MOONLIGHT SONATA: DEAFNESS IN THREE MOVEMENTS – Review by Brandy McDonnell

The story picks up when Jonas, an ornery, action-packed 11-year-old taking piano lessons, becomes enamored of Ludwig van Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata.” He is determined to learn the piece even though his teacher warns him that it may be too difficult musically as well as emotionally for someone his age.

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WEEK IN WOMEN; Julie Andrews to receive AFI Life Achievement Award – Brandy McDonnell reports

Throughout an illustrious career that spans seven decades, she has won five Golden Globes, three Grammys and two Emmys for projects infused with her incomparable charm and recognized for their ability to enthrall audiences worldwide. The critically lauded Andrews is also a Kennedy Center honoree, a Disney Legend inductee and the recipient of a SAG Life Achievement Award.

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ABOMINABLE – Review by Brandy McDonnell

Mostly aimed at the 10 and younger crowd, the movie offers plenty of eye-popping and ear-pleasing spectacle for all ages, from gorgeous scenes at the Leshan Giant Buddha in Sichuan, where Yi plays a violin cover of Coldplay so beautiful that it conjures natural wonders, to a glitzy sequence on the Shanghai Tower, where the kids use the mega-skyscraper’s daily light show to ditch Burnish’s thugs.

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JUDY – Review by Brandy McDonnell

Flashbacks to her adolescence at MGM Studios make it clear that show biz broke Garland early and often: The teenage Judy (the terrific Darci Shaw) is force-fed uppers to suppress her appetite and keep her working 18-hour days, denied sleep and meals for long stretches and deprived of any privacy or personal time. Her attempts to buck the system lead to soft-spoken spates of verbal abuse from intimidating studio head Louis B. Mayer (Richard Cordery, low-key terrifying).

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BUNUEL IN THE LABYRINTH OF THE TURTLES – Review by Brandy McDonnell

Taking its title from the crude, shell-like roofs on the villagers’ huts, the animated film alternates between the story’s reality and the scary, surreal dreams of stilt-walking elephants and chicken-filled giraffes that haunt Bunuel. The simple beauty of the hand-drawn making-of film also is effectively interspersed with actual clips from “Las Hurdes,” which was given the English title “Land Without Bread.”

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