Category Archives: History

THE RED SEA DIVING RESORT (2019): The Things I Liked…

The Red Sea Diving Resort (2019), Chris Evans, Netflix
The Red Sea Diving Resort (2019), Chris Evans, Netflix

The Red Sea Diving Resort, the historical thriller starring Chris Evans, Michiel Huisman, Alessandro Nivola, Hayley Bennett and Alona Tal is more than two hours long, but it didn’t quite feel that way for me.

Set in the early 1980s, writer / director Gideon Raff’s movie is based on the true story of the international agents and brave Ethiopians who used a deserted holiday retreat in Sudan, as a front to smuggle thousands of Jewish Ethiopian refugees to Israel. 

I enjoyed Raff’s film because it’s well acted, well paced and features a fair amount of nail-biting moments. The entire film is based on the perspective of the main agent, Ari Levinson (Evans). As such we unfortunately don’t really get to know much about the film’s Ethiopian characters. We don’t get to know much about Ari and his team of agents either. This would have been far more noticeable and / or problematic for me, had it not been for Ari and fellow agent Sammy’s (Nivola) friendship. Though still very lightly drawn, it is partly through their relationship that we get to learn a little (still definitely only a little) more about two key people behind the mission. 

The Red Sea Diving Resort absolutely kept me entertained  but because of the focus on keeping the missions interesting rather than clearly painting the characters, I was left with many questions; some of which – and more have been answered by this article… ‘The Real Heroes Of the red Sea Diving Resort Rescue.’

Watch it if you’re curious.

Happy Film Loving

G

HARRIET (2019): New Harriet Tubman Biography Starring Cynthia Erivo, Janelle Monáe, Joe Alwyn…

Harriet (2019), Janelle Monae, Cynthia Erivo, Focus Features
Harriet (2019), Janelle Monae, Cynthia Erivo, Focus Features

From director and co-writer Kasi Lemmons, Harriet is a new historical drama based on the biography of iconic freedom fighter Harriet Tubman.

Starring Cynthia Erivo as Tubman, Janelle Monáe and Joe Alwyn, the story focuses on Tubman’s escape from slavery and subsequent missions to free dozens of slaves through the Underground Railroad…

Based on this trailer, I can tell I’m going to appreciate the dialogue, inspiring heroism and love. I can’t wait to see Erivo deliver what looks like an awards worthy performance.

Clarke Peters, Tim Guinee, Vanessa Bell Calloway, Vondie Curtis-Hall, Leslie Odom Jr., Tory Kittles, Deborah Ayorinde and Omar J. Dorsey also star.

Harriet Release Dates: November 1st 2019 (US)…

Happy Film Loving

G

THE RED SEA DIVING RESORT (2019): New Trailer From Chris Evans, Michiel Huisman, Haley Bennett, Alona Tal…

The Red Sea Diving Resort (2019), Chris Evans
The Red Sea Diving Resort (2019), Chris Evans

Read my spoiler-free movie review of The Red Sea Diving Resort (2019).


Chris Evans, Michiel Huisman, Hayley Bennett, and Alona Tal star in writer / director  Gideon Raff’s historical thrilller, The Red Sea Diving Resort.

Set in the early 80s, this is the true story of the international agents and brave Ethiopians who used a deserted holiday retreat in Sudan as a front to smuggle thousands of refugees to Israel…

I simply want to know how this story ends and to learn about the agents involved. People doing admirable things that are far from my own reality.

Alessandro Nivola, Greg Kinnear, Michael Kenneth Williams, Ben Kingsley, Chris Chalk, Alex Hassell and Schelaine Bennett also star.

The Red Sea Diving Resort Release Dates: July 31st, 2019 (US)…

Happy Film Loving

G

SEA OF SHADOWS (2019): New Trailer For Documentary About The Vaquita – The World’s Smallest Whale…

Sea Of Shadows (2019), National Geographic

Sea Of Shadows is a new documentary about the world’s smallest whale, the vaquita, A species that’s near extinction due to illegal poaching by Mexican cartels and the Chinese mafia.

Executive produced by Leonardo DiCaprio; directed by Matthew Podolsky, Richard Ladkani and Sean Bogle, Sea Of Shadows documents the fight against this illegal multi-million-dollar business by environmental activists, the Mexican navy and undercover investigators…

I’d have eventually made time for this film but knowing of DiCaprio’s involvement certainly helps, especially after Before The Flood (2016).

I hadn’t actually heard of the vaquita until now. Now that I know, I sure hope that some vaquita are at least safe in a sanctuary of sorts, as the fight continues.

Sea Of Shadows Release Dates: July 12th, 2019 (US); September 27th, 2019 (UK)…

Happy Film Loving

G

ONE CHILD NATION (2019): New Trailer For Documentary About China’s One Child Policy…

One Child Nation (2019), Amazon Studios
One Child Nation (2019), Amazon Studios

Nanfu Wang and Jialing Zhang are the directors of One Child Nation, a documentary that aims to uncover the untold history of China’s one-child policy and the generations of parents and children forever shaped by it.

I don’t personally recall having ever heard any Chinese nationals referring to China’s one child rule as a positive thing, so this should be interesting.

One Child Nation Release Dates: August 9th, 2019 (US)…

Happy Film Loving

G

MIDWAY (2019): New Trailer From Patrick Wilson, Ed Skrein, Mandy Moore, Woody Harrelson…

Midway (2019), Patrick Wilson
Midway (2019), Patrick Wilson

Director Roland Emmerich’s Midway stars Patrick Wilson, Ed Skrein, Mandy Moore and Woody Harrelson, in the story of the WWII clash between the American fleet and the Imperial Japanese Navy.

Based on the real-life events of the heroic feat, the focus is on the leaders and soldiers who used their instincts, fortitude and bravery to overcome the odds…

I’m not usually one to gravitate towards war movies but the arresting visuals in this trailer have my attention.

I’m also interested in the hierarchical politics that had to take place, particularly how it was handled by the people on the ground.

Aaron Ekhart, Nick Jonas, Alexander Ludwig, Dennis Quaid, Darren Criss, Jake Weber, James Carpinello, Jake Manley, Luke Kleintank and Keean Johnson also star.

Midway Release Dates: November 8th, 2019 (US & UK)…

Happy Film Loving

G

MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS (2018): The Things I Liked…

Mary Queen Of Scots (2018), Margot Robbie, Focus Features
Mary Queen Of Scots (2018), Margot Robbie, Focus Features

There are a number of things including the history lesson that made me want to watch Mary Queen Of Scots; the story of the troubled relationship between Elizabeth I, Queen of England, and her cousin Mary Stuart. 

Considering that director Josie Rourke’s film is a costume drama, I’d hoped to see lots of sumptuous clothing design, in addition to very well written dialogue delivered by great actors. The film’s trailer even had me expecting something not too far from as epic as director Shekhar Kapur and Cate Blanchett’s Elizabeth (1998). Unfortunately for me, things didn’t quite transpire that way. 

Starring Margot Robbie, Saoirse Ronan, Joe Alwyn and Guy Pearce, there certainly were a handful of well designed costumes to enjoy. Yet it’s the few moments of beautiful visuals – especially outdoor cinematography that proved most arresting for me. Even more so than the dialogue and general story editing which I have to admit had me less engaged and interested than I envisioned I’d be.

Mary Queen Of Scots (2018), Saoirse Ronan, Focus Features

It’s likely that in addition to finding the story more dull than anticipated, my interest also started to diminish in part because of how distressing sitting through the sexism and misogyny proved to be.

Just like my recent review of On The Basis of Sex (2018), another historical drama, it’s the part near the very end that I liked most about Mary Queen Of Scots. Meaning, everything from the moment the two royals finally meet. Actually, even with that said, I still choose the few visually arresting moments over the dialogue and this telling of the Elizabeth I and Mary Stuart story.

Watch Mary Queen Of Scots if you absolutely must. As for myself, I think it’s time I re-watched the great Elizabeth (1998).

Happy Film Loving 

G

WILD NIGHTS WITH EMILY (2018): New Trailer From Molly Shannon, Susan Ziegler, Amy Seimetz …

Wild Nights With Emily (2018), Molly Shannon, Greenwich Entertainment
Wild Nights With Emily (2018), Molly Shannon, Greenwich Entertainment

Molly Shannon, Susan Ziegler and Amy Seimetz are the stars of Wild Nights With Emily, the story of celebrated American poet Emily Dickinson’s life.

From writer / director Madeleine Olnek, this historical comedy is informed by Dickinson’s private letters and focuses particularly on her relationship with a woman…

Molly Shannon is the main reason I want to see this. She’s such a wonderful comic actress and I’ll probably always remember her for her role in Will Grace as the crazy neighbour whose arms never moved back and fourth when she walked.

Brett Gelman, Jackie Monahan, Kevin Seal, Dana Melanie, Joel Michaely, Sasha Frolova and Lisa Haas also star.

Wild Nights With Emily Release Dates: April 12th, 2019 (US)…

Happy Film Loving

G