Conviction tells the real-life story of a single mother named Betty Ann Waters, who tended bar while acquiring her GED, bachelor’s degree, and then her law degree, all so that she could represent her brother Kenny, wrongly convicted of murder. Both the film and the true story are accounts of incredible loyalty, courage, and determination.
Hereafter effectively brings spirituality to real-life events, ranging from the now-historic 2004 Indonesian tsunami to the terrorist attacks of a London train station. It highlights the very question nearly every person asks, particularly during the most trying times: What happens after death? Hereafter ventures a guess that will help audiences remember their faith.
Retirement. The word can conjure visions of sweet oases of rest and relaxation between games of golf and lazy morning bouts with crossword puzzles, a permanent wave good-bye to the daily grind. Or it can conjure nightmares of days with nothing more to do than contemplate the cruelty of impending infirmity and reminisce about youthful revelries over jello and re-runs of The Price Is Right.
Secretariat, directed by Randall Wallace, opens with Secretariat's owner, Penny Chenery, quoting a Bible verse from Job. In the verse, God speaks of the horse in vivid language that evokes images of power and majesty. He describes His creation as a proud and haughty beast whose stride “swalloweth the ground with fierceness and rage” and whose neck is “clothed with thunder.” One could be forgiven for assuming that God was speaking of one horse in particular. With a stride that swallowed the ground at a gluttonous 25 feet and a neck that one Time reporter compared to a buffalo's, no horse epitomizes equinity quite like Secretariat.
It’s Kind of a Funny Story is by far one of the better films to be produced in recent years. But viewers beware — the film's melodramatics have a lasting, haunting effect. Yet is has the unique ability to add levity to some heavy, hard-hitting material, making its title a perfect fit.