Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

Review: Wild Beauty: Mustang Spirit of the West

— by BEV QUESTAD — Smokey mist over early morning vistas, vibrant red sunsets, and grand rusty red mountains in the distance set the idyllic scenes for wild horses nuzzling noses in their family units and galloping freely in sync over the plains. The song, “A Horse with No Name” play[...]

Review: It’s Basic

— by BEV QUESTAD — Imagine Lucille, a single parent with nine dependents as a school bus driver. In St. Paul, Minnesota, she earns $32,394 a year. She gets up at 4 am. Daycares don’t start until 6 a.m., so she wakes her two toddlers up and lugs them with her on her route. They [&he[...]

Review: A Haunting in Venice

— by WILLIAM STERR — “It was a dark and stormy night …” Well, it didn’t start out that way. In this, Kenneth Branagh’s third outing into the world of Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot following “Murder on the Orient Express” and “Death on the Nile” – we meet a ve[...]

Review: Tiger Within

— by BEV QUESTAD — Forever made famous as bushy browed, disgruntled Lou Grant on the “Mary Tyler Moore Show,” beloved actor Ed Asner went on to many other roles in features, documentaries, voice-overs and political issues. Despite his death in 2021, his last starring feature was rele[...]

Review: Haunting of the Queen Mary

— by WILLIAM STERR — Ah, the long gone glory of transoceanic travel! Promenading on the deck while enjoying the bracing North Atlantic air. Then dressing for dinner, served in the sumptuous surrounding of the first class dining room. High on one wall, a mural of the ocean, with Europe on[...]

Review: American: An Odyssey To 1947

— by WILLIAM STERR — What’s it like to be a child prodigy? Few of us know, and that’s probably a good thing. “American: An Odyssey To 1947,” the latest documentary from Danny Wu (“Square One: Michael Jackson”), begins with a detailed biography of Orson Welles, the “enfant t[...]

Review: The Tank

— by WILLIAM STERR — Ah, the Oregon Coast! Protected against over development by prescient state leaders who, in 1913, declared the entire coast a public highway: open to all; privately owned and developed by none. In 1935, a substantial parcel of land along the coast was purchased by Al[...]

Review: The Last Voyage of the Demeter

— by WILLIAM STERR — Most people are familiar with the story of “Dracula,” written by Irish novelist and theater Bram Stoker in 1897. Stoker was a successful theater manager in London, writing on the side. He produced a number of novels and short stories in the melodramatic or “thr[...]

Review: Oppenheimer

— by WILLIAM STERR — J. Robert Oppenheimer, considered the father of the atomic bomb, was a major figure, first in theoretical physics and then in popular imagination, during the first half of the 20th century. Many people today have heard of Oppenheimer, but as the leader of the Manhatt[...]

Review: Owners

— by WILLIAM STERR — Have you ever wondered what goes on in the meetings of a home owners’ association? If you live in a condominium, a gated community, a co-op, or similar arrangement where there are rules that govern what owners can do, or where there are common spaces/resources that[...]

Review: The Eternal Memory

— by WILLIAM STERR — This documentary begins gently: a woman enters a bedroom where an elderly man lies sleeping. She calls, “Hello, hello, hello, hello,” and he stirs. Both laugh softly as he wakes. The old man knows who he is, but does not know her. The scene changes and we see him[...]

Review: Night of the Caregiver

— by WILLIAM STERR — “Abominable.” No, that’s not an alternate name for this movie – it’s a description. Imagine, if you will, that once upon a time a hack writer of screenplays, having had his greatest opus rejected by every reputable film producer in town, hangs himself from [...]

Review: Operation Napoleon

— by WILLIAM STERR — In 1945, in the middle of a spring snowstorm, an Icelandic shepherd peers out his barn door. A plane flies overhead in the night sky, headed out over Iceland’s largest glacier. The shepherd makes the sign of the cross. So begins another adventure related to Nazis a[...]

Review: Sympathy for the Devil

— by WILLIAM STERR — Nicolas Cage really cranks them out. In 2019, he was in six (!) releases. He must have gone into hibernation in 2020, releasing only two. Three in 2021, two in 2022 and now – in 2023 – five! Those five include “Renfield” (previously reviewed) and “Sympathy [...]