Tag Archives: Forest Whitaker

Rogue One

A REBELLION BUILT ON HOPE. Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) becomes involved with the Rebel Alliance and its quest to steal the blueprint for the Death Star; her father deliberately hid a fatal flaw inside this powerful space weapon… This 3D prequel to Star Wars (1977) was made by the Godzilla (2014) director and has a … Continue reading Rogue One

Out of the Furnace

SOMETIMES YOUR BATTLES CHOOSE YOU.  After serving time in prison, steel mill worker Russell Baze (Christian Bale) learns that his younger brother Rodney (Casey Affleck), who did tours in Iraq, competes in bare-knuckle fights. A grim drama from the director of Crazy Heart (2009) set in an economically depressed Pennsylvania borough. The working-class locations feel … Continue reading Out of the Furnace

Crying Game: The Gal With a Secret

PLAY AT YOUR OWN RISK.  In the beginning, this film had a hard time finding an audience in Britain. Opening in October 1992, London had suffered unusually many terrorist attacks and neither the press nor the public seemed willing to accept a sympathetic portrait of an IRA terrorist. When The Crying Game opened in the … Continue reading Crying Game: The Gal With a Secret

Southpaw

BELIEVE IN HOPE. Light heavyweight champ Billy Hope (Jake Gyllenhaal) is struck by a personal tragedy and has to start his life over, with help from a trainer (Forest Whitaker) in a small-time gym. Sons of Anarchy creator Kurt Sutter’s script has a few themes in common with that show, as it explores the consequences … Continue reading Southpaw

Good Morning, Vietnam

TIME TO ROCK IT FROM THE DELTA TO THE DMZ!   In 1965, Adrian Cronauer (Robin Williams) arrives in Saigon to serve as a DJ for Armed Forces Radio Service, but starts breaking protocol right away. Williams’s breakthrough, a story inspired by the real-life Cronauer, was a big commercial and critical hit, a perfect vehicle … Continue reading Good Morning, Vietnam

The Last Stand

NOT IN HIS TOWN. NOT ON HIS WATCH. A drug lord who’s taken a hostage is speeding toward the Mexican border in a modified Chevrolet, but first he needs to cross a sleepy Arizona small town where the sheriff is a former LAPD cop… Arnold Schwarzenegger’s first starring vehicle in ten years (after his stint … Continue reading The Last Stand

Lee Daniels’ The Butler

ONE QUIET VOICE CAN IGNITE A REVOLUTION.  A brisk walk through American history and the civil rights movement in particular, as we follow a black man (Forest Whitaker) who serves seven presidents in the White House from Eisenhower to Reagan. How is the cause best served is the most important question asked in the film. … Continue reading Lee Daniels’ The Butler

North and South: Book II

When we meet the Mains and Hazards again, the Northern and Southern families are pitted against each other as the Civil War unfolds; the miniseries takes us through it. Elaborate, vivid and very entertaining, this first-rate soap offers extravagant battle sequences, thoroughly dedicated leading actors (as well as a few glorified cameos from the likes … Continue reading North and South: Book II

North and South

In the 1840s, George Hazard (James Read) from Pennsylvania and Orry Main (Patrick Swayze) from South Carolina enroll at West Point and become friends for life… but the increasing tension between North and South threatens to tear them and their families apart. One of the most expensive (and popular) miniseries of its time turns the volatile … Continue reading North and South

Platoon: Taking the Pain

THE FIRST CASUALTY OF WAR IS INNOCENCE. After serving in Vietnam, earning a Bronze Star as well as a Purple Heart, Oliver Stone came back to the United States in 1968. Disgusted with the way the war was portrayed by John Wayne in the now infamous Green Berets that year, Stone wrote down his experiences. Even though … Continue reading Platoon: Taking the Pain