Let There Be A Spotlight on Excellence in Movie Making (Part One) – Movies which Deserve A Best in Excellence in Movie Making Award According to Gary S. Smolker


Updated October 25, 2014

Best In Excellence in Movie Making Awards

In this post I report on movies presented at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival which I think are world class examples of excellence.

  1. I attended the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival in Toronto, Canada, from September 7 through September 15, 2014.
  2. While standing in line, waiting to get into movie theaters, I met interesting energetic people from all over the world.
  3. Those people and I discussed films we had seen at the festival so far and the additional films we intended to see before the festival ended.
  4. I saw 20 films; 19 of them are noteworthy.
  5. Below is a list of films which won my  Best In Excellence Awards, followed by highlights of each film which won my (a Gary Smolker) Best in Excellence Award.
  6. The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) is the largest film festival in the world.

In Part One (this post), I give a full write-up of only a few of the following award winners.

In subsequent posts I will give a further and more extravagant write-up (movie review) of the rest of the best in excellence in movie making award winners listed below.

The Gary S. Smolker Best in Excellence Award Winners Are

For best portrayal of a master teacher and passionate perfectionist – “Seymour” An Introduction.”

For best parody of single life and portrayal of current sexual revolution – “Top Five.”

For best costuming – “A Little Chaos.”

For best portrayal of the undistracted environment in which high level thinkers need to operate in order to operate at peak performance level – “Pawn Sacrifice.”

For best example of the “power of shock” – “Haemoo.”

For best portrayal and satire of male fantasies, attitudes towards weddings, the world of sex from a female perspective and of the cultural ferment causing a sexual revolution which is changing the nature of sexual responsibility and marital identity – “Top Five.”

For best portrayal of business genius and the recognition of the importance of style, good taste and elegance – “A Little Chaos.”

For best portrayal of the harsh reality that progress and success aren’t all they are cracked up to be, i.e., that all that glitters is not gold – “Top Five”, “Map to the Stars” and “Foxcatcher.”

For best demonstration of how to choose a spouse – “The Theory of Everything”, “Ruth & Alex”, and “Love and Mercy.”

For most romantic movie – “The Theory of Everything” and “Ruth & Alex.”

For best portrayal of the relationship between creativity, madness and third party exploitation of a creative talent – “Love and Mercy.”

For best portrayal of extremely grounded creative people and extremely sane loving heart choices that would not be made by most people – “The Theory of Everything” and “Ruth & Alex.”

Honorable mention for most sympathetic portrayal of loss of mental acuity – “The Judge.”

“St. Vincent” earns special mention for being a comedic film about current notions about education of young people, bullying, divorce, single parenthood, reverse mortgages, banks, having children out of wedlock, and the cost of assisted living:

In “St. Vincent”,  for the most part, the actors, screenwriters and director manage to turn sad situations into laughter; the emotional resilience of the characters portrayed in this film turns things that would be thought of as a “tragedy” into a hilarious joyful comedy.

“St. Vincent”, is a comedy that is full of joyful chaos instead of tears in spite of the fact that it’s underlying subject matter is the economic impotence of the common man.

Part One of the “I’ve Seen the Light” – Excellent Edifying Movies Presented at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival


1.  Master Teacher and Passionate Perfectionist

“Seymour: An Introduction”

In this film eighty-five year old concert pianist turned music teacher Seymour Bernstein reflects upon a life well lived, tells stories which show how he and other master piano players developed their skills and felt before giving public performances.  He also gives great advice on how to work towards your true dreams and goals.

In one scene in this movie, he takes a young pianist about to give a piano recital to a room which is full of Steinway pianos.

They are in that room to choose the piano that the young pianist will play in the recital.

Seymour Bernstein plays each piano while the young man/piano student listens.

As Seymour plays each piano he asks the young man,  “Can you hear that?”

Seymour explains to the young pianist that each piano in that room is built and is designed the same.  Each piano is the same in all other respects except each piano each piece of wood in each piano is different.  That makes each piano sound different.

In this charming way, Bernstein explains how details and attention to detail makes a difference.

By lessons such as that, Seymour shows the audience how giving students piano lesson gives students  guidance on how to live life.

The habits Seymour Bernstein’s students take on as a natural consequence of learning how to play the piano from Bernstein will give them tools for living a life full of personal fulfillment, i.e. his students will never ask “is this all there is to life?”  They will not be bored.

I will discuss this movie more throughly in a future post.

2.  Best Portrayal of the Current Sexual Revolution

“Top Five”

Chris Rock is an astute observer of contemporary life and its imagination.

He has a vital and adventurous point of view and talks about forbidden topics in this film.

In his film”Top Five”, Chris Rock provides a hands-on understanding/portrayal of the current day in-your-face-sexual revolution which is causing ever increasing cultural-ferment.

As a result of that, his large “hip” fan base will enjoy watching this movie.

I don’t know whether he is poking fun at current extreme ideas/fantasies in Western countries about modern sex life, beauty, sex, fidelity, marriage, and/or being a creative artist in this movie or if he is documenting reality as he understands it.

This movie part of the “can you top this” system of popular/mass culture, and a satire about celebrities and wannabes pandering to the movie going public’s appetite and taste for sex in movies.

In this movie Chris Rock portrays (a) how difficult it is to get a foothold on anything, (b) how doubtful it is that men with women are able to co-exist for a long time together, and (c) that life is rich with facts, full of curiosities, many misfortunes, and a sea of tears.

Life’s standard sexual related problems, which as they pass through Chris Rock’s prism, in this movie become by themselves funny, comedic delights.

I haven’t decided whether “Top Five” has a message and/or has an edifying purpose.

I will discuss this movie more throughly in a future post.

3.  You Are What You See

“A Little Chaos”

“A Little Chaos” is a movie that will make people talk and think about creativity, good taste, living a stimulating life and the importance of elegance, style, creativity and imagination.

Among, other things, the star of the movie is the historical figure King Louis XIV, who is the man responsible for the expression “diamonds are a girl’s best friend” coming into existence.

This movie showcases King Louis XIV’s passion for diamonds, fashion, style, sparkle and glitz.  It is a visually spectacular movie.

A complete stand alone movie review of “A Little Chaos” was posted on the “Gary Smolker Idea Exchange Blog” on September 25, 2014 and is now available for your viewing at  www.garysmolker.wordpress.com.

4.  When Silence Is A Vital Necessity

“Pawn Sacrifice”

This is the incredibly personal story of the role “silence” and the “need for silence in order to have the ability to concentrate” played in 1972 World Chess Championship chess match between American challenger Bobby Fischer and the USSR’s defending champion Boris Spassky.

As a person who sometimes needs “absolute quiet” when I do my work, I loved watching this movie because while watching this movie I found out that the greatest chess players in the world Boris Spassky and Bobby Fischer were that way too.

I will discuss this movie throughly in a future segment of my “I See the Light” movie review.


5.  The Power of Shock


This is an edge of your seat non-stop action packed thriller full of drama.

It is the story of one bad thing after another happening to a man (the owner-captain of a fishing ship), his crew and their human cargo.

The high intensity action in this film begins when the captain comes home and finds his wife having sex in his bed with another man, and never stops.

I will discuss this movie more throughly in a future segment of my “I See the Light” movie review.


6. Male and Female Fantasies

“Top Five”

“Learning to Drive”

“Ruth & Alex”

I will discuss “Ruth & Alex” more throughly in a future segment of my “I See the Light” movie review and as a stand alone movie review on my blog, the Gary S. Smolker Idea Exchange blog at http://www.garysmolker.wordpress.com.

In one of the early scenes in “”Ruth & Alex””, Dianne Keaton reminisces about how she first met her husband-to-be (Morgan Freeman) when she was a graduate student posing in the nude for him.

He (Morgan Freeman) asked her to take off her glasses and to put on another pair that he handed to her.  She (Dianne Keaton) replied: “You are the only man who has asked me to take off my glasses instead of asking me to take off my clothes.”

I will discuss “Learning to Drive” more throughly in a future segment of my “I See the Light” movie review and as a stand alone movie review on my blog, the Gary S. Smolker Idea Exchange blog at http://www.garysmolker.wordpress.com.

In one of the early scenes in “Learning to Drive”, Morgan Freeman asks his wife – he recently married her in an arranged marriage in the United States without ever seeing her before they were married – who has just arrived in America from a small rural village in India, and who is trying to learn English by watching television, “Which English words did you learn watching television “today?”

She replies “peligro.”  He tells her: “That isn’t English.  That is Spanish.  You were watching a Spanish TV station.”

“Ruth & Alex” and “Learning to Drive” are both very engaging stories about marriages that “work.”

“Top Five” is discussed above.  It as an excellent portrayal of “single life’ – and is either the “best parody of single life” and/or an accurate representation of what it is like to be single in the modern world.


7.  Business Genius

“A Little Chaos”

A complete stand alone movie review of “A Little Chaos” was posted on the “Gary Smolker Idea Exchange Blog” on September 25, 2014 and is available for viewing  www.garysmolker.wordpress.com.

“A Little Chaos” is a visually spectacular film about a style obsessed monarch (King Louis XIV) who was a business genius.

Of historical note, Louis XIV is personally responsible for making diamonds a girl’s best friend.

8.  All That Glitters Is Not Gold

“Top Five”

“Map to the Stars”


“Map of the Stars” is a documentary type tale about sex, drugs, addiction to success and insecurity in the movie industry.

I will discuss “Map to the Stars” more throughly in a future segment of my “I See the Light” movie review.dave

“Foxcatcher” is based on the true story of John du Pont, an enormously rich man, who wanted to “own” a winning wrestling team preparing for the 1968 Olympics in Seoul, and focuses on his (John du Pont’s) interactions with  two US wrestling champions – Mark and Dave Schultz.

It is a tragic story about cold-blooded ambition combined with a over-the-top no holds barred pursuit of success.

“Top Five” is discussed above.


9.  Choosing A Life Partner

“The Theory of Everything”

“Ruth & Alex”

“Love and Mercy”

I will discuss “Love and Mercy” and “Ruth & Alex” more throughly in a future segment of my “I See the Light” movie review.

A complete stand alone movie review of “The Theory of Everything” was posted on the “Gary Smolker Idea Exchange Blog” on September 09, 2014 and is now available for viewing at http://www.garysmolker.wordpress.com.

10. Most Romantic Movie Category Award Winner

“The Theory of Everything”

“Ruth & Alex”

“Ruth & Alex” is a delightful story about an “elderly” married couple who decide they should sell their apartment because they are afraid they will not be physically able to continue climb several flights of stairs to get to their home.

The love and consideration they show for each other is inspiring.

The way they go about selling their home is hilarious.

I will discuss “Ruth & Alex” more throughly in a future stand-alone movie review.

A complete stand alone movie review of “The Theory of Everything” was posted on the “Gary Smolker Idea Exchange Blog” on September 09, 2014 and is now available for viewing at http://www.garysmolker.wordpress.com.

11.  Creativity and Madness

“Love and Mercy”

This is a heart breaking story and inspiring story about bad things that happened to singer-songwriter Brian Wilson, of Beach Boys fame, as a result of being exploited by a court appointed conservator as he struggled with his drug addiction and mental illness and the brave loving woman who saved him.

I will discuss this movie more throughly in a future segment of my “I See the Light” movie review.

12.  Creativity and Madness and Saneness

“Ruth & Alex”

“The Theory of Everything”

“Seymour: An Introduction”

“A Little Chaos”

Ruth and Alex and Seymour are each catalysts who ignite artistic endeavor.

I will discuss “Ruth & Alex” and “Seymour An Introduction” and how (what they did and what to do) to be a catalyst to ignite artistic/creative endeavor throughly in a future stand-alone movie review.

A complete stand alone movie review of “The Theory of Everything” was posted on the “Gary Smolker Idea Exchange Blog” on September 09, 2014 and is now available for viewing at  www.garysmolker.wordpress.com.

A complete stand alone movie review of “A Little Chaos” was posted on the “Gary Smolker Idea Exchange Blog” on September 25, 2014 and is now available for viewing at  www.garysmolker.wordpress.com.

13. Most Clueless Person

Al Pacino’s character A.J. Manglehorn (in “Manglehorn”) and Patricia Clarkson’s character Wendy (in “Learning to Drive”) vie for being the “most clueless person” portrayed in a movie.


In “Manglehorn”, Al Pacino plays a man (A.J. Manglehorn) who can’t get over his first love.

He is so obsessed with his first love (the woman who got away), that on a first date with a woman (Holly Hunter) who likes him very much (previously she asked him if he would like to take a bath with her), he (Al Pacino) spends the entire evening (until his date leaves him by walking out on him while they are having dinner at a restaurant) talking about his first love.

TAKE AWAY:  Don’t talk about first loves or prior love affairs, prior husbands or prior people you dated, while you are on a date with someone else.

 “Learning to Drive”

In “Learning to Drive”, Patricia Clarkson plays a woman (Wendy) who doesn’t understand why her husband of 21 years (Ted, played by Jake Weber) left her.

In one scene, while Wendy and Ted are in their house packing their “separate things in boxes, Wendy pulls down a book entitled “The Joy of Sex.”

Wendy turns to Ted and asks: “Who does this book belong to.”  Ted replies, “I gave it to you as a gift.  You put it in a drawer and never looked at it.”

TAKE AWAY:  Be alert.  Pay attention to what other people are telling you.

I will discuss this movie in more detail in a future post.

14. Aging Category

“Ruth & Alex”

“While We’re Young”

“While We’re Young” is a story about an aging documentary film maker (Ben Stiller) who can’t get his act together.  He is a failure who has hit a creative dry patch and does “crazy” things in an attempt to get a creative energy boost.

It is a social portrait of interaction between the culture and aesthetic sensibilities of specific “establishment members” of the young and old New York creative with Ben Stiller, who is part of an aging urban class of “sophisticates.”

In this movie (“While We’re Young), screenwriter/director Noah Baumbach and principal cast Ben Stiller, Naomi Watts, Adam Driver, Amanda Seyfried, and Charles Grodin.

I will discuss “While We’re Young”  – and aging gracefully – more throughly in a future segment of my “I See the Light” movie review.

“Ruth & Alex” is also a movie about “aging gracefully.”

The movie “Ruth & Alex” is discussed in more detail in other sections of this review.

15.  Best Inside Joke Award

“Ruth & Alex”

Everything “Ruth & Alex” do while their real estate agent is showing their home to potential purchasers is “wrong.”

Every savvy residential real estate agent who sees this movie will get a big laugh.

If you want to sell your home, ask a sophisticated real estate agent to see this movie with you and then discuss everything Ruth and Alex do in this movie while trying to sell their home.

I will discuss this movie more throughly in a future stand-alone movie review and in a future segment of my “I See the Light” brief reviews of edifying movies.

16.  The Most Eye Opening Movie Award

I was exposed to ideas I had never thought of while watching “This Is My Land.”

“This Is My Land”

This is a French film.

The film maker, Director Tamara Erde has done a brilliant job.

In “This Is My Land” we are taken inside classrooms in high schools in Israel and the occupied West Bank where we watch how teachers teach history to their Israeli and Palestinian students.

Separately and apart we are treated to hearing comments on the current state of Israeli and Palestinian mindsets made by Israeli and Palestinian teacher/scholars outside their classrooms.

One criteria I use in measuring the quality of a film I have watched is to ask myself whether or not (after watching the film) I want to know more.

After watching “This Is My Land” I wanted to have endless conversations with each of the teachers the film maker Tamara Erde interviewed in the film and with Tamara herself.

For that reason, I give this film my highest quality rating.

One of the scholar/teachers Tamara interviewed stated that the way the history of Palestine and the Holocaust are taught to Israeli high school students traumatizes them: makes Israeli students blame Arabs for the Holocaust, want to kill Arabs.*

What these teacher/scholars have to say about the state of education and how it forms the minds of the Israeli and Palestinian high school students is very important to me because I believe people “are” what they have absorbed, that history and heritage people are exposed to are essential components of identity.

Watching a lesson being taught by a Palestinian teacher to a classroom of Palestinian high school students in the occupied West Bank made me realize there is a way to achieve lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians.

For those reasons, “This Is My Land” is a very important and eye opening film.


*Nurit Peled-Elhanan is the teacher who made that statement.

Ms. Peled-Elhanan is a Professor of Language and Education at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Her grandfather, Avraham Katsnelson, signed Israel’s “Declaration of Independence.”

In 2001 Ms. Peled-Elhanan was awarded the “Sakharov Prize” by the European Parliament.

She is the author of “Palestine in Israeli School Books: Ideology and Propaganda” (November, 2012) which can be purchased from Amazon.


I will discuss this movie more throughly in a future stand-alone movie review.

17.  Ahead of the Curve

“Black and White”

“This Is My Land”

“Black and White” is an idealistic story about the tensions between a black family and a white man in a child custody battle.

I will discuss each one of these movies more throughly in a future segment of my “I See the Light” collection of reviews of edifying movies I saw at 2014 TIFF.

I will also discuss each of these movies in a future stand-alone movie review.

18. Most Uplifting Message

“Top Five”

My “Most Uplifting Message Award” goes to the movie “Top Five.”

In “Top Five”, Chris Rock plays a successful black comedian and movie star.

In one scene he is interviewed by a beautiful female movie critic.

While they are walking down a high class street in Manhattan, Chris’ character says to the movie critic:

“You can smell the progress: We have a black president and a black attorney general.  But try to be a black man trying to flag a cab in Manhattan.”

He then steps into the street to flag a cab.  He puts up his hand to flag a cab; a cab stops immediately to pick them, and then drives away with them.

I will discuss this movie more throughly in a future stand-alone movie review.

19. The Potential of Stand Up Comedy Monologues to Cause Social Change

“St. Vincent”

“St. Vincent” is a brilliant masterpiece of story telling.

In this movie the main character (Vincent, played by Bill Murray) is a hugely enchanting irascible cantankerous cash-strapped retiree who takes control of every horrible situation he is in by talking.

He is able take control of the horrible situations he finds himself in by thinking quickly (at the speed of light) and by masterfully practicing the art of ad lib stand-up comedic monologue.

The makers of this movie (screenwriter, actors, and director) make you smile.

Throughout this film, Vincent fights back at awful situations by talking at his problems.

Vincent (Bill Murray) fights back at problems with comedic one-liners.

The main characters in this film, who are each portrayed as being impotent frail human beings, each give demonstration after demonstration of the monologic art par excellence.  They turn tragedy into comedy, they turn what would normally be seen and/or thought of as horror into joyous chaos.

Screenwriter/director Theodore Melfi and principal cast (Bill Murray, Melissa McCarthy, Naomi Watts, Chris O’Dowd, Terrance Howard and Jaeden Lieberher) provide a comedic sarcastic freewheeling tour of their grievances about our educational system, single parenthood, the divorce system, and medical care and their pugnacious love which they demonstrate through comedy, of social justice and their overwhelming moral and existential claims against what they think is wrong with and searing critique of the current state of public education, health care and how the legal system deals with divorce, child and spousal support, and single parenthood.

This movie teaches us to strive for emotional resilience by smiling at human failing.

I will discuss this movie in more detail in a future post.



Wrap Up

At the 2014 TIFF (which was held over 11 days from Sept. 4 to Sept. 15, 2104), 392 films from 79 different countries were shown; 248 of those films were World-,International-, or North American – premiere features.

I saw twenty serious movies at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival.

Nineteen of those movies taught me an important lesson relevant to my life.

I recommend each of the following movies (which were presented at 2014 TIFF).

I believe each one of the following films will connect with the public, will capture the world’s imagination, will help people who view them be in touch with what is going on and understand human behavior.

I also recommend each of the following movies for the following additional reasons.

  • (a) “Ruth & Alex” (World Premier at 2014 TIFF, Richard Loncraine, director; screenplay by Charlie Peters; Morgan Freeman, Dianne Keaton, Cynthia Nixon, Claire Vanderbloom, Korey Jackson, Carrie Preston, Sterling Jerins, Josh Pais, Miriam Shor and Michael Cristofer, principal cast); “Learning to Drive” (World Premier at 2014 TIFF, Isabel Coixet, director; Patricia Clarkson and Ben Kingsley, principal cast; screenplay by Sarah Kernochan) and “Manglehorn” (North American Premier at 2014 TIFF, David Gordon Green, director; screenplay by Paul Logan; Al Pacino, Holly Hunter, Harmony Korine, and Chris Messina, principal cast) – each taught me, by how the main characters in each movie lived their life, how to generate and maintain good relationships with members of the opposite sex.  How to live life with beauty and poise and how to make sure I do not allow myself or anyone else being a songbird kept in a gilded cage.
  • (b) “Pawn Sacrifice” (World Premier at 2014 TIFF, Ed Zwick, director; screenplay by Steven Knight; Tobey Maguire, Peter Sarsgaard Liev Schreiber, and Michael Stuhlbarg, principal cast) and “Learning to Drive” helped me to better understand (i) why I sometimes need absolute silence while, (ii) how what makes me tick (drive, ambition and single minded) sometimes makes me blind to what impact I may/might have on the people I am interacting with, and (iii) why I am the way I am socially, professionally and intellectually.  Each of these movies gave me insight into why the “good” and “bad” of what has happened to me happened. Each movie tells a story which presents an example of the truism that man meets himself in adversity.
  • (c) I found reinforcement of my already existing views of the human condition, the on-going sexual revolution, values consciousness, the worldwide spirit of the day, and the mystery of creative inspiration in the following movies:
  • (i) “Top Five” (World Premier at 2014 TIFF, Chris Rock, director; screenplay by Chris Rock; Chris Rock, Rosario Dawson, JB Smoove, Gabrielle Union, Tracy Morgan, Cedric the Entertainer, Kevin Hart, Jerry Seinfeld, Adam Sandler, Whoopi Goldberg, Sherri Shepherd, Jay Pharaoh, Anders Holm and Michael Che principal cast) and “Black and White” (World Premier at 2014 TIFF, Mike Binder, director; screenplay by Mike Binder; Kevin Costner, Octavia Spencer, Anthony Mackie, Andre Holland, Bill Burr, Mpho Koaho, Gillian Jacobs, Jennifer Ehle and Jillian Estell principal cast) each provide a “feel good” portrayal of the status of race relations in the United States today in a very positive evolved upbeat light. (ii)” Ruth & Alex” and “While We’re Young” (World Premier at 2014 TIFF, Noah Baumbach, director; screenplay by Noah Baumbach; principal cast Ben Stiller, Naomi Watts, Adam Driver, Amanda Seyfried, and Charles Grodin) present a positive and loving portrayal of human frailty and the stages of a life as we grow older. [iii] “Top Five,” “Maps to the Stars” (North American premier at 2014 TIFF, David Cronenberg, director; screenplay by Bruce Wagner; Principal Cast: Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, Olivia Williams, Sarah Gadon, John Cusack, and Robert Pattinson)  and “Love & Mercy” (World Premier at 2014 TIFF, Bill Pohlad, director; screenplay by Oren Moverman and Michael Alan Lerner; Principal Cast: John Cusack, Paul Dano, Elizabeth Banks and Paul Giamatti), on the other hand, present a glaringly ugly portrayal of the “tortured existence” of people in the entertainment industry, the pain of expectations, and the crushing unhappiness of discovering that what you thought you wanted isn’t what you wanted at all, because the price is too high.  [iv]“Haemoo” (International Premiere at 2014 TIFF, Shim Sung-Bo, director; screenplay by Shim Sung-Bo and Bong Jooh-ho; principal cast: Kim Yoon-seok, Park Yu-chun, and Han Ye-re) and “Two Days, and One Night” (Canadian Premier at 2014 TIFF, Luc Dardenne and Jean-Pierre Dardenne, directors; screenplay by Luc Dardenne and Jean-Pierre Dardenne; principal cast: Marion Cotillard, Fabrizio Rongione, Pili Groyne and Simon Caudry) show in a compelling dramatic fashion what desperate “ordinary” people will do when threatened economically by having low paying jobs or no jobs, living in a mass unemployment environment where men and women who want to work who can’t get jobs and what they are “driven to do” by hard economic times. [v] “Foxcatcher” (Canadian Premier at 2014 TIFF, Bennett Miller, Director; Screenplay: E. Max Fry, Dan Futterman; Principal Cast: Steve Carell, Channing Tatum, Mark Ruffalo, Vanessa Redgrave, Sienna Miller, Anthony Michael Hall, Guy Boyd, and Dave “Doc” Bennet) demonstrates one aspects of the old saying “great wealth and absolute power corrupt absolutely.”
  • (d) “Foxcatcher”, “Learning to Drive”, “Two Days, One Night”, “This Is My Land” (World Premier, Tamara Erde, director; screenplay by Tamara Erde) , “Breakup Buddies” (World Premier at 2014 TIFF, Ning Hao Director; Screenplay: Yue Xiao Jun, Xing Aina, Sun Xiaohang; Principal Cast: Huang Bo and Xu Zheng) and “Haemoo” personalize the realities of human nature.  Each of these movies deals with the economic, human, social, political and technological conditions that cause things to be the way they today.  Each movie portrays fiscal realities and other conditions under which most people are living today, i.e. each movie shows a different part of the whole of humanity – most people are living today through emotional complexities under the weight of economic and political conditions.
  • (e) “The Theory of Everything” is a “twilight and memories” type of movie.  It is a “feel good” movie about the real lives of “gushingly wonderful” people who are heart centered, at all times they act lovingly towards each other.
  • (f) “Pawn Sacrifice”, “A Little Chaos”, “Seymour: An Introduction”  and “Haemoo” masterfully tell stories about human behavior under different conditions, which prove that thinking is part of the reality people have to think about.
  • (g) “The Judge” –  tenderly portrays the personal and professional complexities of the life of a judge who loses his mental acuity.
  • (h) “St. Vincent” – tenderly portrays the “goodness” of a man who on the surface looks like a looser.  It is a feel-good movie, that sparkles throughout with good and wise love of people; it will leave you smiling.


Copyright © 2014 Gary S. Smolker

About Gary S. Smolker

PERSONAL PHILOSOPHY: No enterprise can exist for itself alone. Every successful enterprise ministers to some great need, it performs some great service, not for itself, but for others. Otherwise, it ceases to be profitable and ceases to exist. Imagination, open mindedness and flexibility are the most important factors in unlocking potential. Those who embrace innovation, improvisation, continuous learning, time management, are action oriented, high energy, passionate, creative, purposeful and intense individuals are best equipped to succeed. We all have ideas and the ability to make progress by sharing information and our ideas and also by changing our ideas when appropriate. We should always be on the lookout for teaching and mentoring moments. We hold time like water in our hands; however tightly we clench our fingers, it drips away. But, if it falls on a seed, a seed may grow to become something that will have a positive social impact. PERSONAL INTERESTS: I have a passion to learn, to innovate, to lead, to mentor and to teach. I seek to write things worth reading and want to do things worth writing about. I enjoy (a) driving a fast car, (b) having intense conversations (c) teaching/mentoring, (d) reading and (e) being involved in productive activity. PERSONAL: I believe in cultivating and backing passionate people, innovation, and old fashioned good ideas. I love making human connections and spreading good ideas. I am strongly motivated to achieve in situations in which independence of thought and action are called for. PERSONAL GOALS: I want to live life vibrantly, to be as sharp as a tack until my last breath and to change the world by being me. My personal goal is to be fully engaged in life, to lead by example, to set high standards and to continue to amass firsthand experience and knowledge in all that interests me. PERSONALITY: I love fun and mischief. I relish absurdity. I have an irreverent, facetious and satiric disposition. I dread boredom. I have spent a lifetime reading. I have no bias against people who have lived successful and/or complicated lives. I write to release tension, to get things off my chest. SOCIAL MEDIA: I post articles on the "Gary S. Smolker Idea Exchange" blog at www.garysmolker.wordpress.com, and "Dude's Guide to Women's Shoes" at www.dudesguidetowomensshoes.com. I also post images and comments on Instagram @garyspassion. CONTACT INFORMATION: Gary Smolker, Smolker Law Firm, 16055 Ventura Blvd., Ste 525, Encino, California, 91436-2609, USA. Phone 1-818-788-7290, e-mail GSmolker@aol.com.

Posted on October 21, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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