In the 1960s, Joan Rivers broke new ground as a stand-up comic and TV host, but 20 years later both her career and personal life took a dark turn. Still, she never gave up, and through sheer willpower has continued to be a constant presence on television, stage and of course at red carpet events. Although today she's perhaps more well-known for her extensive plastic surgery than her sharp wit. For this documentary she gave the filmmakers unrestricted access to her life for a year, and what we discover is that she's pretty much the same off camera as on it.
Continue reading: Joan Rivers: A Piece Of Work Review
Annie Sundberg and Ricki Stern's blistering war cry of a film, The Devil Came on Horseback, is about as good an introduction to the Darfur situation as one could hope for. It's told in the admirably tough voice of Brian Stiedle, a former U.S. Marine captain who served a six-month duty as an unarmed observer in Darfur with the African Union peacekeeping force during 2004, after the cease-fire that supposedly ended the 20-year civil war that had been ripping the region apart. With impressionistic verve and harrowing attention to detail, Sundberg and Stern's film relates what Stiedle witnessed in that sun-baked and blood-stained land. His narration as powerless observer is mixed in with the graphic, lividly colored photographs he took of the burnt-out villages and massacred children; the resulting narrative is as dramatic as it is highly moral, in the best sense.
Continue reading: The Devil Came On Horseback Review
Based on an award-winning story by Tom McNeal, Tully is a guy-at-a-crossroads tale, told with a welcome lack of standard convention. The title character, played by able newcomer Anson Mount (Crossroads), is a young, good-looking fella admired by most of the women in his Nebraska farming town, and playing his quiet popularity for all it's worth. Tully works on his pappy's farm with his younger brother, Earl, but still finds time to get it on with a local stripper (Catherine Kellner) on the hood of her car (or his car, if available).
Continue reading: Tully Review
'Smalls Change (Meditations Upon Ageing)' arrives in April.
The two awards have made for a great 72nd birthday present for the country music icon.