Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Politics on film is always been a very tricky subject for Hollywood, the dramatization of events and biography of well know politicians is what the movie machine feed us. In the case of documentaries you have a more objective point of view of events and personalities. "Wiener" is the documentary directed Josh Kriegman and Elyse Steinberg following he events of congressman Anthony Weiner success and demised as a politician in 2011 when is forced to quit because of a sex scandal. The story continues with his comeback in the race for mayor of NYC with his wife Huma Abedin by his side throughout the campaign. The directors explored several sides of Anthony Weiner using on camera interviews, cameramen following him all the way as well a collection of material from several TV networks. The documentary is dramatic and sometimes very ironic about what politicians do to be likable and also manipulate voters just by pretend to care about their issues.

"Weiner" documents a conflicted man who was trying to do so much good for the people for NY but have demons who keep haunting him for years, still today. This documentary serve as a metaphor of this day and age in politics. The goal is to find the weakness in the most obscure places on humanity, because to serve this country or state you really need to be the cleanest person you can be. Dirty laundry is the best weapon against your opponents, but media is the best tool to expose your elements of destruction. Americans love a scandal but also love second chances. No matter on which field: sports, entertainment, politics. It happens all the time, from Ryan Lotche, Bill Clinton, Dominic Strauss, Lance Amstrong…

But the real victims in this scandals are people next to kin who become the punch ball. For Anthony Weiner is Huma Abedin, a woman who was capable to tolerate some much media pressure and also the shame of been the wife of a person who cannot stop his obsessions.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Chess is a game of strategy, of carefully planning every move, but also figure out what your opponent will do. Hollywood always have engage in the art of portraying famous or smart people who are capable to pay chess like a pro. Most of this films have something in common. An specific ethnic background. I’m not trying to say that Hollywood have not been diverse in this subject, but in a way the film “Queen of Katwe” is a pure metaphor of diversity playing a game that is consider just for aristocrats and wealthy people.

“Queen of Katwe” directed by Mira Nair is the sports film about Phiona Mutes (Madina Nalwanga) a Uganda player who became a prodigy in the art of chess. Raised in the slums of Katwe by her mom Nakku Harriet (Lupita Wyong’o), because her father died of Aids, she helped her mom selling made in the street market. One day she and her brother discover the project name Sports Outreach Institute. In a after school project she started paying chess with the rest of the kids, Robert Katende (David Oyelowo) see in her potential to become a good chess player.

Phone life is rough, a poor family, who can barely afford to eat and live in a proper house, but she is a bright star and Katende will invest everything he got to push her to be the best.

Director Mira Nair famous for her movies, Kama Sutra, Mississippi Masala, Salam Bombay. create a very emotional tale for Phiona Mutes, filled with the colors of Africa. The story is strong and engage with the audience just a few minutes as the movie started, showing one of the most vulnerable moments of Mutes ready to play one of her ultimate tournaments sending you back to her early days in the slums of Katwe. Besides a 124 running time the film flows masterfully. Madina Nalwanga is great discovery for this movie, Lupita Nyong’o and David Oyelowo are spot on.

“Queen of Katwe” is a powerful film with a great lessons about life, tolerance, respect, perseverance and success against all odds.