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Aug 30th
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TETRO

film_poster_tetroFrancis Ford Coppola is out of the giant, make-or-break blockbuster biz and back making small indie movies for the sheer joy of it. His newest, Tetro, is such an adventure in technique, style, and pure cinematic brio, it almost doesn’t matter that the story gets away from him the fourth act, and the film runs about 30 minutes too long. You can have too much of a good thing, and the sins of admission in Tetro detract from otherwise masterful storytelling, but there’s still plenty of swoony delight to be had in the look of the film and the operatic scope of its story.

 

film_tetroShot mostly in brooding, shimmering black and white, the story begins with dewy young American Bennie (Alden Ehrenreich), military school dropout and cruise ship busboy, arriving in Buenos Aires in the dead of night to visit his prodigal brother, Tetro (Vincent Gallo), a failed writer. Bennie was a child when Tetro left home to follow his muse, after their renowned composer father (played in flashback by the great Klaus Maria Brandauer) told him there was only room for one genius in the family. For the few days that his ship undergoes repairs, Bennie tries to reconnect with the prickly older brother who wants nothing more to do with their family. A father-sons drama of near-Biblical proportions (lust, betrayals, guilty secrets) unfolds against Tetro’s life with his warm and grounded girlfriend, Miranda (Maribel Verdu), and their bohemian artist friends, as Bennie probes for answers about their fractured family. Coppola injects dramatic revelations into the story in spasms of saturated color created in homage to the lush, slightly berserk Technicolor dance melodramas of the great Robert Powell (The Red Shoes). Snippets from Powell’s “Tales Of Hoffmann” are featured in Tetro, and Coppola stages a few more dances-within-the-film of his own to express the characters’ unspoken sorrows. This works beautifully on an emotional as well as visual level; the film is a pleasure to watch, even during a lengthy detour to an arts festival in Patagonia that eats up too much time and contributes nothing that might not have been more effectively inserted elsewhere in the film. Still, a mesmerizing performance from the ever-iconoclastic Gallo, and terrific support from accomplished Spanish actress Verdu and newcomer Ehrenreich, along with the vivacity of Coppola’s filmmaking, make Tetro a cinematic feast to be savored. (Not rated) 127 minutes. (3 1/2 stars out of 4)

 

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The Meaning of ‘LIFE’

With a new documentary film about his work, and huge exhibits on both coasts, acclaimed Santa Cruz nature photographer Frans Lanting is having a landmark year. But his crusade for conservation doesn’t leave much time for looking back

 

Seasons of Opportunity

Everything in our world has a specific time (a season) in which to accomplish a specific work—a “season” that begins (opportunity) and ends (time’s up). I can feel the season is changing. The leaves turning colors, the air cooler, sunbeams casting shadows in different places. It feels like a seasonal change has begun in the northern hemisphere. Christmas is in four months, and 2015 is swiftly speeding by. Soon it will be autumn and time for the many Festivals of Light. Each season offers new opportunities. Then the season ends and new seasons take its place. Humanity, too, is given “seasons” of opportunity. We are in one of those opportunities now, to bring something new (Uranus) into our world, especially in the United States. Times of opportunity can be seen in the astrology chart. In the U.S. chart, Uranus (change) joins Chiron (wound/healing). This symbolizes a need to heal the wounds of humanity. Uranus offers new archetypes, new ways of doing things. The Uranus/Chiron (Aries/Pisces) message is, “The people of the U.S. are suffering. New actions are needed to bring healing and well-being to humanity. So the U.S. can fulfill its spiritual task of standing within the light and leading humanity within and toward the light.” Thursday, Aquarius Moon, Mercury enters Libra. The message, “To bring forth the new order in the world, begin with acts of Goodwill.” Goodwill produces right relations with everyone and everything. The result is a world of progressive well-being and peacefulness (which is neither passive nor the opposite of war). Saturday is the full moon, the solar light of Virgo streaming into the Earth. Our waiting now begins, for the birth of new light at winter solstice. The mother (hiding the light of the soul, the holy child), identifying the feminine principle, says, “I am the mother and the child. I, God (Father), I Matter (Mother), We are One.”

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of August 28

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