‘Ingrid Goes West’ skewers social media culture

‘Ingrid Goes West’ skewers social media culture

“Ingrid Goes West” (2017). Cast: Aubrey Plaza, Elizabeth Olsen, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Wyatt Russell, Billy Magnusson, Pom Klementieff, Meredith Hagner. Director: Matt Spicer. Screenplay: David Branson Smith and Matt Spicer. Web site. Trailer.

We all want to be liked. But how far are we willing to go to achieve that outcome? And what if it gets the better of us, becoming an unhealthy obsession? That’s the stuff of which the incisive new comedy-drama “Ingrid Goes West” is made of. (more…)

‘Marjorie Prime’ wrestles with loss, the future of humanity

‘Marjorie Prime’ wrestles with loss, the future of humanity

“Marjorie Prime” (2017). Cast: Jon Hamm, Geena Davis, Tim Robbins, Lois Smith, Stephanie Andujar, Hannah Gross, Azumi Tsutsui, Hana Colley, Leslie Lyles, Bill Walters. Director: Michael Almereyda. Screenplay: Michael Almereyda. Play: Jordan Harrison, Marjorie Prime. Web site. Trailer.

Coping with loss is something that most of us have had to deal with at some point in our lives. This can take a variety of forms, too, from the loss of a loved one to the loss of something we value to even the loss of some part of our own selves. How we handle such situations varies from person to person, depending on our individual circumstances and coping capabilities. Some of us soldier on, getting through the circumstances and moving on with our lives. But others among us may need some assistance in approaching these challenges, especially if they’re associated with strong emotions, a tremendous or unrelenting sense of loss, or unresolved aspects that prevent us from progressing. Such are the questions raised in the haunting new sci-fi drama, “Marjorie Prime.” (more…)

‘Normal Is Over’ outlines the need for global change

‘Normal Is Over’ outlines the need for global change

“Normal Is Over” (2017). Cast: Lester Brown, Charles Eisenstein, Paul Gilding, Michael E. Mann, Ian McCallum, Naomi Oreskas, Vandana Shiva, Heike Brunner (narrator). Director: Renée Scheltema. Web site. Trailer.

The world is changing, to be sure. But the degree of that shift is more radical than most of us probably realize, and, if we don’t take steps to deal with it, we may all be in for a very rude awakening – and much sooner than most of us probably think. That’s the message to come out of the engaging new documentary, “Normal Is Over.” (more…)

Smart Money Tip #16 – Can Your Business Run With … or Without You?

Smart Money Tip #16 – Can Your Business Run With … or Without You?

The downside most business owners face is not being able to take a break. When working with a business owner, these are the questions I frequently ask:

  • How confident are you about leaving your business for a few days, a week, a month?
  • Do you end up glued to your computer or smart phone when you take a family vacation?
  • What would it be like if your business could literally run without you?

(more…)

Smart Women Tip #15 –  Estate Planning: Planning for the Unexpected

Smart Women Tip #15 – Estate Planning: Planning for the Unexpected

Almost 20 years ago when my mother married my step-father, they came to me for estate and financial planning.  My parents created their own trusts and set-up some assets in joint accounts.  To simplify things, they consolidated all financial assets into a brokerage account with American Express Financial Advisors, and I was their financial planner.

Everything was perfect, right?  Well almost. (more…)

‘Under the Sun’ chronicles the challenges of self-preservation

‘Under the Sun’ chronicles the challenges of self-preservation

“Under the Sun” (2015 production, 2016 release). Cast: Lee Zin-Mi. Director: Vitaly Mansky. Screenplay: Vitaly Mansky. Web site. Trailer.

In a totalitarian state like North Korea, virtually every aspect of life of virtually every citizen is rigidly controlled. Given the pariah nation’s social, political and economic status, many of its residents often go wanting, be it for material goods, opportunities or any of the other things that make life worth living. In fact, about the only ones who are able to rise above bare minimum standards are those who are willing to become advocates (i.e., propagandists) for the state, extolling its alleged virtues, regardless of how empty or vacuous its claims may be. Nevertheless, there are those who are willing to take that step, especially among the nation’s youth who seek to become members of the Korean Children’s Union, the subject of the compelling documentary “Under the Sun,” available on DVD and video on demand. (more…)

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