Visual Review Index Numbers, A
Being able to see broken humanity is what gave Capote insight. This film allows us to see how that brokenness is a part of every life. -Review by Darrel Manson
Overview (dial up speed)
CORELLI'S MANDOLIN (2001)
David Bruce reviews: "Captain Antonio
Corelli, an officer with an irrepressibly jovial personality and passion
for the mandolin, wants to make music, not war..."
DE LOS BABYS (2003)
Review by Darrel Manson: John Sayles once again brings various individual
stories together. Whereas movies often tell the story of a few central
characters, Sayles keeps showing us a broader picture whether it involves
the Black Sox scandal (Eight Men Out), corruption (Lone Star), a revolution
(Men With Guns), or community transitions (Sunshine State)
Director: Lasse Hallström. Stars: Heath Ledger, Sienna Miller
The famous lover (Ledger) encounters a woman (Miller) immune to his charms.
David Bruce reviews: "The relativity of time
and relationships. Everything is time related and passing away. Nothing
in the material universe is eternal -not even human relationships. The
message in this film is chilling, and frightening. We have an inborn need
to survive. We want to flourish. We want to live --forever! We are incredibly
resourceful. We are extremely creative. Guess whose image we reflect?'
ME IF YOU CAN (2002)
Review by Mike Furches and David Bruce: When this true-crime story
first appeared in 1980, it made the New York Times bestseller list within
weeks. Two decades later, it's being rereleased in conjunction with a
film version produced by DreamWorks.
|THE CAVE (2005)
Deep in the Romanian forest, a team of scientists stumbles upon the ruins of a 13th century Abbey. On further inspection, they make a startling discovery - the Abbey is built over the entrance to a giant underground cave system. Local biologists belive the cave could be home to an undiscovered eco-system, so they hire a group of American cave-explorers to help them investigate its depths.
Water Baptism gone wrong. Christian baptism in water
is both a symbol of the grave and re-birthing. Carl, unfortunately had
a seizure well under the water and he never experience his full baptism.
-This somehow locked him into a psychological state of death.
Review by David Bruce and Mike Furches: This film
is loaded with spiritual implications. Imagine a story about someone getting
a call to save people from destruction. Hmm, sounds like the story of
St. Paul in the Bible, or even the story in this film!
Darrel Manson reviews:
with RealVideo review"A suspense thriller in which a minor auto accident
triggers a chain of events that forces two strangers to become vicious
antagonists. The story explores the Human Condition...
|CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY (2005)
Acclaimed director Tim Burton brings his vividly imaginative style to the beloved Roald Dahl classic Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, about eccentric chocolatier Willy Wonka and Charlie, a good-hearted boy from a poor family who lives in the shadow of Wonka's extraordinary factory.
A fun film that explores the place of women.
ANGELS: FULL THROTTLE (2003)
Review by David Bruce: In Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle, the Angels
deal with personal problems (their private lives are not exactly perfect)
while fighting crime, as undercover agents, dressed in incredible costumes.
BY THE DOZEN (2003)
Review by Mike Furches: I especially enjoyed Steve Martin's movie Bringing
Down the House. It was good enough that it inspired me to go see Cheaper
by the Dozen. While I came away with a deeper respect for family and the
things that make family important, I left the theater feeling taken advantage
of by the makers of the movie.
|CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN 2
Director: Adam Shankman. Stars: Steve Martin, Bonnie Hunt, Hilary Duff. The Plot: While on vacation at Lake Winnetaka, The Baker family encounters The Murtaughs, and what should be a peaceful retreat for the two families turns into fierce competition for supremacy on the water.
Review by David Bruce: Velma Kelley (Zeta-Jones) burns in the spotlight
as a nightclub sensation. When she shoots her philandering husband, she
lands on Chicago's fames murderess row, retains Chicago's slickest lawyer,
Billy Flynn, and is the center of the town's most notorious murder case,
only increasing her celebrity.
Director: Mark Dindal. Stars: Zach Braff, Joan Cusack, Garry Marshall. A chick's hyper-active imagination lands him in some pretty hot water with his hometown. To help him overcome his particular setback, the community has him shipped off to Camp Yes-U-Can, where he stumbles upon a secret, evil plan concocted by his counselors. Overview (dial up speed)
Mel Gibson turns chicken to help bring about a chicken yard exodus.
OF HEAVEN (1999)
human hope and beauty against a harsh economic and political landscapes.
David Bruce reviews: "A fable about piety.
A small French village is tranquil, until a wind-blown, free spirited
woman arrives and opens a chocolate shop. And it happens during Lent.
The battle begins between Vianne and the town's self-appointed moral guardian,
the Comte de Reynoud..."
David Bruce reviews: A Chicago journalist finds
himself in a small Texas town on Christmas eve. Lonely and alone, he encounters
old faces and new facts…a hand carved manger, a father’s guilt,
a young girl’s faith. The trip into the past holds his key to the
future, and a scarlet cross shows him the way home.
WITH THE KRANKS
Review by Geg Wright: Tim Allen was drawn to the
improbable twist at the end of the movie in which Krank must decide between
his own selfish desires to ditch Christmas, or doing the right thing for
a neighbor he hates. “It’s a lonely thing to change from selfish
to selfless,” Allen says. “That transition, for a human being,
THE CRONICLES OF NARNIA
Blog, News: The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe, the first in the highly anticipated series of films based on the phenomenal bestselling CS Lewis novels, concerns a war between good and evil, pitting the magnificent lion Aslan against the forces of darkness in the magical world of Narnia.|
Special Narnia Blogs section
CHRONICLES OF RIDDICK (2004)
Review by Kevin Miller and Mike Stokes: While the
theology of this film is far from completely realized, the fact that a
highly commercial movie like this even attempts to broach such topics
is to be commended. I only hope that as The Chronicles of Riddick franchise
grows, so does the depth of its spiritual musings.
The story of a physically and emotionally damaged
woman who is reunited with her husband, Joe. Sixteen years earlier
while being chased by the law, Joe plunged the family car off a dark
mountain road with Chrystal and their young son inside. Chrystal
was left behind with a broken neck, Joe was sent to prison, and the
boy was never found.
|THE CHUMSCRUBBER (2005)
The idyllic suburb of Hillside is decorated with banners heralding “Carefree living.” The sad thing is that it is true. Here is a suburb in which everyone is so self-absorbed that they don’t care about anything or anyone else. Overview
crafted film about not so beautiful subject of abortion.
|CINDERELLA MAN (2005)
Russell Crowe stars in the story inspired by the life of legendary athlete Jim Braddock, a once promising light heavyweight boxer forced into retirement after a string of losses in the ring. As the nation enters the darkest years of the Great Depression, Braddock accepts a string of dead-end jobs to support his wife, Mae, and their children, while never totally abandoning his dream of boxing again.
BY THE SEA (2002)
David Bruce reviews: NYPD police officer Vincent
and son Joey have been painfully estranged ever since Vincent divorced
Joey's mother. He lives his life in solitude, keeping his girlfriend at
arm's length. As long as Vincent lives in the protection of the present,
he doesn't have to deal with the pain of his past.
OF ANGELS (1998)
'Wings of Desire' American style. An angel falls from heaven to fall
in love with a human.
CITY OF GOD (2002)
Review by Darrel Manson: But more than
just showing the way violence begets violence, this film shows violence
to be as addictive as any drug. The more violence is used in this film,
the greater the thirst for violence by the hoods, until their thirst will
never be quenched -- except by death.
Review by Darrel Manson: The Clearing is a wonderful
love story. It's not the kind of love story of boy meets girl, etc. It's
a love story about discovering just what love means. Even without the
physical passion that is often used in films to speak of love, we see
as the film plays out just what the love that Wayne and Eilene share entails.
A WHOLE FILM ON HOLLYWOOD JESUS.
CLICK THREE TIMES (1999)
an entire short film. This is a first for Hollywood Jesus. This film is
by my friend, Vickie Rose Sampson. SPECIAL FILM Independent
films of note.
Review by Elisabeth Leitch: Someone once told me
that movies portray people falling in love and falling out of love yet
rarely portray people in love. Depicting only first meetings, breakups,
reconciliations, and points of crisis in two intersecting romantic relationships,
Closer does just that.
Review by Kevin Miller: Coach Carter’s
central message is simple: We all have the ability to live extraordinary
lives. However, working against that potential is our tendency to believe
the lies people tell us. As the saying goes, belief is reality. Thus,
if we hope to realize our potential, we need to cast off the lies and
start living the truth.
AND CIGARETTES (2004)
Review by Darrel Manson:
With the summer film season gearing up, there are plenty of films. Many
of those are sequels or formula movies that can all blend together. For
those who dare to take a chance on a film that is different from the standard
multiplex fare, Coffee and Cigarettes can be very rewarding.
Review by Darrel Manson: Actually the story is of two journeys, Inman's
several hundred mile trek from the coast to the Blue Ridge mountains,
and Ada's more personal journey of learning how to survive and do things
that actually accomplish something.
Review by Chris Utley: In times of peril it is how
we handle ourselves in the midst of the chaos. The big question: do we
give in to the doom and dread of the situation or do we stand on the goodness,
faith and truth that are within us?
With RealVideo Review David Bruce reviews. "Since September 11th," says producer Steven Reuther, "'Collateral Damage'
has become a term that we've all had to digest. The journey that Gordon
Brewer takes in this film has become more understandable for everyone."
About a man who to fights with God for answers to his suddenly disastrous
life. He decides to get back at God by breaking all the 10 commandments.
OF A DANGEROUS MIND (2003)
Review by David Bruce: Television producer by day, CIA assassin
by night. At the height of his TV career, Chuck Barris was recruited by
the CIA and trained to become a covert operative.
|THE CONSTANT GARDENER (2005)
Based on the best-selling John le Carré novel. In a remote area of Northern Kenya, activist Tessa Quayle is found brutally murdered. Tessa's companion, Justin, appears to have fled the scene, and the evidence points to a crime of passion. Using his privileged access to diplomatic secrets, he will risk his own life, stopping at nothing to uncover and expose the truth - a conspiracy more far-reaching and deadly than Justin Quayle could ever have imagined.
Review by David Bruce: Listen to
the Spiritual Journeys of the Cast. Contantine was born with a gift
he didn’t want, the ability to clearly recognize the half-breed
angels and demons that walk the earth in human form.
AND CARLA (2004)
Review by Don Emmerich: Sometimes the goofiest of movies are capable of
imparting to us the most profound spiritual truths. Such is the case with
Connie and Carla, a film about two women who, in an effort to hide from
the Russian Mafia, masquerade as singing drag queens in a Los Angeles
Faith and science need to hold hands. And they do, literally, in this
film. Here also is the search for the Heavenly Father.
Integrity in the midst of scandal.
Review by Darrel Manson:
Documentary filmmaker Jehane Noujaim is in an interesting position to
raise the question. As an Egyptian American, she considers herself a part
of both the American and Arab worlds. She is not so much trying to push
her views of the war, rather she wants to show us that there are other
ways of looking at what is happening.
|CORPSE BRIDE (2005)
Director: Tim Burton, Mike Johnson. Stars: Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Emily Watson. Stop-motion animated feature follows the story of Victor (Johnny Depp), a young man whisked away to the underworld and wed to a mysterious Corpse Bride (Helena Bonham Carter), while his real bride, Victoria (Emily Watson), waits bereft in the land of the living. Overview (dial up speed)
"Moving at the speed of life, we are bound to collide with each other." And we do. Sometimes our collisions bring out the best in us. Sometimes they bring out the worst. Either way, they shake us, they slap us in the face, and they wake us up to the reality that our world is much bigger than just ourselves and our lives. In the movie Crash, these collisions are what construct its story.
David Bruce reviews: Another
in a long list of recent movies that deal with the missing father. Two
Los Angeles high school students from opposite ends of the social spectrum
fall for each other. On is the troubled daughter of a wealthy congressman.
CRIMEN DEL PADRE AMARO (2002)
by Darrel Manson: We can tell what is going to happen before it actually
happens. We know that Father Amaro will fall. But the real crime is not
the sexual sin, it is the subtle seduction and corruption of a young priest.
CRONICLES OF NARNIA (2005)
Blog, News, etc by David Bruce: The Lion, The Witch,
and the Wardrobe, the first in the highly anticipated series of films
based on the phenomenal bestselling CS Lewis novels, concerns a war between
good and evil, pitting the magnificent lion Aslan against the forces of
darkness in the magical world of Narnia.
Bruce reviews: "There
are no computer generated effects. When you see people walking on the
tree tops -they are. The actors have no doubles -they do their own stunts.
Yun-Fat Cho Michelle Yeoh excel. This film transcends its genre. It is
profoundly spiritual in its statement of the human condition..."
|CRY WOLF (2005)
In the new thriller Cry Wolf, eight unsuspecting high school seniors playing a game of lies come face-to-face with terror and learn that nobody believes a liar…even when they're telling the truth. Overview (dial up speed)
|THE CURSE OF THE WERE-RABBIT starring WALLACE & GROMIT (2005)
Director: Steve Box. Nick Park. Stars: Peter Sallis, Helena Bonham Carter, Ralph Fiennes. Wallace and his loyal dog, Gromit, set out to discover the mystery behind the garden sabotage that plagues their village and threatens the annual giant vegetable growing contest. Overview (dial up speed)
|CURIOUS GEORGE (2006)
Director: Matthew O'Callaghan. Stars: Will Ferrell, Drew Barrymore, Eugene Levy. While in Africa, a man (Ferrell) who wears a curious yellow hat accidentally adopts a mischievous chimpanzee named George. With a new life in America, George's adventurous nature takes control, and he heads out into is new world.
Visual Review Index Numbers, A