Movies: Inferno, Queen of Katwe


This is the third film adaptation by Director Ron Howard from Author Dan Brown.  First was The Da Vinci Code and the Second was Angels &Demons.  It must be said, we loved these films and the storylines.  So it should come as no surprise we would love Inferno too.

The critics…well, let’s say reviews overall has been tepid.  It is hard to say why.  Inferno has all the same ingredients except without the heavy church overtones.  It is filled with as many twists and turns as the previous movies.  It is another romp to incredibly wonderful destinations of Florence, Venice and Istanbul.  And what could be more important than than half the planet’s population?

Actors included a tight cast with Tom Hanks, Felicity Jones, Irrfan Khan, Omar Sy, Sidse Babett Knudsen and the Ben Foster as a really bad guy.

As with most of the series, the film production was first rate.  We were fortunate enough to watch it at Vue, London’s Westfield Center in Shepherd’s Bush.  It was showing in the Extreme theater, screen 30 feet high and over 70 feet wide, capacity over 800.  We were the only two in the theater for the 9:30 AM show.

Rating 4 globes

Queen of Katwe

This story is heart wrenching and inspiring at the same time.  It spans several years of the true story of Phiona Mutesi’s emergence from the slums of Kampala, Uganda.  She joins a club to help young people learn how to play chess.  Phiona has a natural talent, become a Chess Champion with a path to an education and eventually out of poverty.

The film is based on the book by Tim Carothers.  The movie was produced by Disney and ESPN.  It was directed by Mira Nair.  It is a powerful look at poverty, determination and perseverance. The acting was excellent, starring the Oscar Award actress, Lupita Nyong’o as Phiona’s mom.  Additional noteworthy performances by David Oyelowo, Madina Nalwanga as Phiona, and Ethan Nazario Lubega as Phiona’s little brother.

Run time is a whopping 2 hours and 4 minutes.  Rated PG.

Rating: 3 globes

NOTE TO ALL:  Tomorrow we embark on our second cruise for the next two weeks.  We will assume no access to first run movies for the duration.  That will put the pressure on us when we return as we will be in the middle of the historical Oscar season.  Nonetheless we commit to getting up to speed and will be sure to keep you posted on all the Oscar buzz!


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