Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

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 [...]

Review: Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny

— by WILLIAM STERR — If it wasn’t apparent from the title, here is what gives it away. Prof. Jones (Indy) is infiltrating a Nazi unit responsible for transporting looted art, including precious antiquities. He is caught and hung within a chamber at the top of a tower, while the command[...]

Review: Tiger Within

Ed Asner. Multiple Emmy winner. Leader of the Screen Actors’ Guild (SAG) during their 1980 strike for a better, more equitable contract. In this film, released the year before his death at age 91, Ed Asner plays an aging Jewish widower and Holocaust survivor living in Los Angeles. One day, as he[...]

Review: Holistay

— by WILLIAM STERR — Movies about short-term rental horrors seem to be a cottage industry within the larger horror genre. This story is about a very nice “cottage” on a golf course in San Diego. A young couple, Branna (Erin Gavin – “Audrey”) and Finn (Gavin O’Fearraigh &#[...]

Review: Belle

— by WILLIAM STERR — The story of “Beauty and the Beast” has charmed readers and viewers for centuries. Adaptations have appeared on stage, on TV, and in the movies. Here we have a new one. “Belle” takes place in the starkly beautiful environment of Iceland. It begins with a reci[...]