Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Tip#991: Inspiring Movies for Diversity, Part 1 - The Magnificent Seven

One of the enduring benefits of the original Star Trek series from the 60’s are the countless stories of real-people of different racial backgrounds that were inspired by the visible minorities on the show. Astronauts like Dr. Mae Jemison, the first African-American woman to fly in space, was inspired by the show as a little girl. Scientists, engineers and movie makers like Whoopi Goldberg were also inspired by the groundbreaking vision of equality on this show.

The Star Trek series inspired me as well and because I grew up in the glorious diversity and cultural mosaic/melting pot of Toronto, these were important factors for molding my mind and attitude for inclusion and respect for different people and their cultures. Growing up I was always around friends that were Asian, South Asian, Middle Eastern, blacks and white. That’s why it always excites me to see films that demonstrate diversity and inclusion like the 2016 version of The Magnificent Seven.

Nichols Nichols (Lt. Uhura from original Star Trek series) and Astronaut Dr. Mae Jemison who had a cameo role on Star Trek: The Next Generation

The Magnificent Seven (2016)

The western drama, The Magnificent Seven, is a remake of the 1960 version of the same name, which in turn was a remake of the 1954 Japanese film Seven Samurai. This gritty, updated story has some great performances by a diverse cast that include Denzel Washington, Chris Pratt, Ethan Hawke, Vincent D'Onofrio, Byung-hun Lee, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, Martin Sensmeier, Haley Bennett and Peter Sarsgaard. And yes you do hear the classic 60’s music theme! See: movie trailer

Inspiring Themes:
• Perseverance
• Resilience
• Strategic Thinking
• Leadership
• Teamwork
• Community

The film has many examples of life and work lessons such as perseverance, resilience, strategic thinking, leadership, teamwork and the strength in community. Where the movie really shines is it’s visible minorities with unique skill sets and the authenticity of its cast. It also has a strong female character. For example…

• Denzel Washington (African American) plays Sam Chisolm, a bounty hunter, licensed lawman and the leader of the Seven
• Vincent D'Onofrio (White American) as Jack Horne, an elderly skilled tracker
• Byung-hun Lee (Asian) as Billy Rocks, a knife-wielding assassin
• Manuel Garcia-Rulfo (Mexican) as Vasquez, a Mexican outlaw
• Martin Sensmeier (Native American) as Red Harvest, a Comanche warrior
• Haley Bennett (White American) as Emma Cullen, a strong-willed young woman who hires the Seven

The film’s diverse casting has been featured in the press and there is one article that addresses something I noticed in the movie. With the inclusion of an Asian and an African American in a leadership role there was almost no racial slurs like in a Quentin Tarantino's Western. I was really happy about this and was addressed by the director Antoine Fuqua in an article. It is little touches like this that I believe will help increase respect for other people’s differences through cinema.

Read: Why The Magnificent Seven Doesn't Use Racial Slurs Like Quentin Tarantino's Westerns

There is also a humorous social media campaign called #StarringJohnCho aimed at increasing castings of Asian-American actors. This features actor John Cho’s face being photoshopped into popular Hollywood film posters, like The Martian, The Avengers and as James Bond in Spectre. Cho also made headlines when his character, Lieutenant Sulu of the film Star Trek Beyond, was shown to be gay and with a loving family. It’s initiatives like these that can help increase awareness and change in Hollywood.

I am glad diversity and inclusion are being addressed in the movies, TV shows and even at The Academy Awards because it provides hope that changes will increase for more inspiring role-models for both young and old. I want to live in a world where there is more harmony in my community and workplace. Is this the world you’d like to live in too?

Read More: Emmanuel Lopez: Movies about Diversity and Inclusion – Part 2

Related Tips:
Tip#936: Cultivate Community, Part 12 – Zootopia
Tip#338: Take the Leadership Role – Remember the Titans
Tip#849: Great Teamwork Movies, Part 6 - Invictus
Tip#976: Great Teamwork Movies, Part 12 – Star Trek Beyond
Tip#60: Favourite TV Shows Inspire Careers - Star Trek 

ON SALE NOW:
Top Inspiring Women in the Movies:
15 Films for Leadership at Work & in Life
The latest eBook by Emmanuel Lopez: Click Here

LISTEN TO EMMANUEL’S CBC RADIO INTERVIEW on
MOVIE MESSAGES OF HOPE: Fresh Air Show 14 minutes

Remember How Movies Can Help You: 
A) Entertain & Escape 
B) Re-energize & Release 
C) Inspiration & Motivation 

http://bit.ly/cxjH4Zhttp://bit.ly/cj7UIphttp://www.pinterest.com/motivatorman1/http://bit.ly/9Je5dhhttp://bit.ly/djk9Yjhttp://bit.ly/bUSAy0

Emmanuel Lopez-Motivatorman
The Movies-For-Motivation Speaker
Discover How Movies Inspire Resilience & Indestructible Optimism
See website: www.motivatorman.com

© Emmanuel Lopez 2016

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Tip#990: Movie For A Rainy Day, Part 3 - Hunt for the Wilderpeople

I remember so clearly the day after I saw La La Land at The Toronto International Film Festival. I was still very emotional about the ending of this film and it was raining all day long. The dark day really reflected how I was feeling. I was profoundly melancholy and reflective of my life decisions over the years because of the messages I received from this movie (see tip#988).

I could also feel my inner child craving some comfort food and I so baked some Pillsbury chocolate chip cookies. The timeless smell, sight and taste of fresh, hot cookies lifted me up as I listened to the rain pour outside my window. This was the perfect time for a rainy day movie and thankfully I found the perfect one.


Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016)

The adventure comedy-drama film, Hunt for the Wilderpeople, is about a rebellious boy named Ricky Baker (Julian Dennison) and his foster uncle (Sam Neill) in the New Zealand wilderness escaping a national manhunt for them. This wonderful, lighthearted, charming movie is filled with quirky characters and beautiful, lush scenery and is sprinkled with hilarious film references! See: movie trailer

There was so much to like about this film. The character of Ricky is lovingly goofy while the music has a big nostalgic 80’s synth feel to it. I also loved hearing their Kiwi accents! Watching this movie was like a warm blanket on a dark, reflective day where everything was suddenly right with the world. I was whisked away to the gorgeous green locations of New Zealand and spent some time with new cinematic friends. I felt at peace and also enjoyed warm, freshly baked chocolate chip cookies!

Films can lift your spirits up on a rainy day. Comfort food too! Remember that you can always find the perfect movie prescription to help you find some peace of mind and comfort from a dark day you are in. What rainy day movies to do enjoy?

Related Tips:
Tip#457: Movie For A Rainy Day, Part 1 – Megamind 
Tip#846: Movie For A Rainy Day, Part 2 - Mr. Destiny
Tip#990: Movie For A Rainy Day, Part 3 - Hunt for the Wilderpeople
Tip#574: Getting through Dark, Rainy Days - Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix 

ON SALE NOW:
Top Inspiring Women in the Movies: 15 Films for Leadership at Work & in Life The latest eBook by Emmanuel Lopez: Click Here

LISTEN TO EMMANUEL’S CBC RADIO INTERVIEW on
MOVIE MESSAGES OF HOPE: Fresh Air Show 14 minutes

Remember How Movies Can Help You: 
A) Entertain & Escape 
B) Re-energize & Release 
C) Inspiration & Motivation 

http://bit.ly/cxjH4Zhttp://bit.ly/cj7UIphttp://www.pinterest.com/motivatorman1/http://bit.ly/9Je5dhhttp://bit.ly/djk9Yjhttp://bit.ly/bUSAy0

Emmanuel Lopez-Motivatorman
The Movies-For-Motivation Speaker
Discover How Movies Inspire Resilience & Indestructible Optimism
See website: www.motivatorman.com

© Emmanuel Lopez 2016

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Tip#989: Learning through Movies, Part 3 - Snowden

I love receiving life and work lessons and insights from the movies. They usually come through an emotional scene or an epiphany watching the movie hero take action with a challenge they face. But then there are films that reveal factual information that shakes up my world and change what I thought I knew. The 2014 documentary called Citizenfour was one of those thought-provoking movies.

As I wrote in #tip#832 about Citizenfour, On one level this movie feels like a gripping thriller/horror film and on another it shocks with the information of covert mass surveillance on the general public. And as said in the documentary, “Know that every border you cross, every purchase you make, every call you dial, every cell phone tower you pass, friend you keep, site you visit, subject line you type, is in the hands of a system whose reach is unlimited but whose safeguards are not.” 

I’ve been noticing that when I’m doing a product search on a site like Amazon that the exact same product image will appear on other random sites I visit or even on Facebook as ads. They will continue to appear for days afterwards. I realize I’m being tracked and it bothers me. All this and much more are explored in detail in Oliver Stone’s film Snowden. And this is where you will learn the power of a little piece of tape over your laptop’s camera eye!

Snowden (2016)

The biographical political thriller film, Snowden, is about Edward Snowden’s (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) experience and shocking discoveries of mass surveillance while working for the National Security Agency and CIA. This gripping story is filled with details of the tracking systems Snowden helped build and then revealed to the world as well as an uncanny performance by Levitt of Snowden. See: movie trailer

This movie actually felt like an educational film as much as a Hollywood picture. I was learning more about the power of online technology and the infringement of personal rights. And what I also learned was really a reminder to continue being responsible for my own actions and words on social media, online and even in my text messages. I believe this can be an important lesson for anyone who sees this film.

I highly recommend you see both Snowden and Citizenfour as they are both important companion pieces from different perspectives. Watch them with the intent that you will learn something of value for your life or work. This is the power of cinema. Not only can they be a source of entertainment and inspiration, films can educate and illuminate your thoughts in a creative way!

Related Tips:
Tip#919: Learning through Movies, Part 1 - The Big Short 
Tip#920: Learning through Movies, Part 2 - Concussion 
Tip#989: Learning through Movies, Part 3 - Snowden
Tip#832: What is Your Mission? – Citizenfour

ON SALE NOW:
Top Inspiring Women in the Movies:
15 Films for Leadership at Work & in Life
The latest eBook by Emmanuel Lopez: Click Here

 LISTEN TO EMMANUEL’S CBC RADIO INTERVIEW on
 MOVIE MESSAGES OF HOPE: Fresh Air Show 14 minutes

Remember How Movies Can Help You: 
A) Entertain & Escape 
B) Re-energize & Release 
C) Inspiration & Motivation 

http://bit.ly/cxjH4Zhttp://bit.ly/cj7UIphttp://www.pinterest.com/motivatorman1/http://bit.ly/9Je5dhhttp://bit.ly/djk9Yjhttp://bit.ly/bUSAy0

Emmanuel Lopez-Motivatorman
The Movies-For-Motivation Speaker
Discover How Movies Inspire Resilience & Indestructible Optimism
See website: www.motivatorman.com

© Emmanuel Lopez 2016

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Tip#988: Remember the Magic of Cinema, Part 4 - Top Films from TIFF 2016

I just had an epic week at the Toronto International Film Festival this year! It was special because it was my first time actively attending screenings since I started my recovery early last year from clinical depression. Prior to that I wasn't attending TIFF regularly because I wasn't feeling well enough. So with each film I saw this year I received extra special life lessons and answers I’d been seeking to keep moving forward with my life and career with confidence and enthusiasm! Here are my top 4 highlights for inspiration and motivation when they are widely released…

A Monster Calls (2016)

This fantasy drama is about how a giant tree monster (Liam Neeson) helps a young boy named Connor (Lewis MacDougall) cope with the terminal illness of his single mother (Felicity Jones). This film was an incredible mixture of richly animated sequences and highly emotional moments. This is a major tearjerker! Highly recommended for anyone needing to release suppressed emotions and face the upcoming death of a loved one with courage. Read my full review tip#986 

Burn Your Maps (2016)

This comedy drama is about a young boy named Wes (Jacob Tremblay) who thinks he is a Mongolian goat herder and goes on an exciting road trip that becomes transformational for his mother (Vera Framiga) and father (Marton Csokas). It is also about dealing with grief and keeping a family together. The whole cast is outstanding and also includes Virginia Madsen and Suraj Sharma. Highly recommended for anyone needing to heal from the loss of a loved one or feeling lost in life and wanting to find your place in the world.

Brain on Fire (2016)]

This biographical drama is about a journalist named Susannah Calahan (Chloë Grace Moretz) suffering from a rare autoimmune disorder repeatedly misdiagnosed. All the performances were outstanding, especially Moretz, and the film was a powerful, emotional sledgehammer. This is the type of film that could save lives because of the important insights it shares about helping someone clearly needing personal medical attention, love, patience and understanding. Highly recommend to anyone dealing with mental illness and wanting to find hope and inspiration for increasing indestructible optimism and resilience.

La La Land (2016)

This romantic musical comedy-drama is about Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) and Mia (Emma Stone) who are drawn together by their common desire to follow their dreams and passion. What unfolds from the moment the film starts is a breathtaking, magical throwback to the classic Hollywood musicals of the 60’s. The singing, dancing, songs and music are all so fantastic! Highly recommended for lovers of musicals and for those needing inspiration to follow a dream with courage and a willingness to make sacrifices along the way. See this beautiful short teasers: Teaser #1 Teaser #2

Note: If I had seen The Arrival and Lion I'm sure they would have been part of this list!

AFTER PARTY HIGHLIGHTS AT TIFF 2016

At the after party for Burn Your Maps I had the honor of having wonderful conversations with two actresses I’d been a fan of for years. Virginia Madsen was so supportive when I told her about my movie blog helping people dealing with depression and difficult times. I mentioned her character in The Rainmaker always inspired me with her inner strength and courage. I also said how much I loved her new film and will be featuring it on my blog. Virginia was so down to earth and gave me such warm eye contact that my knees started to buckle from her beautiful face and presence!

I was also grateful for how gracious Vera Farmiga was in chatting with me. I mentioned that I’d featured her film At Middleton in my movie blog and she just lit up and said she loved doing that film! I told her that I loved her new film and range of emotions she showed as a mother having problems dealing with a family death. And like Virginia I was so amazed at her warm eye contact and giving of her time. And yes she is even more gorgeous face to face!

I also met the super cute, super talented and super shy Jacob Tremblay! He was really astounding to watch in this film! He is truly gifted and feel lucky getting this selfie photo with him!

Q&A HIGHLIGHTS AT TIFF 2016

The Q&A after the screening of Brain on Fire was very emotional and insightful. Joining the writer & director Gerard Barrett and lead actress Chloë Grace Moretz was the real Susannah Cahalan and Dr. Souhel Najjar that saved her life. Everyone shared their personal reasons for wanting to make this movie and one common factor was they just want this film to save lives. There was a very emotional moment when survivors of the disorder featured in the movie were asked to stand up in the audience and came onstage. This film had a huge, personal impact on me because of my mental health challenges and will be featuring this, along with the other TIFF films I covered, closer to their release dates.

If you love movies than I highly recommend you attend TIFF or any major film festival. You will love the energy of a huge community of movie lovers coming together and sharing this passion! And definitely go see a gala screening where the stars and film-makers show up and talk about their film with the audience. And if you are lucky to get into after parties then I hope you have the same wonderful experiences I’ve had meeting your favourite movie stars!

Related Tips:
Tip#581: Remember the Magic of Cinema, Part 1 – The Artist  
Tip#959: Remember the Magic of Cinema, Part 2 - Micmacs
Tip#987: Remember the Magic of Cinema, Part 3 - Café Society
Tip#988: Remember the Magic of Cinema, Part 4 - TIFF 2016

ON SALE NOW: Top Inspiring Women in the Movies:
15 Films for Leadership at Work & in Life
The latest eBook by Emmanuel Lopez: Click Here

LISTEN TO EMMANUEL’S CBC RADIO INTERVIEW on
MOVIE MESSAGES OF HOPE: Fresh Air Show 14 minutes

Remember How Movies Can Help You: 
A) Entertain & Escape 
B) Re-energize & Release 
C) Inspiration & Motivation 

http://bit.ly/cxjH4Zhttp://bit.ly/cj7UIphttp://www.pinterest.com/motivatorman1/http://bit.ly/9Je5dhhttp://bit.ly/djk9Yjhttp://bit.ly/bUSAy0

Emmanuel Lopez-Motivatorman
The Movies-For-Motivation Speaker
Discover How Movies Inspire Resilience & Indestructible Optimism
See website: www.motivatorman.com

© Emmanuel Lopez 2016

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Tip#987: Remember the Magic of Cinema, Part 3 - Café Society

“Life is a comedy written by a sadistic comedy writer.” 
Café Society (2016)

As I wrote in my previous tip#986 I attended a TIFF gala screening at Roy Thomson Hall and, as always, the air was filled with electricity and excitement! That environment always re-energizes me especially when I’m not feeling well or stuck in life or work. Seeing films with other people is fantastic and yet if I am alone and watching an engaging film, whatever blues or woes I am feeling quickly dissipate.

The day right after the TIFF screening I was invited to speak at an intimate event called ALL IN OUR HEADS: Using Story to End Stigma with several other speakers sharing lived-experiences with mental illness. The event was hosted by Lori Lane Murphy who also shared her personal experiences. It was inspiring to hear such honest, tragic stories told with a humorous, heartfelt tone. I spoke on how movies and writing my movie blog for 10 years helped save my life over and over again.

Natalie Daley, the Director of Art With Impact, presenting the event had taken some fantastic photos of me that amazingly captured the abstract feelings of depression thanks to the spotlight that was in shimmering motion like being underwater. The darkness of the photos actually captured the mood I was in as I wasn’t feeling well that day. But I began to feel re-energized talking about my passion for films and sharing how the magic of cinema can lift anyone up!

Café Society (2016)

The romantic comedy drama, Café Society, is a Woody Allen film about Bobby Dorfman (Jesse Eisenberg) leaving New York City to seek an exciting career in the glamour of 1930’s Hollywood. Bobby is helped by his uncle Phil (Steve Carell), a powerhouse talent agent and falls in love with his secretary Veronica, nicknamed Vonnie (Kristen Stewart). This gorgeous, colourful film is highly entertaining with wonderful performances from the entire cast! See: movie trailer

This film is a classic movie lover’s dream with its sumptuous look of 30’s Hollywood and New York City soaked in rich hues by cinematographer Vittorio Storaro. The romantic story, characters, period music and its celebration of classic cinema absolutely took me away to a magical reality for two hours! This is a perfect example of a movie that you can use as a tool for re-energizing and uplift you from your troubles. The film made my spirit smile and brought me back to earth with renewed optimism and hope for a better tomorrow.

Remember the magic of cinema the next time you feel down, depressed or lost in your life or work. Let the excitement of the colours, characters, music and locations you see on the screen that can lift your spirits high. Movies can be there for you unconditionally whenever you need them!

Related Tips:
Tip#581: Remember the Magic of Cinema, Part 1 – The Artist  
Tip#959: Remember the Magic of Cinema, Part 2 - Micmacs
Tip#987: Remember the Magic of Cinema, Part 3 - Café Society

ON SALE NOW:
Top Inspiring Women in the Movies:
15 Films for Leadership at Work & in Life
The latest eBook by Emmanuel Lopez: Click Here

LISTEN TO EMMANUEL’S CBC RADIO INTERVIEW on
MOVIE MESSAGES OF HOPE: Fresh Air Show 14 minutes

Remember How Movies Can Help You: 
A) Entertain & Escape 
B) Re-energize & Release 
C) Inspiration & Motivation 

http://bit.ly/cxjH4Zhttp://bit.ly/cj7UIphttp://www.pinterest.com/motivatorman1/http://bit.ly/9Je5dhhttp://bit.ly/djk9Yjhttp://bit.ly/bUSAy0

Emmanuel Lopez-Motivatorman
The Movies-For-Motivation Speaker
Discover How Movies Inspire Resilience & Indestructible Optimism
See website: www.motivatorman.com

© Emmanuel Lopez 2016