2015 Oscar nominees default to (mostly white) men

(CNS/Focus Features)

(If you want to know who I hope will win, you have to come to our awards party!)The U.S. film industry's celebration of self at the 87th Academy Awards takes place on Sunday and there are many good films and some great, if not, outstanding, performances up for recognition.For the most part, the films nominated for Best Picture are not box office successes, "American Sniper" being the exception. And while everyone bemoans the fact that no African-Americans have been nominated in the … [Read more...]

Sr. Rose to present first Razzie “Redemption” Award!

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I have to say, it was a surprise to be asked! Check the website. There is still time to vote for who should be redeemed! PRESS RELEASE WHO BETTER TO PRESENT THE RAZZIE REDEEMER AWARD? A nun. And not just any nun, but veteran film critic, Sister Rose Pacatte. The Razzies, who’s motto is “Own Your Bad,” felt Sr Rose would be the perfect choice to present their newest award, not just because of her award-winning journalistic background but because of her insight into the value of … [Read more...]

‘The Railway Man’ is a powerful story of a wounded soul

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"The Railway Man" is probably the best film you haven't seen this year.From the time he was a boy, Eric Lomax (Jeremy Irvine) always loved trains in his native Scotland. After World War II, he memorized timetables and had a keen interest in the railway system of Great Britain.One day in 1980, while taking his seat on a train, Lomax (played as an older man by Colin Firth) meets Patti Wallace (Nicole Kidman), and they strike up a friendship that eventually leads to love and marriage, … [Read more...]

‘Fury’ fuels the ‘war is hell’ mentality without shining fresh light on it

From left: Shia LaBeouf, Logan Lerman, Brad Pitt, Michael Pena and Jon Bernthal in "Fury" (CNS/Columbia Pictures)

"Fury" is writer/director David Ayer's latest action film, moving from city streets ("Street Kings," "S.W.A.T.") to the battlefields of World War II. Sgt. Don "Wardaddy" Collier (Brad Pitt) commands a five-man crew on a tank named "Fury." Their assignment is to join with three other tank units and first take one German town, then move on to take a crossroads and hold it. It is after the landing at Normandy -- many men have been killed, yet they must go on and do their jobs. The fifth man on the … [Read more...]

‘The Decent One’: Documentary on Himmler a compelling contribution to Holocaust filmography

Heinrich Himmler in 1941 (Kino Lorber, Inc.)

 Heinrich Himmler -- the Nazi Gestapo chief, head of the German police in the Third Reich, head of the Reich Main Security Office, and Reich Minister of the Interior -- was born to a Catholic family Oct. 7, 1900, in Munich. His father, Gebhard Himmler, was a tutor to Prince Heinrich of Bavaria, who in turn was young Heinrich's godfather.Heinrich was a good student but poor athlete, and his father used his influence with the royal family so that Heinrich could enter officer training … [Read more...]

‘The Good Lie’ and the true story of the Lost Boys of Sudan

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 Catholic moral theology teaches that it is never acceptable to lie. It also teaches that there is no such thing as a “good lie,” so the title of the film is unfortunate. But it is in literary reference to Mark Twain’s Tom Sawyer, as the film demonstrates. During the Second Sudanese Civil War (1983–2005), thousands of boys and girls were orphaned when their parents were killed. Some of them were recruited to be child soldiers; others marched hundreds of miles to a refugee camp in Ke … [Read more...]

‘The Giver’ what happens when we destroy what makes us human

Jeff Bridges, left, and Brenton Thwaites star in "The Giver" (©The Weinstein Company)

 The word "dystopian" has always intrigued me. The easy definition is that it means "anti-utopian," but it sets up too facile a dichotomy because life never reaches the utopian ideal except in dreams, books and movies. If anything, dystopian means post-apocalyptic, which most often brings us into the realm of science fiction. A once acceptable world, however imperfect, has self-destructed or suffered destruction from outside forces, or a combination of the two. Whatever is left is … [Read more...]

‘Gabrielle’ a sweet story of a young woman struggling for acceptance

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 Gabrielle (Gabrielle Marion-Rivard) is a 22-year old woman who lives in a group home for cognitively disabled adults in Montreal. She has Williams Syndrome, a genetic disorder whose symptoms include hyper-socialization, heightened musical skills,  and intellectual disability. Gabrielle is very close to her older sister, Sophie (Mélissa Désormeaux-Poulin) who has her own apartment and longs to go to India to be with her fiancé but feels responsible for Gabrielle. Their mother, (Isabelle … [Read more...]

“Walking the Camino: Six Ways to Santiago” interview with filmmaker Lydia B. Smith

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 Here is my interview with filmmaker Lydia B. Smith about her revealing and inspiring documentary about the Camino de Santiago de Campostela. Find out why six people (and  more really) from different parts of the world, and different ages, walk this ancient pilgrimage route and why and how Smith, a non-Catholic, made such a Catholic film.  Here's my online review of the film from "The INNdustry with Sister Rose":       … [Read more...]


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