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The Last Tree

“The Last Tree” is a period piece set in 1990’s London and follows young Femi’s journey, settling back in with his birth mother after a having lived with a foster care family in Lancashire.  Femi goes from being sidelined as the only black child in his white classroom in Lancashire to experiencing a new angle of racism where he is now being sidelined as the darkest child in his black classroom in London, all of which sums up the multiple layers and dimensions that contirbute to  race, identity and home in today’s world. His life is switched from living a pretty idyllic childhood in Lancashire with a loving and caring foster mother and family coming to live with his birth mother, played by Gbemisola Ikumelo, who is about tough love and survival. They are  constant at loggerheads with each other whilst also having to share a claustrophobic high rise flat in London…

Depicting Mary Magdalene

Mary Magdalene’s history and existence are a long and complicated matter and she has remained a woman who is still the source of much speculation and rumour, so how did the writer of Mary Magdalene actually go about developing the screenplay and what were her sources of inspiration? Mary Magdalene has the reputation in Western Christianity as being a repentant prostitute or loose woman; however, these claims are not supported by the canonical gospels. The identity of Mary Magdalene is believed to have been merged with the identity of the unnamed sinner who anoints Jesus’ feet in Luke 7:36–50. From the New Testament, one can conclude that Mary of Magdala (her hometown, a village on the shore of the Sea of Galilee) was a leading figure among those attracted to Jesus. When the men in that company abandoned him at the hour of mortal danger, Mary of Magdala was one…

Billboards of Dissent

“Three Billboards Outside Missouri Ebbing” led to inspiring speeches by Frances McDormand as she and Sam Rockwell swept up Golden Globes, BAFTA’s, Oscar’s and gathered an army of fans, talk of inclusion causes as a matter of requirement for film projects and has also influence campaigners around the world. After waiting for months with no culprit’s being caught in her daughter’s murder case, Mildred Hayes buys up three billboard signs with a message aimed at William Willoughby, the town’s revered chief of police. The intended outcome is to draw attention to her daughter’s case and to provoke action from the sheriff’s office. Throughout the film, the billboards are constantly being destroyed and updated ultimately remain on the landscape whilst Mildred continues to seek out justice for her daughter. It’s this image that has inspired campaigners to use this tactic in their campaigns or justice. Billboards are being used to call…