On the big screen last week SCAD Savannah Film Festival celebrated its 20th year. It showed riveting stories about how wars are fought after World War II, Vietnam, Baghdad, cultural and societal rifts. Most of the audiences felt uncomfortable with alive narratives about truth, memories, horrors and others times we struck a funny bone.
Director Dee Rees’ “Mudbound” from the Mississippi Delta introduced us two veterans – Ronsel Jackson played by Jason Mitchell and Jamie McAllan played by Garrett Hedlund – returned from World War II where their families worked as sharecroppers in a cotton farm. They found a friendship by their experiences of war but their hometowns didn’t treat blacks and whites as friends. Significant women in their lives Florence Jackson played by Grammy-Winner Mary J. Blige and Laura McAllan played by Carey Mulligan glued the families together by poverty and love. They found strength to survive acts of horror by Ku Klux Klan townspeople. The film will be released on Nov. 17, 2017.
The brothers of Vietnam acted by Bryan Cranston, Laurence Fishburne, and Steve Carell were separated by distance and lifestyles, “Last Flag Flying.” They carried the wounds of war and were hardly connected until one of them asked them to join a road trip across the country to bury his son killed in Baghdad. These men found humor, talked, song, drank and reached an understanding about how they coped with war. They also made amends with things they regretted. Cicely Tyson played the mother of a fallen solider who didn’t make it home. The film was released on Nov. 3, 2017.
“The Final Year” is a documentary about the foreign policy team created by former U.S. President Barack Obama. The team expected Hillary Clinton to carry the baton but were surprised and defeated when President Donald J. Trump was elected. This documentary was released in September.
“Beatriz at Dinner” is a cultural divide between Salma Hayek Pinault, a holistic practioner, and John Lithgow, a real estate mogul who collided with words over dinner. She discovered that he had destroyed her town in Mexico for a development. The film was release in June and is found on Amazon.
Idris Elba, the lawyer, and Jessica Chastain, the criminal defendant, were central roles in “Molly’s Game” about how Molly Bloom was caught in a web of a high-stakes poker game. The film will be release Dec. 25, 2017.
Director Kathryn Bigelow renewed the possibility that rouge police officers can violate civil rights and get cleared during unrest in “Detroit.” Teenagers were beaten and murdered played by two original members of The Dramatics when they went to a motel to avoid a confrontation with the police. When another renter shot a play gun, police officers tortured others in 1967. These young film stars John Boyega, Will Poulter, Algee Smith, Jason Mitchell, John Krasinski and Anthony Mackie should take a bow. The film is available on DVD and Redbox.
The tickets go on sale for next year on Dec. 1, 2017.