The 59th Chicago International Film Festival has come to an end and it has been among the least productive fests for Solzy at the Movies. I didn’t not watch screeners going into the festival because of how the Jewish holidays fell. My initial plan had been to wait until after the end of Simchat Torah. As we all know, my plan to watch any screeners became impossible because the tragic attack on Israel on October…"59th Chicago International Film Festival Recap"
Jonathan Majors, one of the stars of Devotion, spoke with Solzy at the Movies during the 2022 Chicago International Film Festival. Majors was in town to receive the Artistic Achievement Award as a part of the Black Perspectives Tribute during the festival. Devotion is an aerial war epic based on Adam Makos’ bestselling book of the same name. The film tells the story of two elite US Navy fighter pilots–Jesse Brown (Jonathan Majors) and Tom…"Jonathan Majors talks Devotion, Marvel"
JD Dillard, the director of Devotion, spoke with Solzy at the Movies during the 2022 Chicago International Film Festival. Devotion is an aerial war epic based on Adam Makos’ bestselling book of the same name. The film tells the story of two elite US Navy fighter pilots–Jesse Brown (Jonathan Majors) and Tom Hudner (Glen Powell)–during the Korean War. Their heroic sacrifices would ultimately go onto make them among the Navy’s most celebrated wingmen. In addition…"JD Dillard talks Devotion"
She Said follows a pair of New York Times investigative reporters as they research and report on the Harvey Weinstein scandal. The Harvey Weinstein scandal had a domino effect in Hollywood as it was the biggest story of its day. After he was exposed, many survivors had the bravery to speak their truth. Myself included, albeit around the subject of transphobic abuse. You can call this the Spotlight of Hollywood-adjacent newspaper films but it’s so…"She Said: One Of The Most Powerful Films Of The Year"
All the Beauty and the Bloodshed, the new documentary from Laura Poitras, is playing the major film festivals this season. Make no mistake that portions of All the Beauty and the Bloodshed are powerful. After watching Dopesick, I was thinking that this would be a complementary companion in its taking down of the Sackler family. Suffice it to say, taking them down is just one part of the film. The rest of the film is…"All the Beauty and the Bloodshed – Chicago Int’l FF 2022"
Glass Onion, If These Walls Could Sing, and Sr. are among some of the highlights playing the Chicago International Film Festival. Because of the Jewish holiday scheduling this year, my festival prep is nowhere close to what it was in prior years. Similarly, I don’t know how many films I’ll be able to cover this year on the ground or via screeners. However, I was able to watch a number of festival selections in Toronto…"Chicago International Film Festival: What to Watch"
Mike Mills finds a way to deliver two films in one with his newest drama, C’mon C’mon, switching between family and documentary. This is one of those films where it’s a mix of two different films. Writer-director Mike Mills finds a way to weave the stories together. It’s a case where there are two solid films in one. Part of me, however, would like to see more in terms of the documentary side where radio…"C’mon C’mon: Mike Mills Delivers Two Films In One"
Belfast is the most personal film yet for writer/director Kenneth Branagh and could only be made after his parents died. August 15, 1969. Belfast. Riots. The city would never be the same. We’ve all heard about the fighting between Catholics and Protestants in Ireland but this film really puts in on display. Appropriately, Belfast focuses in on Buddy (Jude Hill), a nine-year-old boy. Buddy’s life in North Belfast is turned upside down right there in…"Belfast Is A Personal Film For Kenneth Branagh"
The French Dispatch, Wes Anderson’s love letter to journalism especially The New Yorker, is a mostly good film that’s well worth the wait. This film is a series of vignettes focusing on a travelogue, art, student protests, and a police kidnapping. The four stories come from the final issue of The French Dispatch, based in the fictional French city of Ennui-sur-Blasé. Outside of the city, nothing ties them together. Together, the vignettes do feature an…"The French Dispatch Is Short of Masterpiece Status"
Documentary filmmaker Jesse Moss brings audiences inside Pete Buttigieg’s presidential campaign in the new documentary, Mayor Pete. My first thought upon watching this film is that it’s amazing that Boys State was finishing up while Moss was hard at work on this film. But more than that, it shows the ins and outs of a presidential campaign. We get an inside look at the debate prep that comes with running for president. Getting elected to…"Mayor Pete – Chicago Film Fest 2021"