Charlize Theron's Real, Raw Take on Motherhood Gives Tully Heart

Charlize Theron's Real, Raw Take on Motherhood Gives Tully Heart

Charlize Theron has never been one of those starlets who stayed  away from a part because it wasn't glamorous. With Marlos, she goes in full-throttle with raw emotion and an uncomfortable physicality that fully helps someone like me understand the mental and physical toll going birth can be on an entire fa

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Paula Patton is Action Vigilante in Deon Cole Indie Film Traffik

Paula Patton is Action Vigilante in Deon Cole Indie Film Traffik

Trafficking of young women in America has turned into a form of modern-day slavery.  Living in Southern California, there are daily breaking news items concerning some white van full of young non-speaking English women who have been bought, sold and transported like cattle to a farm.  As a woman of color, it breaks my heart to watch women being treated with such disdain and disrespect.  Even more to the point, watching these same women drugged, raped and beaten so that some man somewhere can make a quick buck.

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Why Black Panther is the Crown Jewel of the Marvel Franchise

Why Black Panther is the Crown Jewel of the Marvel Franchise

Black Panther is hands down the best film in the Marvel Franchise!!!  Why?  Black Panther is on the road to do for Marvel what The Lion King did for Disney.  The Lion King had Mufasa, Simba and The Pridelands...Black Panther has Wakanda, King T'Challa, Nakia and Killmonger.  Black Panther also manages to show tender young love between a man and a woman, a man and his parents and unflinching love for one's country no matter what the sacrifice.

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BABY DRIVER

BABY DRIVER

When I tell you that this is the best action movie I've seen in awhile...I do not exaggerate! The car stunts in this flick make the Fast and Furious franchise look like a movie about bumper cars.

From the first frame to the last, I was riveted by the acting, stunts and overall story line.  It sort of has a little Godfather quality in the respect of "...every time I try to get out...they pull me back in."

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LA FILM FESTIVAL 2017: OUT OF STATE

LA FILM FESTIVAL 2017:  OUT OF STATE

"The first time I walked into the Saguaro Correctional Center in Eloy, Arizona I cried.  There, in the middle of a dusty prison recreation yard, were 100 men chanting my entrance into the facility.   Prior to arriving, I had reasonable concerns about filming in prison and had been  advised by mentors to love my subjects but to also be cautious given their histories. Every expectation was immediately thrown out the door when I saw these men chanting in varying

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LA FILM FESTIVAL 2017: SKID ROW MARATHON

LA FILM FESTIVAL 2017:  SKID ROW MARATHON

When one thinks about skid row, the last thing that would come to mind is running through the streets of Los Angeles to prepare for a marathon half way around the world.

The Honorable Judge Craig Matthews spends his entire day sentencing convicted criminals from the Los Angeles Superior Court.  When he invites these skid row felons to join him on Mondays and Thursdays at 5:45am...the results will blow you mind.

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CARS 3

CARS 3

I think if I had known about a female race car driver, I could've probably been the 1st African-American chick to blaze NASCAR!!! Naw, not really, but in Disney/Pixar's latest in the Car franchise - Cars 3, there is some serious female empowerment going on!

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LA FILM FESTIVAL 2017: THE BOOK OF HENRY

LA FILM FESTIVAL 2017:  THE BOOK OF HENRY

How many times do we watch an injustice happen to a compete stranger or even a next door neighbor and run a blind eye?  Better yet, what if a loved one passes on and has a final wish they are insistent be carried out...would you do it?

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BLOOD ROAD

BLOOD ROAD

Like so many in the U.S., my father was a Marine who served his country in Vietnam.  While he was away, he sent letters and reel-to-reel tapes to me, My Mom and my brother letting us in on his adventures, his fears and his never-ending love for us.  Daddy was one of millions of men that ventured down the Ho-Chi-Minh trail, otherwise known as "blood road" for all the blood shed by both sides during the war.

While watching this documentary, I  couldn't help thinking about the fact that our family was one of the lucky ones.  My Dad returned from the war in one piece, but there are so many that were "missing in action".

One of those missing soldiers was Captain Steve Rusch.  His plane was shot down during the war and his family didn't know if he was a P.O.W (prisoner of war), dead or lost somewhere with a mistaken identity.  It would be 30 years later, that a portion of his remains would be found - two teeth.

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THE FREEDOM TO MARRY

THE FREEDOM TO MARRY

The Freedom to Marry chronicles Wolfson, Bonauto and a few couples along the way who they fought the good fight with.  This documentary, at times, was just as heartwarming as it is heartbreaking, but inspiring all at once.

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Wonder Woman

Wonder Woman

This prequel, which delves into the origins of this strong-willed amazon,  is a rollercoaster ride from first frame to the last.  Taking place roughly a century earlier, Wonder Woman comes to "Man's World" for the first time during World War I.  It was not lost on me that this is literally the third film I have seen this year directed, written and produced by a woman  (Patty Jenkins)and starring a woman!  Who says women don't rule the world!!!

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Sophia Coppola Makes History at 70th Annual Cannes Film Festival

Sophia Coppola Makes History at 70th Annual Cannes Film Festival

Oscar-winner Sofia Coppola made Cannes Film Festival history  becoming the second woman in the event’s 70-year history to win best director for her Focus Features release The Beguiled. Previously, Soviet director Yuliva Solntseva won for her 1961 war drama Chronicle of Flaming Years about the Russian’s resistance to the 1941 Nazi occupation.

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ILLICIT

ILLICIT

Sasha and Guy Curtis appear to be a beautifully educated couple who are both successful in their own right..  Sasha, a former model, is now mostly a housewife and Guy is a supervisor for former felons trying to get on the right track.  When one of those felons takes advantage s when things go terribly awry for the Curtis family.

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Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

Picking up where “Guardians of the Galaxy”—2014’s  highest grossing film of the summer—left off,  Peter Quill aka Star-Lord and his gang of eccentric characters  patrol and protect the universe, doing mercenary work in the wake of the popularity and fame garnered from saving Xandar.  Set to the magnificent backdrop of Mixtape #2 (Parliament Funkadelic's "Flashlight" is one of my favs), doing a seat boogie while rooting for the Guardians to prevail over evil was definitely part of the experience.  No one was happier to see a thief, a thug, an assassin and an angry little tree reunited!

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Smurfs: The Lost Village

Smurfs:  The Lost Village

If Beyoncé' lit a match under millennial women with her concept album "Lemonade", Smurfette is the ringleader for  the Female Smurf Nation.  At least until she stumbles upon the "lost village", which is saturated with female Smurfs.  These dolls have a strong sense of self, confidence and identity.  For all these reasons and more, Smurfs:  The Lost Village will really strike a chord with young girls.

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Stranger Things hit SAG Awards with Viola Making History and Hidden Figures Blasting Off

Stranger Things hit SAG Awards with Viola Making History and Hidden Figures Blasting Off

The Screen Actors Guild Awards are always a highlight of the award season because the love comes directly from the acting community.  Needless to say, actors showed up and showed out casting their Ensemble votes for Hidden Figures and giving Fences mad love by honoring Best Actor Denzel Washington with his very first "actor" along with Mahershala Ali  for Best Supporting Actor (Moonlight) and Supporting Actress Viola Davis for her mind-blowing performance in Fences.  Davis is making history all over the place in 2017.  

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SLEEPLESS

SLEEPLESS

In Sleepless, Jamie Foxx plays a cop who gives the impression that he is trying to tag in on a deal to "get rich quick".  Unfortunately, for him, that deal goes all kinds of wrong and leads to a "sleepless" night of action mind-games and survival by any means necessary.

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One Piece Film: Gold

Musicals are the "it" thing this year and even the anime game is getting in on the action with the release of Funimation Films...One Piece Film:  Gold!  The opening montage is complete with a Swinging Big Band, showgirls, kick lines and pirates ships.  The Gran Tesoro, where most of the action is set, reminds me of a golden version  The Venetian Hotel on the Vegas strip.  Aboard the Gran Tesoro, where it rains gold upon a golden river, The Straw Hat pirates become enamored with their VIP status and 300 Million dollars line of credit.  However, deception is king and the crew soon discovers that all that glitters is NOT gold.

Based on the wildly popular hit anime manga and television series, One Piece Film: Gold  follows the Straw Hat pirates to the big screen in an all-new high-flying adventure. The Batman-like graphics, slot machine sound effects and high-octane music keep the energy of this entertaining flick moving and grooving.

Originally a Japanese manga series, One Piece was adapted into a television series by Toei Animation (Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z, Dragon Ball Super, Sailor Moon, Yu-Gi-Oh!, Digimon) that has since aired over 760 episodes. As of August 2016, the original manga series has more than 380 million copies printed worldwide – the best-selling manga series in history.

 

The new film One Piece Film: Gold is a standalone film that does not require new audiences to be familiar with previous content to enjoy the thrill of this new adventure.  Do the Straw Hat pirates luck turn them into billionaires?  Or,  are they turned into gold slaves?  You can find out for yourself when On Piece Film:  gold begins its North American Release begins TODAY  through January 17th.   Click Here to Grab Tickets to One Piece Film: Gold

 

 

Carla Renata

Hey My Fellow Movie Lovers...

A Bison, Virgo, devoted daughter, yoga and spinning enthusiasts, graduate of  the "mecca" - Howard University's School of Communications, former publicist, actress, branding influencer and "doggie mom" to an adorably smart-energetic maltese are just a few of the characteristics that make up the essence of me -- Carla Renata.

Formerly of UBNRAdio.com, where I Co-Hosted "On Air With Tony Sweet", this Fall, I will be hosting a new show for Black Hollywood Live owned by E! Correspondent Maria Menounos  and am a freelance contributor for NPR's Weekend All Things Considered.

I absolutely adore talking about all things cinema and it is my sincere hope that although not every opinion I have will or will not be embraced, know that I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to share!  Enjoy and see you on the red carpet!!!

Hidden Figures and Fences Get No BAFTA Love - 2017 BAFTA Nominations

Hidden Figures and Fences Get No BAFTA Love - 2017 BAFTA Nominations

BAFTA nominations were announced today and the love toward American artists in general was a little less than stellar.  American Cinema has always outstretched our arms embracing artists from other countries...particularly the Brits.  How many times have we nominated Dames Helen Mirren, Judi Dench, Emma Thompson or Sir Anthony Hopkins?

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