Brian D

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About Brian D

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  • Gender
    Male

Previous Fields

  • Occupation
    Family medicine doctor
  • Favorite movies
    In America, Of Gods and Men, Munyurungabo, New World, Running on Empty, Where the Wild Things Are, Dead Man Walking, Men Don't Leave, The Apostle, Into the West
  • Favorite music
    U2, Dylan, Springsteen, Sufjan Stevens, Arcade Fire, Sara Groves, Innocence Mission
  • Favorite creative writing
    Novels: Gilead - Marilynne Robinson Brothers Karamazov-Dostoevsky Auralia's Colors-Overstreet Short stories: The Tumblers - Nathan Englander My Mother's Garden - Katherine Shonk
  1. Haven’t seen many films from 2016, but… The Innocents – a photo shoot of a community transformed The Fits - the first dance scene on the overpass, awakening to something The Fits – the final scenes, "must we choose to be slaves to gravity?" Gleason – the voiceless man pierces to the heart as he interviews Eddie Vedder…leading the singer to voice something deep inside Gleason - 2 beds in a wide room, camera not looking away from the physical and emotional separation between an ALS sufferer and his wife Embrace of the Serpent – classical music in the jungle Hidden Figures – doorway is destroyed to accommodate the huge computer, then Dorothy getting it to work Hidden Figures - Kevin Costner passionately knocks down a bathroom sign Love and Friendship – the character intros, a playful playbill onscreen Almost Holy – every scene of rescue
  2. Sounds good to me.
  3. Awesome. "Be the first to rate this movie." Tried to give it 5 stars, but sadly it didn't take. Maybe I actually need to watch it on Amazon first, which sounds like a fine idea.
  4. Oh yes, and this film provides one of the best "who could have imagined this" moments I've seen recently : Gleason, via his voice box, interviews Pearl Jam's lead singer Eddie Vedder at one point. The scene only lasts a minute, but it's such a delightful surprise what we get here that I don't want to spoil it by saying anymore about it.
  5. Documentary streaming on Amazon Prime. Amazingly intimate portrait of a former football player's downward slide into ALS. As a doctor, I learn so much from seeing Steve Gleason's story. As a Christian, I am cut to the heart by the faith-related tension between Steve Gleason and his father here. There is one astonishing scene in which Gleason attends a "faith-healing" service at the request of his seemingly new-believer father. The way Steve Gleason himself responds to this service is something I will never forget. There is so much going on here in this scene, and I think a lot of it has to do with the relationship between the father and his son. This comes even more into focus in a later scene in which Steve Gleason, with the slurred words of his advanced disease, confronts his father about the father's "evangelization" attempts. The scene ends with tears and an embrace, but there is a bitter taste of tragedy here that really lingers in the mind. As Steve Gleason alludes to at one point in the film, this is in essence the story of a father and a son. Perhaps we should say "fathers and sons." The football player and his son, yes, but certainly also the football player and his father. The father and son themes, in fact, make this essential viewing for parents...and children of parents.
  6. About the topics that are most exciting: Cultural upheaval = awesome Waking up = perhaps even moreso
  7. Thanks, everyone. Long overdue for A&F to get a discussion/appreciation thread going on this. Nathaniel, intriguing thoughts about existentialism. Can you flesh out the details of how this film perhaps departs from a traditional existentialist response to the brokenness of the world? Joel and Evan, I agree that this is relevant beyond all expectations. Amazing. Similar to what I said before, I really like this film's ability to live both in the realms of "high-spiritual" cinema and "high-adventure" cinema in the sense of its epic scope. Rare combination in cinema, and one that is compelling because a life of mercy, of faith lived out, is much more of an adventure than is usually acknowledged onscreen. Or in any corner of modern culture, for that matter.
  8. Shall we extend for a week or two after January so that there may be some more chance for participation? I know folks want to join in, but likely haven't found the time yet.
  9. What an interesting film, in the way the first half seems mildly directionless, whereas the second half is acute and stunning. Note to those who try to catch this on Amazon Prime : stick with it to the end, as the final half brings so much into focus that seemed to stumble along in the first. In the end, we are left with a sense of the holy having descended on the film’s convent in a way that is quite unexpected and joyful.
  10. I receive this news like a late Christmas present: Amazon Prime has added Cameraperson, The Fits, and The Innocents, all (I think) within the past week. Amazing that movies like these appear with almost no fanfare, whereas the latest Amazon TV shows on Prime are advertised non-stop. Sometimes it seems to me that streaming services like Amazon Prime and Netflix need to hire some more staff who understand independent, foreign, and otherwise obscure films. Not only that, but who understand those who love those films. In any case, I have completely rearranged my film viewing schedule for the next few weeks. Thank you, Amazon Prime, even if you are a little like the Tim Robbins pitcher in Bull Durham when he threw a brilliant pitch and said something like "what did I just do?”
  11. I've got the perfect extra for a future Criterion release for this film: an English language translation of the novel! That novel has gotta clock in at 800+ pages with this much narrative packed in. So my proposal is a modest one that would take years to carry out.
  12. Did Andy post a top albums list for this year? Joel, your Good Letters piece looks wonderful. I look foward to tracking down previous editions.
  13. Reviving this thread! I just finished watching this for the first time, encouraged as I was by the enthusiasm of Ryan, Jeremy, and others. Impressive...really all I can say since it is almost midnight and our baby just started crying. Anyone ever track down an English version of this novel? Also, how have you all found this on repeat views...greater still?
  14. Thanks, Joel. I need good lists like these. Any other lists you've found helpful? Question from the uninformed: is Andy Whitman still active as a music writer? I miss reading his lists.