GLORIA:  IN HER OWN WORDS: HBO On DemandSeptember 16, 2011


GLORIA:  IN HER OWN WORDS: HBO On Demand

HBO

On Demand Weekly provides new movie reviews of hot movies and shows on demand from the POV of watching from the comfort of your home. Today’s review: GLORIA: IN HER OWN WORDS (HBO).
 

GLORIA: IN HER OWN WORDS

By Jean Tait

 

 

 

Are we living in a post-feminist age? I don’t think so! Just look at how relevant Gloria Steinem is today. Lovely, smart, funny and gracious, this feminist icon is everything a woman should strive to be, and “Gloria: In Her Own Words” is the proof.

Many of today’s young women may wonder why Gloria Steinem is so worshipped and reviled. Coming from a broken home (before that was the norm), and learning at a young age to compensate for her mother’s inability to cope, young Gloria sought escape from her Toledo home by coming to New York City to live the glamorous writer’s life. It started off not so glamorous when the only assignments she could get were about cooking or fashion.

 

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MANN V. FORD - HBO Explores The Ramapough Indians Fight The Ford Motor CompanySeptember 23, 2011


MANN V. FORD - HBO Explores The Ramapough Indians Fight The Ford Motor Company

HBO

On Demand Weekly provides new movie reviews of hot movies and shows on demand from the POV of watching from the comfort of your home. Today’s review: MANN V. FORD (HBO).
 

MANN V. FORD (HBO)

By Jean Tait

 

A candy apple red 1967 Ford Mustang convertible, shiny and new: is there anything cooler than that? It is a perfect example of a corporation at its peak of popularity. And as the only American car company around today that didn’t need a bailout from the American taxpayer, Ford remains at the top of the heap. Now let’s take a closer look at that heap it’s on top of….

The Ramapough Indians live in northern New Jersey, as they have for hundreds of years. If you fly over or drive through this part of New Jersey, it’s lovely: beautiful woods, flowing streams. On closer examination though, the rocks and dirt show bits of unusual color, and the smell is foul.

 



Its paint and chemical sludge, some of it still bright and shiny and as candy apple red as it was when it was dumped there decades ago. Ford contracted out its waste disposal, but memos indicate they knew their waste was being dumped in the Ramapough Indians’ land. They also knew it was full of toxins and carcinogens.

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Harry Belafonte’s SING YOUR SONG (HBO On Demand)November 04, 2011


Harry Belafonte’s SING YOUR SONG (HBO On Demand)

HBO

On Demand Weekly provides new movie reviews of hot movies and shows on demand from the POV of watching from the comfort of your home. Today’s review: SING YOUR SONG (HBO).

 

SING YOUR SONG

By Jean Tait

 

As the economy has tanked and quagmire-wars continue endlessly overseas, I’ve wondered where the protesters of the sixties and seventies are. Now as Occupy Wall Street spreads across the world, I realize that not only is that activism alive and well, but some of that feeling never went away. That fire for demanding human rights has been burning continually in Harry Belafonte!

 



At 84, the still handsome and vigorous Belafonte remains glorious and gracious, and still demanding human rights, as captured in the new documentary, “Sing Your Song” now On Demand on HBO.

For those who may not know him at all, or only vaguely as the guy who sings that Day-O song, this documentary will be a revelation. For those who were already aware of the multi-talented actor/singer, this will expand that awareness into full on awe.

 



With his good looks, charm and talent, Harry Belafonte quickly rose to success as a singer/actor. But his success brought controversy as young girls (many of them white) swooned for him, much to the dismay of older, more bigoted audiences. His theatrical appearances with Marge and Gower Champion broke barriers when Marge Champion (who is white) danced and sang with Harry, actually holding his hand on stage.

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HBO’s MARATHON BOYNovember 11, 2011


HBO’s MARATHON BOY

HBO

On Demand Weekly provides new movie reviews of hot movies and shows on demand from the POV of watching from the comfort of your home. Today’s review: MARATHON BOY (HBO).

 

SING YOUR SONG

By Jean Tait

 

SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE introduced American audiences to the Indian Cinderella story, albeit a fictional one. MARATHON BOY at first appears to be a real-life one. An adorable toddler, born in a mud-floor shack next to train tracks, is rescued by a sports coach who takes in orphans and makes sure they are educated and trained. Little Budhia quickly outshines the other children when his talent for long distance running is discovered. Before he is even four years old, Budhia has run numerous marathons, coached along with love by Baranchi Das.

 



As the whole Indian State of Orissa adores Budhia, questions understandably arise as to how much is encouragement and how much is exploitation. Baranchi Das and his wife Gita had adopted Budhia, but allowed his biological mother to stay with them. When his mother figures that Baranchi and Gita are making money off of Budhia’s popularity, she arranges to have him kidnapped back to her slum. Accusations of abuse are made, with Budhia half-heartedly telling stories of torture and beatings. Even after medical examination proves these false, Budhia is kept with his biological mother, breaking Baranchi’s heart.

 


 

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THE LOVING STORY - On DemandFebruary 09, 2012


THE LOVING STORY - On Demand

HBO

Demand Weekly provides new movie reviews of hot movies and shows on demand from the POV of watching from the comfort of your home. Today’s review: THE LOVING STORY(HBO).


THE LOVING STORY
A Landmark Case for Love

By Jean Tait

 

“Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, malay and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with His arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix.”
--Caroline County Court (Virginia) Trial Judge Leon M. Bazile

These are the words Judge Bazile used to find Mr. and Mrs. Richard Loving guilty of miscegenation in 1958. Those words make my stomach churn. However, those words made it possible to go forward with the lawsuit that made the law that inspired them unacceptable and obsolete.

How that turning point was taken is lovingly (sorry, couldn’t resist!) explored in the filmmaker Nancy Buirski’s HBO Doc, “The Loving Story,” using rare and previously unseen footage along with some extraordinary photos and recordings.

The Lovings could not have been more appropriately named. As revealed in the footage, you can’t help but root for this simple, warm-hearted family. Not activists in any way, they were firmly rooted in their love for each other and for their families and home. They simply wanted to be together and be able to live in their hometown, near their parents and friends. This basic need was powerful enough to move the Supreme Court of the United States of America.

 



Of course, they had help in the fresh-out-of-school pair of ACLU lawyers, Bernard S. Cohen and Philip J. Hirschkop, who navigated the treacherous waters of our legal system and won (unanimously!) their Supreme Court case.

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