The Farewell Party
High drama and lowbrow, morbid humor get stitched together in this successful tragicomedy about terminal patients and assisted suicide. Works better than expected.
* This filmography is not intended to be a comprehensive list of this artist’s work. Instead it reflects the films this person has been involved with that have been reviewed on this site.
A preview of the 2015 EU Film Festival at the Siskel Film Center in Chicago.
Movie Mezzanine's best films of 2014 list; A closer look at "Interstellar"; The accuracy of "The Imitation Game"; Robert Yeoman on "The Grand Budapest Hotel"; The drawbacks of a record 2015 box office.
I wrote recently about my childhood growing up in Downstate Illinois. I mentioned me and my friends roaming all over town on our bikes, walking to the movies and the swimming pool on our own, and riding our bikes through rain water backed up after thunderstorms. Also, for that matter, through piles of burning leaves. One of my classmates wrote to mention that the Boneyard, the creek running through town, was a drainage canal. "What?" I asked. "Where we caught crawdaddies?"
One of the comments on the entry was from a reader in Florida who said, rather sadly, that his 15-year-old son had just taken his first unsupervised bike ride through the city park. When he was growing up, he said, things were different. But not "today." We use that word today as code for the dangers lurking everywhere in modern society. Another reader sent me a link to a web site advocating the raising of Free Range Children. I learned this has become something of a movement, cheered by a book by Lenore Skenazy. The movement believes we are punishing our kids by over-protecting them.
Certainly today we take for granted things that we never imagined in our own childhoods, like child car seats, bike helmets, bottled water, security guards, sunblock, hand sanitizer and childproof bottles. I mentioned my childhood memory that we boys would pee behind trees, shrubbery, or garages ("If you run home, your mom might grab you and make you do something"). I forgot to mention that one of the reasons we needed to pee is that when we got thirsty we drank out of garden hoses--our own, and anybody else's.