Tag: Bill Pullman


Battle of the Sexes

December 28th, 2017 — 4:12am

***

Battle of the Sexes-sp

Most of you may know about the story of the tennis match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs in 1993. We have memories of the time and the famous event that took place. However this movie does capture more than a battle between a talented, skillful female tennis champion standing up to an older male, retired professional tennis player who was a male chauvinistic showman who thought he could laugh his way to making money and putting down women. This story and this well-done film shows us the beginning of the Women’s Movement and also the glimmer that eventually grew to a shining light where gay women could eventually be themselves. This goal still had a long way to go in the 1970s when this story took place.

Emma Stone was excellent as Billie Jean King and Steve Carell could not have been better as the clueless self-proclaimed, “Man” of the hour. Andrea Riseborough was very good as Billie Jean’s intimate confidant and hair dresser. The excellent supporting casts included Nathalie Morales, Bill Pullman, Elizabeth Shue, Alan Cumming and Eric Olsen. The movie was directed by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris with the screen play by Simon Beaufoy. The dramatic tennis matches which were shown in the film may have used actual archived footage, which certainly added to the excitement of the movie. This story deserved to be told and we are sure that it will have an important place in cinematic history about the role of women in sports and in American culture as well as memorializing an exciting key moment in time. (2017)

Comment » | 3 Stars, Documentary, Drama, Sport, Uncategorized

May in the Summer

August 14th, 2014 — 11:48pm

****Screen Shot 2014-08-13 at 11.22.44 PM

May in the Summer- sp Cherien Dabis is an award winning Palestinian American director, producer and screenwriter who does all three roles in this film in addition to taking the starring role which she handles in outstanding authentic manner. May (Dabis) is coming home from the U.S. to see her mother in modern day Jordan to prepare for her upcoming wedding. Her mother (Hiaam Abbass) and her family are Christian and May’s fiancée is Muslim so we are introduced to one of the several themes of this film. May’s two sisters Dalia (Alia Shawkat) and Yasmine (Nadine Malouf) have also come to Jordon for the event and the conflicts and bickering among the sisters is part of the evolving story further highlighted by one sister acknowledging that she lesbian although she doesn’t like that label. The sister’s father (Bill Pullman) had left the girls’ mother and married a much younger woman (Rita Singh Pande). He tries to apologize for the neglect of his children and establish a relationship with them when May and her sisters visit their Dad and his new wife as May’s wedding plans are being made. Through the discussions with May’s mom we also become aware of the limited options for a divorced woman in this society, although she clearly hasn’t given up. On top of everything May has doubts about her decision to get married. Each one of these conflicted issues is evolving as the characters interact in a very believable environment. The film does not attempt to delve into any one of these themes in depth. Each of them could have been a separate story but it is the universality of all of them allows the audience to recognize the people in this human drama and find meaningful identifications with them. That is the strength and the success of this excellent film. (2014)

Comment » | 4 Stars, Drama, Uncategorized

Bottle Shock

September 8th, 2010 — 1:30am

Bottle Shock* * *
Bottle Shock
– nf – We finally caught up with this movie that we had been wanting to see since we missed it at the local movie theatres. As new Californians the pride we have in California wines is nothing compared to the passion that Napa valley vinters had in their local wines which 35 years ago were hardly recognized world wide as compared to French wines. This movie, which is based a true story, centers on Steven Spurrier (Alan Rickman) a Brit living in Paris who had a wine store there and his pal and confidant (Dennis Farina). Spurrier decided that he would stimulate interest in buying wine by showing that in the 1976 bicentennial anniversary year, the upstart Americans still could not make wine, which could hold a candle to the established French products. He travels to America and meets Jim Barrett (Bill Pullman) owner, but deeply in debt, of the Montelena Chateau and his son Bo (Chris Pine) as well as a group of other California vintners. He convinces 12 of them to give him two bottles each to enter into a French wine tasting event in which the wine would be blindly judged. The California group knew that “if one wins, they all would win.” As they say, the rest is history. There are a few subplots which include Sam (Rachel Taylor) the beautiful graduate student wine intern, Bo, Barrett’s son who gets boxed around by his father and Gustavo (Freddy Rodriquez), the Mexican-American farm hand who is owner of a small wine maker operation with his father (Miquel Sandoval). The movie also stars the beautiful green California grape yards, the spirited Napa Valley Wine growers and the very French wine guys in Paris. There is the expectable dramatic blind wine tasting contest in Paris which has subsequently come to be known as Judgment in Paris. There were no big surprises although you do come away from the movie feeling good and also having learned an important history lesson about a product many people love and revere. (2008)

Comment » | 3 Stars, Comedy, Drama

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