Jakubczyk on Common Sense

Applying faith and reason to ideas, issues and events in today's world

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John J. Jakubczyk has been active in the Pro-Life Movement since 1975.  He served as President of Arizona Right to Life, Arizona's largest, oldest and strongest pro-life organization.  He was on the board of AzRTL for many years and now acts as the Arizona delegate to the National Right to Life Committee.  As the founder and president of Southwest Life & Law Center, he continues to use his legal skills to assist in advising, counseling and defending women, children, pro-life activists, organizations, as well as victims of abortion. A national speaker, motivator and adviser since the 1980s, he is very familiar with the history of the movement at the national level.   A founder and past president of Ville de Marie Academy, he served as a trustee for 15 years.  He has been an attorney in private practice for 35 years, is active in his church, married, the father of 11 children, and a proud grandfather.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Bella Calls for Appreciation of Life

Bella is playing in a theater hopefully near you.
Someone at Boxoffice.com was looking for a short review. I thought the following would be something a little different from the standard fare. Perhaps they will run it.


Bella Calls for Appreciation of Life

Instant messaging, speed dials, texting, facebook. Our world is so much about the moment and how that moment will impact our lives. In Alejandro Monteverde’s first major directorial effort, Bella, the audience learns a moment can affect a life and change a person forever.

The story takes place in New York City which acts not only as a backdrop to the dramas which takes place but also seems like a character in the story as well – busy, vibrant, bustling, “like a big clock,” Nina tells the blind man who asks her to describe the day.

The film starts off slowly at the beach with Jose sitting there reflecting on the scene. From that quiet serenity, there is the sharp contrast of a Latin rhythm as we see a younger handsome Jose dancing with a little girl on the sidewalk while children are playing soccer in the streets. Life is what is happening and you get the feeling that this movie is going to take a slice of the lives of these people as it weaves its story.

The rest of the story, the intersection of Jose’s life with that of Nina the co-worker and how they spend the rest of the day and thereafter is the plot line to Bella. She has just been hit with some unexpected news – she’s pregnant – and doesn’t want to be. Then being late again for work, she gets fired. This is not her best day. But then Jose decides to get involved. He listens. He takes her to lunch. He takes her to his parents’ home, a sanctuary and sharp contract to the noisy NYC. She takes it all in and so does the viewer. Jose’s parents are real people. We have met people like this and it is in seeing that there are people who care for one another Nina sees “joy.” She also learns about Jose’s own tragic story and what he has to live with every day.

The movie is not terribly action packed. Much of the suspense is predictable. It is however very introspective and allows the movie-goer to hear not only the thoughts of the characters, but their own thoughts ass well. As for the acting, everyone is wonderful. Eduardo Verastegui presents a man with a burden. Yet he is a kind and caring fellow, the type of human being all of us would want to be there it listen in a time of crisis. Tammy Blanchard and Manny Perez give fine performances and music is captivating as it helps to frame the various sequences throughout the film. The kitchen and family dinner scenes have a playful humor all their own and the brothers show a genuine affection as they go about their day.

The winner of the 2006 Toronto International Film Festival and the 2007 Heartland Film Festival, Bella has something that can appeal to everyone. Bella has a special flavor that is quite different from typical productions and that it what makes it such a winner.

I read an excellent review written by Sean Daily at his blogspot, The Blue Boar.

Sean writes about love of neighbor and then applies the events in the movie to that theme. I encourage you to check it out.

The film is slowly expanding and is in almost 500 theaters. It will be in theaters over the Thanksgiving weekend and hopefully will continue to do well. I have been able to recommend the film to some clients who were really stressed out as well as a buddy of mine who had been dealing with some really tough stuff at work. . I told them all to go see Bella. They did and They all loved the movie. The one fellow is a military tough guy and does not really get into "sensitive" films, but he really liked it. I continue to me meet people who saw and liked the film very much. What I have found interesting is that the reasons for their liking the film as a distinct as the persons providing the reasons.

On a side note, Eduardo was in Washington D.C. last week speaking at the White House on the subject of adoption.
Fro more information on where to find a showing of Bella in your neighborhood, go to www.bellathemovie.com