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Foreign Films You Should Stream: Sweet Bean, Beach Flags, and Cleo from 5 to 7

26 Feb

In addition to having access to thousands of books, one of the best things about having a Hoboken Library Card is having access to Kanopy. Kanopy is a streaming platform that offers tons of great movies and videos to watch. Every month, Hoboken resident cardholders can have access to 10 films for adults from Kanopy and unlimited high quality kid’s movies, TV, and animated story books from Kanopy Kids for free!

What I love about Kanopy is that there is an abundance of indie and foreign films to watch – films that would otherwise be difficult to find. I love watching foreign films in particular, since they provide a glimpse into different locations, stories and cultures. So I, of course, was thrilled that a foreign film won Best Picture at this year’s Oscars. Living in America, with a strong and prolific movie industry, we can sometimes forget that there is so much more out there beyond our borders.

There are all sorts of foreign films on Kanopy, so there is sure to be something for everyone. Here are a few selections:

If you like contemporary dramas…

Sweet Bean
Sweet Bean
Sweet Bean” is a Japanese movie from 2015 directed by Naomi Kawase. It is based on the novel by Durian Sukegawa (the book’s title was translated to “Sweet Bean Paste”). The movie follows the story of Sentaro, a man who runs a dorayaki shop. Dorayaki are a Japanese sweet, made with two small pancakes around a filling of red bean paste. When looking for a new hire, an elderly woman applies for the job, handing him over her own homemade red bean paste. An unlikely friendship forms between them and a young schoolgirl who is a frequent customer of the shop. We discover the pasts that they hide, and by the end of the movie, we’re left with the wonder of being alive. A beautiful, moving film.

If you like animated shorts…

Beach Flags

Beach Flags

Image from Kanopy.com

Beach Flags” is a short animated film from Iran, written and directed by Sarah Saidan. It follows the story of Vida, a young lifeguard, who wants to be the one in her group to be chosen for an international competition in Australia. Vida is clearly the best among her peers, but her status as best is challenged when a newcomer, Sareh, arrives. Vida’s competitive streak is evident, but she discovers there is more to Sareh than meets the eye. A tale of young women, ambition and friendship in a country that restricts their freedoms.

 

If you like classic movies…

Cleo from 5 to 7
Cleo from 5 to 7
Cleo from 5 to 7” is a French New Wave film from 1962 directed by the world-renowned Agnès Varda. The story takes place from 5pm to 7pm on a particular day when Cléo, the title character, is waiting for the results of a medical test that might confirm her fears of a cancer diagnosis. It’s an interesting film with a theme of existentialism and a fascinating look into how women were perceived in 1960’s France.

Sweet Bean and Cleo from 5 to 7 are also available on DVD from BCCLS Libraries.

Written by:
Samantha Evaristo
Circulation Assistant

Celebrating the Queen of Suspense: Mary Higgins Clark

5 Feb

Mary Higgins Clark passed away on January 31, 2020 in Naples, Florida, at the age of 92. Clark lived for many years in north Jersey. She was my mother’s favorite author and she often enjoyed finding details she recognized about local sites in her books, so it was great sadness that we learned of her passing. I wanted to take look at the literary legacy Clark left behind. According to Simon & Schuster, “Beginning in 1975 with the publication of WHERE ARE THE CHILDREN, each of her 56 books has been a bestseller. There are more than 100 million copies of her books in print in the United States; they are international bestsellers and have been translated into every major and many less well-known languages.” Check out one of her novels out today!

Kiss the Girls and Make Them Cry
by Mary Higgins Clark
Kiss the Girls
Kiss the Girls and Make Them Cry was Clark’s latest novel published in November. It focuses on the story of journalist Gina Kane who investigates a TV News Network where employees are complaining of sexual misconduct; the woman, who reached out to Kane dies in a suspiciously timed accident. With sexual misconduct in the workplace a current hot topic, this work shows that Clark kept her finger on the pulse of what was going on in the world and reflected it in her work.

Under Suspicion Series
by Mary Higgins Clark and Alafair Burke
You Don't Own Me
The Under Suspicion Series was co-written with Alafair Burke and details the mysteries of Laurie Moran, producer of the TV documentary series which focuses on cold cases. In the first from the series, I’ve Got You Under My Skin, Laurie must deal with the memories of the unsolved murder of her husband as she begins producing a documentary about another cold case. In the latest in the series, You Don’t Own Me, Laurie is planning her wedding and looking for a new place, when a couple comes to her with the case of their murdered son.

Mount Vernon Love Story: A Novel of George and Martha Washington
by Mary Higgins Clark
Mount Vernon Love Story
Clark’s first novel, Aspire to Heaven, was published in 1969. It was a short historical romance about the relationship between George and Martha Washington. It was republished years later in 2002, under the title Mount Vernon Love Story allowing fans to see how Clark’s writing career began.

Alvirah and Willy Series
All by Myself Alone
Alvirah, a lottery winner, and Willy Meehan, a plumber, are a married couple who solve crimes together and make appearances in several of Clark’s novels. In 1987’s Weep No More, My Lady, Alvirah fist makes her debut when she helps a woman who is unraveling what occurred in the death of her sister. The most recent featuring the couple from 2017 All By Myself, Alone, is set during a cruise for their forty-fifth wedding anniversary; a jewelry expert reaches out for their help in solving the mystery around the death of a wealthy woman on board, whose priceless necklace is now missing.

Holiday Novels
by Mary Higgins Clark and Carol Higgins Clark
Santa Cruise
Mary Higgins Clark’s daughter Carol Higgins Clark is also a bestselling novelist. I’m a fan of Carol Higgins Clark’s Regan Reilley Series. Mary and Carol did several holiday novels together including Santa Cruise and The Christmas Thief, which feature crossovers between Reilley with Alvirah and Willy.

Movie Adaptations
Haven't We Met Before
Several of Mary Higgins Clark’s works have had theatrical adaptations and many have been adapted as TV movies. As well as individual movies like Haven’t We Met Before starring Nicollette Sheridan, you can borrow collections from BCCLS libraries including Mary Higgins Clark 14 film collection and Mary Higgins Clark : 5 films.

Written by:
Aimee Harris
Head of Reference

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