Film Review: Antonia’s LIne — 3.5 stars

ONE WORD REVIEW: Women!?

SUMMARY: Antonia returns to her small, Dutch community of quirky, wonderful characters where she leaves a legacy of love and laughter in the midst of life’s pains.

DETAILS: Winner of the 1995 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, Antonia’s Line shows the connectedness of family and community and the lineage we leave behind. Following World War II, Antonia and her daughter return to the village of her birth. The cast of this film is filled with wonderfully, quirky characters who breathe much life into the first half of this film. As the film progresses we see that Antonia and her line do not really need men (other than for occasional sex). Antonia ages throughout the story and we eventually see her line develop. The film is rated R for a reason, but the fun, quirky characters make this a fun film to watch.

SCORE: 3.5 out of 5
RELEASE: 1995
RATING: R
FOREIGN

Film Review: The Grand Budapest Hotel — 4.5 stars

ONE WORD REVIEW: Stylized

SUMMARY: A hotel concierge is accused of murdering one of his wealthiest guests in this highly-stylized, fun-filled comedy.

DETAILS: Gustave H. (Ralph Fiennes) is the loved and respected concierge of the Grand Budapest Hotel at the height of the hotel’s fame in the 1930’s. His guests all love him, especially the wealthy, old, blond woman whom he cares for, flatters, and often sleeps with. But when one of the wealthiest ends up murdered, the fingers are pointed at Gustav. He and his Lobby Boy, Zero (Anthony Quinonez) soon are on the run from the family and their hired hit man in a chase that takes them from a prison break to the highest slopes of Europe in this highly-stylized, artfully-directed, comedy that hopefully will find room on it’s shelf for an Oscar or two.

 

SCORE: 4.5 out of 5

RELEASE: 2014
RATING: R

Film Review: Unbroken — 4 stars

ONE WORD REVIEW: Powerful!

 

SUMMARY: A U.S. Olympic athlete turned WWII Airman survives a plane crash, 45 days on the open sea, and the remainder of the war in a Japanese prison camp… all the while remaining unbroken.

DETAILS: Based on the true life experiences of Louis Zamperini, Unbroken tells the story of a U.S. Olympic athlete turned WWII Airman (Jack O’Connell) who survives a plane crash in the ocean, 45 days on the open seas, and the remainder of the war in a Japanese prison camp. Zamperini continually hears his brothers words of encouragement though all of his trials, beatings, and torturous experiences. In the end he remains unbroken and eventually chooses to forgive his enemies. This screenplay, written by Joel & Ethen Coen (and others) contains several scenes that portray strong themes of faith and redemption, including a “crucifixion” scene, and a beautiful baptism scene where Louis and all the prisoners ultimately receive their redemption. Directed by Angelina Jolie, the story doesn’t cover the entire novel by the same name, but certainly is an inspiring telling of Zamperini’s early life.

 

SCORE: 4.0 out of 5 stars

RELEASE: 2014
RATING: PG-13