Capernaum (Chaos) is Gut Wrenching

It doesn’t matter that Capernaum (Chaos) is a subtitled film because this film will have you in tears by the time that the credits finish rolling. The film starts off with Zain (Zain Al Rafeea) suing his parents, Souad (Kawthar Al Haddad) and Selim (Fadi Kamel Youssef).  Zain does this even as he’s been serving a five-year prison sentence for stabbing someone.   It takes some backstory to eventually reach the point but we eventually learn that he…

"Capernaum (Chaos) is Gut Wrenching"

If Beale Street Could Talk is Beautifully Directed

Beautifully directed, If Beale Street Could Talk is able to raise the bar on what we come to expect from writer-director Barry Jenkins. If you didn’t notice it with Moonlight, Barry Jenkins has a way with telling a story on camera.  If Beale Street Could Talk further enhances his work as a storyteller.  Jenkins puts so much care into the film even if it’s James Baldwin’s words that he adapts on screen.  We especially see…

"If Beale Street Could Talk is Beautifully Directed"

Divide and Conquer: The Story of Roger Ailes

Divide and Conquer: The Story of Roger Ailes explores the life of Fox News founder Roger Ailes while tackling the sexual harassment that brought him down. “It’s easy to make somebody into a monster.  It’s hard to see that you’re on that path, too.” The above are the words that we first hear as soon as the film documentary starts.  What’s most surprising is that they come out of the mouth of former Fox News…

"Divide and Conquer: The Story of Roger Ailes"

Roma: One of The Best Sound Designs Ever!

The sound design for Roma is so intricate that watching this film in anything other than a theater would not be doing proper justice to the film. Cleo (Yalitza Aparicio) is the film’s main focus.  She’s working as a live-in maid for a middle-class family living in Mexico City’s Roma neighborhood.  The family dynamics change when Señor Antonio (Fernando Grediaga) returns from a conference only to leave again.  This means that Sofia (Marina De Tavira), a mother of…

"Roma: One of The Best Sound Designs Ever!"

Green Book: A Must-Watch Film

Because of its approach to racism in the early 1960s, Green Book may offer light-hearted moments but it’s one of the must-watch films of 2018. Bronx native Frank Anthony “Tony Lip” Vallelonga (Mortensen) works as a bouncer for Copacabana but is forced to find work while the club undergoes repairs.  He learns that Dr. Don Shirley (Mahershala Ali) is looking for a driver so he applies for the job. What Tony doesn’t know until meeting…

"Green Book: A Must-Watch Film"

Outlaw King gets Bloody and Brutal

In telling the story of Scottish king Robert the Bruce’s early years, Outlaw King draws a bigger focus on the battle at hand. There’s no doubt that Robert the Bruce (Chris Pine) led an interesting life but as a person, he’s such a complex character.  He goes from noble to kind to outlaw in the span of just a few years.  How many people can truly put such impressive feats on their resume?!?  The Scotland…

"Outlaw King gets Bloody and Brutal"

A Private War: Marie Colvin’s Important Story

A Private War follows The Sunday Times journalist Marie Colvin during some of the most pivotal moments of her career as a Foreign Affairs correspondent. The film starts out in Homs, Syria in 2012 before flashing back to London, 2001.  While her bosses wanted to send her to one country, Colvin (Rosamund Pike) believed that the Sri Lankan Civil War was the more important story.  Whatever the case, Colvin’s decision would get her placed in…

"A Private War: Marie Colvin’s Important Story"

Viper Club Never Reaches Full Potential

In spite of the material’s importance, it felt as if Viper Club was lacking something in getting across the film’s message. Make no mistake that it’s a bummer that Viper Club isn’t a better film than it should have been.  This is a film who tells the story of emergency room nurse Helen Sterling (Susan Sarandon).  While the Oscar winner is fine actress and does what she can with the material, her performance alone isn’t enough…

"Viper Club Never Reaches Full Potential"

Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Melissa McCarthy is virtually unrecognizable while portraying New York writer-turned-forger Lee Israel in Can You Ever Forgive Me? Lee Israel (Melissa McCarthy) is a biographer.  When we first meet her, she’s just beginning to write about comedian Fanny Brice.  She doesn’t know it yet but her life is about to change when she stole two notes written by Brice.  While it’s initially for the better with the amount of money she makes, things soon take…

"Can You Ever Forgive Me?"

Mid90s: Racist, Sexist, Homophobic

Jonah Hill’s directorial debut, Mid90s, takes us back to the middle of the 1990s with a look at life for one teenager’s summer in LA. Stevie (Sunny Suljic) lives with his older, abusive brother Ian (Lucas Hedges, appearing in 3 films at TIFF), and single mom, Dabney (Katherine Waterston).  Stevie’s world opens up when he discovers a skate shop.  It’s soon thereafter that the teenager meets a new crop of friends.  Among them are Ruben…

"Mid90s: Racist, Sexist, Homophobic"