hamill, and the guy who does the voice of SpongeBob (and boy, was he a hit). And long-time Comic-Con enthusiast Kevin Smith moderated (if that term can be used) a Spike TV panel on women in action/horror/fantasy/sci-fi with Jamie King (whose mother named her after the Bionic Woman), Lucy Lawless, “Terminator” co-writer/producer Gale Anne Hurd, and comic book artist Pia Guerra.
At any given moment there are a dozen different panel discussions with everyone from “the world’s greatest zombie expert” to comic book legends, scholars, screenwriters, performers, and just plain cool and interesting people. More details coming soon from your faithful Comic-Con correspondent including an interview with the director of the upcoming animated film “Igor” starring Jon Cusack. Stay tuned.

List: The Top 25 Law Movies

posted by Nell Minow

The magazine published by the American Bar Association has assembled a list of the 25 best movies about the law, with another 25 on the list of runners-up. I am a lawyer from a family of lawyers and we all love movies about the law. Just about every lawyer I know would agree with the ABA’s assessment that “To Kill a Mockingbird” is the all-time best.

I’d like to say that it is because I am a lawyer that I have such a passion for courtroom dramas, but I think it is more accurate to say that I became a lawyer because I was so inspired by films like To Kill a Mockingbird and Anatomy of a Murder.  I even wrote a law review article about two of my favorites, Miracle on 34th Street and Inherit the Wind.

YouTube Preview Image

I am partial to the movies based on real-life cases like “Philadelphia,” “Amistad,” and “Erin Brocovich.” Another of my favorites, “Inherit the Wind,” includes dialogue lifted straight from the court transcripts. “Anatomy of a Murder has the additional distinction of being based on a book by a judge and having a real-life judge and American hero playing the part of the judge on screen. And it is the only law movie I can think of where one of the highlights is a lawyer finding the right precedent in the law library.

I know it is a popular movie, but I was surprised to find “The Verdict” on the ABA’s list, even with Paul Newman’s Oscar-winning performance. It is wrong on so many points of law that my law professor sister said she could ask her students to find all the errors as an exam for her Civil Procedure class. All of the movies on the full list, including the honorable mentions, are worth watching. There is something inherently gripping about a courtroom drama, as “Law and Order” shows several nights a week.

Interestingly, though, one of the most widely seen and highly regarded of the films takes place entirely outside the courtroom: 12 Angry Men. A friend recently gave me a copy of a a special issue of the Chicago-Kent Law Review dedicated to the 50th anniversary of that classic movie.

In , all but a few moments of the film take place in one room as a dozen men deliberate in a murder case. A teenager has been charged with stabbing his father to death. In the initial vote, all but one (Henry Fonda as Juror #8) vote “guilty.” I go on jury duty myself for the first time after Labor Day and will keep this movie very much in mind as I try to live up to one of society’s most important responsibilities.

YouTube Preview Image

 

Previous Posts

In the Footsteps of St. Peter
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l4c7qh9hMVY[/youtube] David Suchet (PBS' Hercule Poirot) is the host of In the Footsteps of St. Peter, out tomorrow on DVD.

posted 3:55:57pm Oct. 20, 2014 | read full post »

Wrong About Critics, Wrong About Movies, Wrong About Faith
I am not going to give the people behind the idiotic and offensive press release I recently received the recognition of identifying them by name, but the claim that they make is one I have heard often enough I need to respond. The headline: Film Critics Don't Get Faith Films. This shows no understan

posted 2:36:30pm Oct. 20, 2014 | read full post »

Disney Announced a New Animated Film for 2016: Moana
Entertainment Weekly reports that Disney has announced a new animated feature to be released in 2016: "Moana," with a Polynesian heroine in search of a fabled island. With Disney greats Ron Clements

posted 1:59:28pm Oct. 20, 2014 | read full post »

Manners at the Movie Theater
Here's a cute reminder on movie theater manners. [iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/Dz5Qwd93VpE?rel=0" frameborder="0"]

posted 8:00:38am Oct. 20, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: Ted Melfi of "St. Vincent"
Writer/director Ted Melfi got Bill Murray to appear in his first film by calling him. Murray does not have an agent or a manager. He has an 800 number. And Melfi left message after message until Murray finally called back and asked Melfi to pick him up at the airport. Apparently his pitch skills (an

posted 12:55:48pm Oct. 19, 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.