Movie Review – Sea of Trees

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Sea of Trees (2016)
Written by Chris Sparling
Directed by Gus Van Sant

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Arthur Brennan is a distraught man who books a one-way ticket to Japan and finds himself about to commit suicide in the beautiful and notorious Aokigahara or Sea of Trees. He is stopped in the middle of his act by Takumi, a Japanese man who stumbles through the forest, bruised and bloodied, saying he is trying to find a way out. Arthur can’t stomach letting this man wander until he dies and decides to lead him to the path before returning to his original intent in the woods. However, the track isn’t where Arthur remembers it, and he and Takumi get lost deeper and deeper into the Sea of Trees.

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Movie Review – Morris From America

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Morris From America (2016)
Written & Directed by Chad Hartigan

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13-year-old Morris is an African-American young man living in Germany. His dad is a soccer coach, former player, and his mom passed away a few years prior. Morris did not grow up in Germany, and he is having trouble adjusting to the different culture. His Germany teacher, Inka, suggests he spend time at a community center practicing his language skills and meeting kids his age. Morris reluctantly agrees and immediately becomes infatuated with Katrin, an older girl who teasingly befriends him. Morris doesn’t seem to be meshing with the culture around him, despite his best efforts to explore and absorb. His father also struggles in determining where the line between discipline and freedom lies for his son.

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Movie Review – Primary Colors

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Primary Colors (1998)
Written by Elaine May
Directed by Mike Nichols

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Henry Burton is a young man working his way into the political scene, but almost everyone he meets knows him as the grandson of a great civil rights leader. Henry ends up under the radar of the campaign to elect Governor Jack Stanton president. Stanton is an incredibly charismatic Southerner with a headstrong wife, Susan, who wants nothing more for her husband to attain this high office. As Henry says, Stanton seems like the real thing, and before he knows it, the young man is swept up into the momentum of Stanton’s ascendancy. As the campaign drags on though, Henry begins to learn more about the man at the center of things, about his infidelities, indiscretions, and lies. Henry is forced to face the hypocrisies that are unfolding before him and decide if this is the path he wants to continue down.

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Movie Review -Equals

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Equals (2016)
Written by Drake Doremus & Nathan Parker
Directed by Drake Doremus

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In a futuristic utopia, humans live with emotions suppressed and all illness cured. There are no deep relationships and no sexual ones. All reproduction is done through artificial insemination determined by random lottery draws. In this world there is one affliction, Switch on Syndrome, where the afflicted is hit with a rush of emotion. Those with SOS typically end committing suicide of their own accord or at the behest of the government. Silas is an illustrator who works for a propaganda outlet and notices his co-worker Nia is showing subtle signs of SOS. Not long after, Silas begins to experience nightmares and the bubbling up of emotions. These two will embark on a struggle to escape their world and task a risk to see what lies beyond the borders.

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Comic Book Review – Punisher: Dark Reign & Dead End

Punisher: Dark Reign (2010)
Written by Rick Remender
Art by Jerome Opeña

Punisher: Dead End (2010)
Written by Rick Remender
Art by Tan Huat

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The Marvel Universe has come under the sway of Norman Osborn. The Skrull invasion was thwarted by the business tycoon, and in the aftermath, Tony Stark and the Avengers are smeared as criminals. Frank Castle the Punisher has decided to take Osborn out himself but finds out the “reformed” villain has support in the form of The Sentry and The Hood. Punisher gets help from Henry Russo, a young man with street smarts and tech skills who fills the role of the vigilante’s late support Micro Chip. The supernaturally-powered Hood decides to taunt Punisher by using dark magic to resurrect long-dead villains as well as people that will dig into Punisher’s deepest psychic wounds.

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Movie Review – They Remain

They Remain (2017)
Written & Directed by Philip Gelatt

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Keith and Jessica are sent for an extended research assignment to study nature. This isn’t your typical assignment because the plot of land they are visiting is the site of ritualized murders committed by a Manson-style cult decades before. The private interest backing the expedition wants to know if such acts of depravity and evil have left a mark on the environment. Keith goes out each day, placing cameras and gathering samples. Jessica stays in their geodesic dome headquarters processing samples, looking for some elusive unknown. Keith encounters a wild dog that seems to be leading him through the woods, and both researchers begin to experience hallucinations and dreams about the dark acts performed on this land. Something evil lurks in the darkness and is slowly luring two more victims to it.

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Movie Review – Tully

Tully (2018)
Written by Diablo Cody
Directed by Jason Reitman

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Marlo is already the mother of two young children with a third on the way. Her daughter is having confidence issues, and her son is showing signs of being on the autism spectrum. Her son’s condition, in particular, is creating anxiety in her life as the headmaster of her children’s private school is pushing for her child to seek services elsewhere. Marlo’s brother recommends hiring a night nanny, a person who will take care of your newborn’s nighttime crying fits and only wake you for feedings. Tully is the name of the night nanny who arrives, and she is a vibrant, inquisitive presence. Over time, Marlo comes to find herself revitalized and friendship between she and Tully begins.

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