AUTHOR | Anthony Francis

ARCHIVES

Rita Moreno stoked the Hollywood furnace and survived the studio system becoming a screen and stage icon (REVIEW)

"Rita Moreno: Just a Girl Who Decided to Go For It"
A documentary directed by Mariem Pérez Riera

Rita Moreno, what spirit, what soul! Hers is a a long and successful career in a Hollywood system that did not want her to be herself nor allow her to celebrate her Puerto Rican heritage. The new documentary “Rita Moreno: Just A Girl Who Decided to Go For It” which came out this week is an uplifting look at the EGOT [EGOT is a way to define those entertainers who have won all four of the ... more >

“QUEEN BEES,” or when you run top actors into the ground with superficially-written roles | REVIEW

Joining a retirement home clique is fraught with perils
Ellen Burstyn, James Caan and Jane Curtin
Directed by Michael Lembeck

Ellen Burstyn and James Caan are two of our finest actors and it is always nice to see them on screen. While their combined resumes contain some of the best films of the seventies (and a few of the eighties), today’s films are losing their adventurous spirit and, as the years go on, modern Hollywood gives actors of their caliber and age less and less to do. These days when we see a cast that ... more >

“Simple like Silver,” an affecting and poetic story of human intersections | FILM REVIEW

Film was shot in, and around, St. Augustine and Jacksonville, Florida
Cristina Marsillach, Lacy Marie Meyer and Susanna Nelson
Directed by Damian Lahey

"The mysteries of life. The mystery of everyone who passes us on the street. What is happening in the lives of these people? Sometimes nothing. Perhaps something.” Strangers walk by one another and might say “hello.” Other times, we glide by, silent and unaware, not knowing what plight others may be experiencing. An acknowledgment, a smile, it has importance. It could save a life, even. Perhaps ... more >

Review: down on his luck and out of jail, “THE LONG WAY BACK”

Film was shot entirely in New York City
Mark Borkowski, Conor Romero and Sayra Player
Directed by E.B. Hughes

For some, redemption lies at the end of a long and difficult path. For many, that road is without a bend, to others a winding and treacherous journey of doubt awaits. To those who have done jail time all this can seem impossible. Writer/director E.B. Hughes’’s New York City-set “The Long Way Back” follows one Max Lyons, a man who’s  just been released from prison after doing a year and a half ... more >

“ARMY OF THE DEAD” is an apocalyptic action/horror thrill ride that earns its stripes in the genre | REVIEW

Venturing into the quarantine zone
Dave Bautista, Ella Purnell and Nora Arnezeder
Directed by Zack Snyder

I've never really cared for the films of Zack Snyder. They may look great as the director gives each one his unique visual style but the films feel empty and badly scripted. Apart from his debut feature as director, the surprisingly respectful remake of George A. Romero’s “Dawn of the Dead,” every Snyder film became more and more insufferable. (It should be noted that, as of this writing, I ... more >

NETFLIX: “Master of None Presents: Moments in Love” (Season 3 boldly goes in a new direction and this is a take on that)

On the messiness of domestic life and sentiment

“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans” - John Lennon Season Three of Aziz Ansari’s excellent Netflix series “Master of None” is quite the departure. Season One was a lite and funny take on the New York dating lives of Ansari’s Dev and his close friends Denise and Arnold. Season Two was a B&W love letter to sixties Italian cinema. Where creator, writer, ... more >

Review: “It’s easy to die. They are making it hard for us to live” | TWO GODS

Film premiered at last Hot Docs Festival

Hanif Muhammad made the conscious decision to rise above the injustice and poverty that befell him and many in his community. Muhammad found himself incarcerated due to the many bad choices made in his youth, as he went down a wrong path for many years. Allowed a second chance to rise above it all and break the stereotypes that affected many of his friends and family from his neighborhood, ... more >