Archetypes: Film: Review: ‘Alien: Covenant’ (2017)

The Alien franchise’s signature archetype has been the Moon, signifying Lunar birthing and caregiving: there’s the space vessels’ operating system MU/TH/UR, simply referred to as “Mother”; the extraterrestrial xenomorph, keen on reproducing; the absentee mom who misses out on her daugheter’s entire life – easy to do when you’re lost in space – and who […]

Archetypes: Television: Review: Feminine Archetypes in ‘The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks’ (2017)

Families bequeathe their most valuable possessions to subsequent generations to preserve legacy. In HBO’s fact-based dramatization “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks,” based on the book by Rebecca Skloot, an item as dear as gold is gifted to the world and bypasses the offspring. The story focuses on what’s medically known as the HeLa cell […]

Archetypes: Television: Review: ‘Girls’: Moon, Venus and the Feminine (2017)

Unlike Athena, who emerged fully formed out of Zeus’s thigh, the quartet of “Girls” – chronologically young women but called by a more immature younger-female appellation – spent six seasons finding themselves. And the show’s creatrix, Lena Dunham, used the dyad signifying the archetypal Feminine – Moon and Venus – as their strategy for self-discovery. […]

Archetypes: Film: Review: ‘A United Kingdom’ (2017)

A United Kingdom, directed by Amma Asante and based on a true story, wastes no time announcing its Uranian theme of breaking with tradition. On the one hand, the upheaval is personal. In 1947 Englishwoman Ruth Williams (Rosamund Pike) attends a dance with her sister (Laura Carmichael) and has one of those love-at-first-sight moments with […]

Archetypes: Film: Review: ‘Jackie’ (2016)

You need a kickass, steely preservationist to ensure that an exceptional life becomes a memory that feeds future generations. And in Jackie, that force-of-nature caretaker is Jacqueline Kennedy who, after her husband’s assassination, impressionistically exudes intentions – elegantly, sullenly, arrogantly – to ensure Jack’s being remembered. Directed by Chilean filmmaker Pablo Larrain, and written by […]

Archetypes: Film: Review: ‘Morgan’ (2016)

Motherhood set against a wash of sophisticated biotechnology is the prevailing theme of Morgan, a futuristic thriller directed by Luke Scott. The title character with the sexually ambiguous name is Morgan (Anya Taylor-Joy), an “It” – a “hybrid autonomous organism” – which has been generated in a remote location by a dedicated tribe of corporate […]

Archetypes: Film: Review: ‘Mia Madre’ (2016)

The fine line between balancing one’s family and professional life cuts a deep groove in Mia Madre (My Mother), an incisive dramedy co-written and directed by Nanni Moretti. Margherita (Margherita Buy) is an earnest but nit-picking middle-aged movie director who has turned into a frustrated caregiver on set. Her charge is Italophile actor Barry Huggins […]

Archetypes: Film: Review: ‘Jason Bourne’ (2016)

We’re long past identity, supremacy, ultimatum and legacy. Now, as the title says, it’s just Jason Bourne, with the entirety of his chiseled-six-pack essence reduced to finding the truth about the trajectory that led him to become amnesiac Jason Bourne (Matt Damon). Bourne has kept in touch with Nicky Parsons (Julia Stiles) who has gone […]

Archetypes: Film: Review: ‘The Nice Guys’ (2016)

Done right, the two-guys-and-a-gal buddy-movie combo is hard to beat. It worked superbly in the 1950s-set L.A. Confidential, where a nurturing Veronica Lake-lookalike prostitute (Kim Basinger) was sandwiched between Bud White’s (Russell Crowe) brawn and Ed Exley’s (Guy Pearce) brains. That archetypal Moon-Mars-Mercury triad has somehow begotten The Nice Guys. The movie, co-written and directed […]

Astrology: Fashion: Julianne Moore’s Sweaters and Wraps in ‘Maggie’s Plan’

A lot of cold-weather settings figure into Maggie’s Plan. In turn, they serve as a logical prop for Georgette’s (Julianne Moore) enveloping, artisan, wool sweaters and accessories. Her items’ weaves, stitches and looping are so sensual that they provoke hands to reach out to the screen and immerse palms into the items, as one would […]