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  • Strictly Films

Weekly Roundup Episode 32; Mitch Jr. Makes Family History Once More

Welcome to another edition of Weekly Roundup! Next Sunday on October 4th, will be my birthday as I will turn the big twenty-five years old. A quarter of a century down already... I honestly don’t want to be doing another twenty-five years of this, but at the end of the day make the best of your time here and live life to the fullest until it’s over of course.

Along with turning the big twenty-five, I will become the first member in my entire family’s history, to start their first twenty-five years of life, never drinking, smoking, doing drugs, and maintaining their virginity... S T A T S! This is a very high honor towards my family’s history, I don’t think we’ll ever experience this ever again... Rightfully so, this is honestly an impossible achievement that requires a lot of hard work and patience. My life has taught people a couple valuable lessons, regarding living this lifestyle.

One lesson at hand: Peer Pressure Doesn’t Exist. They say whomever you choose to associate yourselves, means you’ll become exactly like them... I’m here to tell that is completely bullshit. Sure people can introduce or influence you to new things, but you don’t need to be exactly like them in order to fit in. My entire family is heavily into alcohol, I’ve hanged around those that smoke and do drugs. Still to this day: I have no intentions to do any of that stuff, yet can still maintain friendships and relationships with them. The only person that is responsible in anything you do, is only yourself. You can be whoever the hell you want to be in life, you don’t have to do anything you wish not to do. Stop blaming others for the person you have become in this life time, as you yourself need to only blame yourself and if you don’t like the person you are... Simply take action and change. I’m happy I proved this blasphemous illusion we call Peer Pressure is nothing more than a tool, to blame others for your own faults rather than take responsibility, that this theory doesn’t exist. *Mic Drops*

The most valuable lesson at hand: It’s not impossible to battle your battles head on naturally. One of the main reasons I chose to partake in drinking, smoking, or drugs is because I don’t want to experience feelings that are not my own. As a human being you’re going to experience many feelings at hand, whether it be happiness, sadness, anger, and fear. More than often human beings run away from feelings they don’t want to experience, as they simply drown their sorrows away with these substances. I have no sense of judgment against anyone that does these things, I’m an understandable accepting human being, as the only thing I care is your character and being a decent human being. In my opinion: How are you going to grow as an individual, that chooses to drown their sorrows, when the challenge of facing these emotions comes about?!

Is it a challenge to take on your battles head on?! Absolutely. However because I’ve battled my battles head on, I now have experience with every single feeling as I know how to handle it myself. The thing is not only do you not grow as an individual partaking in these substances due to the difficulty of battling your own battles, you are also ruining your health physically and mentally. Though battling your battles head on takes a toll on you mentally, I do feel an increase of stability as the time goes on, while also maintaining a fairly healthy physical approach, as you can sense a great amount of strength mentally as well. With these substances even including medications which I am against... You’re honestly killing your body as well, loosing a fair amount of brain cells as it becomes harder to comprehend over the course of time.

I’m never against a good time, I think people don’t exactly need to be exactly like me and be entirely sober. Don’t forget I’m flawed as the only person that is flawless is Jesus. But the moral lesson is when the going becomes tough: It’s better to fight those battles head on, to have experience of those dreadful emotions, than to damage your mind and body with those substances instead. That’s why they say in commercials involved with alcohol, to drink responsibly for a reason.

I’ve endured a great amount of judgement and criticism for the lifestyle I live, family members included. But as a young kid I’ve experience a great amount of mental abuse, to those that were under the influence. The name calling and the hostile environment, has left me truly scarred as even when I’m older, I’m still terrified by this feeling. At sixteen during a summer vacation I told myself, “I will never grow up to experience being under the influence of any kind. I never want to make a child’s experience during their journey of life, a living hell for them, where they question everyday if being born was a mistake?” The amount of trauma I’ve experience from those under the influence, will haunt me for the rest of my life, and I don’t apologize for this lifestyle I wish to live, for the better of others and myself.

At the end of the day: I’ve accepted every single one of you, as I only hope for happiness, growth, and success for each and everyone of you. So just accept me.

Extremely proud of the individual I am today, as there is no other person I rather be than myself. Thank you to all the children, all the women, my mother, and praise God for influencing the character in which I want to achieve each and everyday. I love you all, God Bless, and LET’S TALK ABOUT MOVIES!

Suzi Q Grade: B

Suzi Quatro was the first female led rockstar in bands, as we embark on a fairly successful music career and theatre career as well.

This documentary on Suzi Quatro goes by the book of any other documentary, on any recording artist. The film making style is nothing really to behold, it’s a fairly basic shot documentary as it doesn’t try to be anything beyond it’s standards. Substance Wise... It’s cute. Here’s a woman that was determine to become a star and didn’t let anyone hold her back from doing so. Whether it be her family or her marriage, Suzi was determine to be her own person and not be boxed in, in which I can heavily respect that. When we rely on heavily fro the approval of others, the ability in reaching to heights you want to reach, can be hold down by those people. Doesn’t mean Suzi disrespected nor disregarded them, she just believe there was more to her potential, than being held back by others.

I enjoyed the poetry and music portions of this film, Suzi Quatro is extremely gifted as an artist, creating many fun tunes that were inspired by Elvis, Disco, and of course heavy rock n roll. Personality wise Suzi Quatro is one that can easily be followed, due to the fact she has an outgoing personality, with tons of charisma. I love how this documentary concludes, as Suzi Quatro doesn’t deny any request to talk with fans, give out autographs, or take photos with them. She’s extremely grateful for the life she has, as there is no reason to bring out a good day for others that have supported her, I wish more celebrities would have that kind of attitude than crying all the time.

Overall, Suzi Q is a solid documentary film. I recommend checking this one out, it’s a nice watch.

The Shadow of Violence Grade: B

The Shadow of Violence or Calm With Horses whatever you want to call it, featured one of the most promising young actors of the future Barry Keoghan, whom delivered an Oscar snubbed performance out of The Killing of a Sacred Deer.

The Shadow of Violence follows a basic formula, regarding a troubled soul who is caught up in shady business, as he has no control towards his own well being. Arm (Cosmo Jarvis) used to be a pound for pound boxer, as he now does illegal drug activity with his buddy Dympna (Barry Keoghan). Arm is not a cold blooded murderer as his role is suppose to be, he’s just a man that lost his way in life, as boxing is a sport that requires control and discipline from a coach, as Arm really has no idea how to be his own man. I liked the story, I felt it finished fairly strong in the end, giving us an emotional knock out punch. However some of the tropes felt too familiar from other past films, as I would’ve liked something different this time around.

Regarding the character Arm I’ve come to question just why he gave up boxing in the first place?! He mentioned earlier he killed a man, but it’s not throughly explained why. Did he kill a man off from the ring which made him banned from the sport, or did he kill a man in the ring while boxing which left him wanting to quit the sport?!

The strongest aspect of this film is how well written the characters are. You understand each and everyone of their struggles, as it makes clear sense. Of course Arm is the best written character as he has a lot going on for him. Regarding he struggles being his own person, being involved in this illegal activity, plus the hardships of handling a son whom has a disability as those in this town shame the mother for turning him out this way... Which makes the audience wants to punch those people in the face. This is director Nick Rowland’s first feature film, as I can honestly say he should be proud of himself, as I look forward to see what exactly he has for us moving forward.

Overall, The Shadow of Violence is a solid film. I recommend checking this one out.

House of Hummingbird Grade: B+

House of Hummingbird happens to be film maker Bora Kim’s debut feature film, as what Bora Kim does with this film is something special. A well done executed coming of age story from start to finish, as the audience develops a connection with our lead character Eunhee (Ji-Hu Park). Watching Eunhee life going as one whom hasn’t fully discover themself as a whole, as she tries to figure things out through the troubles of growing up, while living in a strict household felt very relatable to all the misfits in the world.

Though Eunhee makes a mistake along the way that involves shop lifting, she’s simply a normal teenage girl who cares for individuals, simply like exploring her neighborhood, likes hanging out with friends and a love interest, and likes drawing comics. Eunhee goes through many challenges along the way, involving abuse from her own brother, a lump beneath her ear, and grief. Over the course of this film you can’t help to not only feel sorry for Eunhee for the disappointment she’s facing, but also the lack of care she is given around her. In a way this film reflects the way we view mental health, as it’s often ignored as we only care individual placements such as school and jobs, rather than the human being.

Don’t get me wrong Eunhee parents have every right to feel strongly passionate for their kids to get in a good school, secure a great career so they don’t have to work all day like themselves. But to constantly throw out such incredibly offensive things, putting down the individual, and even worst allowing abuse at home is unacceptable. You can still be strict by the way you parent, but you have to remember you’re still a parent and should play the best role you can be as a parent for Eunhee.

The film is shot beautifully, really loved the concluding shot where the characters are looking at the fallen bridge of 1994. Lovely composed score, pretty good performances across the board, well written story that makes you feel a great amount of emotions. 2020 has delivered us some great emotionally riveting films like Never Rarely Sometimes Always, Sorry We Missed You, and now you can House of Hummingbird along with that special group.

Overall, House of Hummingbird is a great film and a striking debut from film maker Bora Kim. I highly recommend checking this one out, you will certainly not be disappointed. -Mitch Smietana

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