#Encanto, #KingRichardFilm, and more – Review Repost – In Stores Now

Table of Reviews

Disney’s Encanto – Review

Disney’s Encanto – Budget of $120 – 150 million – 1 hours and 49 minutes

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While running from war with triplets, Pedro stopped, kissed his wife, Alma, and headed towards the soldiers.  He sacrificed himself for his family.  Alma fell to the ground in tears.  Then her candle started to glow, and mountains grew around her.  And from nowhere, a house, Casita, formed out of thin air with magic.  However, it wasn’t the only magical entity.  When each family member came of age, they would touch the candle, and their door would reveal their gift.  The family uses their abilities to care for the town.  Mirabel is a descendant of one of the triplets.  Unlike her family, she did not get a gift.  Now, the townspeople and the family worry that the same thing will happen to Mirabel’s cousin, Antonio.  The entire community watches the ceremony, but Antonio wants Mirabel by his side.  Antonio touches the door and gets the ability to talk to animals.  They open the door and find a jungle in his room.  The town celebrates, and Mirabel walks around thinking about her purpose.  Then she sees the house starting to crack, and the candle’s flame almost extinguished.  Mirabel runs to tell the family, but they see nothing and blame it on jealousy.  After talking to several family members, she learns that her estranged uncle Bruno, gifted with premonitions, had a vision of the family losing the magic but never finished his vision.  Instead, he ran, and the family won’t speak his name.  Mirabel decides to go through Bruno’s door and complete his premonition to save her Casita, her family, and the entire town.

This movie doesn’t just point out Mirabel’s struggles; it allows her and the audience to see that each of her family members has their struggles too.  Her older sisters, Luisa and Isabela, struggle with having gifts and the town depending on them.  They live in a state of panic that their ability will dissipate at any moment, and they won’t have a purpose.  If you ever feel unimportant or under immense pressure, this movie will speak to you and bring a tear to your eye.  With stunning visual effects, this film will engross your whole family.  And be prepared to dance in your seat.  Be aware this movie isn’t about good guys versus bad guys.  It’s about the struggle we all face within.

I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars

I heard you – Deloras

I need you – Antonio

Everyone’s looking for you – Mirabel

What I think is today was very hard for you – Julieta

We say nothing – Agustín

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King Richard – Review

King Richard – Budget of $50 million – 2 hours and 18 minutes

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While Venus and Serena Williams study and practice, their father, Richard, passes out brochures to everyone at the local country club.  Richard works as a security guard at night, and his wife, Brandy, is a daytime nurse.  Before Venus and Serena’s birth, Richard wrote a detailed plan for their tennis career.  While he believes in his daughters, Richard can’t get someone to coach the girls for free.  With five children in a 2-bedroom house, the Williams family has very little money but need a coach with connections.  With his brochure getting little traction, Richard packs up Venus and Serena and drives them to see Paul Cohen.  Richard talks Paul into watching the girls hit a few balls, and Paul is impressed.  But he tells Richard that he can only coach Venus for the junior tournaments.  This moment is the first time something hasn’t gone according to the plan.  He has to decide if he will allow Venus to advance in a tournament known for burning players out or keep Venus with Serena and go through the daunting tasks of finding a new coach.  Now, Richard has to make a lasting decision that will affect Venus and Serena’s lives forever.  Heavy is the head that wears the crown.

King Richard tells the story of a complicated man in a battle with himself and the world for what he pre-ordained.  At the moment, it’s hard to understand if Richard is doing this for pride or love.  Often, Brandy calls him out on his pride privately.  She understands why he makes his decisions but doesn’t like that Richard excludes her or the girls in them.  Although he is instrumental in the girls’ success, as Richard steps back, the girls fly.  Venus takes the reins with Nike, and Serena does when she enters herself in a competition.  Sit back and watch history in the making.  

I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars

You look pretty rich to me – Richard

I want the people to want to play like me – Serena

Are we a team – Brandy

I know I can beat her – Venus

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Summer of Soul ( …Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised) – Review

Summer of Soul ( …Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised) – Budget Unknown – 1 hour and 57 minutes

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Tony Lawrence heard about the upcoming Woodstock festival but realized it was missing key artists.  So, with his hustling skills and connections, he made half promises to managers and the city of Harlem about creating a festival at Mount Morris Park.  But with Maxwell House and Mayor John Lindsay backing him up, Tony Lawrence creates a festival with scores of acts and 300,000 attendees over six weeks.  These acts include B.B. King, Nina Simone, Stevie Wonder, The Edwin Hawkins Singers, Abbey Lincoln, Max Roach, David Ruffin, Ray Barretto, Hugh Masekela, and many more (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer).  Learning that this cultural festival of jazz, funk, blues, pop, gospel, latin, and pop music would happen, several people came together to film it.  That film sat in a basement for 50 years, until now.  Watch as Questlove talks to spectators, culturalists, artists, and organizers to bring this history out of the darkness and into the light.

1969 was a historic year for all Americans because there were assassinations, political change, and a moon landing.  But there was a culture shift happening in Harlem.  The days of buttoned-up suits disappeared for dashikis and afros, and the music of this time reflected this shift within the small community.  And the Harlem Cultural Festival mirrored it all.  With the festival running along with Woodstock, it’s easy to see why this festival didn’t gain steam outside the community.  But for it to disappear for so long is a travesty.  Hopefully, with the popularity of this movie, the film’s proprietors will release the concert in its entirety.  And while focusing on the history is beautiful, you will leave the theater wishing to see more of the festival.

I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars

How can you be an artist and not reflect the times – Nina Simone

Watching you watch it … It’s overwhelming for me – Questlove

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