Tag Archives: Jena Malone

The Neon Demon (2016) Review

The Neon Demon is an uncompromisingly divisive film. The 10th feature film for Nicolas Winding Refn who has made quite a name for himself with his unique style and controversial subject matter. His best known previous film was the extremely well received 2011 film, Drive, starring Ryan Gosling. After returning to the screen with Ryan Gosling in 2013’s Only God Forgives, Refn has now chosen to make a very female-centric film in The Neon Demon. In it there is a stirring commentary on the culture of beauty in our society today.

Refn said that this film was allowing him to be born into the body of a beautiful 16 year old girl. He didn’t know what it was like to be beautiful and with two daughters, the oldest of which is 13, he wanted to explore the idea of beauty and see how deep the rabbit hole goes. Some believe that Refn has gone too far and has slipped into the realm of smut in his latest film. I can see where they are coming from since there are some very extreme taboos that he plays with including cannibalism and necrophilia. However, while it certainly is not for everyone, The Neon Demon is a powerful film which has had me pondering its themes of beauty and death ever since I saw it last week.

Continue reading The Neon Demon (2016) Review

Weekend Outlook – Independence Day, Shallows, Free State of Jones, Neon Demon

It is a very busy weekend at your local multiplex. It’s really one of those weekends that there is something for everyone. However, the battle for box office supremacy this weekend is not going to be much of a battle at all. It would be a huge upset if Finding Dory doesn’t handily take down the alien invaders.

Since its record-breaking, $135 million opening weekend, Finding Dory has continued to impress with its box office performance. Forget about comparing it to all other animated films which it has blown out of the water (no pun intended). Finding Dory‘s performance puts it in the company of films such as Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Jurassic World and The Dark Knight. I’m expecting Dory to bring in another $80 million this weekend. So let’s look at the four wide releases that will hit theaters today and find out what you should watch and what your should wait for.

Continue reading Weekend Outlook – Independence Day, Shallows, Free State of Jones, Neon Demon

Contact (1997)

Roger Ebert – First Review – 1997:
Roger Ebert – Great Movies Review – 2011:

mv5bmjeymdqxmtmxmf5bml5banbnxkftztcwntu0odcymg-_v1_sx214_al_I watched the 1997 film, Contact, again last night and I, like Ebert, was struck with its boldness as it seeks to weave together politics, faith, and science. As an HR Manager, I have advised employees that they would be better off not discussing those topics in the workplace because they are too controversial. I spent years speaking about faith as a pastor and I am unashamedly and evangelically Christian.

However, many people don’t know that before I was called into ministry, my desire was to be a scientist. I was vacillating between organic chemistry and theoretical physics particularly quantum mechanics. I have always had a deep love for science. I seek to observe our world much like I observe movies, to look beyond the visuals to mine deeper. I seek to find truth and beauty wherever it may be found and in whatever way it may be conveyed.

As a scientist, I must concede that there is a possibility that our universe and everything in it is not the production of an Intelligent Designer. But I have experienced something so magnificent and awe-inspiring that it continually reminds me of both my insignificance and my value. I cannot deny this and it will forever shape the way that I look at the world.

I think it is important to say that I don’t agree with Roger Ebert on everything. But I believe that he would agree with me on this. Whether you are an atheist, an agnostic, or a person of faith, I encourage you to watch this film. It is beautiful, heartbreaking, majestic, and rich. If you let it speak to you, I don’t think you will walk away unchanged. And what more can we ask of a film than that?