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08 April 2015 @ 09:41 am
I only saw a few movies this quarter. But I want to keep up the habit of doing this run-down, so here goes:

  1. Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara. This is an intriguing and provocative documentary about McNamara, who is most famous as having been the Secretary of Defense under JFK and LBJ. Much of it is, of course, about Vietnam, but there is a lot other material ranging from McNamara's statistical analysis of bombing sorties during World War II to his later stewardship of the World Bank. Recommended if you have any interest in history and its lessons for current and future events.

  2. The Thin Man. I had, surprisingly, never seen this classic, though I had read Dashiell Hammett's novel. Sad to see, the movie version really didn't work for me. There's too much emphasis on partying and drinking (and Asta getting underfoot) and too little on the actual story. Disappointing.

  3. Deli Man. I already wrote about this movie, which I saw as part of the Washington Jewish Film Festival. It's about Jewish delis, with a focus on Ziggy Gruber of Kenny and Ziggy's in Houston. It's funny and poignant and highly recommended to fans of Jewish humor and Jewish delis alike.

  4. Birdman. I watched this on my flight to Norway. I understand why it won the Oscar for Best Picture. Namely, the motion picture industry insiders love this sort of meta-film. I thought it had its moments (e.g. a sex scene between two actors, which goes wrong in a particularly twisted way), but, overall, it didn't work for me. I couldn't bring myself to like - or care about - any of the characters. I will say, however, that Michael Keaton did an impressive acting job.