Category Archives: Movies

History’s Mysteries: Secret Societies

History's Mysteries

History’s Mysteries: Secret Societies is a documentary done by the History Channel.

I have heard of various secret societies throughout my life and have found it vaguely interesting. I think the books and movies for the DaVinci Code have brought more attention to the existence of secret societies. When I saw this documentary, I decided to watch it out of curiosity.

I wasn’t very impressed by this documentary. Usually, I think that the History Channel does a great job. However, I didn’t feel like this documentary uncovered any mysteries – except now I know that the Bilderberg & Skull & Bones group exists. When the documentary ended, I thought “Really? That’s all.”

One thing that was interesting was the fact that secret societies have been in existence for a very very long time. Also, the documentary showed just how many influential people in the world and in the US are part of these societies – which is a sort of interesting and, in my opinion, scary fact. If you have never heard of any secret societies this would be a good documentary to watch as an introduction.

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , ,

Craigslist Joe – Documentary

CraigslistJoe

Craigslist Joe is a documentary about one man’s quest to see if technology can be used to bring a sense of community. Basically, he sheds all money, connections, etc. He gets a new phone number and e-mail address. The rules, he has to survive over the next 31 days off of contacts and kindness from people on Craigslist. “Joe” challenges the idea that all strangers are dangerous and proves that there are people out there with kindness and caring in their hearts and who can in fact be trusted.

While the premise of the documentary is interesting, it sort of drags on and on. I would have loved to watch a 10 to 20 minute video. However, I am glad I watched it because it is an out of the box, daring concept.

What truly impressed me about Joe was his ability to admire others, not matter how strange or unusual their practices, attitudes or ideas were. He never belittles or made less of anyone and he always went out of his way to help others. He seems like a good person.

Tagged , , , ,

Fresh – The Documentary

fresh_the_movie_640_s640x427

I have watched various different documentaries about the problems of industrialized farming and the problem has become more and more real to me. After watching Hungry for Change (I blogged about that one too.) I started adding more vegetables in my diet.

Fresh, approached the problem of the food in America from a different angle. Fresh shows the successful actions of the sustainable and organic farmers. It shows what they do and how it maximizes the use of their land. Something that was very interesting to me, was the fact that growing different types of crops and raising different types of animals greatly reduces disease etc. The intelligence and creativity of the farmers, or at least those who originally designed the system floored me.

This film was more inspiring than upsetting. Food, INC for example is more scary and upsetting than uplifting. Food, INC gives you the hard truth, Fresh shows that too. Mainly, though, it shows SOMETHING CAN BE DONE ABOUT IT and that there are people who are doing something about it! That, I LOVE!!

I found this documentary inspiring, so instead of grabbing the ice cream on the way home (even though I was really hungry and wanted it) I came home and ate part of a grapefruit and put some sweet potatoes in the oven….a much more nourishing way of going about it FOR SURE!!

My boyfriend and I are building a house. When we move in, I am DEFINITELY putting in a garden!

Tagged , , , , ,

Hungry for Change

hungry-for-change

I started watching this documentary on my phone while making brownies – a little bit of irony for you there…

This is a documentary about food and its effect on a human body. It is an interesting documentary that addresses a daunting problem in today’s urban societies – the use of sugar and chemicals in foods and the resulting disease and lack of health. This film didn’t advertise one specific diet plan or ideology. Rather, it touches upon several different ways of approaching the same problem.

I think that the American society at large has not examined the obesity epidemic and faced its true root. The majority of overweight Americans do a couple of different things (this is based on my personal observations and not any sort of scientific study) 1. They do nothing. 2. They continue to eat the same foods and simply take pills to curb the symptoms. These two methods of handling the problem aren’t workable. This film presents a workable way of handling the weight. The great thing about it is, is that the people are giving the information are people who have lived through it themselves and have gotten results.

Rather than making people feel guilty about what they are eating, this film is inspirational. It presents a mindset that isn’t about dieting and isn’t about depriving yourself or forcing yourself not to eat certain things. Rather, it is about adding things to your normal eating habits that promote health, it’s about loving yourself.

I think this film is worth the time it took to watch and I have personally resolved to eat healthier this coming year.

Tagged , , , , ,

Brave – The Movie

My family sat down and watched Brave after a busy Thanksgiving day.

It was a funny, entertaining movie about a young princess who wants to break tradition and choose who she wants to marry. In desperation, she turns to a witch who casts a spell on her mother. Of course, the spell causes an unanticipated consequence, and the girl fights to get the spell reversed. In the journey, mother and daughter renew their bond.

The main thing I appreciated about this movie was the comedy. There were many times when I found myself laughing very hard.

I’d say the movie was a crowd pleaser – a good choice for the whole family. It’s kid appropriate and the adults will enjoy it too!

Tagged , , , ,

Arranged – Friendship has no religion

As you may have figured out, I like cultural movies.

This is a movie about a young Orthodox Jewish girl, and a Muslim girl.  They are both teachers at the same school in New York. They strike up an unlikely friendship.

While this movie, is not always perfectly accurate as far as religious customs, etc. (For example, the Jewish girl’s father does not wear a beard – something that all truly religious men would wear.) However, these small faults aside,  the movie does give a good deal of insight into these two religions. Including parallels in both religions, most notable is the similarity in the dating/marriage process – a major focus of the movie.

While the acting in this movie was quite good, the plot was not always the most exciting. Overall, I think it was a good movie.

To get more information about the truth of these  religions you can check out these websites:

www.jewinthecity.com

www.jewcy.com

www.religionfacts.com/islam/beliefs.htm

www.islamreligion.com

Tagged , , , , , ,

The Hunger Games (the movie)

My boyfriend took me to see “The Hunger Games” for my birthday. I have to say, I really enjoyed it. I have never read the books, but after seeing the movie I am looking forward to reading them.

If you don’t know already, the basic premise of the story is that there was a great big war (in the future) across northern America. Now it is divided into districts. Every year each district has to give up a boy  and a girl between the ages of 12 and 18 as a “tribute.” These tributes have to fight to the death. There can be only one winner.

I enjoyed the acting, scenery, story line (even if the concept is a bit disturbing) and the costumes were great as well.

This movie is not yet available on DVD.

Tagged , , , ,

Skin (Based on an Extraordinary True Story)

Skin is a movie about Apartheid in South Africa.

My mother grew up in South Africa, and while my mom did not cheer Apartheid on, she did not speak harshly of it. As a result, I am ashamed to say, I did not think it was such a big deal. Until I saw this movie and became truly educated about what Apartheid was and how it affected people’s lives.

Skin was not only about Apartheid; it was about human courage, misery and strength. As with all life, it was bitter sweet. While some wrongs were rectified, others were not. The most shocking thing of all to me, was that this woman still lives. Here is the Trailer:

 

Watch the full movie! It was entertaining and eye-opening.

You can watch this movie on Netflix – www.netflix.com.

You can rent or watch this movie on amazon.com

Tagged , , , , , ,

Sabah: A Love Story

Sabah: A Love Story is about a 40 year old Muslim woman who lives in Toronto, Canada. She ends up falling in love with a non-Muslim Canadian man. This creates problems in her somewhat traditional Muslim family.

I stumbled upon this movie while browsing Netflix, it was in the romantic/ feel-good section. I am a sucker for romantic comedies, and  I love movies about various different cultures. So combine the two and I am sold. (I love the movie Bend it Like Beckham – just in case you’re wondering)

In the end, the movie was decent. The acting wasn’t spectacular, but it wasn’t painful either.The love story was predictable, and cute.

To me the most important part of this movie was the cultural aspect. I like to expose myself to different cultures and belief systems, even if I do not agree with those systems. While, I don’t think this movie gives a perfectly accurate view of Muslim traditions and opinions it gives us a flavor.

As we all know there are some very extremist Muslims, they go around blowing themselves up, and blowing others up and they give a very bad name to Muslims in general. (There are extremists in every religion – consider the Spanish Inquisition, the Holy Wars, etc) From all  I have seen most Muslims are basically good people, just like you and I. They are some cultural aspects I do not agree with. For example, there is a great deal of room for improvement as to the freedoms and rights given to women.

Overall, I enjoyed this movie. especially the look I got into semi-modern Muslim culture.

Rating: 2.75 out of 5 stars

Pros: highlighted Muslim culture, cute story, good ending, showed actual issues a Muslim family like this might face.

Cons:the movie moved a bit slowly and there wasn’t a whole lot of action.

Trailer:

Price: $5- $30

Where to shop: www.amazon.com , www.fye.com

Where to watch: www.netflix.com

Tagged , , , , ,

Waiting for “Superman” – Documentary about American Education

This is a powerful documentary on the state of education in America. It shows the current state of American education and the problems children are facing in public schools, as well as other options that have showed improvement. This documentary dissects the entire system, it covers education across America and examines the causes of the current system. It is easy to understand and very moving.

This is something all Americans, from every background, should be made aware of. Our children deserve a change!

Rating: 5 out of 5

Pros: See above

Cons: None

Price: $15-$17

Where to shop:www.amazon.com

Where to view: www.netflix.comhttp://documentaryheaven.com/waiting-for-superman

The official website for Waiting for “Superman” provides more information on what is being done and what you can do to change education in America. To visit their site go to: www.waitingforsuperman.com/action

Tagged , , , ,

Forks over Knives

I decided to watch this documentary because my boyfriend’s parents (who were staunch meat lovers, and fans of processed food) decided to go vegan after watching it.

For those who don’t know, Forks over Knives is about the benefits of a plant based, whole food diet and the risks of an animal/ processed food based diet. (I made and then ate steak while I watched this documentary.)

I found this documentary to be informative, and never felt like the information was forced off on me. The data was very easy to understand, and was shown to be scientific fact by several broad and well documented studies.

Before I always felt the vegans were extremists/hippies, and the term held a somewhat negative connotation. While I will not be going vegan myself, I now understand why people make that choice, and it no longer holds any stigma. I will, however, be examining my diet and cutting out a lot of processed foods, and adding a lot of plant based foods.

I think that this is a must see for all humans, especially those living on the “Western” diet.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Pros: very informative, includes a lot of scientific research presented in every day terms, always interesting

Cons: does not show any research comparing diets containing small amounts of animal based products and solely animal based products, the documentary was a tad long.

Price: $15

Where to Shop/View: amazon.com, netflix.com, etc

Forks Over Knives

Tagged , , ,