The Dallas Movie Screening Group

This is the homepage of the Dallas Movie Screening Group. To join our mailing list you must sign up at our group page on Yahoo. You will then be connected to receive notices on how to find passes to the local screenings in the DFW area. It's up to you to pickup or sign up for passes. You can also barter, trade or just giveaway passes you don't want, need or share with other members of the group. Please read the instructions on the Yahoo page very carefully before posting. This group is closely moderated so that your mail box is not full of spam or other unnecessary mail. We appreciate everyone's consideration and cooperation.

You can use this homepage for posting comments, reviews, and other things that cannot be posted to the group. Of course spam is not allowed. Thanks!

To join the Dallas Movie Screening Yahoo Group:

Reesa's Reviews can also be found at:

Logo art by Steve Cruz

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Sunday, April 22, 2018

Movies Scheduled for the Week of April 22 - April 28

Hardly any screenings happening this end of April. Perhaps in anticipation for the new Avengers movies coming out this week. In any case, I guess it's a good time to catch up on stuff, like housework, homework, getting your life sorted out. can check out the DIFF2018 schedule to plan your week in May.

AND...the USA Film Festival is this week.

April 22 - April 28

Mon - April 23

The Rider - 7:00 pm - Angelika Dallas

Sat - April 28

Pup Star: World Tour - 10:00 am - AMC Northpark

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Friday, April 20, 2018

I Feel Pretty

This movie was ridiculously funny. Renee (Amy Schumer) portrays a woman who suffers with incredible negative self-esteem and insecurity issues. Renee has this sense of notion that thin, gorgeous women do not suffer with any problems, especially men problems and ultimately believes that men are the ones with the issues. After all, the women she sees are beautiful, super-thin and picture perfect. During one of her exercise classes, she falls and hits her head. She wakes up believing she is this super model with an incredible sexy body and a newfound sense of self-confidence. Although her looks never changed her concussion makes her believes that is she is this sexy woman and that she can do anything that she puts her mind to.

After her new discovery, Renee perceives that she in the same category as these thin beautiful women and anyone who does not see it are jealous and the ones with the issues. She even attempts to empower her friends, Sasha (Gia Crovatin) and Vivia (Aidy Bryant) to enable their self-confidence but realize that their bilious ways will keep them stuck and displace. Her high, self-confidence attitude empowers her to compete in this swimming contest with some gorgeous women and although she did not win she never believed it was about her looks. As far as she perceived the contest she confidently believed there were more men cheering her on than the rest of the contestants.

Heck, her new boost of confidence even had her going after men believing that their shyness was the reason she boldly took the first step in talking to them. So, in hindsight she zealously made her move to go after the guy she wanted. As she continued this pretentious high she hit her head again and loses the effusive effect. She persistently believed she lost her appeal because of the accident and not realized that she had this confidence all along.

This movie illustrated that anyone who have high self-esteem powers can make the world turn with their incredible confident. No matter, whether the body, face or a positive attitude an efficacious confident can take anyone places without the fear of what other people think. I believed the story had the right concept although the audience may believe differently. I thought the movie was exceptionally funny, however, it still lacked depth and perception in the story. I rated this movie a 5 out of 10.
(Review by Dr. Dwanna Swan-Ary)

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Sunday, April 15, 2018

Movies Scheduled for the Week of April 15 - April 21

Hope some of y'all were able to attend the volunteer meeting this weekend for DIFF2018. Or you are volunteering for the EarthxFilm at The DFW has a multitude of film festivals that offer some unique programming that you cannot find at the normal metroplex cinemas. Lets support the film community here in Texas!

April is running by quickly. Avengers Infinity War starts next week so I guess we will all be busy seeing that numerous times.

Not too much this week. Keep in mind that Super Troopers is rated R, so please keep the kids at home. It may be a comedy, but the humor is probably not appropriate for young minds.

April 15 - April 21

Mon - April 16

I Feel Pretty - 7:00 pm - Angelika Dallas

Tue - April 17

Super Troopers 2 - 7:00 pm - AMC Northpark

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Thursday, April 12, 2018


As I have said in the past, video game movies do not really work. This goes back many a year, even to 1989’s “The Wizard,” wherein they tried to give TV’s “The Wonder Years” Fred Savage his own chance at becoming a matinee idol. I think his appearance as the sick kid in William Goldman and director Rob Reiner’s” The Princess Bride” landed to more of his credibility as a name to remember.

But, I digress, since we are here to know about “Rampage,” the new “based on a video game” tale that finds George, a gorilla who can actually communicate via sign language. He was rescued by Dwayne Johnson’s Davis Okoye, who saved George many a year ago when he was still a baby. George is not the only genetically altered animal on the planet, since there is a wolf as well as a crocodile.

Also adding further credibility to this moronic yet fun movie is Naomie Harris. She was the new Moneypenny in the last James Bond entry, “Spectre.” Her part is that of a brilliant scientist wgo for all intents and purpose was fired from her last job due to some insider shuffling at the top.

As disappointing as far as movies go, this one had some weight and gravitas in pooling all the plot points together. One of the characters thought to be an adversary turns out to be a good guy. Jeffrey Dean Morgan plays Harvey Russell, a government higher-up with some clout in getting things done immediately and ASAP.

This flick acknowledges the ridiculous proceedings, such as when Johnson’s Okoye states that of course the wolf flies. Of course there are plenty of Mcguffins thrown into the mix.

Further awful video game movies come to mind when watching the silliness here, namely “Super Mario Bros.,” “Resident Evil,” the 1994 version of “Street Fighter” with Fean Claude Van Damme,” “Alone in the Dark” and the awful but watchable “House of the Dead.”

With “Rampage,” the director is Brad Peyton, who has steered Johnson to some big hits, namely “San Andreas” in 2015. He also directed him in “Journey 2: The Mysterious Island,” in which his character replaced Brendan Fraser. ”They are occasionally crass and rude, but it’s what the audience paid to see in this bona-fide definition of a guilty pleasure.

Grade: C+
(Review by Ricky Miller)

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Blumhouse's Truth or Dare

(Review by Chase Lee)

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Lean On Pete

Coming of age stories are a dime a dozen, but since it's from A24 you can be sure it will be a bit different. Based on the novel of the same name by Willy Vlautin, it is written and directed by Andrew Haigh. It's a serious toned look at the inner workings of a lonely 15 year old young man who attempts to save a race horse from being sent to the slaughterhouse. Charlie Plummer, who plays the young teen, won the Marcello Mastroianni Award for Best Young Actor or Actress at the 74th Venice International Film Festival.

Charley Thompson (Plummer, who played John Paul Getty III in All The Money in the World) lives with his dad Ray (Travis Fimmel). Charley's mom left him shortly after he was born. His dad moved him around depending on his work. The last place was in Spokane where he excelled in the school football and track teams. Charley continues with his running as he explores the new neighborhood where he finds the Portland Downs racetrack. His dad meanwhile is messing around with a married (but separated) woman from his workplace. Ray says half kidding that her husband is a big Samoan who may be ticked off with his wife's affair. Charley likes this woman better than the last because she makes a good breakfast.

Charley makes friends with a trainer at the horse track. Steve Buscemi is Del Montgomery who used to be a big name on the horse race circuit, but is down to a handful of horses that he runs mostly in off track races and county fairs. He hires Charley to help walk the horses and shovel the barn for $25 a day. Charley who told Del he is 16, earns a bit more as Del is impressed with his willingness to learn and help. Chloë Sevigny plays Bonnie the jockey who rides for Del. She tells Charley not to get attached to any of the horses. They are not pets. When a horse is not performing, they are usually shipped off to slaughter houses in Mexico.

One night Charley comes home to find the angry Samoan husband throwing his dad out the window. The police want to put him in child services, but Charley says his aunt is on the way. Charley sleeps in the tact room at the stables, visits his dad when he's not working. Charley asks his dad to give him his aunts phone, but since they had a falling out, Ray says not to worry. The eventual tragedy propels the rest of story of Charley stealing Lean On Pete, Del's truck and trailer in an attempt to find his aunt in Wyoming. His lonely, desperate journey finds Charley walking with the horse when the truck runs out of gas. We hear his inner struggle to make sense of his vagabond life with his dad, how he had gone to a friends house in Spokane and found out how real families work and he hangs on to that hope of a normal life. Along the way he meets up with homeless guy Silver (Steven Zahn) who almost derails his plan.

Charlie Plummer is a remarkable young actor who pulls you in with his innocent and plucky young man. His orphan outlaw is a haunting and sensitive portrayal that is doomed with frustrating conundrums that stand in his way. This is not a family film of a boy and his horse. (Spoiler Alert: The horse doesn't make it through the whole movie). It is a story that will stay with out after you leave the theater.
(Review by reesa)

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½* (out of ****)

At a certain point in the climax (if it can be called that) of Krystal, the eponymous figure, a down-on-her-luck single mother, learns a valuable lesson and receives a much-needed stepping stone toward the rehabilitative help she has needed. This is what is at the heart of Will Aldis’ screenplay, except the screenwriter’s heart is in the wrong place entirely. To wit, the way the film presents her with this opportunity is by having several characters shame her for being forced, by the economic and marital situations in which she has found herself, into providing for her disabled son through exotic dancing and sex work.

It is, as you can imagine, a pretty heartless turn for any movie, but this one is a special case: This scenario is not at all surprising in the context of the overall movie we’re dealing with here. Indeed, it might be the least weird thing about this movie, which is a very strange one. Krystal (Rosario Dawson), the former sex-worker and current adult dancer, isn’t even the protagonist of this story, which has been named after her. She certainly factors into it enough to be giving second billing in a credits context, but she is really a device for the coming-of-age of our real protagonist.

Taylor (Nick Robinson) has suffered from paroxysmal atrial tachycardia (PAT), which causes a quickening heartbeat at random intervals for no reason, since the moment in his childhood when his dog died. He imagines the driver of the car that killed his beloved pet as a demon, with burnt-orange eyes and a wicked smile, that shows up whenever he has a cardiac event. Curiously, though, the film doesn’t really know what to do with the condition until the end. Before that, the symptoms of the defect come and go as the screenplay pleases. It does, though, introduce this concept in just about the most off-putting manner possible.

After we learn that the second event to set off the defect was his innocent curiosity about an adult magazine, the film returns to the present, where Taylor stands on a beach. Another event is in process when Krystal, wearing only some swimsuit bottoms and a tank top (with nothing underneath it), runs up to assist him. The event intensifies upon Taylor’s realization of her (lack of) attire. So, Taylor is an uncontrollable horn-dog. Got it, movie. And in case we don’t get it, well, the plot hereafter, which has Taylor essentially stalking Krystal and using a fake name (Bobby) and thin façade (that of a pretentiously self-reflexive intellectual) to do so, will get the job done.

There isn’t much more to say, really. The plot is a thin clothesline on which to hang a series of would-be-wacky situations played for comedy, before taking a suddenly sincerer approach in the homestretch that goes entirely unearned. Krystal has a wheelchair-bound son (played by Jacob Latimore) to provide for and a violent ex-husband (played by Tip “T.I.” Harris), who shows up to provide some painfully egregious conflict. Taylor’s parents (played by William H. Macy, who also directed the movie, and Felicity Huffman) and brother (played by Grant Gustin) are all just annoying projections of Taylor’s most annoying personality flaws. And Kathy Bates shows up as Taylor’s wise mentor figure, apropos of nothing at all.

Macy directs this material with a blunt, lackadaisical misunderstanding of how to blend the comic elements with the melodramatic ones, though it is likely for the best. The comedy is never funny, and the melodrama that anchors it is permanently fixed to the least interesting characters present. Most of the actors, too, adopt bizarrely unbelievable accents regional to the Georgia setting of the tale, except without any signs that they were professionally coached to perform with them. All the while, Krystal herself, despite a solid turn from Dawson (the only actor to retain any dignity through this charade), remains a cypher. Krystal is named after her, and that isn’t able to be reconciled on the evidence of this floundering failure of conviction and conceit.
(Review by Joel Copling)

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Where's Kyra

*** (out of ****)

One of the opening shots is a fascinating and disconcerting one: The titular character stands in the right-hand side of the frame – or so we think – and her ailing mother sits in the left-hand side. The younger woman is preparing a bath, and when she has finished and it is time to place her mother into the tub, she enters the frame from the left side, approaches the bed, and sits offscreen on the part of the mattress and in the part of the shot that is unseen by us. Only her hand, as it grasps the old woman’s shoulders to lift her to a standing position, is now visible. She had been preparing the bath in view of a mirror. That was how we saw her in the shot when it started.

Director Andrew Dosunmu and cinematographer Bradford Young often devise shots of casual complexity like this in Where Is Kyra?, which relies on our disorientated disposition to lure us into a morally challenging final half-hour. Michelle Pfeiffer’s performance as the eponymous Kyra, often capturing via longshot, is also paramount to this rising feeling of unease. It would be doing the film a disservice, though, to call it a thriller. The only element here that suggests a component of that genre is Philip Miller’s score, which is really just an occasional intrusion of a sharp sting in the otherwise silent soundtrack.

The story is an incredibly insular one, in which Kyra’s mother (played by Suzanne Shepherd) dies, leaving her daughter in an ever-growing mountain of debt as she continues a job hunt that has gone on for two whole years. She meets and falls hard for a local nursing-home employee Doug (Kiefer Sutherland), and then a mysterious figure, draped in her mother’s clothing and walking with her shuffling gait, appears around the city. The central mystery surrounds who this figure is and why she seems to be cashing the dead woman’s checks, and the major conflict involves Kyra’s imminent eviction from her home.

It’s a story (written by Darci Picoult) of economic desperation, bathed in the muted browns and greys that reflect Kyra’s situation. It’s a richly atmospheric experience first and foremost, and Pfeiffer, who is captured in suffocating close-up when not in those longshots, gets better as this situation gets pricklier. The mystery isn’t much of one, really, but the conflict has an emotional texture that is hard to shake. The final shot of Where Is Kyra? is an extended portrait of desolation, reflecting the movie that has proceeded it, and the cumulative effect of it all is rather sneaky.
(Review by Joel Copling)

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Monday, April 9, 2018

48th Annual USA Film Festival

The USA Film Festival announces
48th Annual USA Film Festival
April 25 - 29, 2018

DALLAS – The USA Film Festival announces the schedule of events for the 48th Annual USA Film Festival, April 25 - 29, 2018 as part of Dallas Arts Month. Programs will be held at the Angelika Film Center, 5321 E. Mockingbird Lane, Dallas, Texas. Advance tickets are available exclusively through Ticketmaster beginning April 11, 2018.

The full schedule of programs, guests and events can be viewed at the USA Film Festival’s website

Thanks to support from The City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs and the Festival’s Sponsors, the Festival is pleased to present over 50% of all programs as Free Admission for the community.

This year’s program highlights and guests include:

- Salute to actor Richard Chamberlain in conjunction with a special repertory screening of The Last Wave (1977) and on-stage conversation. Mr. Chamberlain will also sign copies of his memoir “Shattered Love” following the screening.

- Stephen Tobolowsky Hosts The Shorts Showcase and Salute to Elizabeth Ashley and Salute to Barbara Bain. Both iconic actresses have lent their talents to short film works. The program will feature new short film works with filmmaker guests in attendance including: actor Josh Zuckerman who will present his directorial debut A Real Adventure; co-writer/director SJ Main will present Reconnected featuring actress Barbara Bain; writer/director Elisabeth Gray will present Severance featuring Elizabeth Ashley; and writer/director Michael Langman will present his directing debut Wake the Riderless Horse featuring actor/producer Scott Michael Foster (who is from the Dallas area and a graduate of the prestigious Quad C Theatre program at Collin County Community College). Actor Stephen Tobolowsky will host the on-stage Q&A with all guests following the screenings.

- Director Dana Adam Shapiro and producer Carra Greenberg will present their documentary Daughters of the Sexual Revolution: The Untold Story of the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders the never-before-told story of Suzanne Mitchell, the fiercely-loyal den mother of the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders. Also in attendance, some of the former Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders interviewed in the film.

- Writer Daniel Pearle will present the moving family drama A Kid Like Jake starring Claire Danes, Jim Parsons, and Leo James Davis; adapted from his play of the same name, and directed by Silas Howard.

- Spanish Actress Assumpta Serna will present Red de Libertad, the little-known true story of Sister Helena Studler, the French nun who created a network of contacts and collaborators that enabled the escape of 2,000 people from Nazi camps and persecution during WWII (including future President of France, François Mitterrand).

- Actress Dale Dickey returns to USAFF to serve as a Juror for the 40th Annual International Short Film Competition, and she will also introduce Debra Granik’s (Winter’s Bone) feature film Leave No Trace, in which she performs
- Writer/actor/producer and great story-teller Stephen Tobolowsky returns to the USAFF with The Primary Instinct, directed by David Chen, featuring Tobolowsky using the art of storytelling to take the audience on a riveting and moving journey about life, love and Hollywood.

- Director Tiffany Bartok and producer Jayce Bartok will present their documentary Larger Than Life: The Kevyn Aucoin Story. The program will be hosted by Dallas-native, model, creative director, and magazine contributor Chandra North (who knew and worked with Kevyn).

- Former Dallasites co-writer/director Mark Hayes and producer Gabriele Hayes return to present their documentary Skid Row Marathon.

- To celebrate the 150th Anniversary of Louisa May Alcott’s classic novel, the Festival will present a modern-day film adaptation of Little Women, written and directed by first time filmmaker Clare Niederpruem with Dallas-raised producer and USAFF alumni filmmaker Chris Donahue. This free-admission program is presented in partnership with the City of Dallas Office of Community Care as part of the “Engage at Any Age” program as we kick-off Older Americans Month in May.

- Director/producer Susan Kucera will present her thought-provoking documentary Living in the Future’s Past, produced and presented by Jeff Bridges.

- Director/producer and Film Professor at Yale University School of Art Sandra Luckow returns to USAFF to present her documentary That Way Madness Lies...

- Producer Marty Ashby will present his documentary covering the unrecognized history of jazz music in Pittsburgh entitled We Knew What We Had: The Greatest Jazz Story Never Told. This free-admission program will be presented in partnership with D’JAM ( Dallas Jazz Appreciation Month) and the Sammons Center for the Arts.

- Jurors for the USAFF’s 40th Annual International Short Film Competition include actress Tamara Taylor, writer/director/actress/producer Assumpta Serna, actress Dale Dickey, actress/writer/director Christina Beck (Jury Chairperson), writer/director John Putch, journalist and festival consultant Michael Goro Takeuchi, painter and filmmaker Rosson Crow, and animator Bill Haller. The Awards program will take place on Sunday during the Festival.

- Other highlights include: the revelatory documentary RBG, which explores the incredible life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg; the documentary The Quest of Alain Ducasse where filmmaker Gilles de Maistre followed the legendary chef for two years as he continues to push the boundaries of his profession; Disobedience starring Rachel Weisz, Rachel McAdams, and Alessandro Nivola in terrific performances; the unbelievable true story American Animals starring Evan Peters, Barry Keoghan, Blake Jenner, Ann Dowd, Jared Abrahamson, and Udo Kier; the intimate documentary profiling fashion guru André Leon Talley, The Gospel According to André; Tully starring Charlize Theron and directed by (USAFF alumni) Jason Reitman; the mesmerizing coming-of-age story We the Animals starring Raul Castillo, Sheila Vand, Evan Rosado, Isaiah Kristian, and Josiah Santiago; the eye-opening documentary Poisoning Paradise, co-written/directed by Keely Shaye Brosnan and Teresa Tico and executive-produced by Pierce Brosnan; the deeply moving and engaging documentary The Last Goldfish; and several compilation programs of short films (Narrative, Nonfiction, Student, Animation, Experimental), as well as Texas-made works.

(A full schedule of films is listed in the attached program flyer. An additional 60+ filmmaker guests will be in attendance.)

– USAFF48 is dedicated to these friends and filmmakers that we lost this past year: Dorothy Malone was a great friend to USAFF, attending our program many times over several decades to speak when we presented films in which she performed, and to help host some of our other visiting artists whom she knew from her many years in film and television. Horror visionary George Romero first visited the USAFF in 1979 with Dawn of the Dead, a film that Roger Ebert (another regular USAFF attendee) called “one of the best horror films ever made.” Horror master Tobe Hooper also visited USAFF several times with his films, and was also a great friend to the Festival.


Tickets for most programs are $10.
There are also several FREE-admission programs noted in the schedule.

Advance tickets will be available via TICKETMASTER beginning April 11th
-- To purchase tickets online –
-- To purchase tickets by telephone – 214-631-2787

A complete schedule of all Festival events may be:
-- To purchase tickets online –
-- and printed schedules can also be picked up at the Angelika Film Center Dallas

Sponsors of the 48th Annual USA Film Festival include Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate, Gaedeke Group, Whole Foods Market, Carol and Alan J. Bernon Family Charitable Trust, Headington Company, Dallas Tourism Public Improvement District, Mary Fox and Laura Fox Williamson, Dallas Film Commission,, Sidley LLP, Yelp Dallas, Jackson Walker LLP, Norma’s Café, Texas Film Commission, SAG-AFTRA, Dallas Producers Association, The Downtown Business News, Interabang Books, Kevyn Aucoin Beauty, Alford Media Services, Angelika Film Center and Ticketmaster.

The USA Film Festival is supported in part by the City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs.
The USA Film Festival is supported in part by the Texas Commission on the Arts.


A year-round film festival featuring 50 days of programs
The USA Film Festival is a 48-year-old Dallas-based 501c3 non-profit organization dedicated to the recognition and promotion of excellence in the film and video arts. Year-round events include the annual KidFilm® Festival, a 40-year-old International Short Film Competition; monthly screenings; special programs and premieres; and the USA Film Festival, held each Spring. Throughout the year, the Festival presents a variety of membership, exhibition, educational, and cultural programs designed to promote equity and equality, and to bring together audiences and artists for a “live cinema” experience.

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Sunday, April 8, 2018

Movies scheduled for the Week of April 8 - April 14

As y'all have probably heard by now, there will not be a promo screening for the highly anticipated movie of the season. Marvel's Avengers Infinity War. In a way, it's ok, cuz the lines would have been nuts.

In the meantime, we have a few films this week. As usual, there are multiple screenings at multiple theaters. Hopefully everyone got their pass by now.

And don't forget DIFF2018 is coming up soon. This is a good chance to volunteer and earn vouchers to see some great upcoming films.

Please join us at Volunteer Orientation on Saturday, April 14th at 10AM at Studio Movie Grill - Royal Lane.

You'll learn all about:

1. Our NEW Volunteer shift scheduling program

2. Our NEW Volunteer benefits and rewards

3. The Festival itself with all the films, the parties and special guests!

*Even if you're a returning volunteer, please consider joining us to learn about all the new changes!*

Forward to a friend and kindly RSVP here by noon Friday, April 13th:

April 8 - April 14

Tue - April 10

Rampage - 7:00 pm - AMC Northpark
Rampage - 7:30 pm - Cinemark 17
Blumhouse's Truth or Dare - Angelika Dallas
You Were Really Never Here - 7:30 pm - Angelika Dallas

Wed - April 11

Blumhouse's Truth or Dare - Cinemark 17

Thu - April 12

I Feel Pretty - 7:30 pm - Angelika Dallas

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Friday, April 6, 2018

Finding Your Feet

FindIng Your Feet is a senior-seasoned comedy directed by Richard Loncraine that glances at real life and limitations of time in people ever changing life. This movie embarks on two sisters from different background, the upstanding, snobbish, Lady Sandra Abbott, (Imelda Staunton), whose life seem artificial and stilted, after she discovers her husband had been having an affair with her best friend for over five years, to her high-energetic, free-spirit, out-spoken sister Elizabeth, known as Bif (Celia Imrie), who lives life to its fullest, hubristic in self-confident as she enjoys the moment as it comes. Life takes a roller coaster for Sandra after she leaves her husband when she moves in with Bif. Although, Sandra believe that she and Bif are totally opposite they find their balance with each other through friendship, trial and error, and dancing. With Bif’s great friends, Charles (Timothy Spall), Jackie (Johann Lumley), and Ted (David Hayman), Sandra soon learns to forgo her unpleasant, peevish ways when she discovers that time is of the essence. She soon finds comfort in attending the weekly community dance classes. This group of friends show Sandra that life is not always abrasive, boorish or dull if she let herself be free to be spontaneous and advantageous.

But once tragedy hits home with Bif dying to cancer, Charles’s wife passing away and Sandra reuniting with her estranged husband only to discover that life is fleet. It is when Sandra tests the water with Charlie, she realized that her old life was habitual and mannered.

This movie is for an audience who can enjoy a warm, witty, laughable, but entertaining movie. This movie shows that changes in life can be rapid yet withering for seniors in terms of embracing divorce, romance, new friendships, health and death. The characters were enjoyable and complimented one another. It was a bit slow as for keeping the audience engage at certain period of the movie. There was a bit of musical selections where the group from the community dance class put on a performance that took away from the structure of the movie but nevertheless entertaining.

Overall, I gave the movie a five out of 10.
(Review by Dr. Dwanna Swan-Ary)

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Thursday, April 5, 2018


(Review by Chase Lee)

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Final Portrait

This is a story from the life of Alberto Giacometti. He was a Swiss painter and sculptor who achieved great success in his lifetime. The story follows James Lord, a young American from New York City, as he takes up the position of posing for Giacometti for the artist’s last portrait. James Lord is a character with much patience and sophistication. He always appears on screen in a fine and good-looking suit while he has a much extended stay in Paris.

Giacometti turns something which should have taken a couple of hours to do into something that spans over a couple of weeks. Armie Hammer plays James Lord with an upper-class essence that fits his character perfectly. The character has much patience during the film. Geoffrey Rush plays Giacometti with the utmost eccentricity perfectly and basically without any flaws. Rush gives Giacometti that old look of someone who has been tired out by his own mind. He is such a good artist that his perfectionism gives Giacometti a disadvantage. Mr. Rush plays him with all of the character’s intricacies and is completely enveloped by his character.

The house which was the main setting for the film was grey, white, and black. It resembled what I would think to be the quintessential artist’s home. The set was constructed brilliantly with several pieces of artwork and art tools all over the place.

The facet of Giacometti’s life which consisted of his infidelity with a young prostitute was portrayed well throughout the film. His wife, Annette Arm, is consistently hurt by this clear and overt act of cheating. Sylvie Testud plays this woman with the pain and understandable emotional fatigue considerably well. Giacometti is mesmerized and obsessed with the prostitute, a young woman named Caroline. He spends much money on her and her boundless energy is maybe compensation for Giacometti’s eccentric tiredness. The relationship tension between Giacometti and his wife is communicated very well

Diego Giacometti, who is played by Tony Shalhoub, is Alberto’s kind and mild-mannered brother who is a strong supporter of Alberto. He is basically the soundest and most rational human-being living in the Giacometti home. Tony Shalhoub plays Diego with a great subtlety and wiser soul which is portrayed beautifully in the film.

This is a very nice little movie that fully illustrates the often times wild and eccentric life of great artists. The film communicates the idea that even with wonderful success, artists can still be unsatisfied with their proven efforts.
(Review by Wyatt Head)

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12th annual event finds a new home at The Magnolia and releases a preview of features and shorts (DALLAS, April 2018; source: CultureHype)​ – Local film nonprofit ​Dallas Film Society (DFS)​ is proud to announce its 12t​h​ annual film festival, returning to Dallas for a new eight-day event from ​Thursday, May 3​ to Thursday, May 10​.

This year, for the first time ever, all competition feature and short film screenings at the Dallas International Film Festival (DIFF) ​will take place at ​The Magnolia ​in Uptown’s​ West Village​ shopping center. In honor of its 12t​ h​ anniversary, Dallas Film is announcing its first 12 films, representing some of the best in the art of filmmaking.

The Dallas Film Society expects close to 100,000 visitors will enjoy DIFF activations at West Village. The ​2018 Dallas International Film Festival (DIFF) ​will screen over 110 films from 25 countries and will include the 12 films listed below and a series of Special Events including a 25t​h​ anniversary event for Steven Spielberg's three-time Academy Award®​-winning blockbuster ​Jurassic Park​ which will screen ​at Studio Movie Grill – Spring Valley (13933 N. Central Expy @ Spring Valley), ​Sunday, May 6​.

Opening Night Celebration​ at ​The Magnolia​ on ​Thursday, May 3​ will be followed by a celebration in the streets of West Village. More details to be announced.

2018 DIFF Film Screenings

Won't You Be My Neighbor
​ - A film focused on the legacy of Mister Rogers by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Morgan Neville (​Twenty Feet from Stardom​)

McQueen​ – The fashion motion picture, directed by Ian Bonhôte, offers a personal look at the extraordinary life, career and artistry of fashion designer Alexander McQueen

First Reformed​
– A film directed by Paul Schrader following Reverend Ernst Toller (Ethan Hawke), a solitary, middle-aged parish pastor at a small Dutch Reform church in upstate New York on the cusp of celebrating its 250th anniversary

Sammy Davis Jr.: I’ve Gotta Be Me​ – Directed by Samuel D. Pollard, the film is the first major film documentary to examine Davis’ vast talent and his journey for identity through the shifting tides of civil rights and racial progress during 20th-century America

​– Inspired by the award-winning short film of the same name by director Yen Tan, the film follows a young man during the wave of the AIDS crisis

Eighth Grade ​–Bo Burnham directs this film about 13-year-old Kayla endures the tidal wave of contemporary suburban adolescence as she makes her way through the last week of middle school

Loud Crazy Love ​(Texas Premiere)​ ​– Trey Hill and Scott Mayo direct this music documentary focused on Brian Welch’s (Korn) vicious battle with crystal meth, ultimately finding solace in one place he never thought he could belong: church

The Iron Orchard​ (World Premiere) – The story of Jim McNeely, a young man thrust into the vibrant and brutal West Texas oil fields circa 1939 who works his way through the ranks to ultimately become a formidable wildcatter, directed by Ty Roberts

Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich
​(Texas Premiere) - A reimagining of the Charles Band classic, from Dallas-Based, Cinestate. This Horror Comedy will headline DIFF’s “Almost Midnight” category.

Sons of St. Clair ​– A music documentary directed by Tim Newfang following Krayzie and Bizzy of iconic R&B group Bone Thugs N Harmony into the recording studio as the duo sets out to prove to the younger generation that they can still create relevant music today

Tejano ​(World Premiere)​ ​- Desperate for cash to pay his grandfather's medical bills, a young man resorts to smuggling drugs across the Texas - Mexico border in this film directed by David Garcia

To purchase passes for the ​2018 Dallas International Film Festival (DIFF)​, please click ​here​. All-Access ​Star Passes​ can be purchased online in advance for ​$500​ and include access to Screenings, Galas, Special Events and the Filmmakers Lounge for all 8 days. Individual tickets start at ​$12​ and discounted passes for Students and Senior Citizens can be purchased for ​$80​.

About Dallas Film Society

Dallas Film Society is a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting film, filmmakers and film education through our annual events, the Dallas International Film Festival and The Art of Film, through membership events and screenings, and through our educational programs: Summer Film Camp, the High School Roundtables and High School Day, and The Veterans Institute for Film & Media. Dallas Film provides leadership in screen education and the recognition and celebration of excellence in the art of film, television and digital media. For more information, please visit ​​.

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Monday, April 2, 2018

Isle of Dogs

I have to say as a filmmaker director Wes Anderson has a pretty good track record in my book. I’ve given the bulk of his movies the grade of an A- or higher on his resume. This even goes back to his 1998 release of the brilliant “Rushmore” wherein a young Jason Schwartzman flames out as a prep school student who for all intents and purposes is an overachiever.

But we’re here to talk about “Isle of Dogs,” Anderson’s latest that involves talking dogs who are discarded on Trash Island, a wasteland of the canine breed that have to fend for themselves on a desolate trash bin. This tale is set in Japan, where the president, Mayor Kaboyashi (Kunichi Nonura) of the nation is a cat lover and not so much the K-9 sect.

The device displayed in “Isle of Dogs” utilizes the same stop motion technology that was in awesome “Fantastic Mr. Fox” from 2009. It actually received a couple of Oscar nominations as well, for best animated feature as well as best music for a feature film.

In “Isle of Dogs,” it is Bryan Cranston providing the voice of Rex, a dog discarded on the island who was a prominent figure in a higher position of power. He was essentially the guard dog and companion of Atari (Koyo Rankin), the Mayor’s nephew.

Also involved in the story are Rex (the voice of Edward Norton, King (Bob Balaban), Boss (Bill Murray) and Duke (Jeff Goldbllum). They are essentially a pack of wild dogs who will protect Atari and Rex at any cost.

The mayor has a hidden agenda, so when his staff finds a solution to the dog flu epidemic, he chooses to bury it instead of giving it to the masses and the general public.

Funny and amusing are the fights that occur. Viewers are treated to an overhead shot that just contains a mixture of smoke with heavy emphasis on the grunts and growls that occur.

As a filmmaker, Anderson, like either coupled of Woody Allen or Whit Stillman has a very exact demographic that he appeals to. For arguments sake, let’s just say it is movie critics and the like. His verbiage and approach to the spoken word is for a very specific demographic, one that does not really hold a mass appeal.

The humor is very dry and witty. It contains a nice dose or sarcasm coupled with some keen outlooks on life, in general.
That is why I liked it so much. The dialogue is natural, witty and filled with ironic touches. The set up is just a day in the life of these people, nothing more, nothing less.

I think back to the 1990’s, wherein “Seinfeld” was a really big hit on TV. It was just a show about nothing. That is kind of the way Wes Anderson looks at life problems and predicaments.

I’d recommend this flick, but it really isn’t made for kids, frankly for teenagers and young adults.

Grade: A-

(Review by Ricky Miller

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Sunday, April 1, 2018

Movies Scheduled for the Week of April 1 - April 7

April showers brings May flowers. Yes, it's spring in Dallas. The weather is nice, the trees are filled out and it's great days for a BBQ It's too bad there are only a few movies scheduled for this month. Will have to be vigilant for the new Marvel movies. Just hang in there.

If I missed something, please let us know. Y'all know you can share this info with everyone, right?

April 1 - April 7

Tue - April 3

A Quiet Place - 7:30 pm - AMC Northpark and Studio Movie Grill Northwest Hwy
Blockers - 7:30 pm - Angelika Dallas

Wed - April 4

Blockers - 7:00 pm - AMC Northpark, AMC Mesquite and AMC Irving Mall
The Miracle Season - 7:30 pm - AMC Northpark and the Angelika Dallas

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