There are quite a few films releasing to DVD on Tuesday, Sept. 24, including Ethan Bortnick’s acting debut; a documentary about racism; and Vivica A. Fox’s latest. Check out these short reviews from the Chico Movie Examiner.
12-year-old Ethan Bortnick shines in his feature film debut, “Anything is Possible.” Many may already know of his great accomplishments as a pianist, but he could also achieve great things if he decides to continue his acting career.
For those who don’t know much about Bortnick, he broke the Guinness World Record for being the youngest headline entertainer at the age of six and is the youngest performer to headline a solo tour – beating out the King of Pop, Michael Jackson.
In the film, Bortnick plays Nathan, a young boy whose mother, Maggie (Lacey Chabert), goes missing in Japan during a rescue mission after the 2011 Tsunami. When it’s revealed that George (Jonathan Bennet) is not Nathan’s real father, and the right paperwork wasn’t filed, the government comes to take Nathan away. Instead of going with them, Nathan flees from home. On the road, he meets some unique people and discovers a talent he never knew he had.
Not only is “Anything is Possible” just a movie to show off Bortnick’s great talents, but it’s a real heartwarming tale, too. On his journey, Ethan befriends a homeless military vet known as Captain Miles (David Haines), who suffers from P.T.S.D. Haines is great, and the two have perfect chemistry together.
The story is not entirely refreshing, but the film will leave a smile on your face.
There are a few moments in “The Power of Love” where continuity and knowledge of a microphone’s location are completely ignored. Despite these technical errors, the film is an uplifting one, even if it doesn’t really bring anything new to the table.
Vivica A. Fox plays PJ Payton, a best-selling author who gets invited to be on the LA-based radio station, KLUV. During her time, the talk show host takes some calls from people who are having trouble trying to understand love. One man talks about his trouble with a psychopathic woman who says she can’t be dumped, while one woman is trying to move on from her abusive and cheating husband. As they discuss their issues, the two tell PJ about their rebirth and how they have accepted God into their lives.
“The Power of Love” is not a pretentious film about religion and love. The mentions of God aren’t hammered into the viewer’s skull, and the performances are solid all around. But there are moments where people go to hug, and their bodies rub against the microphone or completely muffle it. Technical errors like these shouldn’t have made it past the filming stages, but, apparently, they did. There’s also a moment where a woman purposefully spills wine on her dress, and then we don’t see a stain on the dress when she stands.
Putting those issues aside, “The Power of Love” is still filled with moments of humor and good dramatic scenes to merit a mild recommendation.
Racism is still a hot topic, even after the days of abolishing segregation have past. In “Dark Girls,” directors D. Channsin Berry and Bill Duke take a look at those who still face racism because of their dark skin – particularly African American women.
“Dark Girls” is an informative documentary, but the majority of the 70-minute runtime shows how one race is affected by racism. Every race has issues because of the color of their skin – not just African Americans. There are moments where people of Asian descent are asked questions, but it’s very brief.
The documentary does work by showing how America has twice elected a black president (Obama), but there are still people who proudly display their hatred via Facebook and Twitter. Several well known names are interviewed, but the documentary just seems so focused on one side of the issue, and that makes it a mild disappointment.
Other films releasing to Blu-ray/DVD on Sept. 24:
“Iron Man 3” (click link for full review)
“Bloody Homecoming” (click link for full review)