Popcorn Perspectives – Week of April 8, 2019

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton

Week of April 8, 2019

On the Basis of Sex
Rated PG-13 for some language and suggestive content
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 73%
Available on Disc and Streaming

While critics liked this docudrama about the rise of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, it basically fizzled at the box office, probably because of its being released into a crowded field of better films, and possibly because a movie about law and politics is just too much for most audiences right now. But regardless, Bader Ginsberg is a fascinating subject, and the case that would eventually land her in the Supreme Court is still relevant today, maybe even more so. While it plays much like a made-for-TV movie, its A-list cast, including Felicity Jones and Armie Hammer, and terrific production elevate it to a film suitable for a theatrical release, but it might have received a better audience and awards consideration at HBO or Netflix. But it does make for a good drama, and an educational one at that which will probably give it legs as future students learn about our government and its many evolutions. B

Rated PG for thematic elements including some scary images
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 92%
Available on Disc and Streaming

This Oscar-nominated animated film from Japan tells the story of a bratty young boy who discovers a magical garden where his baby sister, now in older form, takes him on a journey through space and time to uncover his family’s long-winding story. Simply put – this is a lovely story which is well-told and beautifully animated. Its creative rhythm might leave some audiences scratching their heads, and it does get a little weird and even disturbing at times, but it turns out to be a movie where you tend to drift off on your own journey as you try to place yourself into the boy’s. A-

A Dog’s Way Home
Rated PG for thematic elements, some peril and language
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 62%
Available on Disc and Streaming

So apparently several cities in Colorado have a pit bull ban and this story follows the life a stray pit bull puppy who is discovered in Denver and taken in by its rescuer. But when the city threatens to put it down, the dog is sent far away where it escapes and attempts to travel through the wilderness to find its person. It’s a familiar formula, and just like any movie in this sub-genre, it is a manipulative tear jerker. But at least the film gives us enough of a change to become watchable and even, at times, likable. I especially enjoyed the relationship with the cougar, which from the trailer looked stupid, but made sense within the context of the actual story. While I wouldn’t want to subject myself to a film like this too often, now and again I can handle it – especially if my kid is loving it. B-