Tag: Peter Sarsgaard


March 17th, 2017 — 6:19am

Jackie – nf

Jackie of course is Jacqueline Kennedy. This movie tells the story through her eyes, how she reacted to the horrific assassination of JFK who died with his head in her lap after his skull and brain was shattered by Lee Harvey Oswald’s bullet. Natalie Portman seems to have captured the former First Lady’s breathless voice and her struggle with her grief. If you were alive and conscious of your surroundings in November 1963, you must remember following every detail of this historic event including the tv and radio coverage of the assassination, the President lying in state, the procession to the church service and the burial at Arlington Cemetery. This movie certainly succeeds in awakening these memories that many of us never bury beyond instant recall with any association to the event. Aside from Jackie, the other major character who was depicted is JFK’s brother, Robert Kennedy who is played by Peter Sarsgaard. Of course Lyndon Johnson and his wife and other familiar names and faces are there also. The movie was directed by Pablo Larraín and is interspersed with some documentary footage and an appropriate musical background by Mica Levi. The film really doesn’t go beyond this brief time period. We both did feel that something specific was left out of the movie. When we recalled the President lying in state, the image that would bring about tears to both of us was Little John John, the President’s , at most 4 year old son  saluting a flag-covered coffin. We missed that event in this film but we still hold on to it whenever we remember that sad day in November. (2016)

Comment » | 3 Stars, Documentary, Drama

Robot & Frank

July 20th, 2012 — 7:07am


Robot & Frank – sp   The setting of this movie is “some time in the near future.”  Frank(Frank Langella), an older man living alone,  who may be having some memory problems is visited by his son(James Marsden) who drops off a robot (voice by Peter Sarsgaard) to be his servant/companion. The robot cleans the house, cooks the meals and becomes a meaningful object in Frank’s life. As this very clever story begins to examine the relationship between man and machine, it also allows a look at a film load of life issues. There is the father/son thing especially when father has been away at his own doing for long periods of time and maybe wasn’t the best of dads. The searchlight is put on aging and how an old guy can get marginalized and might want to feel he still is in the game. Not only is there the question of will machines take on human personas in the future but we are reminded that we may be on a path where technology take away things like the intimacy of being able to read and share an actual paper book. All these themes and more are examined as our Don Quixote like character and his faithful Sancho Panza type robot tilt at  Frank’s windmills. The closest thing to a Dulcinea is the warm hearted librarian (Susan Sarandon) who has a good reason to have a special  spot in her heart for Frank. This is all a lot going on in a tender movie about a robot that originally started off as a short film as part of the NYU Film School  studies of C.D. Ford who expanded that project to this screen play along with his then classmate Jake Schreier who directs his first feature film.  They now have a really good movie with an award winning performance by Frank Langella. (2012)

Comment » | 3 Stars, Drama

An Education

January 16th, 2010 — 2:02am

An Education* * * *
An Education
– sp – How often does it happen that a promising high school student goes astray and blows the opportunity for a great college education? It could be drugs, alcohol, falling in love or whatever. In this movie set in London in the early 1960s, it is an attractive extremely bright 16-year-old girl (Carey Mulligan) with no apparent drug use but occasional cigarette smoking, who hopes to get into Oxford, study English, speak French and explore the classics. Through a chance meeting with a somewhat older man (Peter Sarsgaard), she becomes enamored with him, his apparent wealth and appreciation of music and all the fine things. Her parents don’t have a clue what is going on and her father (Alfred Molina) concludes this guy is a fine fellow. He would not even object if she decides to skip college and go off into the sunset with this wonderful man. This film adroitly directed by Danish director Lone Scherfig focuses closely on Carey Mulligan, this delightful young women who is in every scene and we clearly see her evolution. The photography of this period piece is well done particularly of the English countryside, the automobiles and the clothes. Things are not always what they seem to be and the movie has a storyline that you may not anticipate. The script is actually based on a true-life situation originally written recently by women now in her 60s. There is also a questionable anti-Semitic theme, which can lead to some interesting post movie discussions. Susan and Michael differed on the final value of this film as Michael also felt that it had some unresolved and unaddressed moral issues. We ultimately went with Susan’s rating as we both thought the movie was worth seeing. (2009)

Comment » | 4 Stars, Drama, Romance

Garden State

November 7th, 2009 — 1:18am

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Garden State
– nf – Kind of a slacker movie, “days in the life…” of some offbeat, but affecting young people having trouble growing up. 2004

Comment » | 3 Stars, Comedy, Drama, Romance

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