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The Real Story: Ashley Smith and “Captive,” Based on Her Life

posted by Nell Minow

Ashley Smith made headlines when she touched the heart of the man who took her captive by reading to him from Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Life. Her own book is Unlikely Angel: The Untold Story of the Atlanta Hostage […]

New From Oprah Winfrey: “Belief”

posted by Nell Minow

Oprah Winfrey’s seven-chapter series “Belief” starts on October 18, 2015. It follows some of the world’s most fascinating spiritual journeys through the eyes of the believers. Episodes include: the largest peaceful gathering in the history of the world as a […]

One-Line Movies With the Year’s Best Actors

posted by Nell Minow

The actors who created some of this year’s most intriguing performances each appear in a eleven original (very) short films directed by Oscar-winning cinematographer Janusz Kaminski.  The one-line scripts are from the year’s best screenwriters, from Lake Bell of “In a […]

Lee Daniels’ The Butler

posted by Nell Minow
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some violence and disturbing images, language, sexual material, thematic elements and smoking
Movie Release Date:August 16, 2013
DVD Release Date:January 13, 2014
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some violence and disturbing images, language, sexual material, thematic elements and smoking
Movie Release Date: August 16, 2013
DVD Release Date: January 13, 2014

Washington Post reporter Wil Haygood was covering the 2008 Obama campaign when some young black women told him that they were going to vote for America’s first major party Presidential candidate who was African-American, even though their fathers told them […]

Interview: Lee Daniels of “The Butler”

posted by Nell Minow

“Lee Daniels’ The Butler” is inspired by the real-life story of a black man who worked in the White House for decades, serving eight Presidents from Truman to Reagan.  Born in the Jim Crow-era South of lynchings and segregation, he […]

Trailer: The Butler Tells the Story of A Man Who Served Eight Presidents

posted by Nell Minow

Lee Daniels (“Precious”) directs this story of Cecil Gaines, the White House butler who served eight Presidents, starring Forest Whitaker and Oprah Winfrey, with Robin Williams as Harry Truman, James Marsden as John F. Kennedy, Alan Rickman and Jane Fonda […]

Oprah Interviews “Lincoln’s” Spielberg, Day-Lewis, and Field

posted by Nell Minow

Tomorrow at 9:30 (eastern) on OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, Oprah interviews the people behind “Lincoln:” Academy Award winners Steven Spielberg, Daniel Day-Lews and Sally Field talk about the making of the film and the history behind it.  

Oprah Visits the Hasidic Jewish Community

posted by Nell Minow

Next on Oprah’s new series is a two-part visit to the cloistered world of Hasidic Jews in Brooklyn, a branch of Orthodox Judaism with strict observance of religious laws and traditions. Tune in to OWN on Sunday, February 12, at […]

Interview: Tom Shadyac on the DVD Release of ‘I Am’

posted by Nell Minow

I spoke to Tom Shadyac last March about shifting from big Hollywood films like “Ace Ventura: Pet Detective” and “The Nutty Professor II” to a small and very personal documentary about just about everything called “I Am.”   Shadyac was […]

Goodbye to the Oprah Show

posted by Nell Minow

Today is the last Oprah show.  After 25 years, Oprah is giving up her daily talk show to concentrate on her OWN channel.  One of Oprah Winfrey’s great gifts is making everyone in the audience feel not just that we […]

Father’s Day Gift Guide

posted by Nell Minow

After breakfast in bed and hand-made Father’s Day cards, let Dad settle back into his favorite chair with a great new DVD. My suggestions: Foyle’s War The 6th set of this superb British miniseries has just been released, with Michael […]

The Princess and the Frog

posted by Nell Minow
Lowest Recommended Age:4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:G
Movie Release Date:December 11, 2009
DVD Release Date:March 16, 2010
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating: G
Movie Release Date: December 11, 2009
DVD Release Date: March 16, 2010

Disney has cooked up a yummy batch of gumbo with this blend of the past and present. “The Princess and the Frog” is a satisfying and thoroughly entertaining return to the hand-drawn animation that built the studio. Although it is […]

The Great Debaters

posted by Nell Minow
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for depiction of strong thematic material including violence and disturbing images, and for language and brief sexuality.
Movie Release Date:December 25, 2007
DVD Release Date:May 13, 2008
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for depiction of strong thematic material including violence and disturbing images, and for language and brief sexuality.
Movie Release Date: December 25, 2007
DVD Release Date: May 13, 2008

In 1935, the debate team from a tiny all-black college took on the top white team in the country and they won. This is that story, Oprah-fied to be sure (Winfrey’s company produced the film), but powerfully told by director […]

Previous Posts

Independent Spirit Nominees 2015
The Spirit Awards are like the Oscars for independent films. Some of them have big stars and some are distributed by big studios. Some are made by first-time filmmakers on budgets that would barely pay for one day's catering fees on a studio ...

posted 7:49:50pm Nov. 24, 2015 | read full post »

The most romantic movie of the year is "Carol," based on a novel by Patricia Highsmith, the author of Strangers on a Train and The ...

posted 5:54:13pm Nov. 24, 2015 | read full post »

The Good Dinosaur
"The Good Dinosaur" is the good movie. Not the great movie. Not the especially memorable movie. Just the perfectly nice and pleasant movie, much ...

posted 5:43:47pm Nov. 24, 2015 | read full post »

Rocky had to find the eye of the tiger. When we first met him back in 1976, Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) was an amiable, ...

posted 5:18:44pm Nov. 24, 2015 | read full post »

Is "Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever" the Worst Movie of All Time?
It was a lot of fun to talk to Libby Coleman about "Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever." In an article for Ozy, Coleman says that by one standard it is the worst film of all time (or at least since the internet began keeping track) -- it has 115 negative ...

posted 10:29:10am Nov. 24, 2015 | read full post »


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