Articles written by debbie lynn elias


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  • MOVIE REVIEW:THE SIEGE OF JADOTVILLE ● NO ASYLUM: THE UNTOLD CHAPTER OF ANNE FRANK'S STORY

    debbie lynn elias|Oct 6, 2016

    It's a look into history this week with the narrative feature THE SIEGE OF JADOTVILLE available on Netflix and, NO ASYLUM: THE UNTOLD CHAPTER OF ANNE FRANK'S STORY, now on various digital and VOD platforms. THE SIEGE OF JADOTVILLE Unknown to most is the story of the 1961 post-Colonial siege at Jadotville in The Congo in which Irish battalion A-Company held off a five day attack by 300-plus Katangese secessionists and mercenaries, and despite being out-manned and out-gunned, lost none of their...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: SNOWDEN

    Debbie Lynn Elias|Oct 6, 2016

    We all know the name Edward Snowden. A former CIA employee and contractor to various U.S. government agencies and its sub-contractors, Snowden turned the world upside down in May 2013 when he leaked classified information to journalists, Glenn Greenwald and Ewan MacAskill, and documentarian Laura Poitras, exposing the high level of global surveillance being perpetrated by the NSA and others with the knowledge and support of the United States and European governments. During a "covert" operation...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: STORKS

    debbie lynn elias|Oct 6, 2016

    In a day and age where kids are losing the innocence of childhood and the idea of myth, fantasy, Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, Mother Goose and storks at frighteningly early ages, it's refreshing to see co-directors Nicholas Stoller and Doug Sweetland deliver a story that stops that clock and reverses it, reinvigorating the centuries old "the stork brought you" story while redefining the definition of family for a new generation. Seriously people, does a 3 or 4 year old child reaaaallly need...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: The Light Between Oceans

    debbie lynn elias|Sep 15, 2016

    There is more than light between oceans in this latest film from writer/director Derek Cianfrance. There are tears, lots and lots of tears, and the tidal swirling of emotions both on screen and in the audience as Cianfrance pulls on every heartstring known to mankind and then some, with this adaptation of Australian author M.L. Stedman's 2010 bestseller. The richness of the story swells and surges to life thanks not only to exquisitely strong and impressive visuals, but complex enigmatic...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: BAD MOMS

    Debbie Lynn Elias|Sep 15, 2016

    Holy mother of God! You won't believe your eyes and ears when you watch BAD MOMS! It's moms-behaving-badly in this raunchy, riotous ridiculum of side-splitting hilarity. And although not a perfect film, it is the perfect antidote for a case of the mid-summer doldrums or whatever ails you. Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell and Kathryn Hahn star as our seemingly less than perfect "bad" moms - Amy, Kiki and Carla, respectively - who are trying to do it all but sometimes fall a bit short, while Christina...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: HANDS OF STONE

    Debbie Lynn Elias|Sep 8, 2016

    For everyone who has already seen "Hell or High Water", you know the Oscar race has begun thanks to an award-worthy performance by Jeff Bridges, a powerhouse script from Tayler Sheridan and stunning cinematography by Giles Nuttgens. This film has Best Picture contender written all over it. (And if you haven't seen "Hell or High Water", get thee to a theatre now!) But this week another contender in the acting race steps into the Oscar ring with Jonathan Jakubowicz' HANDS OF STONE and two knockout...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: BEN-HUR

    Debbie Lynn Elias|Sep 8, 2016

    Let's just cut to the chase. BEN-HUR is masterful! A spectacle worthy of Cecil B. DeMille but with a story that is more grounded and layered with softer, nuanced, more human emotional performances that go beyond the visual (and visceral) experience and elevate the film into an eye-opener for the heart. Majestic in scope and message, what director Timur Bekmambetov and company have done is deliver a film for the ages. Being the classic film devotee that I am, and as my regular readers and...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: Tallulah

    debbie lynn elias|Aug 4, 2016

    A quiet little gem from "Orange Is The New Black" writer/producer Sian Heder expands wider in theatres this week - TALLULAH. Heder, who not only writes TALLULAH, makes her feature directorial debut, and in the process delivers a beautiful film driven by intimate character studies and the intricacy of nuanced detail. We first meet Tallulah and boyfriend Nico living in Tallulah's beat-up old van. Living a true vagabond life, the two have been wandering around the country for two years, stealing...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: INDIGNATION

    Debbie Lynn Elias|Aug 4, 2016

    Philip Roth has long been a favorite author to many. His words have found themselves adapted for the big screen countless times to great effect. But it’s his 29th novel, INDIGNATION, that is one of the most beautiful and resonant adaptations thanks to writer/director James Schamus. A novel that fictionalizes Roth’s own life during his college years, on both page and screen, we are transported on both an emotional and sensory level to 1950's Newark, New Jersey with the story of Marcus Mes...

  • MOVIE REVIEW DOUBLE FEATURE:

    Debbie Lynn Elias|Aug 4, 2016

    ICE AGE: COLLISION COURSE Scrat's back and as to be expected, he's up to his old tricks again; this time inadvertently creating the solar system thanks to his never-ending pursuit of that elusive acorn. That's right folks! The ICE AGE franchise continues with this fresh and funny fifth installment, ICE AGE: COLLISION COURSE. As has become the story standard, everyone's favorite saber-toothed squirrel Scrat and his mishaps are the catalysts or inspirations for each film. Remember the splitting...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: CAFÉ SOCIETY

    debbie lynn elias|Jul 14, 2016

    Once again, Woody Allen sweeps us up into the magic, elegance, glamour and excitement of an era long past with CAFÉ SOCIETY. But that's where the "once again" part ends as Allen pushes himself beyond his patented funny and delivers a film with emotionally resonant characters (but still dealing with myriad neuroses) and a story as rich as the film's visuals. Filled with bittersweet poignancy, heartbreak and humor, a tinge of melancholy laced with a longing for days gone and a wistful wondering...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: CAPTAIN FANTASTIC

    debbie lynn elias|Jul 7, 2016

    The first word that comes to mind on watching writer/director Matt Ross's CAPTAIN FANTASTIC is "intelligent", quickly followed by "humor" and "heart", culminating in "beautiful storytelling." Ross captures our attention and imagination not only with the opening titles but with the first frames. A lush, thick wooded forest. Glimmers of sunbeams filter through the massive height of the trees. An audible stillness fills the senses with the sounds of nature. A softly babbling brook. The soft rustle...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: OUR KIND OF TRAITOR

    debbie lynn elias|Jun 30, 2016

    When it comes to espionage, be it literary or cinematic, one name jumps to the forefront. John le Carre. "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy", "A Most Wanted Man", "The Russia House", "The Constant Gardener" and currently airing on cable on AMC, "The Night Manager" with Tom Hiddleston and Hugh Laurie, should immediately spring to mind. And now OUR KIND OF TRAITOR, a subtler yet equally fraught with tension, but a more emotional and contemporary story based on Le Carre's 2010 best-seller is added to the b...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: FINDING DORY ● PIPER

    debbie lynn elias|Jun 30, 2016

    It's been 13 years since we last saw everyone's favorite short-term memoried blue tang Dory and all it takes is one look at FINDING DORY to ask yourself - How could we have gone this long waiting to see Dory again? But without missing a beat, everything feels right with the world and you forget that it's been so long since our last visit. FINDING DORY is an undersea rainbow of beauty, mystery and fun, filled with heartfelt happiness. Swimmingly sensational, FINDING DORY is nothing short of Two...

  • MOVIE REVIEW - Captain America: Civil War

    debbie lynn elias|Jun 16, 2016

    To the horror of my colleagues in the press and evoking a chorus of gasps and boos from them at the recent press junket for CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR (although Paul Rudd cheered and Kevin Feige lit up like a Christmas tree), I dared to say that which apparently should not be said: CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR is BETTER than "Star Wars: The Force Awakens." I said it then, I've said it since and I say it again now. While "The Force Awakens" is a global phenomena filled with touchstones of the past...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: ZOOLANDER No. 2

    Debbie Lynn Elias|Jun 16, 2016

    Time to call out the Fashion Police, Tim Gunn, Heidi Klum and Tyra Banks because while we have some "really, really ridiculously" hilarious voguing going on, ZOOLANDER No. 2 is missing a few signature pieces to really really "make it work" for the mainstream movie audience. That being said, however, when viewed within in its own contained universe resurrected by Ben Stiller after a 15-year absence, ZOOLANDER No. 2 is so politically (and fashionably) incorrect on so many levels that one can't...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: THE MUSIC OF STRANGERS: YO-YO MA AND THE SILK ROAD ENSEMBLE

    debbie lynn elias|Jun 9, 2016

    Yo-Yo Ma. World renowned cellist. Child prodigy. Many American audiences got their first glimpse of Yo-Yo Ma when at age 7 he was introduced on television by Leonard Bernstein. Over the decades, Yo-Yo Ma has opened the senses of the masses to the beauty of classical music. Passionate about bringing about peaceful change in the world through the universal musical language, in 2000 Yo-Yo Ma started bringing artists - and their culturally unique musical instruments - from around the world together...

  • MOVIE REVIEW-High-Rise

    debbie lynn elias|May 19, 2016

    British director Ben Wheatley first caught the attention of many when he threw his hat into the feature film ring with "Kill List". Already known for his episodic television work across the pond, "Kill List" made one sit up and take notice of Wheatley's directorial storytelling skill. Now, with HIGH-RISE, Wheatley firmly solidifies himself as a visionary thanks to his stylized interpretation of Amy Jump's adaptation of the 1975 J.G. Ballard sci-fi novel of the same name which, in the hands of...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: Green Room

    debbie lynn elias|May 19, 2016

    I always knew "green rooms" could be dangerous places - especially back in the 70's and 80's at the height of metal and then with 90's punk and free-flowing drugs and alcohol, but Jeremy Saulnier takes the idea of a green room to a whole new deliciously twisted level with GREEN ROOM. As we know from “Blue Ruin”, Saulnier is adept at carefully placed and judiciously utilized tongue-in-cheek double entendres, and GREEN ROOM is no different; most notably with the band's name - "The Ain't Rig...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: ELVIS & NIXON

    debbie lynn elias|Apr 21, 2016

    You've seen the pictures. I've seen the pictures. The whole world has seen the pictures. And "the pictures" remain to this day the most requested images in the National Archives. What pictures, you may ask? Those taken on December 21, 1970, by White House photographer Ollie Atkins; when Elvis Presley met President Richard Nixon. Now, thanks to director Liza Johnson and screenwriters Hanala Sagal, Joey Sagal and Cary Elwes, culling from personal notes, recollections and interviews of the few...

  • MOVIE REVIEW - Criminal

    debbie lynn elias|Apr 21, 2016

    How can anyone pass up a Kevin Costner film where his character of Jerico Stewart reads like a combination of that in "Mr. Brooks" and "3 Days to Kill"? Then toss in Ryan Reynolds, Gary Oldman, Gal Gadot and Tommy Lee Jones with a script by David Weisberg and Douglas Cook and the directorial eye of Ariel Vromen who last brought us "The Iceman". Quite simply, you can't. A unique take on a CIA spy thriller with a Frankenstonian spin, CRIMINAL is a hard hitting, tech-savvy, high octane adrenaline...

  • Weekend Movie Roundup

    debbie lynn elias|Apr 14, 2016

    Lots of good stuff opening in theatres this week, as well as on a concurrent digital/VOD platform, including the much anticipated Disney's THE JUNGLE BOOK. Normally, I would devote full coverage to this Disney film, but given the review embargos were lifted some time ago and reviews have been flooding the marketplace leading up to the April 15th release, we're going to look at some of the unsung winners of the week in this column today. But, suffice to say, when it comes to THE JUNGLE BOOK, it i...

  • MOVIE REVIEW - One More Time

    debbie lynn elias|Apr 14, 2016

    Seems appropriate to go from Christopher Walken voicing King Louie to Christopher Walken being, well, Christopher Walken, in the charming comedy ONE MORE TIME. Paul Lombard was a star back in the day. Crooning a-la Sinatra he had hit after hit after hit. But as happens with time, the fans disappear. Not content to sit back and watch time pass him by, Paul spends his night secretly updating his Wikipedia page with more glowing adjectives than stars in the heavens. Ever the egotist, rationalizing...

  • MOVIE REVIEW - The Adderall Diaries

    debbie lynn elias|Apr 14, 2016

    Can't get enough Amber Heard? Then make sure you catch THE ADDERALL DIARIES where she's paired up with none other than James Franco. Written and directed by Pamela Romanowsky based on the book by Stephen Elliott, "Memoir of Moods, Masochism, and Murder", James Franco takes center stage as the flawed but fascinating unreliable memorist Stephen Elliott, a best-selling author who is forced to confront the truth about his past when a father he has written as being dead and having abused Elliott as a...

  • MOVIE REVIEW: LONDON HAS FALLEN

    debbie lynn elias|Apr 4, 2016

    I'm betting the original London Bridge, built in 1830 and once spanning the River Thames, is pretty happy it now sits here in the United States in Lake Havasu City, because if still in London, it would have fallen victim along with every other landmark and historical site populating the city in the latest action sequel to hit the big screen, LONDON HAS FALLEN. Explosive non-stop action takes center stage as London is destroyed, and all the leaders of the western world (but for the US President)...

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