Movie Reviews From a Spiritual Perspective

Showing Tag: "festival" (Show all posts)

ABSENTIA

Posted by Jean Jessup on Tuesday, March 27, 2012, In : Horror 

ABSENTIA by Mike Flanagan, USA

This artistic, moody, low budget, black & white horror story tells the tale of a woman, Trisha, who's husband went missing around 7 years ago.  She finally starts to complete the paperwork on filing his death in "absentia."   (After 7 or 8 years if someone is still missing, they can be declared dead.) Trisha starts to see horrifying visions of her husband.  She tries going to a counselor.  Her sister, who drove through Tucson...
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Arivaca Film Festival

Posted by Jean Jessup on Saturday, April 23, 2011, In : Shorts 

ON LOCATION at ARIVACA

I wasn't able to attend the Arivaca portion of the fest this year, but I was able to find some trailers for the shorts program.  Links to reviews of the films I have seen are below.

I wasn't able to attend the Arivaca portion of the fest this year, but I was able to find some trailers for the shorts program.  Links to reviews of the fil...
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THE AVENUE

Posted by Jean Jessup on Sunday, April 17, 2011, In : Documentaries 


THE AVENUE by Alan Williams, Tucson

This locally produced documentary tells a cautionary tale about how the local character of a street can be destroyed by corporate take-overs and buy-outs.  The documentary starts out showing excerpts from the documentary, Mill Ave, Inc., about how large corporations took over the artsy Mill Avenue in Tempe, AZ and made it into a stale, characterless street wit...
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THE GREATER GOOD

Posted by Jean Jessup on Saturday, April 16, 2011, In : Documentaries 


THE GREATER GOOD by Kendall Nelson & Chris Pilaro, USA

This documentary tried very hard to be balanced about the pros and cons of vaccine use today.  But being very wary of vaccines, I personally found the documentary to have lots of evidence to support not taking vaccines.  Mainstream scientific research is not conclusive about the safety of vaccine use.  There has been no research performed to show what happens when a person does not take vaccines, so we...
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Gift of the Magi & Night of the Fish

Posted by Jean Jessup on Saturday, April 16, 2011, In : Drama 

This stop-motion animated short faithfully retells O'Henry's story of the Gift of the Magi.  This classic story is about a very poor couple.  The wife has beautiful long hair and the husband has a gold watch. The husband sells his gold watch for a beautiful accessory for her hair and she sells her hair for a nice chain for his watch.

I loved the detail on the animated set pieces.  But I found the animation at times choppy or non-existent and at other times very ...
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ABRAXAS

Posted by Jean Jessup on Friday, April 15, 2011, In : Drama 

ABRAXAS by Naoki Kato, Japan

This was a gentle, funny, charming film about an ex-punk-rocker, Jonen, who became a Buddhist priest.  Jonen's wife is relieved that he has left his Punk lifestyle.  But Jonen soon realizes that he cannot separate himself from his music.  So, much to his wife's chagrin, he is compelled to stage a punk rock concert for the small town where his Buddhist temple sits. 

I enjoyed the message of always following your heart and ...
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RUN TO THE EAST

Posted by Jean Jessup on Friday, April 15, 2011, In : Documentaries 

RUN TO THE EAST by Henry Lu, USA

This documentary follows three Native American high school students who are cross-country runners.  We see them successfully focus on their training in spite of the numerous obstacles they face in their culture.  Such obstacles include, meth abuse and alcoholism, lack of transportation, lack of money, lack of emotional support, and lack of opportunity on the reservation.  Their goal is to get running scholarships in order t...
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FLY AWAY

Posted by Jean Jessup on Friday, April 15, 2011, In : Drama 

FLY AWAY by Janet Grillo

This feature about a divorced mom, Jeanne (Beth Broderick,) and her autistic teenage daughter, Mandy (Ashley Rickards) surprised me.  For me, the story was more about the mother, than the daughter.  Jeanne struggles with the daily chaos of dealing with Mandy's unpredictable behavior and also strongly identifies with this difficult lifestyle.  Jeanne wrestles with the idea of putting Mandy in a school for autistic kids and resolves ...
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HAPPY - A Profound Documentary

Posted by Jean Jessup on Friday, April 15, 2011, In : Documentaries 

HAPPY - A documentary by Roko Belic

I wasn't interested in seeing a smiley-face film.  But since I was trying to review every film I can in the festival, I had to see it.  When I arrived, the theater was almost packed.  The director made a short presentation before the film and a Q&A.  The film was quite profound and well-researched.  I learned a lot.  Scientists, psychologists, statisticians, to name a few were interviewed about happiness.  The place wher...
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