Archive for the ‘DVD Advisory’ Category

“Captain Fantastic”

December 18, 2016

Billed as a comedy/drama, “Captain Fantastic” is a unique view of a family who has adapted an alternative life style.  Viggo Mortensen is the father of a family of six children, who live in the wilderness of Washington state.  Ben Cash and his wife Leslie have become extremely disillusioned with the American way of life.   As a result, they have decided to raise their children in an area where they can co-exist with nature.

When the film opens, Leslie, who suffers from a bi-polar disorder, is being hospitalized in Arizona.  Ben Cash continues to home school his children and provide for their physical and mental health as well.  When the family receives word that Leslie has taken her life, they decide to make the trip to Leslie’s parents’ home in Arizona where she will be buried.0025192358913_p0_v2_s118x184.jpg

As they journey from Washington to Arizona in the family bus, we learn more about the family and how fiercely loyal they are to one another.  Trouble will ensue when Ben Cash protests to Leslie’s family about their funeral arrangements for their daughter. Conflict and a reevaluation of what’s best for the family will result in a stronger family unit.

As this year ends and film critics announce their picks for the best films of 2016, “Captain Fantastic” is finding its way on to many lists.  Viggo Mortensen’s performance is also being talked about as being one of the best of the year.

This is a film with a strong ensemble cast.  Quirky yet sincere this film has definitely found a following among movie goers.

“Age of Adaline”

December 6, 2016

If you are looking for a movie that combines romance and a bit of scientific hocus pocus then “Age of Adaline” is my suggestion for some mindless fun.

The basic plot deals with what happened to Adaline at the age of 29.  She survives a near-death experience, with the result that she never ages.  In order to create a life for herself, she is constantly on the move trying never to connect with anyone.

Even though she tries not to fall in love, of course, she does.  The consequences will be life altering.0031398228080_p0_v2_s118x184.jpg

The film stars  Blake Lively as Adaline, Ellen Burstyn, as her daughter, and Harrison Ford as a former love.  Both Burstyn and Ford rise above the trite plot.

As the winter starts to get cold, “The Age of Adaline” might be a good escapist romantic film.

Shop on AmazonSmile, Support the Library

November 29, 2016
This #GivingTuesday, choose to support The Palisades Free Library with your purchases!
Just follow these simple steps:
  1. Start your purchase at
  2. Sign in to your Amazon account and go to “Your AmazonSmile” under “Your Account Settings”.
  3. Search for the Palisades Free Library to select it as your benefiting organization.
  4. That’s it! Underneath your search bar you should see the statement: Supporting: Palisades Free Library.
A percentage of your purchase will be credited to the Library. There is no additional cost to your purchase. The trick is to remember to start at the address and not the regular address.
Thank you in advance!

“The First Monday In May”

October 23, 2016

If your invitation got lost in the mail or you just didn’t have time to attend, here is your chance to get an inside look at the planning and the actual event:  the Metropolitan Museum of Art Gala 2015.0876964009652_p0_v1_s118x184.jpg The moving force behind this elaborate charity happening is Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of Vogue.  Andrew Bolton, head of the Costume Institute at the Met, curated this show:  “China Through The Looking Glass.”  These two creative individuals and a staff of hundreds of people put together the most successful show at the Costume Institute.  If you have any doubt how important this event is at the Met take note that the Met is closed only a few days each year.  One of those days is the first Monday in May.

If you want a glimpse of the big name celebrities who attended and, of course, what these glamorous women wore, this documentary does not disappoint.

What is probably more interesting is the discussion of fashion as art.  Wintour, of course, believes that fashion is art and the film provides ample proof in explanations of how each piece in the show demonstrates artistic craftsman and beauty.

For those interested in fashion, art, and the activities of the rich and famous this film is an interesting glimpse into their world.

“Movie or book”

October 11, 2016

” A Hologram For The King,” written by Dave Eggers, was published in 2012.  A recent DVD release, it stars Tom Hanks as Alan Clay, a salesman for Reliant, an IT company.

Having seen and enjoyed the movie, I was left with some questions about the characters and the plot.  So, I read the book.

Alan Clay arrived in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, in 2010.  He is a divorced father of a college-aged daughter.  He is experiencing some serious person financial problems. The one that troubles him the most is his inability to pay for his daughter’s next semester at school.  Hopefully, this sales’ trip to Jeddah will make him solvent again.

His company has developed a holographic teleconferencing system.  He and his team of three young IT people will set up a demonstration at the King Abdullah Economic City and sell this innovation to the king.  Alan is confident that he will make the sale.

Suffering from jet lag, Alan oversleeps and misses the team van to the demonstration site.  After several tries, the hotel final engages a driver for him.  Yousef, a young Saudi, will become not only Alan’s driver but a friend.  Yousef will help Alan gain some insight into this foreign culture.

The trip to the KAEC takes more than an hour.  Alan and Yousef travel through miles of desert finally arriving at the KAEC, which consists of two buildings, a huge tent, and several half constructed buildings and lots and lots of sand.



What follows are days of waiting for the king to appear.  With so much time on his hands, Alan investigates the landscape, meets the king’s local staff , has a run-in with foreign workers, and is treated by a female Saudi doctor.

Whenever a book is made into a movie, there is always discussion about which was better:  the book or the movie?  In this case, the movie and the book are different in only minor ways.  The book does give the reader more information about Alan’s failed marriage and failed business dealings.  The movie gives you just enough detail to fill in the blanks about Alan’s need to make this business deal work.

Whether you read the book or see the movie, “A Hologram For The King” is very enjoyable.  Eggers’ novel paints an interesting picture of a developing Saudi Arabia and how an American IT guy tries to do business in this kingdom.  It has moments of humor, sadness, desperation, and self-discovery.  A good book and a good movie.


%d bloggers like this: