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Television

A Call To Spy

Shortly after Germany’s conquest of France in 1940, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill instructed his intelligence services to send spies behind enemy lines. In a departure from past practices, women were recruited,  supposedly because they were more inconspicuous than men. A Call To Spy, a thriller now available on the Netflix streaming network, tells their […]

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Television

American Insurrection

During the dying days of Donald Trump’s turbulent four-year presidency, hundreds of his supporters stormed Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. in a brazen attempt to stop Congress’ certification of Joe Biden’s presidential election victory. A disturbing proportion of the demonstrators who participated in this unprecedented event on January 6, 2021 were far-right extremists who belonged […]

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Television

Hemingway In Perspective

Nearly 60 years after his suicide, the American novelist, short story writer and journalist Ernest Hemingway is still a formidable, even legendary, figure. Hemingway, a three-part PBS biopic by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick, explores his life and legacy through forceful words and evocative photographs and newsreels. This absorbing documentary, narrated by the actor Peter […]

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Television

Shtisel Dives Into Its Third Season

Shtisel is back for a third season. The Israeli drama about an ultra-Orthodox family in Jerusalem is now available on the Netflix streaming network. Rabbi Shulem Shtisel (Dov Glickman), a widower and the headmaster of a religious day school for boys, is the dominant figure in this meticulously crafted production. Bearded and rumpled, he’s clearly the […]

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Television

Sons Of Anarchy: A Greek Tragedy Set In California

It didn’t seem like the kind of TV show that would even remotely interest me. Sons of Anarchy, created by Kurt Sutter and currently running on the Netflix streaming network, is a crime drama about a motorcycle club in California. What could possibly attract me to Hells Angels types and their misadventures? Throwing caution to […]

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Television

Pele The King

I used to be a big sports fan, but nowadays I seldom follow sporting events. When I do watch sports on television, I tune in to the track and field program at the summer Olympic Games or to the World Cup, the championship of soccer. So when I read that Netflix was planning to broadcast […]

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Television

Tehran: A Suspenseful Television Miniseries

Israel and Iran are the worst of enemies. Iran regularly call for Israel’s destruction and supports its most implacable enemies. Israel, in turn, works ceaselessly to sabotage Iran’s nuclear program and undermine its regional proxies. Their conflict is an existential battle tailor-made for the big screen or television. Tehran, the new eight-part Apple TV miniseries, […]

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Television

Love, Lights, Hanukkah!

Twinkling Christmas trees and flickering Hanukkah candles are the illuminating bookends of the Hallmark Channel’s newest seasonal movie, Love, Lights, Hanukkah! Filmed in Vancouver, but set in Cleveland, Mark Jean’s feel-good movie celebrates not only the miracle of Hanukkah, the Maccabees’ victory over the Syrians, but the miracle of a mother connecting with a long […]

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Television

Downfall Of A Titan

Dominique Strauss-Kahn rolled the dice and lost. DSK, as he was popularly known, blundered in a moment of incredible stupidity, setting into motion castastrophic events that cost him his career, tarnished his reputation and destroyed his marriage. DSK was managing director of the International Monetary Fund and a potential president of France when disaster struck on […]

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Television

Mank Resurrects A Legendary Hollywood Creative Partnership

David Fincher’s workmanlike film, Mank, shines a spotlight on one of the most productive collaborative partnerships in the annals of the Hollywood movie industry. Citizen Kane, the enduring 1941 cinematic classic, was the brainchild of Herman Mankiewicz, a seasoned wordsmith who struggled with alcoholism, and Orson Welles, a precocious upstart who basked in self-adulation. Now […]