December 13, 2021

WOMEN FILM CRITICS CIRCLE 2021 AWARDS As proud members of this important organization, we are excited to share with you the winners of the Women Film Critics Circle for 2021. Tune in to our podcast episode this coming Saturday for reviews of many of these winners and nominees! (Sr. Rose: I have been a member of the WFCC for about ten years and I have met some fine women critics through our e-list and sometimes at film festivals. Belonging also... Read more

December 9, 2021

In modern war-torn Mosul, when ISIS begins to establish a new caliphate, the mother (Albane Courtois) of a young boy, Laith (Gabriel Cartade),  is killed by an ISIS fighter when he finds a bookmark in her apartment that reads, “Peace be upon you Lady Fatima.” He then tells the young boy to run.  An Iraqi soldier finds the boy in the chaos and offers to take him home to his grandmother. Laith is upset and has nightmares following his mother’s killing so the kindly grandmother soothes him by... Read more

December 9, 2021

  In a new six-part series from NatGeo and Disney+, actor Will Smith accompanies big names in earth’s exploration to some fascinating, mysterious, scary, and beautiful places on earth, some of which we may have never seen before – and neither has Will Smith. One unique aspect of the series is that it is framed by the six senses: sight, sound, smell, taste, touch – and wonder.   “Welcome to the Earth” is a six-part follow-up to NatGeo’s 2018 “One Strange Rock”. Both series are directed by Darren Aronofsky... Read more

November 19, 2021

  It seems only recently that we have seen a rebirth of musicals filmed for theatrical (and streaming) release, either taping a live performance, such as Hamilton and Come from Away, or adapting a musical for film such as the surprising (to me) and inspiring homage to creativity, the late Jonathan Larson’s “tick, tick … BOOM!” Jonathan Larson (Andrew Garfield) relates his inner angst in song amidst his daily life in New York, trying to write a musical while working... Read more

November 18, 2021

This inspiring drama is about how Richard Williams (Will Smith) planned and co-coached, with his then wife Oracene “Brandy” Price (Aunjanue Ellis), their talented daughters Venus (Saniyya Sidney) and Serena (Demi Singleton) to become top champions of women’s tennis. Tennis, a sport with no previous black women champions except for Althea Gibson (1927-2003), begins in the late 1980s when Venus is about nine years-old and Serena is seven. The setting is Compton, CA, and Richard is training and coaching two... Read more

November 9, 2021

3212 Un-Redacted premiers on November 11, 2021, HULU As I write this review of the extraordinary documentary premiering on Hulu November 11, 2021, I am mindful that this is the birthday of the Servant of God, peace activist, and social justice advocate for the poor, Dorothy Day. She knew that American children who practiced hiding under their school desks in case of a nuclear bombing during “duck and cover” Civil Defense drills in the 1950s and 60s would not protect... Read more

September 24, 2021

Lilly (Melissa McCarthy) works at a grocery store as a distracted stock person. She seems peculiarly focused on making sure the display of blue snowball snack cakes looks nice and stays upright. The manager, Travis (Timothy Olyphant) reminds Lilly again that there’s work to do. But now Lilly is in a hurry to leave to visit her husband Jack (Chris O’Dowd) who is in a mental health facility. It soon becomes evident that Jack is unable to cope with guilt... Read more

August 8, 2021

  In my review of the 2018 narrative film “Boy Erased,” based on the 2016 book Boy Erased: A Memoir by Garrard Conley, I wrote that the film “is a starting point for parents wondering what God is asking of them when they discover their child is LGBTQ. First, you love your child unconditionally and go from there. You don’t hurt them, or give them pain and suffering so that ‘good’ [change of sexual orientation] may come of it…. Now... Read more

May 11, 2021

I was able to interview “Finding You” producer Ken Carpenter earlier this year about his new film. It tells the story of a young American girl who goes to Ireland for a semester abroad and discovers herself, romance, and how fulfilling care and love for a resident (played by Vanessa Redgrave) in a home for seniors can be. I have posted links to the audio and video of the interview below as well as to my review in St. Anthony... Read more

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