Tuesday, March 9, 2010

DVD Reviews: One Documentary, Two Dramas

Capitalism: A Love Story

The latest political documentary from Michael Moore examines the impact of corporate dominance on the everyday lives of Americans (and by default, the rest of the world). The film moves from middle America, to the halls of power in Washington, to the global financial capital of Manhattan. Although ultimately not as strong as Moore's past triumphs (Bowling for Columbine, Fahrenheit 9/11), the filmmaker still excels at telling an important story with both humor and outrage. And before you attack Moore for being a liberal, I think you may be surprised that he challenges both Republicans AND Democrats here. This balanced view caught me by surprise -- and reminds us that Americans need to ease the bi-partisanship and focus on what's best for the country overall.

What is the price that America pays for its love of capitalism? Families pay the price with their jobs, their homes and their savings. Moore goes into the homes of ordinary people whose lives have been turned upside down; and he goes looking for explanations in DC and elsewhere. What he finds are the all-too-familiar symptoms of a love affair gone astray: lies, abuse, betrayal. Some of the vignettes work better than others -- as Moore wanders from the big picture a bit. However, the detours -- such as one highlighting a child care scandal in Pennsylvania -- are still fascinating. Extras: bonus features include the usual -- deleted scenes, extended interviews and theatrical trailers. [Rated R; released on DVD today]

Grade: B

Precious: Based on the Novel "Push" by Sapphire

Precious won two Academy Awards on Sunday -- Best Supporting Actress for Mo'Nique's incredible performance and Best Adapted Screenplay for Geoffrey Fletcher's heart-wrenching script. It earned the other four nominations it received as well -- including one for Best Picture. It truly was one of the best films of last year. Here is my original review of the theatrical release. [Rated R; released on DVD today]

Up in the Air

Although it received six Oscar nominations, Up in the Air was shut out on Sunday. But it still was one of the best films of 2009. Here is my original review of the theatrical release. [Rated R; released on DVD today]

No comments:

Post a Comment