|'Dolittle': Physician, Heal Thy Self|
It was early in director Stephan Gaghan's "Dolittle," the umpteenth permutation derived of Hugh Lofting's 1920 novel, "The Story of Doctor Dolittle," when I began to bemoan my choice of occupation. Little on the screen could dissuade me from the self-pity. So, I resorted to fantasizing. What would have been so
|'1917': Mistaken Destiny|
Anyone with half a brain knows that there's no such thing as a war movie … that there are only antiwar movies, of which director-writer Sam Mendes' "1917" is an iconic example. They also know that this harrowing, R-deserving delve into the bowels of humankind destroying each other with whatever new, technological device
|'Little Women': The Halberstadter Excuse|
The seventh film adaptation of Louisa May Alcott's "Little Women," exquisitely chiseled to fully expected, classic standards by director-writer Greta Gerwig, jogged my memory. I specifically remember the exact day in Dr. Halberstadter's class at Olde Ivy Film Criticism College when the good professor warned us that upon
|'Richard Jewell': All That Sparkles …|
"Richard Jewell," director Clint Eastwood's skillfully told account of how a hero was turned into a scapegoat following the murderous bombing at the 1996 Olympics, stokes that greatest fear upon which our judicial system is based: that an innocent soul might be convicted of a crime.
It is everything in a true
|'Dark Waters': 'They Were All My Sons'|
"They were all my sons." — Joe, in Arthur Miller's "All My Sons"
Pogo's Walt Kelly capsulized man's inhumanity to man when he coined a cynical variation on U.S. Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry's 1813 missive to Army General William Henry Harrison, informing, after the victory at Lake Erie,
|'The Irishman': At 3 Hours & 29 Minutes, it all Depends|
"Fuhgeddaboudit" was the advice from those who decided against climbing the movie mountain that is Martin Scorsese's "The Irishman," all 3 hours and 29 minutes of it. Dilemmas presented themselves. How many times will I have to go to the bathroom? Should we skip breakfast, have dinner now, pack a picnic lunch, or maybe
|'A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood': What This World Needs Now|
Can you say inspirational?
I can't remember the last time I left the movie theater thinking that what I had just seen was inspirational. Crazy? Yes. Funny? Yes. Sad and foreboding? Yes, quite often. But inspirational, in this cynical environment, with the Philistines at the gate? Nah, couldn't be. Who'd buy
|'Ford v Ferrari': Or, Goliath v David|
The red-blooded American portion of me, the part that in my youth soaked up John Wayne movies, was gratified by the spirit of director James Mangold's studiously executed "Ford v Ferrari." Rah, rah and all that good stuff.
Ferrari had been dominating world auto racing and its reign might have gone on for a bit
|'Parasite': For Richer or Poorer|
"You see, sir, rich people and theorists, who are usually rich people, think of poverty in the negative, as the lack of riches, as disease might be called the lack of health. But it isn't, sir. Poverty is not the lack of anything, but a positive plague, virulent in itself, contagious as cholera, with filth, criminality,
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