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‘Sta. Niña’ Film Review: The intersection between miracle and superstition

“Sta. Niña”-- a finalist in the New Breed full-length feature category of the Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival 2012 -- is a family melodrama set a decade after the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo. The story revolves around the people from the lahar-covered plains of a Pampanga town as they still cope up with the desolation brought about by the calamity, as well as their more current personal, familial, and economic struggles. The film’s front story features a very straightforward narrative. It follows

Blu-ray Review: ‘The Impossible’

"The Impossible" is based on the real-life account of Spanish survivor Maria Belon and her family during the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami that struck the coast of Thailand. This moving tale directed by Juan Antonio Bayona debuts on a single-disc Blu-ray package containing the film's Blu-ray, UV digital, and digital download copies. Its main stars include Naomi Watts, Ewan McGregor, and Tom Holland. Watts' utterly convincing and visceral performance led to her Best Actress nomination at the Academy Awards and her

‘Rio 2’ Film Review: Perfectly fine, perfectly forgettable

"Rio 2" is a delightfully bright and breezy bit of computer-generated entertainment. As an acceptable family fare, this sequel maintains that blockbuster flavor that is expected of such an animated flick. It mostly hits the sweet spot when it comes to eye-popping visuals and feisty song-and-dance sequences. However, its predictable narrative plays too safe that it simply crafts nothing more than a fine commercial blend of heart-warming and toe-tapping moments for its target demographic. For this second installment in the "Rio"

Blu-ray Review: ‘Day of the Falcon’

Coming out on a single-disc Blu-ray package, the action-adventure drama "Day of the Falcon," originally titled “Black Gold” for the international market, features a soaring epic that centers on two rival kingdoms' bloody war during the dawn of the oil boom in the Middle East. Exploring the themes of love, honor, greed, family pride, betrayal, and traditions, it follows the story of star-crossed lovers whose families get caught up in a reignited conflict after the discovery of oil between their territories. This

Movies for Mother’s Day: Musicals with memorable mom characters

While it is expected that movies for Mother's Day should primarily feature likeable mom characters and stories about a mother's love, going a little more festive and distinct can actually add a more special appeal to the celebration. Choosing fun or heartwarming musicals for a Mother's Day movie marathon or for a movie night to cap off a pleasing family day can make the occasion even more vibrant, touching, and memorable. With the many ways to celebrate Mothers' Day from fine

Oscar-nominated movies to watch on Father’s Day

Spending quality time with dads in celebration of Father's Day can be most fitting when watching movies that particularly touch on father-child relationships. Dads and their children have varying tastes and interests when it comes to movie genres. Yet, choosing from a diverse list of the best Oscar-nominated movies with memorable father characters can be quite ideal, especially when trimming down options or looking for interesting themes for movies to watch on Father's Day. "Big Fish" On a personal note, "Big Fish"

Blu-ray Review: ‘The Descendants’

"The Descendants" releases on a two-disc set consisting of a Blu-ray disc and a DVD. The package houses the HD, SD, and digital copies of this Oscar-winning family drama by Alexander Payne. Based on the novel of the same title by Hawaiian author Kaui Hart Hemmings, this 2011 film explores the ups and downs in the lives of an American family living in Hawaii. It stars George Clooney, Shailene Woodley, Amara Miller, Nick Krause, Judy Greer, Matthew Lillard, and Beau Bridges.

‘The Descendants’ Film Review: Hawaiian family landscape

Based on the novel of the same title by Hawaiian author Kaui Hart Hemmings, "The Descendants" is a non-preachy family drama packaged as an island-hopping road movie. It examines the depth and complexity of life, love, relationships, and humanity through a fine mix of slapstick and pathos, while also exploring its lush Hawaiian locales with genuine emotionality. Just like the varying waves in its beach locations, this film allows the audience's emotions to naturally rise and fall with laughter and tears

‘Shrek Forever After’ Movie Review: Happily ogre after?

While it occasionally provides good laughs, this fourth "Shrek," like its main ogre, is confused and way beyond its prime. For its long-time followers, "Shrek Forever After" is passable entertainment. It is for those who grew up with the franchise and not the type that could easily add new toddler fans. In any case, the "Shrek" brand still works for the DVD and Blu-ray market with a potentially good spot for top home video sales charts. "Shrek Forever After" begins so mediocre.

Blu-ray Review: ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’

"Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" comes out on a single-disc Blu-ray package featuring Tim Burton's rendition of the Roald Dahl novel about the eccentric chocolatier Willy Wonka and the children visiting his renowned chocolate factory. This astonishing and enduring visionary piece is filled with jaw-dropping sights and visually appealing oddities. It showcases a star-studded cast including Johnny Depp, Freddie Highmore, Helena Bonham Carter, Deep Roy, Danny Elfman, and David Kelly. This 2005 motion picture adaptation tells the story of Charlie and

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