Friday Filter: A Year in the Blue

I was given access to this documentary as compensation for my review. All the thoughts are my own.

I was contacted by Passion River Films to take a look at a new documentary they have available.

“A Year in the Blue” is a film following a few cadets during their first year at the Air Force Academy in Colorado.


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When I was told documentary, I was pretty much sold. When I saw that it was related to the military, I definitely knew I would find it interesting.

This film portrays the difficulties and triumphs of entering the Air Force Academy. It runs you briefly through the obstacles that each person must face to enter among the ranks in this particular branch.

They show you pieces of basic, when they choose their majors, how invested they are in their studies, and why being part of the Air Force is important to them. You witnessed struggles they faced as they were tested. You were able to experience the emotional toll that occurred throughout the process. You saw how pride and passion carried them through it all.

I liked being able to see glimpses of traditions at the school from the Ring Dance to the sporting events. I found this interesting to see on the film after hearing some of these events from my friend, Janelle’s, perspective of watching her husband go through these very things.

What I liked most about the film was the interview structure. They would show group interaction, but then they would interview individuals so you got to actually hear their emotions and see their reactions first hand. They also interviewed alumni, which I thought was a pretty neat way to show continuity and longevity of the lessons learned and the take away from the program. Most of you know that I love a good personal story!

Since most of my “military” experience is with the Army, I enjoyed learning more about the Air Force. They do things WAY different than the Army. I think what I found to be most intriguing about the film was being able to compare it to what I have seen in the Army and how vastly different the experiences are, but ultimately that these men and women are in it for the same reasons that Army folk are.

I really do appreciate all that our Armed Forces do, no matter what their training and experiences look like. Each branch has their own way of doing things, but they all give a lot of themselves and their families as a sacrifice to our nation.

I would highly recommend this film. It is an easy watch and gives you some great insight!

If you would like to view the film, it is now available for public viewing. There are a few ways you can get a hold of it. You can purchase the documentary on the public website at and various retail stores like Barnes and Noble, Amazon, or CD Universe.

Have you ever visited the Air Force Academy in Colorado?

Friday Filter-Film “Changeling”

I know I am a bit behind in seeing this movie that came out in 2008. Thanks to Netflix, I can get with the program though.


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This is a film about a mother’s love. Angelina Jolie plays a single mother in the 1930s who comes home one day to find her child missing. She reports it to the LAPD and does a crack job at investigating. They find a boy who matches the description loosely, mostly just meeting “lost boy,” and says that he is her lost son. She insists that he is not, and that her son is still missing and to keep the investigation active. LAPD doesn’t want a scene or bad press, and ensures that the boy just underwent “dramatic” changes while he was lost and sent him home with her. The mother doesn’t ever believe this is her son, and continues to try to get the LAPD to see her truth. They end up sending her to a mental ward just to shut her up.

I won’t give any other parts away. You will have to watch to see whether she ever reunites with her son or not, and for what other surprises are thrown in.

I think why I waited so long to watch this is because I am not particularly fond of Angelina. I don’t really have a reason because she is a decent actress, she just doesn’t strike my fancy. It comes fairly close to my hatred of Nicholas Cage.

I will admit though, that I really enjoyed this movie. It was gripping and emotionally intense. It was a mystery story that kept adding layers as you go through the plot line. You have themes of a parent’s love, women’s issues, corruptness, and more.

The acting was really great. I felt the emotions they were portraying. A review I read said, “rarely is the truth pretty.” That is so perfect to describe this film. It’s not a pretty film. It is cold and dank mostly. But I still was in awe when it was over. It gave me chills.

What I was most impressed with was the way they filmed the scenes. Being set in 1928-1935, they depicted a pretty drabby time in our history. And you could see that in every way they shot the frames. There were no rosy tints or bright sunny colors. It was all blue and industrial. It really set the mood for other themes to come out more fully.

I love when pieces of a film come together. That is what is so great about the movies. Everything from the costumes, music, to the hue of the frames can affect our mood and how we react to the story. These can affect us just as much, if not more at times than what is being said by the actors themselves. So the contributors and masterminds behind this particular movie did a great job making sure all the layers intertwine for a power punch to the viewer.

Have you watched any good films lately?

Friday Filters offer a review that are my own opinions. I was not contacted by anyone associated with these works or compensated for my review. My review has not been influenced by anything other than my love for entertainment and art.

Friday Filter Film: “Jobs”

We recently watched the new film Jobs.

Jobs (2013) Poster

Ashton Kutcher stars in this motion picture depicting the late Steve Jobs and how Apple began.

The company I went with have mixed reviews about this movie.

I am always fascinated to see the history of things and how timelines evolve. So in that retrospect, this was great. You were able to see how Jobs built this company from his parent’s garage.

The downside was that you got to see how he built the company.

I was not aware of Steve Jobs life apart from being a great innovator in our time.

This movie showed how big of a sleazebag he was. From bailing on his closest friends who helped him with the start up to being a dead beat dad; he was just a big jerk.

But besides not liking him as a person, this was a good movie. I felt the acting was good, (Tom disagreed with me). They did a phenomenal job casting. The staging and costume design was fun to see the progression of the decades.

They stuck to the truth even if it was awful to learn how awful he was as a person. You have to give him credit for changing our world one electronic device at a time. He did push people to invent the unknown and push their limits to create something unimaginable. I would agree with him on his theory that Apple electronics should speak to the person’s heart and be an extension of themselves. If you think about how each of us try to personalize our personal devices, he had that spot on. I may just not agree with all of his business methods, but at the same time I know I am not cut out for real business and the cut-throat tactics. I feel that highlighting the corporate shark aspect and his confidence in his product was the main focus of the film.

There did lack some connectivity in some of the transitions. Sometimes it was hard to follow the timeline and understand where we were and how we jumped to whatever scene. Tom didn’t like the fact that it didn’t show the timeline up until the present. They did just kind of stop the storyline in my opinion, but it was already a long enough movie so it had to end sometime.

Do I think that this may get some award buzz, probably. Like I said, film quality isn’t so bad. It is undoubtedly, in my humble opinion, Ashton’s best role.

Would I ever want to watch this again? Nope.

Anyone else see this movie and have opinions?

Friday Filters offer a review that are my own opinions and are not influenced by anything other than my love for entertainment and art.