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Showing posts from July, 2020

A Mid-Summer Viewing Menu

Cinephiles mourned the loss of the great Italian composer Ennio Morricone who died at age 91 earlier this month, especially remembered for his iconic film scores for the Clint Eastwood “spaghetti westerns” of the 1960s and for “The Mission” among other classics.Also on the music front, although my last post was quite critical of the Netflix series “The Politician”, the best thing about it is to have introduced a wide audience to Ben Platt who has the title role.Platt, who has been on stage since childhood and became a Broadway star, is a supremely talented musician, singer, and songwriter.Check out the Netflix special Ben Platt Live from Radio City Music Hall, a fantastic performance, immensely appealing and candid, recorded last September. As the “politician”, Platt’s character is determined to become president. So my favorite Platt quote is: “I’m counting the days until Trump is just a stain on history …”.On the acting side, Platt has joined an 18-year project by master filmmaker Ri…

More Online Viewing Options -Canada Day Edition

The already vast amount of streaming content keeps growing. Some is on established specialty TV channels like HBO.I’m grateful to it for showing the wondrous 2018 Quebec feature Une Colonie (A Colony), from first-time director Geneviève Dulude-De Celles, which has garnered numerous awards including best film at the 2019 Canadian Screen Awards. I remember watching “Perry Mason” as a kid with Raymond Burr in the title role.Check out HBO’s new 8-episode version with Matthew Rhys as “Perry” and Canadian Tatiana Maslany as “Sister Alice”.Also just arrived on HBO is David France’s searing Welcome to Chechnya (https://www.welcometochechnya.com/) about LGBTQ persecution, particularly deadly in this ravaged Russian province ruthlessly ruled by Putin’s chosen strongman.Amid harrowing scenes France observes the courageous work of activists in rescuing endangered individuals and getting them out of Russia (Canada is a noted country of refuge).This is guerilla-style filmmaking at its finest. Here’s…