Movie Review: Freeheld

Why is there smoking in movies? Why? Why hasn’t smoking in movies been banned since the 60’s? Why is that as soon as the surgeon general determined that smoking WILL KILL YOU that smoking was not allowed in any movie? In the 40’s and 50’s smoking was considered cool and because of this, God knows how many people took up this horrible habit and lost years off of their life and died horribly from lung cancer or any number of 100 other diseases caused by smoking.

Freeheld is a true story and the first movie I have ever seen that got this smoking issue right because it showed the main character smoking heavily and then later she gets stage 4 lung cancer and then it spreads to her brain and then she dies. This is how lung cancer works and your odds of surviving stage 4 lung cancer is something like 10-15%.

The other part of this story is the incredible injustice of a gay lesbian couple who are living together, essentially married, but the law at the time stated that her partner was not able to get her police pension. The politicians at the time in Ocean City New Jersey could have cared less about what was fair or right in treating a police officer with 23 years of service fairly or even with some respect. All they cared about was saving their township some money and not doing what is right.

The acting in this movie from Julianne Moore and Ellen Page was outstanding and there might be an academy award nomination for one or both of them for there performances. I definitely recommend Freeheld.

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Freeheld IMDB

Movie Review: Steve Jobs

This movie definitely has some great acting and great writing. Of course every time Aaron Sorkin writes anything (his last movie being the Social Network in 2010) you know that there will be some very impressive dialog. I was most impressed with the acting of Seth Rogan who proved in this movie that he can definitely act and because of that, its highly unfortunate that most of his movies have been so bad when he has written, acted and starred in them.

This movie is highly unusual in that its really 3 stories told in real time; the release of the Macintosh in 1984, the release of the Next Computer in 1988 and finally the 3rd act, the release of the IPOD in 1998. The connecting thread throughout these 3 acts was Steve Job’s relationship with his daughter Lisa. At first Job’s denied he was Lisa’s father and at the end he fully believed and embraced the fact that she was his daughter. Along the way there was his turbulent relationship with the woman who he had Lisa with and his constant arguing early on that he was not the child’s father, even coming out with a 28% algorithm that proved that 28% of American men could have been her father.

What is most amazing about this Apple Computer history lesson and the career of Steve Jobs is we all forgot that the Macintosh was a huge failure for Apple in 1984 and that Jobs first computer with Next was also a huge and overpriced disaster. Despite all of this, Apple rehired Jobs in 1997 and he completely turned the company around even though Apple Computer was 90 days from going under financially. Now some 18 years later, Apple is the most valuable and most important company in the world.

Other connecting threads of this movie were Steve Jobs relationship with Steve Wozniak and his close friend and adviser Joanna Hoffman and his rudeness and ruthless behavior towards everyone who worked for him. It is probably well known the difficult and argumentative relationship Jobs and with Wozniak, but I for one never heard of Joanna Hoffman. Its amazing that Steve Jobs was able to accomplish what he did in his life being so rude to so many people but over time he did improve this part of his personality. Steve Jobs was 100% driven to change the world and he just did not care how he was able to accomplish this along the way.

The big flaw in this movie is that it is really NOT a biography of Steve Jobs, after the book “Steve Jobs” written by Walter Isaacson. This movie is only about 3 incidents in Job’s life and at times was like a soap opera of arguments and conflicts, which did include many moments of great acting. I for one would have rather seen an accurate biography of Steve Job’s life even if the movie was 3 hours long instead of this movie, which was good for what it was, but I think overall not what most people would expect or even want to see.

The 4 main actors in this movie: Seth Rogen, Michael Fassbender Jeff Daniels and Kate Winslett are all very good in their roles and despite the obvious flaws in this movie I do recommend it.

Steve Jobs IMDB
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