Emily the Criminal – Sundance 2022

Aubrey Plaza delivers a career-best performance in Emily the Criminal, which marks the feature directorial debut of John Patton Ford. Ford had been to Sundance some twelve times earlier with a short film. It was fate that his feature directorial debut would debut during the January film festival. However, it’s just unfortunate that said debut was unable to premiere to a packed theater in Park City due to the pandemic. Produced in the heat of…

"Emily the Criminal – Sundance 2022"

Against the Tide: How Peter Bergson Saved Jews

Peter Bergson’s name might seem forgotten to history but Against the Tide shows his efforts in trying to save European Jewry. Rabbi Stephen Wise held a press conference in Washington, D.C. on November 24, 1942. It followed the State Department’s confirmation that Jews were being killed by the Nazis in Europe. You would think it would be major news, right? I mean, it was also the first time that the Nazi’s plan for the Jews…

"Against the Tide: How Peter Bergson Saved Jews"

The Long Way Home: From WWII to Israel

The Long Way Home follows the years in the aftermath of the Holocaust in which Jews are displaced and have nowhere else to go. The film starts with a quote from Exodus 13: “When Pharaoh let the people go, G-d did not lead them by way of the land of the Philistines, although that was near…But G-d led the people round by way of the wilderness…” Per the film’s on-screen text, the voices are taken…

"The Long Way Home: From WWII to Israel"

Genocide: An Oscar-Winning Holocaust Doc

Genocide is known for being the first Holocaust documentary to win an Oscar and remains essential viewing in teaching about the Shoah. Simon Wiesenthal briefly introduces the film before we get into the nuts and bolts. From there, it is non-stop. If you’re looking for entertainment, you will not find it here. What you will find is the bare minimum when it comes to Holocaust education. How did it happen and why? When one thinks…

"Genocide: An Oscar-Winning Holocaust Doc"

2012: Disaster Thriller Is Our Worst Nightmare

Roland Emmerich’s 2009 sci-fi disaster thriller, 2012, offers thrills and destruction at the end of the world with amazing visuals to boot. We follow the film through the lens of two different characters, geologist Adrian Helmsley (Chiwetel Ejiofor) and novelist Jackson Curtis (John Cusack). On a trip to India in 2009, Adrian learns that neutrinos are heating up the Earth’s core. This information is quickly presented to White House Chief of Staff Carl Anheuser (Oliver…

"2012: Disaster Thriller Is Our Worst Nightmare"

Holky: The Steven Holcomb Story

Holky: The Steven Holcomb Story is a new documentary short that profiles the late Olympic medalist, bobsledder Steven Holcomb. If you know me, you know I have a love of bobsledding going back to the classic Disney film, Cool Runnings. Prior to the start of the 2020 Sundance Film Festival, I made my way over to the Utah Olympic Park in Park City to check out the museum and take a tour. For me, one…

"Holky: The Steven Holcomb Story"

Magical Mystery Tour: The Beatles Do It Themselves

The Beatles do it themselves in their 1967 made-for-TV film, Magical Mystery Tour, which celebrates its 55th anniversary later this year. The BBC committed the terrible sin of first airing this film in black-and-white in December 1967. They would rectify this by airing a color version shortly thereafter. But by then, it was too late because they damage had been done. Here’s the thing about Magical Mystery Tour: it isn’t a film in the same…

"Magical Mystery Tour: The Beatles Do It Themselves"

Aftershock – Sundance 2022

Aftershock is among the most heartbreaking documentaries that any audience will watch when the film is eventually released. The U.S. maternal health system is in a crisis. Perhaps you’ve heard of it and perhaps you did not. In any event, this documentary brings the crisis directly to you for the better part of almost 90 minutes. It’s unfortunate because the United States is among the most industrialized nations in the world. We should not have…

"Aftershock – Sundance 2022"

892 – Sundance 2022

892 is just further proof that America as a whole needs to do better when it comes to its veterans after their service career is over. An American veteran and father, Brian Brown-Easley (John Boyega), is waiting to receive his latest disability check from the Department of Veterans Affairs. Because he owes money somehow, they never bother sending out a check and it only gets worse from here on out. Not receiving the check is…

"892 – Sundance 2022"

Cha Cha Real Smooth – Sundance 2022

Cooper Raiff follows up his SXSW award-winning Shithouse with Cha Cha Real Smooth, a film set on the Bar and Bat Mitzvah circuit. My worst fear going into this film was that Dakota Johnson would be the latest non-Jewish actress starring as a Jewish woman. This turns out to not be the case, thank G-d. Because of this, we do not have to have that conversation all over again. Similarly, Raiff is not Jewish but…

"Cha Cha Real Smooth – Sundance 2022"