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FLICKS: The Second Mother, The New Girlfriend & Stonewall

Posted on 24 September 2015 by LeslieM

By Dave Montalbano


Opening tomorrow, The Second Mother kicks off Hispanic Heritage month. With dialogue in Portuguese and English subtitles, this film is a two-hour drama with humorous moments about family life and the social caste system in Brazil.

Val (Regina Case) is the devoted housekeeper to a doctor and his high class wife. She dotes upon their son, Fabinho (Michel Joelsas), who feels a special attachment to his “Second Mommy.” Early in the film, Val is babysitting Fabinho at the pool when the telephone rings. When Val answers the phone and talks to her estranged daughter Jessica (Camila Mardila), Fabinho becomes confused.

As the years past, Val becomes as much of the fixture of the doctor’s house as the living room sofa. When Jessica arrives in town to take a series of entrance exams, the doctor impulsively offers to let Jessica stay in the guest room. Complications arise as Jessica observes Val’s intimate relationship with Fabinho.

The Second Mother is a fresh motion picture about the rites of passage for a mother transferring from middle age, a wealthy family adjusting to empty nest syndrome and two young people confronting responsibility in the world. It’s contemporary and is likely to be remade as an American sitcom.

From France comes The New Girlfriend, a film that is being promoted as an Alfred Hitchcock-style thriller. The film is much more related to Hitchcock’s later, more personal work, like Marnie, Spellbound and Rebecca, three films that rely more on psychological revelations than cliffhanging action sequences.

Stonewall is a slice of contemporary American history much like Straight Outta Compton and Black Mass. Directed by Roland Emmereich (Independence Day), Stonewall details the birth of the Gay Liberation movement from the riots in New York City.

Despite the televised distractions caused by football, baseball and the Republican debates, the motion picture box office is enjoying its best September in over a decade. Expect 2015 to close out as a memorable movie-going year.

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