Love & Friendship

Review by Carla Renata for and Love-Friendship-1-e1453767274288

I absolutely live for a good Jane Austen film!  Pride & Prejudice, Emma, Sense & Sensibility...Did you know that Clueless with Alicia Silverstone, Paul Rudd and Stacey Dash was a modern take on Emma?  I know right??!! So, when  I learned that there would be Jane Austen film ready to be screened at Sundance 2016...I was all over it like a cheap

Love & Friendship is based on a series of short stories by Austen centers around Lady Susan.  Baby, I was not ready for Lady Susan and her antics!  She is hardly a saint and is always quoting from the bible and popping off the Commandments, all while totally not adhering to a single one of them! Lady Susan also gets it in with her good girlfriend played brilliantly by Chloe Sevigny for a daily gossip session whether by post or in-person.  Having worked together before in "Last Days of Disco", Beckinsale and Sevigny have a naturally hysterical chemistry that plays well in this flick,


Location images of Love & Friendship, a Jane Austen film adaptation starring Kate Bekinsdale and Chloe Sevigny, directed by Whit Stillman. CHURCHILL PRODUCTIONS LIMITED. Producers Katie Holly, Whit Stillman, Lauranne Bourrachot. Co-Producer Raymond Van Der Kaaij. Also Starring: Xavier Samuel, Emma Greenwell & Morfydd Clark

Kate Beckingsale gives Lady Susan the perfect blend a venomous intent with a beautiful a smile and disposition.  While many performances are worth mentioning, it is the scene stealing Tom Bennett as Sir James Martin that made my side literally split from laughter.  He makes Sir James so socially awkward that you can't help but feel a little embarrassed at this obvious ignorance to reality.

Having been purchased by Roadside for a theatrical release, if you love Jane Austen, you don't want to miss this one for sure!  It is opens in theaters TODAY!!!!





30th Anniversary of She's Gotta Have It

Before "Sex In The City "and their resident sex kitten Samantha there was Nola Darling. 1986 was not ready for a film student from Morehouse and nor his film She's Gotta Have It!  Director/Producer Spike Lee burst onto the film scene with the same controversy he continues to evoke in 2016 with an urban comedy about a chick who has a voracious sexual appetite.

Nola Darling is a beautiful, black woman from Brooklyn who is independent and knows what she wants and what she likes.  Along the way, the three men in her life - Jamie Overstreet, Mars Blackmon and Greer Childs - all provide their point of view on Nola and on their relationship with her, which often times varies from Nola's point of view on the situation.


The film shot in 12 days and marked the feature film debut of S. Epatha Merkeson, nowadays known for her role on NBC's "Law & Order".

''She's Gotta Have It'' was shot entirely in Brooklyn, and made on a budget smaller than those of some television commercials. The impression of artiness is increased by the use of still shot collages the film being shot in black in white with the exception of one scene.

Spike Lee has made an indelible mark in cinema sharing and exposing life from the perspective of a young black man and their relationships with their parents, women and each other.  It's one of the few time in cinema history that I have gone to the a screening and seen people that look like and reflect the world that I navigated through as a college student at Howard University and as a black woman in life.

This year, She's Gotta Have It is celebrating its 30th Anniversary and Spike Lee is now the recipient of an honorary Oscar for his contribution to cinema.

The films star Tracy Camilla Johns kept the momentum going for a second, and then fizzled out. Johns went on to have a tiny role in Mo Better Blues,was the scandalous girlfriend of G in New Jack City, and had a small role in an early Air Jordan commercial, but after ’91, that was it.

Take a look back at She's Gotta Have It...


Reviews: Zootopia, Midnight Special and Too Late


Film Review of Zootopia, Midnight Special and Too Late for and

So, now that I have recovered from the Oscars , I wanna chat about two films that I adored for very different reasons.

Animation films always have a special place in my heart because it taps into that little girl that lives inside no matter how much I age!  Having said that ...Zootopia is right on time!  Racial diversity has been at the forefront of everything from the Presidential Race to the Oscars! we know, children are like sponges and soak up anything information and education we throw their way.  This is why, I am particularly proud of Disney for releasing this film.  It will teach children how to embrace our differences and not be so quick to judge based on what you've heard.  Instead, based your opinion on your experience and not some myth or stereotypical ideology.

Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin) is told by her parents "anyone can do anything", so she decides she wants to be the first "bunny cop". With that in mind, she graduates from the Bunny Burrow Police Academy and leaves home to make her mark in Zootopia, where she meets a con artist fox (Jason Bateman).  They pair up, discover a conspiracy and make plans to expose those responsible.  There's even a little lesson in what a good cop should be doing for a community - "serve and protect the city...not tear it apart".

It's hilarious, very well crafted and the actors who voiced the characters are perfect thanks to brilliant casting by Jami Sparer Roberts!   Being a HUGE fan of the Godfather film trilogy, my all time favorite moment was the throwback to the wedding scene with the Marlon Brando character looking like a rat...hysterical!!!

Judy Hops says it best, "...real life is messy, we all make matter what animal you are, try to make the world a better place...change the starts with you , me ...all of us"

Zootopia was released on earlier this month and has already grossed over 155 million domestically.  Check it's in a theater near you now!



What would you do if you were part of a community very similar to Jonestown or a Warren Jessup type situation and you had a child that possessed special powers.  Would you make a break for it to save  yourself, your kid or everyone involved?  Directed and Written by Jeff Nichols, I was pleasantly surprised.  When it started out, I thought it was going to be a  horror film!  Those of you who have been following this blog know that I DO NOT do HORROR.  However, I quickly realized that it was more of a Sci-Fi thriller, which is a genre I love!!!

The first ten minutes is so intense and compelling that you know you are in for  nice rollercoaster ride with no idea how it will stop.

Alton Meyer  (Jaeden Lieberher) is an 8 year-old with supernatural powers.  He can cause earthquakes, fire storms and all sorts of interesting events. His community believes he is their savior and on Friday, March 6th, so his Dad (Michael Shannon) and State Trooper friend  (Joel Edgerton) take him on the run to protect him.

Clearly , Jeff Nichols has been heavily influenced by Steven Spielberg as the film feels like a mashup of Close Encounters of the Third Kind, E.T. and Village of the Damned.  It all kinda works though mixing elements of love, family and sacrifice.

The mother/son and father/son relationship is extremely endearing and the major reason the film just clicks.  It reinforces no matter how different a child may be, if they are loved unconditionally that's all that really matters after everything is said and done.

Kirsten Dunst does an excellent job in a role that we have not seen her in to date.  She's all grown up and giving a performance straight from the heart playing a Mom in fear for her son.  Michael Shannon says more with his eyes than any other actor I've seen, which make him fascinating to watch.  His humility, warmth and compassion shown as Roy is quite refreshing.

Midnight Special opens this weekend in limited release.  Check your local listings for a theater near you





Too Late is a film I watched as part of the Los Angeles Film Festival last year and now it will be available in limited release TODAY in Los Angeles and on March 25 in New York!


Check out the trailer and what I had to say about it by clicking the link below

2015 Los Angeles Film Festival Review: TOO LATE