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A Ballerina’s Tale

posted by Nell Minow
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Not rated
Movie Release Date:October 16, 2015
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Not rated
Movie Release Date: October 16, 2015

“A Ballerina’s Tale” — the title suggests a fairy story, with sugar plums and a happily ever after ending. But this documentary about Misty Copeland is a story about the brutal hard work and resolve necessary to create those exquisitely […]

Taylor Swift Shakes it Off

posted by Nell Minow

Taylor Swift, who can be seen in “The Giver,” debuts her first pop album with this adorable video. There have been some online discussions about whether Swift is racially insensitive or even racist.  That is a subjective assessment viewers will […]

The Sugar Plum Fairy: A Christmas Tradition

posted by Nell Minow

“The Nutcracker Suite” is a Christmas tradition.  There have been a couple of movie versions, but none as good as this exquisite moment with Natalya Arkhipova as the Sugar Plum Fairy from the 1989 Bolshoi version:

Interview: Director Bess Kargman of the Ballet Documentary “First Position”

posted by Nell Minow

First-time filmmaker Bess Kargman brought her own experiences studying dance to her documentary, First Position, about a crucial, career-defining competition for young ballet artists.  The Youth America Grand Prix was launched in 1999 by two former dancers of the world-renowned Bolshoi […]

Mao’s Last Dancer

posted by Nell Minow
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG for a brief violent image, some sensuality, language, and incidental smoking
Movie Release Date:August 20, 2010
DVD Release Date:May 3, 2011
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG for a brief violent image, some sensuality, language, and incidental smoking
Movie Release Date: August 20, 2010
DVD Release Date: May 3, 2011

Director Bruce Beresford, best known for “Driving Miss Daisy,” returns to the themes of cross-cultural connections in this film based on the memoir of Chinese ballet star Li Cunxin. Li (Chinese surnames appear first) was taken from his poor, rural […]

The Black Swan

posted by Nell Minow
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong sexual content, disturbing violent images, language and some drug use.
Movie Release Date:December 3, 2010
DVD Release Date:March 29, 2011
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong sexual content, disturbing violent images, language and some drug use.
Movie Release Date: December 3, 2010
DVD Release Date: March 29, 2011

Ballet is more than a profession or even an art form; it is a calling, almost a cult, that demands the ultimate commitment. Ballerinas give everything they have. Director Darren Aronofsky, always drawn to stories about obsession, now takes us […]

Previous Posts

Olivia Gentile on the Best Grandparents in Movies
Olivia Gentile's terrific Grandparent Effect blog has an outstanding new list of the best movie grandparents. Some of the films are not for kids (or adults who don't like bad language) but all of them are terrific. I'd add to her list the ...

posted 11:13:22pm Dec. 01, 2015 | read full post »

Trailer: Now You See Me 2
[iframe width="560" height="315" src="" frameborder="0"] I loved the first one and can't wait to see this -- Daniel Radcliffe joins the group of magician/thieves in ...

posted 3:08:31pm Dec. 01, 2015 | read full post »

Rosa Parks Was Arrested 60 Years Ago Today
[youtube][/youtube] Today and every day we pay tribute to one of the greatest heroes of the 20th century, Rosa Parks, who would not give up her seat on the bus and fought all her life for equal ...

posted 9:23:51am Dec. 01, 2015 | read full post »

Coming to Theaters December 2015
December is always a blockbuster month at the movies, with big end-of-the-year releases opening in time for family viewing over the holidays and awards ...

posted 8:00:37am Dec. 01, 2015 | read full post »

Interview: Shepherd Frankel, Production Designer for "Ant-Man"
Shepherd Frankel is the production designer who created the world of "Ant-Man," the Marvel film about the teeny little superhero named Scott Lang and played by Paul Rudd. It will be released on DVD/Blu-Ray December 8, 2015. I loved the design of ...

posted 3:59:07pm Nov. 30, 2015 | read full post »


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