“Victoria and Abdul” – movie recommendation and review

Victoria and Abdul is the story of the meeting and friendship of an elderly Queen Victoria of England and a  young and handsome Abdul from Agra, India, who happened to visit the royal court on an official state visit to present a nondescript gift to Victoria from the colonial government of India.

The story is told from the points of view of Victoria and Abdul.  The story emerges from their relationship.  There are many complexities to the story, such as the imperialistic tendencies of the British empire, white racial dominance, and power seeking sycophants at the royal court.  Sound familiar?

In its telling, the intention is to distill the aspects of the experience that are important to the characters and express them in human terms that we can understand, for our benefit.  Many of the scenes are humorous, but real.

It is tempting to see the race relations and power structure portrayed in the movie in today’s popular terms, but only doing that limits the impact of the experience of the movie.  Those things are secondary in importance at best, though that seems to be mostly what the critics are hung up on and all they can talk about.

We, the audience, are not objective observers of a drama played out in a certain (maybe familiar) context.  We can actually share the characters’  experience if we allow the suspension of disbelief and merge with them.  What they see, feel and know is what we see, feel and know.  That is the virtue of how the movie is crafted.

We don’t emerge from the movie loving Victoria and Abdul.  We do love the love these characters found as it resonates in us.  After the movie we can go on with great satisfaction having had that experience, just as Abdul suggests to Victoria for her final journey as he recites Rumi’s poem.

“The King of Hearts” – movie recommendation and review

This is one of a few movies that I have been moved to recommend.  In my world view, it deserves everyone’s attention.

Many stories have been written about war and the consequences of engaging in it.  Here is a movie that strips away most of the consequential horror, leaving an experience of very absurd humor and pathos.  Not districted by all the graphic ugliness, the audience is allowed to experience some very profound truth about the mind and human behavior when anything is allowed to happen.  It resonates with and brings a fresh view to today’s world-scape of non-fact reality.  Enjoy.

Here is the review from the Los Angeles Times.

A significant Chapter in History

It is a small offering and the risk is enormous.  While it intends to give grace to a disgraced nation in a difficult time, Fire and Fury (Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House) by Michael Wolff shares some important background of the inner workings of the White house.  It’s important to know.
The details of the story so far are not disputed,  but it is controversial that they were shared at all.  The most opaque administration in history has come to light.  There will certainly be some pushback and reprisal.

Read and share (and buy)

 

 

 

Harry Dean Stanton – Review

Since Friday, with the passing of Harry Dean Stanton, I have been reading numerous accolades about the depth of his work as a character actor. I hadn’t taken notice of his work until about a week before his passing, when I watched an episode (#5, I think) of “Twin Peaks: The Return”. In that episode there is a scene that I count as perhaps the most profound that I have witnessed in this or any show.  It is a credit to all who produce Twin Peaks, but in particular to Harry Dean Stanton.
The gravity of the scene is captured nicely by Mark Butler in iNews.  Bravo.