• Strictly Films

Weekly Roundup Episode 79: Reflecting


Welcome to another edition of Weekly Roundup!


Spring Break is officially here in Florida. I worked last year during Spring Break as literally only like a couple customers came in the store, for the four or five days I worked during the week. So this year considering how dead the store is gonna be and how my hours will be temporary cut: Decided this is the perfect opportunity to go on vacation.


As I reflect on the past few months or so… It’s honestly crazy to believe how I pulled it all off, knowing damn well this is not easily done. As my family decided to leave behind a grand life in Florida, I for one refused to leave. Vegas at the time for me felt like reliving a nightmare. I had no desire of working at an establishment, where one is restricted to breathe or show no facial expression which will likely influence ones mind to encounter a great state of depression. I was disgusted that some establishments in the city had discrimination laws against perfectly normal human beings, whom maintain a different lifestyle that is not considered “Acceptable”. On top of that: I feel I no longer wish to be surrounded by lost souls.


I really enjoyed the lifestyle I have in Florida. I enjoy my job, love the foundation of community there, love my surroundings, I really enjoy my church, and I really love the vibe and energy of this place. To me: Florida was doing many wonders for my life, my mental health, growth as an individual, as I was becoming more whole as a person. Florida has done so much for me, especially during 2020 and early 2021. I recall coming to a conclusion while in Vegas that life has become meaningless, as there wasn’t much of a point to live anymore. Moving to Florida… That all changed. Florida was the one lone place in which brought back my sanity from all the encounters of insanity going on, I felt like my life had actually mattered, that I was genuinely cared for, as I’m beyond grateful for all it’s done for me. That’s why I stood my ground and refused to leave: How can I leave a place in which has done so much good for my mind, heart, and soul?!


Thankfully I was given an opportunity to live with a family friend, as I’m beyond grateful she took me in with open arms, allowing me to continue living the life I rightfully deserve. I understand living this life would also mean leaving loved ones behind, which could increase my chances of enduring a great amount of loneliness. However: At some point in our lives we have to take on a challenging task of responsibility, as well as putting our happiness and well being first… That is what I was willing to do in order to live here, so I did just that.


The experience at hand had many ups and a fair amount of downs. The ups have benefited me well, as I became more daring to explore more within my surroundings, while also being more open to create more with my dishes and such. One of the major ups really is being much more dedicated to going to Church every Sunday: Church has really helped me mentally more so spiritually. The Church I go to offers a much more genuine experience compared to the others I’ve been to, they give back to the community while also offer a place in which helps recovering addicts. I feel a lot of excitement and look more forward to going every Sunday just about, I haven’t felt so eager in going since my elementary school days.


The downs come hand to hand, as loneliness can take a brief toll on you mentally, as I do miss my family and all. I tend to get more emotional on occasion: Sometimes it’s hard to manage it all knowing there’s no one to go to, when you can let your emotions out in the presence of someone. I miss my Mother: I miss being around her presence a lot, as her spirit and well being brings me a lot of joy… That part has been the toughest for me overall. I know that’s something where us men can be made fun, however I think men in general through their entire existence, establish their greatest bond with their mother out of everyone, so embrace expressing your appreciation and grace for your mother.


Throughout this experience: It does feel like I’m in a Foreign Exchange Student Program. Though I love the stay and room, still feels kind of odd to be living in a place where I’ve come across the individual a couple occasions… Like sometimes I feel I’m not welcomed, but that’s more my mind talking. It’s been a cool experience, it has made my spirit more willingly to share more… Like before this experience I hate cooking for others, now when I go to the store I think about the other person in mind, as I thoroughly enjoy serving my family friend every night. Her having a dog is a major plus: Sure his bark is terrible, however he’s a lovable fun energetic doggy.


Looking forward to my return to Vegas for the week, I feel it’s well needed and well deserved, especially giving myself a break from cooking as well. I just hope my itinerary is filled with nothing but fun and memories that’ll last a lifetime, hope to see many friends too, and more importantly… Can cash in on a date with one these girls on Tinder, I spent a month subscription tryna to secure a date, Da Don is Ting Deprived. While what happens in Vegas, Stays in Vegas… Let’s talk about movies!

The Sky is Everywhere Grade: B


I can’t be the only one whom was patiently waiting for Pee Wee Herman to pop out of nowhere, claiming he could relate to Lennie’s (Grace Kaufman) sisters lost comparing it to Pee Wee losing his shoe… I can hear that obnoxious laugh play out.


Josephine Decker returns with a brand new film this time around with A24. I loved Madelines Madeline, however Shirley disappointed me big time as I wasn’t sure what to expect with her follow up. I was actually pleased this time around, as I felt The Sky is Everywhere t’was enjoyable.


I think what’s going to throw off viewers is based around it’s depressing subject matter, the way this film looks from a visual perspective. When I mentioned Pee Wee earlier: That’s exactly what this film reminds me of, especially from a set design like this film looks MASSIVELY colorful and quite bizarre too. I feel this choice at hand makes a whole lot of sense despite how weird it looks. Considering our lead character’s deep mindset, her feelings tangled up as the mind can lose grip on reality as a whole due to depression, and while also this character is a bit weird herself and her family especially… Makes a lot of sense why it looks the way it is, as the odd choice really made this film more engaging than what it already is.


The way this film handled the subject matter I feel they’ll be many whom can relate to what Lennie is feeling in terms of losing of loved one. Losing a loved one surely can shut down anyone especially when you’re extremely close with that individual, like Lennie was with her sister. The whole romantic aspect was cute and weird, I understand whom Lennie hooks up will turn heads like I did, however considering her circumstance and trying everything to feel as if her sister never died… It’s justified.


I guess my biggest issue at hand would be the supporting characters as I felt they didn’t make much of a significant impact on this story, as it’s really Lennie carrying all the weight here. Especially Lennie’s family… I was extremely surprised I didn’t feel anything from them at all, it’s like they were barely noticeable in this film. The pivotal point of the story where Lennie decides to break apart items… That was too goofy, I didn’t care for that sequence at all as it was just silly.


Overall, The Sky is Everywhere t’was a solid film. I recommend checking this one out, can be found on Apple TV Plus.

The Weekend Away Grade: D


Nothing reminds a friend how fun they used to be, than hiring a couple male escorts… This is what happens in the movie, I’m not joking. In what world is hiring Male Escorts the ideal of fun?! Like these were two attractive women, I’m sure they can lure in any guy to have fun with on their own.


The Weekend Away definitely caters to the LifeTime Television community. Visually looks meh, like it definitely looks like a TV movie that’s for sure. Story at hand is a bit ridiculous, as the twists and turns it takes becomes extremely bizarre especially in the closing shot. There are some cringey over the top acting, more towards this one male cop. The logic within the characters written makes absolutely no sense, I understand law enforcement is different in other countries, but good God these people are idiots.


Overall, The Weekend Away is a bad film. I don’t recommend this film, I honestly forgotten this film within days as I struggled to remember the title of it.


Tall Girl 2 Grade: D-


You know you’re film is bad and forgettable, when the opening two minutes is telling the audience what exactly happened from the previous film… OUCH.


Tall Girl 2 does offer a couple genuine moments. There are genuine moments in which addresses anxiety attacks, which one trait could be caused is a voice of doubt going on in your head telling you negative thoughts and putting on immense pressure on yourself. While yes we can criticize the fact the voice inside Jodi’s (Ava Michelle) head moments is obnoxious and it was handled better in one episode on Bojack Horseman, however there is two good moments when Jodi encounters an attack in the car, while going through stress before her big show as her arch nemesis actually helps her. For what it’s worth: The film handles this subject matter not too bad, considering this is a pre-teen property film. Oh there is one good joke about taking a jab at Maroon 5… I didn’t laugh or chuckle, however I did pointed at the screen and said, “Ah, that’s a good joke.”


Everything else about this film… It lacks a great amount of energy. Like it’s not really fascinating, entertaining, nor engaging at all… From a story standpoint, conflicts and situations at hand, and especially characters felt completely bland to me. At least The Kissing Booth trilogy had something to offer in terms of whacky and bizarre entertainment in the worst possible way, with this film… Doesn’t really have a pulse in it, for some reason it exists and the film doesn’t want us to care about it whatsoever. You know what this film can be compared to?! Going into a business where an employee is on their phone the whole time while you’re there: You know they exist, but they’re not giving you much of a reason why to even bother with them in the first place, because they don’t care about being there in the first place.


Overall, Tall Girl 2 is bad. I don’t recommend this film. -Mitch Smietana


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