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Review: Won’t You Be My Neighbor?

— by BEV QUESTAD —

“Won’t you be my neighbor? It’s an invitation for somebody to be close to you. You know, I think everybody longs to be loved and longs to know that he or she is lovable. And consequently, the greatest thing that we can do is to help somebody know that they’re loved and capable of loving.” (Fred Rogers, 1928-2003).

Airing from 1968 to the last PBS episodes in 2001, Fred Rogers masterminded his “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” children’s show featuring two sets, one with a window and door that was an entry to his stage home and another with a castle and trolley that was a fantasy kingdom. Every episode had a theme of social-educational value geared towards explaining the complicated in a simple, understandable way to little children. (CONTINUED)


Review: Widows

— by RON WILKINSON — After “12 Years a Slave,” what was director Steve McQueen to do? That was a hard act to follow. He could have played it safe, but instead he doubled down with fellow Oscar-winner Viola Davis to produce this powerhouse ensemble drama about three terminally disenfranchised widows doing it their own […][...]


Short Film: Sky Migrations

— by BEV QUESTAD — My very favorite film (free access at the end of this review) of all the gorgeously filmed shorts shown at the Willamette Riverkeepers’ 2018 Wild and Scenic Film Festival was “Sky Migrations.” It’s narrated by a young guy who is following the migration path of raptors – large birds like […][...]


A look at Disney’s upcoming remakes

A tweet went out at the end of November 2018 stating Walt Disney had left in his will that all movies should be remade after every 10 years. This tweet stated that the reason for these remakes was so that each generation could have its chance of watching the movies. This was, however, proven to […][...]


Review: All the Devil’s Men

— by RON WILKINSON — Where do all the ex-special elite military go? If we believe writer/director Matthew Hope they engage in careers as mercenary bounty hunters, double cross each other and all quickly eliminated. That is, until there is only one left standing. Presumably he goes on to the next caper and more are […][...]


Short Film: A Letter to Congress

— by BEV QUESTAD — Films on hiking with reticent kids, catching magnificent raptors, mountaineering with “badass” women in Nepal and crazy skiing in the ‘hood represent some of the short film subjects presented at the 2018 Willamette Riverkeeper Wild and Scenic Film Fest. Each year, the WR hosts a sold-out fundraiser to help continue […][...]


Review: Colette

— by BEV QUESTAD — Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette was once a charming, happy farm girl in the farmlands of France in the late 1800s. She is seduced by Willy, an older, dapper Parisian author and publisher. They set up married life in Paris where she learns that her new husband is a philanderer, gambler and compulsive […][...]


Review: Of Fathers and Sons

— by RON WILKINSON — This is one of those documentaries that defies explanation. It is impossible to understand how a filmmaker could have gained the trust and access required to interview a man raising a family to fight for a Syrian caliphate. Director Talal Derki knew he was taking a lethal risk when he […][...]


Review: Leave No Trace

— by BEV QUESTAD — Hidden deep in Portland’s Forest Park, one of the largest city parks (5,100 acres) in the world, a man and his daughter live in a tent abutting a hill, cook under a tarp, and hide camouflaged in the damp, richly green forest. It is inescapably idyllic. They play chess, read, […][...]