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AllErica SchoenefeldRuben Schönefeld

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Chocolat

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-05-02

Normally, I bet people watch a movie because they liked the story, director or actor involved. With this movie, my approach is a bit different because I'm a big fan of Rachel Portman's film music and she scored this movie. Beyond the beautiful soundtrack, this movie has quite an interesting story about a mother and daughter moving into a small French town where they immediately rub some people the wrong way because they aren't going to church every Sunday. There are quite a few laugh-out-loud moments with smart dialogue.

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The Devil We Know

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-04-29

Not drinking the water downstream from a chemical plant is evidently not enough to avoid a toxic chemical used in the production of Teflon, as that chemical is now found in an overwhelming majority of Americans, no matter where they live. Corporate greed is a motivator not only in a cover-up of the dangers, but apparently also in introduction of a replacement of the chemical that is just as dangerous.

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The Dirty Dozen

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-04-29

Every now and again, I'd catch a glimpse or a couple of minutes of this movie on TV and always thought that I should just make it a point to watch the whole thing eventually. And that point was now. Most of the movie revolves around getting ready for a suicide mission to kill German Nazi officers in a French manor and overcoming not only the resistance of the prisoners that are going to be sent on the mission, but also by jealous superiors of the Major put in charge of the operation.

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Generation Wealth

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-04-27

I didn't even know that plastic surgery for dogs was a thing, but that's just mentioned in passing as one of the excesses Lauren Greenfield puts together in this impressive documentary, segments of which span many years in the making.

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Wild Card

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-04-19

Jason Statham is a bodyguard and a bit of a Las Vegas tour guide to a young tech millionaire when revenge for harm done to a friend comes in the way. The fight scenes are over-the-top well choreographed and performed beautifully entertaining. Jason Alexander has a tiny role as a sleazy lawyer with just a couple of minutes of screen time, but he delivers those minutes so well, it's fun to watch. The story overall is a bit weak and simple, but if expectations aren't set too high, that's quite alright.

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Braven

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-04-19

This is one of those movies that gets added to the queue because the wife has a crush on Jason Momoa. Overall, the story is so improbable that it takes away from the entertainment side of it a little.

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The Commuter

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-04-16

The Taken series of movies already showed that Liam Neeson is great in action movies so it feels quite familiar to see him in The Commuter, where he's an ex-cop and newly ex-insurance agent on his commute home when he's pulled into a potential killing for money scheme. But nothing is at it first seems, of course, and in that way, it the movie feels a bit like it's trying too hard to twist the plot, but it's still an entertaining story.

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Williams

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-04-16

When I grew up, I cared a bit about Formula 1, at least while Michael Schuhmacher was a driver. Sometimes the TV crews would show this guy in a wheelchair at the sideline but I never really knew much about him. This documentary definitely filled in some of those gaps for me.

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Captain Phillips

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-04-16

My father was a captain on an oil tanker and while the massive problems of piracy off the coast of Somalia was not such an issue at his time, I remember him telling me about piracy in the waters around Malaysia. When hearing piracy, the image that comes to mind, thanks to many movies, are sailboats firing cannons and scruffy pirate captains with smoky fires in their beards. The piracy that Captain Phillips and his crew encountered off the coast of Somalia is a bit different and the retelling of the true story of the Maersk Alabama hijacking, it makes a nail-bitingly great movie, even when watching it for the second or third time. The shaky camera that captures the movie almost like a documentary does its part to feel part of the action.

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Last Men in Aleppo

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-04-08

Watching a war in the news for so many years, it's in sometimes difficult to remember that it's not only clear-cut front lines with two warring parties fighting one another. The Syrian civil war is one of those examples in which the civilian population very obviously suffers a great deal and groups like the White Helmets, a volunteer team does their best to try to pull people out from under the rubble of their bombed neighborhoods. This documentary is so close to the nightmare these people are going through that it's almost unbelievable that they were able to make it in the first place. It's really difficult to watch and is one of those movies that will make you reflect on your own problems and issues and appreciate how good we have it to live in peace.

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The Soloist

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-03-31

Jamie Foxx and Robert Downey Jr. star in this movie based on the true story of mentally ill cellist Nathaniel Ayers, who walks the streets of Los Angeles. This movie provides a good two hours of entertainment and while I wanted to know more about what lead up to Ayers' life on the streets than the flashbacks that were provided, this might have just blown up the scope of the movie.

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Insomnia

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-03-31

The Norwegian original that was later remade in English with Al Pacino and Robin Williams. While the US-version was a decent remake, I give the original a couple of extra points, simply because it was there first. I also think that the slow drift in insomnia-induced insanity is portrayed more convincingly in this version.

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The Little Hours

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-03-31

The movie is loosely based on a medieval story, but it's the top-notch cast of Kate Micucci, Aubrey Plaza, John C. Reilly and many others that bring this gem of entertainment to life with their hilarious dialogues.

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Period. End of Sentence.

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-03-31

A seemingly simple machine, with simple ingredients can make huge improvements in feminine hygiene. A big difference for the women and girls in India, who work the machines and sell the pads to their neighbors.

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What Happened, Miss Simone?

Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Date: 2019-03-29

Documentary about the singer Nina Simone and the difficult life she had, in times of the civil rights movement and on a smaller, and more hidden stage, the difficulty she had in her own family.

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