WandaVision — Unpacking Marvel’s New DisneyPlus Series

Posted on January 24, 2021 at 9:56 pm

Copyright 2021 Marvel

Have you taken a look at WandaVision? I’ve watched the first two episodes and I’m very intrigued. I am a fan of comics and superhero movies but I do not know much about the Wanda and Vision characters beyond what’s in the Avengers movies.

Here’s the series trailer.

And here, for those of us who are not fully immersed in the MCU, here is a deep dive into the meaning of the references in the first episode.

My friend and fellow critic Sherin Nicole wrote about Wandavision for Idobi. An exerpt:

A lot of what is most intriguing about the first three episodes of the new Disney+ series WandaVision, from Marvel Studios, is indicative of a lot of what’s wrong in America. WandaVision carries the veneer of classic TV, when everything was perfect and perfectly funny and yet we know those times weren’t great for everybody. There was something sinister beneath the surface. In that way, we suspect things aren’t so great for Wanda (Elizabeth Olsen) and Vision (Paul Bettany) either.

Something is very wrong in the idyllic new town they’ve moved to—we can tell because the series starts off in a The Dick Van Dyke Show (1961) world and it’s funny and it’s cute and it’s also a little bit creepy. Moments hitch, things go strangely askew, and red is the only spot of color (like a warning light or a bloody cut). The show purposefully uses one of the brightest TV shows ever made to contrast the suppurating ideology that gives “make America great again” power. And that’s what begins to make you uncomfortable—laugh track and all.

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Superhero VOD and Streaming

Movies For Homebound Grown-Ups: Two Cool New Indies

Posted on April 16, 2020 at 12:05 pm

Copyright Aspiration 2020

You can have your own indie film festival at home now with some new releases:

Phoenix Oregon: James Le Gros plays a bartender and would-be graphic memoirist (James Le Gros) who has lost his way. The outstanding cast includes Lisa Edelstein as a liquor distributor, Dietrich Bader as the restaurant owner, and especially Jesse Borrego as the perfectionist chef who joins forces with the bartender to open a bowling alley.

Standing Up, Falling Down: Billy Crystal gives one of his all-time best performances as a doctor with a number of issues, including substance abuse, who befriends a would-be stand-up comic (Ben Schwartz). Grace Gummer is terrific as the comic’s sister.

And check out a new streaming service for indie films, Topic.

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Independent VOD and Streaming

Film School on Your Laptop: George Mason University Takes Their Filmmaker Lecture Series Online

Posted on March 30, 2020 at 4:08 pm

George Mason University’s Visiting Filmmaker Series is going online. Anyone can attend!

APR
1

Visiting Filmmakers Series Online: Dennis Boni, Director of Photography
Wednesday, April 1, 2020 1:30 PM to 2:30 PM

APR
2

Visiting Filmmakers Series Online: A Conversation with Jennifer Baichwal, director of Anthropocene: The Human Epoch
Thursday, April 2, 2020 1:30 PM to 3:00 PM

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6

Visiting Filmmakers Series Online: Doug Spearman Masterclass in Directing
April 6, 2020, 1:30 PM to April 23, 2020, 3:00 PM

APR
7

Visiting Filmmakers Series Online: Tony Marquez, director and filmmaker
Tuesday, April 7, 2020 4:30 PM to 5:30 PM

APR
8

Visiting Filmmakers Series Online: Panel Discussion on Unions in Filmmaking
Wednesday, April 8, 2020 1:30 PM to 3:00 PM

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13

Visiting Filmmakers Series Online: Christelle Matou, Costume and production design
Monday, April 13, 2020 1:30 PM to 2:30 PM

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14

Visiting Filmmakers Series Online: Henry Ogunjimi, documentary filmmaker
Tuesday, April 14, 2020 1:30 PM to 2:30 PM

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14

Visiting Filmmakers Series Online: Kwanza Gooden, filmmaker
Tuesday, April 14, 2020 4:30 PM to 5:30 PM

APR
15

Visiting Filmmakers Series Online: Steph Garcia, actor, writer, comedian
Wednesday, April 15, 2020 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM

APR
20

Visiting Filmmakers Series Online: Akiva Peñaloza, writer, director
Monday, April 20, 2020 1:30 PM

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Directors Film History VOD and Streaming

Movies from the Siskel Center to Watch at Home

Posted on March 26, 2020 at 6:56 am

Chicago’s Siskel Center, named for the legendary critic, has a guide to resources for watching its great independent and international films at home.

Thanks to Mary Minow for the tip!

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VOD and Streaming

Conscious 2 — A New Streaming Platform With Movies to Inspire

Posted on November 22, 2016 at 7:43 am

Need a break from the stress of the holidays or the tumult of politics?  Check out Conscious 2,  a new streaming service about mindfulness, healing, and inspiration.  Fascinating, moving, meaningful series and movies include:

How I Created A Cult

Stephan’s Big Awakening

House of Davis

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Features & Top 10s Spiritual films Trailers, Previews, and Clips VOD and Streaming
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