Thursday, July 1, 2021

Supernova: Film Review


US release 29 January 2021.

Director Harry McQueen offers Supernova (2020), a quiet film with a heavy topic: how couples respond to a diagnosis of early onset dementia. 

Colin Firth plays Sam opposite Stanley Tucci playing Tusker. The latter is the one with early onset dementia, but clearly such a diagnosis affects Sam as well. 

These two have been a couple for two decades, and now they are taking a road trip through the Lake District of England in a camper van. They are en route to a piano concert featuring Sam. Tusker writes novels, and he has brought some notebooks with him so that he can make progress on his last novel before his memory corrupts any further. 

The film has three sections: establishing their dynamic, conversations with members of Sam's family, and more intense conversations between Sam and Tusker. 

Monday, June 7, 2021

HDL or "Good" Cholesterol: A Biomarker of Health


Image by Wonderland via Creative Commons

Not all cholesterol are created equal. Some types are harmful, and some types are beneficial. Here is a simplified explanation of the difference between LDL and HDL cholesterol: 

Low-density lipoproteins deposit fat into the blood. High-density lipoproteins carry fat out of the blood.

This post is part of a series on biomarkers of health and longevity. 

Note: I am not a medical professional. This post does not offer medical advice; it's only intended to raise awareness. Please see a licensed medical professional if you have any concerns about your diet or health. 

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

The Father: Film Review

Released 27 Jan 2020. 

Director Florian Zeller delivers up an atypical perspective in The Father (2020) for a film that depicts dementia.

By doing so, he actually presents a perspective more typical than other films about memory challenges. 

The Father is one of about thirty "dementia films" that I've viewed in the last decade.  

I find Anthony Hopkins' portrayal (of a character also named Anthony) to be one of the most realistic. 

The majority of the film shows Anthony in conversation with a handful of care partners: family members--such as his daughter Anne played by Olivia Coleman--or those hired to care for him.  

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Nomadland: Review with a View on Poverty


Released 19 February 2021

Having been a fan of Frances McDormand for two decades, I was eager to see her performance as Fern in Nomadland (2020).  She did not disappoint. However, I did not walk away feeling blissful or triumphant. Instead, I was unsettled. 

The film is a blend between fact and fiction. The director, Chloe' Zhao, had a lot of people depict themselves in the film, people who are seasonal workers living in in all manner of vehicles--from campers to converted vans.