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Review: The Fencer

— by BEV QUESTAD —

A slim man with short dark hair agilely steps off a train in steamy cold Estonia, looking furtively at army officials hobnobbing outside the station. He puts up his collar to shield himself from the cold in a way that lets you know, he prefers not to be seen. He heads for his appointment where he is hired as a gym teacher using a pseudonym, Endel Nelis. It is his students, like the youth of Estonia, who will ultimately change him and their country forever.

Like the thin, wary teacher, Estonia, after WWII, was just trying to survive. During the war she was occupied by Germany. All her healthy young men were conscripted by the Nazis, the No. 1 enemy of Stalin’s Soviet Union. After the war, Russia overtook Estonia as part of the spoils of war. (CONTINUED)


Review: The Last Dalai Lama?

— by BEV QUESTAD — The real shocker of this film comes from HH Dalai Lama’s response to the question on his own reincarnation and who the next Dalai Lama will be. But the other traditional questions, those we all want to know, are also answered. What is the purpose of life? What does the […][...]


3 Life Lessons We Can Learn from The House

— by SEAN WILSON — Ten long years after the release of “Blades of Glory,” Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler reunited in “The House.” Starring as the incredibly boring Johansens, Ferrell and Poehler decide to add a little fun to their suburban life and rake in a little extra cash by opening a casino in […][...]


Review: Detroit

— by RON WILKINSON — Kathryn Bigelow’s shaky cam takes you right into the streets of Detroit during the 1967 12th Street Riots. Actually, her shaky cam takes you right into a scripted narrative fiction version of the riots, specifically the horrific Algiers Motel murders. The staged camera work is interspersed with real documentary footage […][...]


Interview: Filmmaker Robert Sickels

— by BEV QUESTAD — There is more to Robert Sickels and his work than immediately meets the eye, just like the little town he portrays. Five of his shorts, featured at the Northwest Film Center Aug. 2, were all shot in cozy, tree-lined Walla Walla, Wash., the complicated home of Walla Walla sweet onions, […][...]


Review: From the Land of the Moon

— by RON WILKINSON — This complicated psychodrama starts with Gabrielle as a very unhappy young woman. She is young and impetuous, to say the least, and sure to have her own way. This promises to be a deep look into the life and mind of a troubled woman. Unfortunately, there is so little convincing […][...]


Review: Atomic Blonde

— by RON WILKINSON — What a fantastic cast. Oscar-winner Charlize Theron, Eddie Marsan fresh off his starring success in “Ray Donovan,” John Goodman, one of the greatest actors alive, Toby Jones, spymaster supreme from “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy,” and Roland Moller, star of indie smash “Land of Mine.” How could such a pot of […][...]


Ocean’s Eleven: From criminals to superheroes

— by CHRIS ANDERSON — Superhero movies are at their biggest these days with the Marvel universe blossoming from countless storylines to come together for the climactic Infinity Wars films as well as DC working its way up the Justice League movie. “Black Panther,” “Captain Marvel” and “Cyborg” are just a few instances of titles […][...]


Review: Indivisible (aka Indivisibili)

— by RON WILKINSON — Meet 18-year-old siamese twins Daisy and Viola. They have no concept of secrecy between them, their most intimate thoughts and acts have been shared from birth. Born with extraordinary vocal talent, they are barely aware of their oddity even as adulthood begins to crack their spiritual solidarity. Is it possible […][...]