Advertisement

Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Movie Mom™


New in Theaters
  New to DVD

The Transporter Refueled
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for sequences of violence & action, sexual material, some language, a drug reference & thematic elements
Release Date:
September 4, 2015

 

Iris
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for some strong language
Release Date:
May 1, 2015

Learning to Drive
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language and sexual content
Release Date:
September 4, 2015

 

Aloha
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for some language including suggestive comments
Release Date:
May 30, 2015

A Walk in the Woods
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language and some sexual references
Release Date:
September 2, 2015

 

Big Game
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for sequences of intense action and violence, and some language
Release Date:
June 26, 2015

New in Theaters

grade:
C-

The Transporter Refueled

Lowest Recommended Age:
High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for sequences of violence & action, sexual material, some language, a drug reference & thematic elements
Release Date:
September 4, 2015
grade:
B+

Learning to Drive

Lowest Recommended Age:
Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language and sexual content
Release Date:
September 4, 2015
grade:
B+

A Walk in the Woods

Lowest Recommended Age:
High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language and some sexual references
Release Date:
September 2, 2015

Advertisement

New to DVD

pick of the week
grade:
B+

Iris

Lowest Recommended Age:
Middle School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for some strong language
Release Date:
May 1, 2015
grade:
B

Aloha

Lowest Recommended Age:
High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for some language including suggestive comments
Release Date:
May 30, 2015
grade:
B

Big Game

Lowest Recommended Age:
Middle School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for sequences of intense action and violence, and some language
Release Date:
June 26, 2015

Advertisement

Interview: Young@Heart

posted by Nell Minow

“Young@Heart” is a documentary about a Northampton, Massachusetts-based choir of elderly performers who sing rock songs — not soft rock or pop but raw punk rock. It is not at all stunt-ish or cutesy. It turns out that these songs written by angry young men to — as Jack Black said in “School of Rock,” “stick it to the man” take on a new and profound resonance when they are sung by these people in their 80’s and 90’s. You might think that by this time they are “the man.” But in a very real sense, they have more cause to stick it to the man than performers in their 20’s could imagine. For them, “the man” is loss, death, making the most of the time they have left. The lyrics of songs like the Ramones’ “I Want to Be Sedated,” The Clash’s “Should I Stay or Should I Go,” Sonic Youth’s “Schizophrenia,” James Brown’s “I Feel Good,” Allen Toussaint’s “Yes We Can Can,” and Cold Play’s “Fix You” are heartbreaking and touching when sung with such ferocity and humor. The Talking Heads’ “Life During Wartime” takes on much more meaning when sung by someone who fought in World War II. Bob Dylan’s “Forever Young” becomes ineffably touching when sung by people who find such joy in performing and learning even in their ninth decades.

I spoke to three members of the choir, music director Bob Cilman, and the man who made the movie, documentarian Stephen Walker.

Chorus members Brock Lynch, Leonard Fontaine, and John Larareo

Movie director Stephen Walker

How did you find out about the Young@Heart chorus?

They were performing in London. My partner Sally George said she had tickets to a show that could be quite interesting — a bunch of old people singing rock and roll music. I thought weird, gimmicky, had a faint image of a dancing bear, but they had brilliant reviews. They are much better known in Britain. I thought the show was just amazing and the audience demographic was interesting, lot of people in their 20’s and 30’s. They were were really responding.

What would you say the movie is about?

It’s about life and death, the way the meaning of words you know well is completely changed. It’s a film about old age through rock music. Other generations can identify with it because it is like a rock opera about old age. Issue led movies about old age are really boring. But looking at those fantastically interesting people, 87-year old Lenny singling “Purple Haze,” it becomes a metaphor for dementia.

The movie features music videos. It’s unusual for a documentary to include material that presented more impressionistically.

The film was hand in glove with the music videos. It was really interesting to break away into an out of time space, to have a commentary on the rest of the film. “Sedated” gets huge cheers in screenings because people see the punk in the 80-year-olds. They’re singing angrily about what it can be like.

What was the biggest challenge in making the film?

That mixture was one of the hardest challenges in the film to pull off, the tightrope between humor and sadness. It is quite a hard thing to pull off. If you get it wrong it can be a car crash. I had no idea that there would be deaths while we were filming. I never thought there would be a death. The worst we thought would happen would be that someone could fall or stumble on stage — we agreed at the beginning we would not humiliate anyone or make them look vulnerable or helpless. Oh, and I learned right from the beginning that two words could get me ejected immediately: “cute” or “adorable.” No infantalizing.

What is next?

We’d like to make a feature film about the group.

Street Kings

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong violence and pervasive language.
Movie Release Date:April 11, 2008
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong violence and pervasive language.
Movie Release Date: April 11, 2008

“Street Kings” is a like a Cliff’s Notes version of Training Day not that Training Day was any special challenge to the mental muscle. Corruption is bad, we get it.

At least that movie had a sizzling performance and an intriguing premise, a young cop’s introduction to the seamy underworld. This one has neither. It is big, dumb, loud, generic, and, worst of all, pretentious.

Keanu Reeves plays Tom Ludlow, and we meet him in what appears to be his daily waking ritual — grab gun, barf, and stop at the liquor store, as the bass line bangs away portentously. Then he and some gangstas try to out-tough each other with threats and insults over some deal. To no one’s surprise except the gangstas, he turns out to be a cop. He goes into the bad guys’ house, guns blazing, and takes everyone down all by himself, for no reason whatsoever except showing off.

Detective Washington, Tom’s former partner (Terry Crews) has been telling Internal Affairs about some of the ways that Tom and his colleagues under Captain Jack Wander (Forest Whitaker) cut corners. Let’s just say that they are not exactly scrupulous about due process. When Washington is killed, Tom is the likely suspect. Investigating that crime exposes the vast reaches of corruption and betrayal. And it provides the opportunity for many, many shoot-outs and other violent confrontations.

It is all supposed to be very tough and meaningful, but even an exceptionally strong cast can’t save dialog like, “This is your mess and I’m cleaning it up,” “It’s time to turn the page and close the book,” and “I gotta watch my own back these days.” Anyone who has ever seen a movie will be able to guess the twist within the first 10 minutes. After that, it’s just waiting for Tom to catch up to you.

List: April Movies

posted by Nell Minow

Happy Spring! Celebrate with these wonderful films, all with “April” in the title:

1. Enchanted April Four women in post-WWI London get away from winter chill when they take a villa in Italy. All of their lives are transformed through the unexpected connections they make with each other.

2. Pieces of April A girl prepares Thanksgiving dinner for her estranged family, including her mother who is dying of cancer. Beautifully written and directed and unexpectedly heartwarming, with brilliant performances from Katie Holmes (pre Tom Cruise), Patricia Clarkson, Alison Pill, and Derek Luke.

3. “The April Fools” Dated and uneven but irresistible story of a man (Jack Lemmon) who falls for the wife of his boss (Catherine Deneuve). In the best scene, they meet a middle-aged couple played by Myrna Loy and Charles Boyer who show them the power of lasting love.

4. “April Love” Okay, it’s no classic, but it’s a sweet story about a city boy who learns about life and love when he has to go to work on a relative’s farm. Pat Boone stars and sings the Oscar-nominated title song and Shirley Jones is the pretty neighbor.April_Love_%281957%29.jpg

5. April in Paris A silly story about a chorus girl sent on a diplomatic mission is an excuse for singing and dancing from Doris Day and Ray Bolger.

The Ultimate Relationship Test: Renting a DVD

posted by Nell Minow

Traveling together. Buying a house. Handling finances. Dealing with in-laws. Raising children. Sex. These are often listed as the primary argument topics for couples — and the arguments most revelatory of underlying relationship issues and problems. It’s time to add debates about DVD rentals to the list, both discussions during the actual rental experience and conversations afterward about the merits of the item selected. A perceptive article in The Movie Blog provides some wise advice, clearly based on experience, to help couples through this minefield. Now, perhaps they can come up with a solution to the “when do you ask for directions” conundrum.
Thanks to Cinematical for bringing my attention to this piece.

Previous Posts

Interview: Kim Campbell on Caring for Glen Campbell and "I'll Be Me"
Glen Campbell...I'll Be Me is a beautiful documentary about an ugly disease. Glen Campbell, one of the most popular and successful musical performers of all time, was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 2011. As memories, words, and some basic ...

posted 12:07:58pm Sep. 04, 2015 | read full post »

The Adorable BB-8 Drone from the New "Star Wars" Meets Some Adorable Puppies
[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tQIeBPjEiys[/youtube] ...

posted 11:43:57am Sep. 04, 2015 | read full post »

Trailer: The Lobster, an Offbeat Sci-Fi Romance with Colin Farrell and Rachel Weisz
[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fpt0tn1-54k[/youtube] This is the most intriguing trailer I've seen in ages -- a love story set in a world where everyone must be romantically paired and if they don't get together fast enough they ...

posted 8:16:04am Sep. 04, 2015 | read full post »

The Transporter Refueled
It must be said. The refueled "Transporter" is very low octane. The original had some of the best chase scenes ever filmed and a ...

posted 5:34:15pm Sep. 03, 2015 | read full post »

Learning to Drive
Katha Pollitt's wry but bordering on scathing essay about taking her first driving lessons in her 50's, after her partner of seven ...

posted 3:25:11pm Sep. 03, 2015 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

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

All reported content is logged for investigation.