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Sandy’s Film Reviews

About me: John OShea at the Onslow College Film Club helped open my eyes to quality movies in the early 60s. Since then I was a regular at the Auckland Film Festival and later the Wellington Film Festival from 1983. My taste is very wide; currently documentaries (truth is very edgy), including blues music & other popular genres. Great films seen include the Iranian film The Separation and Marcel Ophuls Memory of Justice...and many more!
My website: Takaro.

619 Films have been rated or reviewed by Sandy.

Civilisation (TV Series)Civilisation (TV Series) (1969)Recommended
4 stars (Very Good) Disc 1:Stilted Christian focus anti–Muslim. Disc 2: Better more attention on cultural context.#7 on Vermeer & Holland a delight still strong Christian & anti–German focus; ignores rest of the world.
In AmericaIn America (2002)
4 stars (Very Good) Wonderful, heart–warming film of true multicultural love. A movie of courage; bravely showing the way that families can be.
DVD $19.95 $14.95
Grosse Pointe BlankGrosse Pointe Blank (1997)
3 stars (Good Enough) Good comedy!
Why We FightWhy We Fight (2005)Aro Favourite
4 stars (Very Good) BBC/ARTE. Unfortunately still very relevant. Covers the entire period from Eisenhower (1961) to Iraq II 2001 (40 years). A calm weighing of all points – USA is an aggressor state. Vidal wittily sums up the "United States of Amnesia".
Happy as LazzaroHappy as Lazzaro (2018)Recommended
5 stars (Exceptional) Shows a feudal lifestyle that could be 1000 years old, but is contemporary, labourers exploited by the landowner only to then live in squalor in the city. A very diverse and talented cast have created a movie that is completely unique, unlike any other.
DVD $29.95
Ruben Brandt, CollectorRuben Brandt, Collector (2018)Aro Favourite
5 stars (Exceptional) Very clever, w/stunning graphics. Entertaining w/great music. Esp. funny if you know the Musee d'Orsay & Paris. Interest in art, acrobatics, car chases & dreams will also help. Amusing take–off of great artworks, all transformed into Dadaism.
DVD $24.95
HustlersHustlers (2019)
2 stars (Good Try) Trashy but stylish decade in the life of a group of strippers; friends, to a degree. Shallow charactersisation & lack of motivation other than shallow material greed eroded a sense of progression. NZ prostitutes have different values from these women.
DVD $34.95 | Blu-Ray $39.95
Anna Anna (2019)
4 stars (Very Good) Nice Russian spy thriller, sharply plotted. Never a dull moment!rnA bit like a version of the French Nikita, updated, though the loyalties are less convincing.
DVD $19.95 | Blu-Ray $24.95
High ArtHigh Art (1998)Recommended
3 stars (Good Enough) Well–designed & structured in New York. Fascinating characters, all well–acted. Witty, amusing and, yes, pointed.
Miseducation of Cameron Post, TheMiseducation of Cameron Post, The (2018)Recommended
4 stars (Very Good) Cleverly edited & never banal. Chloe Moretz shines in the lead role. One's heart bleeds for her. Interesting & distinctive story with a witty dialogue, but the ubiquity of religious belief in the US is tyrannical. Intelligent and brave.
DVD $39.95

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