Archive for December, 2017

Leadership And Courage Are History in “Darkest Hour”

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Although the Winston Churchill portrayed by Gary Oldman in “Darkest Hour” is ten years younger than the Churchill played by John Lithgow in “The Crown” both give one cause to lament the current state of leadership and political courage.

“Hour” is set at a time when Churchill earned his stripes, as a wartime prime minister battling political enemies favoring compromise with the German’s while protecting Great Britain from actual enemies.

The story takes place over the handful of days when British troops are trapped between the ocean and the German army. “Dunkirk” told this story in macrocosm, “Hour” tells it in microcosm, from the home front, as a citizen armada is debated and created and show’s Churchill failure to  recruit an isolationist US to Britain’s cause.

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“Downsizing” Bigger Than Its High Concept Premise

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What sounds ludicrous about “Downsizing” is ludicrous.

But something bigger looms behind its high concept premise.

Its set in a near future where a scientific advancement allows people to be shrunk in size and live in a miniature ecosystem that resembles the larger world at a smaller scale, in order to save the dying planet. It is also potentially lucrative: if you are a thousand-aire in the regular world, you are a millionaire in the smaller one.

But people are not equal there either.

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All The Movie In The World

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In this season’s twist on “A Christmas Carol.” Tiny Tim is kidnapped and Scrooge refuses to pay his ransom. Call “All the Money In the World,” “It’s a Terrible Life,” with the feel bad character of the season.

Knowing that “The Last Jedi” is Carrie Fischer’s swan song subtly affects your perception of it in the same way knowing Christopher Plummer replaced Kevin Spacey after – do I call it “Money” or “World” on second reference? – was already completed.

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“Last Jedi” Adds New Stories To Familiar Mythology

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“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” begins with a joke that could have come from “Spaceballs.”

In it hot headed resistance fighter pilot Poe Dameron, a Han Solo type, trolls Domnhall Gleeson’s Colonel Hux, the imperious stooge in charge of the First Order fleet, in “can you hear me now” fashion that buys time to allow for something big to occur.

The Resistance achieves a Pyrrhic victory at great cost, that is part of a series of battle that they are losing. Carrie Fisher’s Leia is in charge of military maneuvers, and the late actress has a central role and a complete through line.

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