AUTHOR | Anthony Francis


MOVIE REVIEW: Mark Wahlberg stars in “Joe Bell,” directed by Reinaldo Marcus Green, with Reid Miller, Connie Britton and Maxwell Jenkins

This is the time for important social issues to be dealt with through the world of cinema. Prejudice and misplaced hatred are at the forefront of the current America and any film that deals with bullying of the LGBTQ communities (especially the youth) have an unfortunately relevant place in our theaters. Reinaldo Marcus Green’s “Joe Bell” is a film that wants to speak out against the hatred ... more >

“Broken Diamonds” | REVIEW

Deadpan and natural comedic situations infused with pathos is difficult to successfully pull off. Writer-director James L. Brooks proved himself to be quite the master at that style of filmmaking. After his massive success with 1983’s “Terms of Endearment,” many Hollywood dramedies tried to reach for that golden ring that Brooks made look so effortless on screen. Most failed or could never find ... more >

“When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro,” “FEAR AND LOATHING IN ASPEN” | REVIEW

Weston Cage Coppola, Blake Lindsley and Jay Bulger
Directed by Bobby Kennedy III

In 1970 Hunter S. Thompson began a bizarre run for sheriff of Pitkin County, Col., where he ran on the “Freak Power” ticket. The title of Thompson’s ticket is a pushback on the prejudice toward the local hippies from his opponent Carol Whitmire. Coming on the heels of the documentary “Freak Power: The Ballot or the Bomb,” which examined the same subject, writer/director Bobby Kennedy III’s “Fear ... more >

Mother Earth Is Not Happy; “GAIA”

South African film forces us to rethink our view of nature
Starring Monique Rockman, Carel Nel and Alex van Dyk
Directed by Jaco Bouwer

"Spellbinding" is not a word I throw around lightly. Where South African filmmaker Jaco Bouwer’s latest film “Gaia” is concerned it is richly deserved. While this is a film with a few issues, what works overpowers flaws. Gaia is the goddess of the Earth in Greek mythology. In the seventies, scientist, environmentalist and futurist James Lovelock developed the “Gaia hypothesis,” one that ... more >

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 >