Parasite (2019)

Parasite

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The Kim family lives in unremitting poverty in Seoul, South Korea, though it’s not for lack of trying. Still, they subsist on meager wages from a pizza box folding job, and the most exciting part of their day is scoring free Wifi for their phones. That is, until son Ki-woo (Choi Woo-shik) scores a job tutoring for the wealthy Park family. He sees a good opportunity–not only for himself but the rest of the family–and starts plotting to insinuate his parents (Song Kang-ho and Jang Hye-jin) and sister (Park So-dam) into the Park family’s life as well. Complications ensue.

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Knives Out (2019)

Knives Out

Harlan Thrombey (Christopher Plummer) is a fabulously wealthy murder mystery novelist who lives in a big spooky house with his strange family of leeches, I mean, relatives. That is, until he’s found dead. Was it a suicide? The police think so, though quirky private detective Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) isn’t so sure. There’s a long line of potential suspects, starting with Harlan’s greedy, grotesque family, who all have a motive for murder. Complications–and zaniness–ensue!

My coworker Kelly had recommended this movie to me when it first came out–a recommendation that was also seconded by Jen–and thanks to you both! I’m so glad I watched it! I haven’t had this much fun watching a movie in, well, a while.

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Movie Review: Superman: Red Son (2020)

Red Son

We’re living in a pretty crazy world right now, so maybe this alternative history story, in which that most American of superheroes, Superman, was raised in the Soviet Union and is a communist hero squaring off against the United States, doesn’t seem as quite as out there as it normally would. . . .

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Your Library Card, Your Ticket to the World: Japan

Our library theme for 2020 is Your Library Card, Your Ticket to the World–because with the library, you truly can travel around the world without ever leaving the comfort of your own home. Every month in 2020, we’ll be landing at a new place on the globe. We’re in Japan for March.

Japan, with its fascinating culture and stunning landscapes, is a favorite destination in fiction for readers and writers alike–and for good reason! We’ve got a wide-ranging collection of books (and movies) set in Japan, many of them from Japanese authors/creators. It’s a little something for everyone.

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Movie Review: The Lighthouse (2019)

The Lighthouse

In the late 1800s in New England, Ephraim Winslow (Robert Pattinson, The Lost City of Z) arrives at a remote island for a month-long stint working with a crotchety but far more experienced lighthouse keeper Thomas Wake (Willem Dafoe, Platoon). The two have . . . personality conflicts, to put it mildly, but once a massive storm traps them on the island, Winslow and Wake go a little stir-crazy. Complications ensue.

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Downton Abbey: The Motion Picture

Downton Abbey Movie

I was an enthusiastic Downton Abbey fan back in the day, though I must admit that my enthusiasm waned in the latter years of the show. Not that it stopped me from watching it religiously through its finale in 2015. However, I will admit to having some considerable skepticism when a movie was released last year. I wasn’t, quite frankly, inclined to watch, but I heard so many positive reviews that I decided to cave. And I’m glad I did!

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Movie Review: The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then the Bigfoot (2018)

The Man Who Killed Hitler

Had your fill of holiday cheer? This movie might be for you. . . .

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Movie Review: The Old Man and The Gun (2018)

The Old Man and The Gun

Forrest Tucker is a polite, dapper, and immensely charming 70-year-old man, with old-fashioned manners. He is, as one person who met him briefly explains, “Well, he was also sort of a gentleman.”

He also compulsively robs banks.

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Movie Review: The Great Escape (1963)

The Great Escape

In the middle of WWII, the German military was not especially enthused with the idea of tying up resources guarding troublesome POWs who kept wanting to escape. Now, to my mind, it would probably be more logical to separate all the troublesome prisoners from each other, but instead, the Germans decided to lump them all together in a special high-security POW camp. Probably not too surprising when you gather together dozens of escape artists, they end up orchestrating, well, a great escape. . . .

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Movie Review: Can You Ever Forgive Me? (2018)

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Lee Israel has a problem.

At one point in her life, she was a successful author, writing biographies of famous women like the actress Tallulah Bankhead. She was even on the New York Times Bestseller list.

But that was years ago. Now, she can’t find work and is behind on her rent. The only friend she has is her ailing cat, and nobody will return her phone calls. As far as Lee is concerned, the fact she is now living in poverty and unemployed is a disgrace.

Her longtime agent, though, is less confused about why Lee has been snubbed by the literary world–just because she wrote a bestseller doesn’t mean she’s famous, her proposed new book subject is unmarketable, and Lee herself is just thoroughly unpleasant to deal with. Nobody wants to work with her.

Her agent advises her to seek a different line of work. And that’s just what Lee does. She starts forging letters from famous, deceased authors and selling them to collectors and antique dealers. Needless to say, complications ensue.

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