Dora and the Lost City of Gold (2019)

Nickelodeon has been in a tricky scenario over the last five years, in where the audience that once watched their hit shows is now becoming adults. Now they’ve scrambled for ways to appeal to a new generation, even aging their banner characters a bit. With “Dora the Explorer,” Nickelodeon has taken great pains in allowing her to blossom with her audience, and then revert back to the original formula that made her such a hit. With this feature film adaptation, they manage to pull off what is a loving tribute, a fun action adventure film, an adaptation that is never afraid to poke fun at itself every now and then, and a spotlight for latinx movie heroes we can root for.

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5 More Great Minority Movie Heroes

As we’ve learned over the last few years, representation means a lot and Hollywood is finally catching on to that fact. Minorities and People of Color are no longer gangsters, criminals and thugs. They’re now the everyman hero, the good guys, and yes, even the blockbuster superheroes. With “Dora and the Lost City of Gold” and “Hobbs and Shaw” out in theaters now, I thought it’d be a great time to continue the list of Great Minority Movie Heroes.

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The Bootleg Files: Stop Messin’ About! – The Very Best of Kenneth Williams

BOOTLEG FILES 696: “Stop Messin’ About! – The Very Best of Kenneth Williams” (1996 documentary on the British funnyman).

LAST SEEN: On YouTube.


REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: Due to its lack of availability in the U.S.


One of the joys of the long-running British film series of Carry On comedies was the brilliance of its ensemble – this was the rare series where every member of the cast enjoyed a wealth of laugh-out-loud dialogue and sight gags. But if there was a first among equals in the Carry On crew, it would have to be the immortal Kenneth Williams.
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Ever After (Endzeit) (2019)

Director Carolina Hellsgård wears her heart on her sleeve with “Ever After,” a movie that’s mired in the influence of femininity and women and offers up a lot of metaphysical ideas about mother Earth, nature, and our state of being. Although “Ever After” has been marketed as a zombie movie, the zombie element is mostly a background dressing for something more meditative and complex. While I adapted to what screenwriter Olivia Vieweg was leading us in to after the first half hour, “Ever After” still manages to be a mixed bag and doesn’t quite re-invent the wheel.

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The Tough Ones (Rome Armed to the Teeth/Roma a Mano Armata): Deluxe Edition (1976) [2 Blu-Ray/CD]

“The Tough Ones” is one of the pair of films that Umberto Lenzi directed that spotlighted the character Tanzi, a man almost driven mad by his need to thwart crime at every corner.  Tanzi is something of a great scale anti-hero who spends a lot of his time tracking down a petty thug who is very much a creep and noting very spectacular. Tanzi inspects this crime and chases the criminals like his life depends on it. He spends a majority of the film talking through gritted teeth and shouting at just about everyone and he almost always is on the verge of hurting someone. Tanzi is not meant to be a hero or even a heroic vigilante so much as he’s the corrupt law that’s hell bent on taking down the larger criminal element including Tony Parenzo (Ivan Rassimov) and his efforts to create an underground criminal network.

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Small Gauge Trauma Shorts 2019 Block [Fantasia Festival 2019]

As with every year, Fantasia Film Festival is also a place to showcase the talents of filmmakers that specialize in making short films of all genres. This year I tackled the “Small Gauge Trauma” block and thankfully didn’t find a single bad apple in the whole bunch. These shorts aren’t just creative, but they’re incredibly original and delivered in the realm of horror big time.

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