Reel Corner - July 2021

Donne Paine

Summer Movie Previews

Reel Corner - July 2021

In the ultimate symbol of one Hollywood era ending and another beginning, MGM, home to James Bond, Thelma & Louise and Rocky, finally found a buyer willing to pay retail: Amazon.
Rumors have swirled for a while now that Amazon was looking to buy MGM, and this month those rumors were made official with the announcement that Amazon will indeed acquire MGM for $8.45 billion. That means Amazon will now be in control of the crown jewel of spy franchises, James Bond, which could have major repercussions for one of the longest-running and most iconic movie franchises of all time.

The big question now is how Amazon will handle the distribution of the James Bond movies. No Time to Die, the long-delayed latest installment, is set for release in October 2021 through MGM subsidiary. This will likely hold, but will No Time to Die now have a streaming component day-of, or shortly after theatrical release? Is it too late for any kind of streaming deal to come together? Many questions remain.

Reel Corner - June 2021

Donne Paine

Summer Movie Previews

Reel Corner - June 2021

It seems that Hollywood is very busy with its 2021 summer movies coming to theaters for June, July and August. With an ungodly amount of comic book movies from Marvel and DC alike, to the new Fast and Furious movie, this summer is jam-packed with some of the most anticipated releases to ever be announced. This is due, in part, to the fact that many of these films were originally scheduled for a sooner release, or should have been out months ago. The outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic led to a great deal of rescheduling and reevaluating primary methods of distribution, with some studios taking the straight-to-streaming route. The ones who chose to uphold the tradition of going to the theater either postponed a release to later in the year, or went as far as pushing it right into the 2022 calendar, which is why you may recognize some of the titles below as films you hoped to see in 2020.

Reel Corner - May 2021

Donne Paine

Small Films Worth Seeing

Reel Corner - May 2021

When it comes to films worth seeing, be sure not to overlook the small stuff—animated and live-action shorts, foreign films and documentaries. We are reminded, especially around award season, that there are many alternatives to feature films that should not be missed.

Here are a few to consider:

Reel Corner - April 2021

Donne Paine

Golden Globe Winner Best Motion Picture Nomadland

Reel Corner - April 2021

NOMADLAND
Director: Chloe Zhao
Frances McDormand, David Strathairn, Linda May

Based on the popular non-fiction book by Jessica Bruder, Nomadland takes you on an adventure connecting with nature through van living. Fern, played by Frances McDormand, is grieving a life that’s been ripped away from her. It seems like she was relatively happy in Empire, Nevada, one of those many American small towns built around industry. When the gypsum plant there closed, the town of Empire literally closed with it. In six months the entire zip code was eliminated. During this nightmare state, Fern’s husband died, leaving her alone and “houseless”. (She uses this term over homeless)

Reel Corner - March 2021

Donne Paine

Celebrating Gullah History

Reel Corner - March 2021

If you missed the month-long Gullah Celebration, hosted by Native Island Business and Community Affairs Association, the celebration showcased the rich cultural heritage of the Gullah people and their history in the Lowcountry. It included an art exhibition, “Taste of Gullah” and Gullah gospel music.

Reel Corner - February 2021

Donne Paine

Following My Heart to Stowe, Vermont!

Reel Corner - February 2021

If you recall movies like Funny Farm with Chevy Chase,  Baby Boom with Diane Keaton, The Cider House Rules, Beetlejuice, The Trouble with Harry (filmed entirely in Stowe), or Four Seasons... they were all filmed in Vermont.

Since new film releases have been few and far between during the pandemic, I thought I’d share what it’s like in the ski village of Stowe, Vermont, where these films were made.

Reel Corner - December 2020

Donne Paine

Top 20-20 of 200 Memorable Films

Reel Corner - December 2020

Hallmark Channel is well-known for its “Countdown to Christmas” and original family-friendly movies, and this year is no exception. Hallmark has announced 40 brand new Christmas movies for its 2020 holiday schedule! The movies will air on Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies and Mysteries.

Though Hallmark movies can be formulaic and simple, they are also free of profanity, sexual situations and heavy drama. They are movies you can watch with anyone from age 2 to 92.

There's a reason why the channel refers to itself as the Heart of TV; there is little ugliness to be found in these shows and movies. You can always find a smile on the faces of the characters, even though there may be some tears, as well. But there's not a lot of arguing or disagreements. What disappointment you find is often fleeting, as is the sadness, because Hallmark knows we watch to be uplifted. Hallmark Channel is, indeed, a happy place. And that's why it had a 9 percent growth last year alone.

Reel Corner - November 2020

Donne Paine

Top 20-20 of 200 Memorable Films

Reel Corner - November 2020

Congratulations Pink!
200 issues is quite an achievement,
and The Reel Corner has been honored to a part of all 200 issues.

There are some interesting facts about the number 200:
> A quarter of the world’s wealth is controlled by just 200 companies.
> 200 miles a day was the average daily distance covered by the Pony Express, the United States first east to west mail service
> There are only 200 white tigers in the world
> The Great Wall of China was built in 200 B.C.

Reel Corner - October 2020

Donne Paine

Tired of Netflix? Here are Some Alternatives to Try

Reel Corner - October 2020

Netflix may be one of the biggest and most well-known video streaming services in the world, but it sure isn’t the only one. There are a lot of Netflix alternatives out there that will keep you entertained every night, some of which are even free.

Amazon Prime Video

Amazon Prime Video is one of the best, if not the best, alternatives to Netflix. Prime offers plenty of popular movies and television shows, as well as quality original programming. The shows that stand out are: “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”; “The Man In The High Castle”; “The Boys” and Tom Clancy’s “Jack Ryan,” to name a few.

Reel Corner - September 2020

Donne Paine

The Future of Movie Theaters

Reel Corner - September 2020

The movie business is always changing, but these days it can be difficult to tell the difference between struggle and outright decline.

It is tempting during these dreary times to pin our hopes on a single solution to an intractable problem: One leader who might save us; one vaccine that might inoculate us; one day when suddenly everything will be back to normal. In reality, the return to normalcy will be slow and halting. Even once a vaccine becomes available, not everyone will receive it at once. We will return to our offices, our friends’ homes and, yes, movie theaters in small groups, then larger ones. Appealing as it was to cling to a symbol of resilience and the shared, communal experiences we yearn for, it was never that simple.

Reel Corner - August 2020

Donne Paine

Celebrating the 19th Amendment in Film

Reel Corner - August 2020

Can you imagine living in a time when your voice, your opinion,
your ability to vote your choice was not recognized? Was not allowed.
Well ladies, that’s the way it was until August 26, 1920, just 100 years ago.

After seven decades of a civil rights movement to allow women to vote,
the 19th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified.

In honor of the fearless, brave, courageous and patient women who helped make it happen, I dedicate the Reel Corner column this month with the following films. These are films of resistance, empowerment and justice.

Reel Corner - July 2020

Donne Paine

Resurgence of the Drive-In & Highway 21 Drive In

Reel Corner - July 2020


With much of the U.S. economy shuttered and people still being slow to emerge, families are finding that the drive-in movie theater presents the perfect escape.
The coronavirus has forced traditional movie theaters

to close their doors. That seems to be the recipe for a resurgence of drive-ins—
a slice of Americana
that had its heyday in the 1950s and ‘60s.

If you drive on Route 21 from Beaufort toward Charleston,
you will pass the cool retro sign of Highway 21 Drive In reminiscent of days gone by.
Low and behold, this drive-in is alive and well and is an oasis for movie goers!

Locally, Highway 21 Drive In has always had a healthy clientele, states owner Joe Barth, but when the virus hit he was ready to close, even though drive-ins are perfect for social distancing. But the clientele outcry was so strong to stay open, he petitioned the governor, and Highway 21 Drive In was given permission, with certain precautions, to stay open. Highway 21 Drive In was built in 1978, Joe and Bonnie Barth bought it in 2004. They added a second screen in 2007 and went digital in 2014.

Reel Corner - June 2020

Donne Paine

What if??

Reel Corner - June 2020

With movie theaters closed and blockbusters-in-waiting being postponed all the way to next year, it's a lot for a film fan to take in. Thankfully, there are many, many films, ranging from the fantastic to the fantastically bad, that offer some escape and comfort in a storm of distressing news.

In other words, the Reel Corner’s got you.

Here are a few movies to watch (or perhaps, revisit) that you may have overlooked while we have been sheltering in place. They are perfect for every mood you might be feeling.  
Be Strong…Stay well …and wear your mask!

Reel Corner - May 2020

Donne Paine

What if??

Reel Corner - May 2020

And, what if…
If we subscribe to the philosophy that life is always working out for us, and that there is an intelligence far greater than humans at work…
That all is interconnected.
What if…
the virus is here to help us?
To reset.
To remember.
What is truly important.
Reconnecting with community.
Reconnecting with family, as there is more time at home.

Reel Corner - March 2020

Donne Paine

March Madness at the Movies

Reel Corner - March 2020

You’re thinking of basketball, right? Think again. In the film industry this term refers to a month where films of lesser known actors and directors are introduced in between the award-winning films of 2019 and 2020 summer blockbusters. As in Basketball March Madness a little known team (in this case film or actor) can become a winner and stir up some critical buzz. It’s also a month where actors we haven’t seen for a while are trying to get back into the game.

With the South Korean film, “Parasite,” winning both Best Foreign Language film and Best Film awards, it has given Asian filmmakers confidence and funding for their projects. You can guarantee you will see more films from Asia.

Reel Corner - February 2020

Donne Paine

The Reel Corner Highlight: And The Winner Is...

Reel Corner - February 2020

It’s the award season once more. 

The Golden Globes are already behind us, and the coveted Oscars are this month on February 9.

If you are a movie-goer like The Reel Corner, you might agree there really weren’t many films to get excited about in 2019. Never fear, The Reel Corner has highlighted a few worth seeing.

Reel Corner - January 2020

Donne Paine

The Reel Corner Highlight: Edward Norton

Reel Corner - January 2020

Scarlett O'Hara and Rhett Butler are one of the most enduring couples in American cinema, and December marked the 80th anniversary of their film debut in Gone with the Wind, a tale of war, love gone wrong and tragic endings. The film’s anniversary on December 15, was met with surprisingly little fuss—positive or negative.

Gone With the Wind can be credited for the existence of the television network Turner Classic Movies. Owner Ted Turner's obsession with the movie led him to buy the film library that became the basis of the network. GWTW is the most famous, most widely loved, and—adjusted for inflation—most successful film in Hollywood history ($3.4 billion in current money).

Reel Corner - December 2019

Donne Paine

The Reel Corner Highlight: Edward Norton

Reel Corner - December 2019

Edward Harrison Norton is an American actor known for his intense performances and uncompromising approach to his work. He has received multiple awards and nominations. Raised in Columbia, Maryland, Norton was drawn to theatrical productions at local venues as a child. After graduating from Yale College in 1991, he worked for a few months in Japan as a consultant for his grandfather’s company before moving to New York City to pursue an acting career. He gained immediate recognition for his debut in Primal Fear (1996), which earned him the Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor and an Academy Award nomination. His role as a reformed neo-Nazi in 1998’s American History X earned him an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor.

Reel Corner - November 2019

Donne Paine

What’s Hot in Films? Asian American Stories

Reel Corner - November 2019

I have the honor of knowing these talented young men involved in filmmaking each representing a different decade. Let’s hear what they have to say about the future of films and those interested in filmmaking.

Jim Picariello (40-Something)
If you listen to conversations from those on the creative side of the filmmaking industry, the future of quality film production is heading in one direction: Television. Or at least what we call TV—Netflix, Amazon, Hulu. We all have the same conversation about films today: It’s all Disney or super heroes, or horror or cars making things blow up. Where are all the romantic comedies or mysteries or feel-good dramas? They’re turning into 10-episode series on cable or online subscription services. The definition of what’s a movie and what’s a longer movie that is just split into episodes, is blurring.

Reel Corner - October 2019

Donne Paine

What’s Hot in Films? Asian American Stories

Reel Corner - October 2019

It took the successful release of the 2018 film Crazy Rich Asians, a global phenomenon that raked in $238 million at the box office, to reinforce the idea that diversity could also mean good business. Now the door is opening a little wider for Asian Americans and their stories. Prior, most Asian American actor roles were delegated to parts that required accents and rarely reflected their actual experiences.

Awkwafina, (born Nora Lum) one of the actresses in Crazy Rich Asians, has joined several movie franchises (Angry Birds and Jumanji) and earned rave reviews for Lulu Wang’s The Farewell since her role in the film.

Reel Corner - September 2019

Donne Paine

Tribute to the Beatles

Reel Corner - September 2019

The recent film YESTERDAY reminds us, just in case we forgot, how very talented The Beatles were.

The Beatles were an English rock band formed in Liverpool in 1960. The line-up of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr led them to be regarded as the most influential band of all time. The group was integral to the evolution of pop music into an art form, and development of the counter culture of the 1960s. They often incorporated elements of classical music, older pop and unconventional recording techniques in innovative ways and experimented with numerous musical styles. As they continued to draw influences from a variety of cultural sources, their musical and lyrical sophistication grew. They came to be embodying the era's socio-cultural movements.

Reel Corner - August 2019

Donne Paine

Remembering Woodstock 50 Years Later

Reel Corner - August 2019

Woodstock was a music festival held August 15-18, 1969, which attracted an audience of more than 400,000. Billed as “An American Exposition: 3 days of Peace and Music,” it was a held at Max Yasgur’s 600-acre dairy farm near White Lake in Bethel, New York—43 miles southwest of Woodstock.

Over the sometimes rainy weekend, 32 acts performed outdoors. It is widely regarded as a pivotal moment in popular music history, as well as the definitive nexus for the larger counterculture generation. Rolling Stone Magazine listed it as No. 19 of the “50 Moments that Changed the History of Rock and Roll.”

Reel Corner - May 2019

Donne Paine

2019 Summer Preview

Reel Corner - May 2019

The Reel Corner pored over the 2019 film release calendar and scoured the planet for news and details to bring you this list of the most anticipated summer movies, and there are plenty! Long-anticipated sequels, prequels, and reboots abound—Zombieland 2, Toy Story 4, and John Wick: Chapter 3—and there’s lots of hotly anticipated remakes, too: The Lion King and Dumbo among them. Be sure to keep an eye out for some stellar originals including the adaptation of The Goldfinch and the Elton John biopic, Rocketman.

Reel Corner - April 2019

Donne Paine

Support your local film festivals!

Reel Corner - April 2019

Kudos to Ron and Rebecca Tucker, co-founders of the Beaufort Film Festival. This amazing team and their organization presented a heck of a festival in February.

The Beaufort Film Society and its film festival recognizes aspiring filmmakers of almost every genre, including independent film features, animation, short films, student films, documentaries, and screenwriting.

The Lowcountry is a film-friendly region. For nearly half a century Beaufort has served as the backdrop for more than 20 major motion pictures, including Forrest Gump, The Big Chill, The Prince of Tides, and many more. With our sweeping marsh vistas, antebellum homes, and quiet charm of the Old South, it’s no wonder it has drawn filmmakers.

Reel Corner - March 2019

Donne Paine

Bromance: It’s Good for You!

Reel Corner - March 2019

Bromance: It’s Good for You!

Films depicting female friendship—think Thelma and Louise and Fried Green Tomatoes—are familiar to us. Movies that focus on male relationships…not so much. Today, however, platonic male friendship films have their very own category.

I’m speaking, of course, about the bromance and all its permutations, including stories that take place not only in this decade, but decades past. Green Book, Stan and Ollie, and The Upside are the newest features in this category, and they are all good films.

Reel Corner - February 2019

Donne Paine

“No More Funny Business”

Reel Corner - February 2019

Though Steve Carell is best known for his hilariously clueless characters in The Office, The 40 year old Virgin, Anchorman, and Little Miss Sunshine, he is now making an about-face. While he may seem like your average Hollywood funnyman, he’s recently achieved new depths in his films Beautiful Boy, Welcome to Marwen, and Vice. The actor has moved on to more serious subjects in these three hefty films.

This isn’t entirely unexpected. In 2015, Carell earned an Academy Award nomination for his dramatic role as convicted murderer John Dupont in Foxcatcher.  In Beautiful Boy, he plays the beleaguered father of a young crystal meth addict – a heartbreaking portrayal that debuted at the Toronto Film Festival in 2018 – and, once again, folks are whispering Oscar. In Welcome to Marwen—a tearjerker based on real events—Carell stars as the victim of a brutal attack who finds solace enacting miniature World War II scenes in his yard. And the actor is barely recognizable behind his still hair, and even stiffer smile, as U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld in Vice, a Dick Cheney biopic.

Reel Corner - January 2019

Donne Paine

The Grinch

Reel Corner - January 2019

When Captain Marvel hits theaters in March it will be the 21st entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) and the first to star a female superhero. Over the past decade, MCU has assembled a diverse lineup of female heroes, from witches and warriors to widows and wasps. But never before has a woman headlined her own story until Captain Marvel (a part Kree, part-human pilot) made her comic’s debut in 1968.

Film fans know her only as the mysterious person in the last Avengers: Infinity War, and she’ll appear in the still untitled Avengers 4, presumably to help beat Thanos.

Reel Corner - December 2018

Donne Paine

The Grinch

Reel Corner - December 2018

The GRINCH

Set in Whoville, The Grinch is based on a 32-line poem by Theodore Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss, which appeared in Redbook Magazine in 1955 entitled “The Hoobub and the Grinch.”

In 1957, Dr. Seuss wrote and illustrated How the Grinch Stole Christmas.

The rhymed verse story gained instant critical praise, and 60 years later it has become a staple for children and adults alike at Christmastime, earning three film adaptations: The 1966 animated Christmas special, 2000’s live action film, starring Jim Carrey as the notorious Grinch, and this year’s new animated version, which featurs Pharrell Williams as the story’s narrator and Benedict Cumberbatch as the voice of the Grinch.

Reel Corner - November 2018

Donne Paine

Fall Preview

Reel Corner - November 2018

I can’t stop talking about the latest
film version of A Star Is Born.


Here are some facts you should know about the movie:
1) Bradley Cooper directed this movie and is also one of the producers. This is actually his directorial debut.