Movies: A Dog’s Way Home, Cold War, First Man

A Dog’s Way Home

This film is based on another bestselling novel by the prolific W. Bruce Cameron.  It’s designed to pluck the heartstrings of animal lovers, in this case dogs and cats.

There are many stories behind the story.  For example, Shelby the star dog  character, was “discovered” in a Tennessee garbage dump.  Another surprise was the focus on Denver, Colorado’s pit bull ban, where three specific breeds of pit bulls are banned in the City and County of Denver.

That said, the film is “Bella’s” romp through a 400 mile journey to find her way home.  The film is a charming, child friendly adventure with a few adult trimmings to make the story come together.

The human cast includes Jonah Hauer-King as Bella’s owner, Ashley Judd as the mom, Alexandra Shipp as the girlfriend, Edward James Olmos as a homeless man, Wes Studi as the police chief.  Another dozen bit parts fill in the gaps.

The film is rated PG for thematic elements, some peril, and language.  It’s listed as a Drama with a run time of 97 minutes.

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Cold War

This film has already been nominated for three 2019 Academy Awards for Best Director, Best Foreign Language Film and Best Cinematography.

It’s a love story that spans years.  It takes place in the Cold War of the 1950’s  Poland, Berlin, Yugoslavia and Paris.  It’s shot entirely in black and white.  Critics and apparently audiences are already declaring it “remarkable,” “magnificent” and “transcendent”.  It’s good, maybe even very good, but we’ll settle for passionate.

The mostly Polish cast includes a few French actors totaling over 40 actors.  The plot unfolds slowly, more of a smoldering slow burn if you will.  So slow at times some scenes seemingly take forever to unfold.

All said, it is a unique, refreshing throwback to film noir, and tells the tale rarely presented so well.  Critics and audiences loved this movie.  We thought it over hyped.

It is rated R for some sexual content, nudity and language.  We do not feel this film is suitable for younger children.  Its genre is listed as Drama, Music, Romance with a run time of 89 minutes.  Polish with English subtitles.

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First Man

First…A BIG THANKS to a close friend who managed to get us a copy of this film long after it left the theaters.

It’s the latest film about NASA’s Apollo 11 mission to put a man on the moon between 1961 and 1969.  The film is based on the book by James R. Hansen.  It stars Ryan Gosling as Neil Armstrong.  It’s directed by Oscar winner Damien Chazelle.

The cast includes a brilliant Claire Foy as Janet Armstrong, Kyle Chandler as Deke Slayton, Corey Stoll as Buzz Aldrin, Pablo Schreiber as Jim Lovell and Jason Clarke as Ed White.  The film is nominated for five Oscars in technical categories.

Audiences and critics loved this film.  It reminds us how ground breaking and dangerous space travel was at the time.  It was truly a unique time in our history and it did, in fact, change the world as we know it today.

It is rated PG-13 for some thematic content involving peril and brief strong language.  Its genre is listed as Drama with a run time of 138 minutes.  If you missed it like we did, seek it out on pay per view or a long plane ride.  It’s worth the effort.

P.S.  We just noticed today that AMC re-released this film prior to the Oscars.

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