Watch This: Trailer for Annihilation

The sci-fi thriller Annihilation based on Jeff VanderMeer’s best-selling Southern Reach Trilogy released its first teaser. Continue reading “Watch This: Trailer for Annihilation”

Watch This: Trailer for Jackie

When it happened back in 1963, it was all about LBJ and Lee Harvey Oswald and John John’s salute at the funeral. Jackie was just there, looking sad and beautiful, an accessory. The new biopic Jackie with Natalie Portman playing Jacqueline Kennedy is out to fill in the gaps in the story. Continue reading “Watch This: Trailer for Jackie”

Watch This: Westerns with Women – Trailers for Jane Got a Gun and The Keeping Room

When I was a kid I went to the movies every week. So many of those movies were Westerns. That was in the days of John Wayne and Gary Cooper, Roy Rogers and Gene Autry. Men on horses with six shooters.

As soon as I discovered there were options that went beyond the Western, I was happy to move on.

Now and then since those ancient decades, there have been Westerns starring women. The latest are Jane Got a Gun with Natalie Portman and The Keeping Room with Brit Marling.

Jane Got a Gun

Natalie Portman

Jane Got a Gun is more the traditional Western with a twist. In this story a woman asks her ex-lover for help in order to save her outlaw husband from a gang out to kill him. The film has male writers, a male director (Gavin O’Connor), and a majority male cast.

Starring with Portman are Ewan McGregor, Rodrigo Santoro, Joel Edgerton, and Noah Emmerich. The film went through all kinds problems before and after shooting – cast changes and problems with distribution. But it’s finally ready to go.

The film is releasing in France before the US (US release date is February 2016). The only trailer at this point has French subtitles. Have a look.

The Keeping Room

Hailee Steinfeld

With Brit Marling, Hailee Steinfeld, Muna Otaru, and Sam Worthington in the lead, The Keeping Room is a more female point-of-view tale. The film was written by Julia Hart and directed by Daniel Barber. It released to theaters back in September 2015. You might have to wait for the streaming services to carry it before you can watch it, or catch it in a second run venue.

The plot synopsis is “Left without men in the dying days of the American Civil War, three Southern women – two sisters and one African-American slave – must fight to defend their home and themselves from two rogue soldiers who have broken off from the fast-approaching Union Army.”

Here’s the trailer.

If you caught The Keeping Room when it was first released, please share what you thought of it.

Marvel: Ultimate Mentor Adventure for girls interested in STEM fields

Marvel is doing something marvelous for girls who are interested in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) around the release of Thor: The Dark World. The program is called Ultimate Mentor Adventure. Here’s how it works.

Ultimate Mentor Adventure promo
Natalie Portman in the Ultimate Mentor Adventure promo

Natalie Portman, who plays Jane Foster, an astrophysicist, in Thor: The Dark World describes the program in a video you can see here.

  • Girls from the U.S. in grades 9 – 12 can apply. The minimum age is 14.
  • Each girl is connected to a mentor who is working in a field in which the girl is interested.
  • The girl interviews the mentor and makes a video.
  • The videos are entered in the contest.
  • The winner gets to go to the opening of Thor: The Dark World in California and see the video they made shown along with the film. The winner also gets to go behind the scenes at the movie.

A girl really cannot lose by participating in this mentor adventure. Just by participating she gets to meet a woman in a position she wants to know more about. The girls get help finding the mentors and making the videos. Everyone who participates will have a positive experience whether she wins or not.

Kudos to Marvel for this brilliant idea.