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Cave of Forgotten Dreams (2010)
Humanity's Lost Masterpiece... in 3D
Filmmaker(s): Werner Herzog

Werner Herzog gains exclusive access to film inside the Chauvet caves of Southern France, capturing the oldest known pictorial creations of humankind in their astonishing natural setting.

Lutheran Dead Sea Scrolls Gosh. I sincerely love the commitment that Herzog has made to a cinematic life, and I will follow every chapter. And I am deeply invested in the creative history of man, and what we have of his/her art. Also — but quite independently —...


Published February 9, 2024
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Brave (2012)
Change your fate.

Brave is set in the mystical Scottish Highlands, where Mérida is the princess of a kingdom ruled by King Fergus and Queen Elinor. An unruly daughter and an accomplished archer, Mérida one day defies a sacred custom of the land and inadvertently brings turmoil to the kingdom. In an attempt to set things right, Mérida seeks out an eccentric old Wise Woman and is granted an ill-fated wish. Also figuring into Mérida’s quest — and serving as comic relief — are the kingdom’s three lords: the enormous Lord MacGuffin, the surly Lord Macintosh, and the disagreeable Lord Dingwall.

Engineering Steve Jobs remade Apple, embedding a very specific philosophy. Usually called ‘design,’ the idea is simple and the goal is simple. Have a vision of what you want to accomplish, a clear vision. Then engineer to that vision, ruthlessly eliminating all else. It sounds simple,...


Published February 8, 2024
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Life of Pi (2012)
Believe The Unbelievable
Filmmaker(s): Ang Lee

The story of an Indian boy named Pi, a zookeeper's son who finds himself in the company of a hyena, zebra, orangutan, and a Bengal tiger after a shipwreck sets them adrift in the Pacific Ocean.

30 Million Sephiroth How is it that Scorsese can get 3D so wrong and someone like Ang Lee get it so right? Sure, there is some dimensional silliness — a hummingbird in the first few moments...


Published February 8, 2024
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The InBESTigators (2019)

Four clever school kids start their own detective agency and vlog about their adventures, becoming fast friends in the process.

Little Dinners Dear reader, you may never encounter this, an Australian series designed for tweens and their parents. 40 episodes. The setup is four 10-11 year olds set up an ‘agency’ to solve mysteries that as it happens are small by cinematic standards but loom largish in...


Published February 7, 2024
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Innocence (2004)
The end of innocence...the beginning of life.
Filmmaker(s): Lucile Hadzihalilovic

At an unusual private school for girls, new students, including young Iris, show up in coffins. The establishment's teachers, Mademoiselle Eva and Mademoiselle Edith, introduce Iris and her fellow pupils to the school's curriculum, which includes fairy-like dances through a nearby forest. When night falls, the older girls, who are on the threshold of womanhood, are then given mysterious, life-changing lessons.

Moving Into “Institute Benjamenta” folded into “Picnic at Hanging Rock” “Maladolescenza” folded into “Stalker” “Yume“ folded into “Drowning with numbers” “Au revoir les enfants” folded into “Suspiria“ “Sex and Lucia” folded into “Dracula: Pages from a Virgin's Diary” These movements formed into a star. That star subtracted from the lid of...


Published February 7, 2024
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Skyfall (2012)
Think on your sins.
Filmmaker(s): Sam Mendes

When Bond's latest assignment goes gravely wrong, agents around the world are exposed and MI6 headquarters is attacked. While M faces challenges to her authority and position from Gareth Mallory, the new Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee, it's up to Bond, aided only by field agent Eve, to locate the mastermind behind the attack.

Hacked Screens Gosh, what a difference it makes when you bring in real artists! Here we have essentially the same formula as always, produced by the same Broccoli thick heads as usual. Also, as usual, the production was ‘troubled,’ with fundamental changes occurring well into production. Plus...


Published February 6, 2024
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The Great Gatsby (2013)
Dream dangerously.
Filmmaker(s): Baz Luhrmann

An adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald's Long Island-set novel, where Midwesterner Nick Carraway is lured into the lavish world of his neighbor, Jay Gatsby. Soon enough, however, Carraway will see through the cracks of Gatsby's nouveau riche existence, where obsession, madness, and tragedy await.

Moulin Green When I saw Moulin Rouge,’ I knew that life would change, because film would have an added mainstream vocabulary. We would embrace it and adjust our dreams and intuitions. And indeed we have had Nolan ascendant. Even TeeVee has shifted. Oddly, after that film, Lurhmann...


Published February 6, 2024
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Gravity (2013)
Don't let go.
Filmmaker(s): Alfonso Cuarón

Dr. Ryan Stone, a brilliant medical engineer on her first Shuttle mission, with veteran astronaut Matt Kowalsky in command of his last flight before retiring. But on a seemingly routine spacewalk, disaster strikes. The Shuttle is destroyed, leaving Stone and Kowalsky completely alone-tethered to nothing but each other and spiraling out into the blackness of space. The deafening silence tells them they have lost any link to Earth and any chance for rescue. As fear turns to panic, every gulp of air eats away at what little oxygen is left. But the only way home may be to go further out into the terrifying expanse of space.

The Other Red Shoe One use of science fiction is to purify the threads of a story by displacing them from the distracting familiar. This gives more than clarity; it often frees the narrative to rest in our souls rather than our eyes, rather like the...


Published February 6, 2024
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The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (2013)
Beyond darkness... beyond desolation... lies the greatest danger of all.
Filmmaker(s): Peter Jackson

The Dwarves, Bilbo and Gandalf have successfully escaped the Misty Mountains, and Bilbo has gained the One Ring. They all continue their journey to get their gold back from the Dragon, Smaug.

The Source of the Imagining I read many criticisms of this. Apparently, there is a fundamentalist Tolkien fan club that rivals the Austen group in assailing anyone that deviates from the written word; by this I mean the last rewrite of Tolkien‘s I never could finish any...


Published February 6, 2024
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World War Z (2013)
There will come a day when the world we know will end.
Filmmaker(s): Marc Forster

Life for former United Nations investigator Gerry Lane and his family seems content. Suddenly, the world is plagued by a mysterious infection turning whole human populations into rampaging mindless zombies. After barely escaping the chaos, Lane is persuaded to go on a mission to investigate this disease. What follows is a perilous trek around the world where Lane must brave horrific dangers and long odds to find answers before human civilization falls.

Angry Water I understand that the development of this was a mess. What mattered to me were three things done well: The transition from normal life to the human waves was jarringly effective. What I expect is a traditional zombie story. Some explanation and setup is given...


Published February 5, 2024
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