Whoever said “war is hell” was sure on target. And that saying applies not only to the frontlines but also the home front. What these men and women see during war makes it impossible to forget and move on to lead normal, fulfilling lives once they arrive back home. In Triage, Colin Farrell does not play a soldier…rather a frontline photojournalist who is known for capturing some of the most gritty war footage out there. He seems to thrive on the blood and the gore, at first. Nothing seems to faze him. Or does it? In Kurdistan, where he is covering the latest hotspot of violence, he is injured…in circumstances we do not see. He seems relatively well, physically, but after he comes home, something is wrong…both physically and emotionally. This is a man who had witnessed bodies getting torn apart, piles of corpses waiting to get disposed of, disgusting hospital conditions (even calling it a hospital is a sick joke) and a doctor who marks the “untreatable” soldiers and takes them out and shoots them to end their suffering. So, what makes anything worse than the everyday norm? We later find out that there was something that happened that involved someone he cares about a great deal. And he blocked it out of his mind, as an emotional safety net. Can we blame him? Colin Farrell here is top-notch…some of his best work ever. Trying to convey bottled up emotions can be harder to portray than behaving like an emotional mess and Farrell does the job well. Not for the faint of heart, but this one is a must-see for anyone who likes powerful, riveting dramas.

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One of the funnier films I’ve seen in a long while. Set during their father’s funeral, two brothers (one MUCH more successful than the other) run the gamut of problems and family issues during the should-be-sorrowful gathering. From the wrong corpse in the casket to an alleged gay love affair, this movie really does have it all. It’s original and well acted…and most of the humor is above board (there were only a few times I wish the filmmakers hadn’t “gone” there). If you like British comedies, you MUST watch this one. And, even if you don’t normally like the humor of the Brits, try it anyway. It’s a hoot!

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I remember how excited I was when I got to this one during my “in order” Hitchcock phase as a child. Coming right between Rear Window (1954) and The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956), and the same year as To Catch a Thief, this one would have to be great, right? Well, to a 10-year-old, it was…for lack of a better term, boring. Why? Because it is a dark comedy and the humor, I guess, was over my head. I was expecting another thriller like the ones before and after it. But, instead I got a sweetly innocent story about a small New England town and a newly widowed single mother. Harry, the title character, is/was her husband and the beginning of the film shows his dead corpse lying on the grass under some autumn trees. How, why, and by whom Harry died contributes to both the story and the humor of this tale. And, watching it again as an adult, I liked it quite a bit. It’s sharp and original and clever. But, it’s not Rear Window. Hitchcock didn’t take that many chances throughout his career. He discovered early on that he was good at and liked directing thrillers so he mainly stuck to that. This is one of the few times he deviated and not only does it showcase Hitchcock’s versatility, it also proves he can poke fun at thrillers…in The Trouble with Harry murder/death is pretty dang funny!

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