Lia Beldam aka The Women from Room 237 talks about her role in “The Shining” and reflects on the films 40th Anniversary

You may not know Lia Beldam by name but she is forever the Woman from Room 237 in “The Shining” and also recently reprised in “Ready Player One”. Media Mikes had a chance to chat with Lia about her role and the legacy of the film celebrating it’s 40th anniversary.

Also be sure to check out our first interview with Lia back in 2013 –

Film Review: “20th Century Women”

Starring: Annette Bening, Elle Fanning and Greta Gerwig
Directed by: Mike Mills
Rated: R
Running time: 1 hr 59 mins

Our Score: 3 out of 5 Stars

In 2010, writer/director Mike Mills penned a film loosely based on his father called “Beginners,” with Christopher Plummer taking home an Oscar for his work. This week Mills has turned his pen towards his mother, with Annette Bening shining through in a performance that could end up the same way as Plummer’s did with Oscar gold.

Jamie (Lucas Jade Zumann) is a 15-year old boy being raised by a less then orthodox mother. We learn from Jamie that his mom Dorothea (Bening) wanted to be a pilot but instead now holds a high position with a major company. Dorothea is 55 and divorced. She doesn’t date much and, when she does, it doesn’t last long. Her world is Jamie. Or so she thinks. Her world also consists of Abbie (Gerwig), a boarder dealing with the possibility of having cervix cancer, William (Billy Crudup), a former hippie with a knack for fixing cars and pottery bowls, and Julie (Fanning), a neighborhood girl that Jamie is helplessly in love with. As their stories intertwine, it’s hard to see who the mature member of the “family” is and who the child is.

Set in 1979, the film makes great use with its pop culture references. Musical acts like the Raincoats and Black Flag dot the soundtrack while references to President Ford falling down the stairs of Air Force One or President Carter addressing the nation and it’s “crisis of confidence” – now referred to as “the Malaise Speech” – help set the tone of the on-screen action. As someone who remembers these events, and the “groovy” clothes from the period, it triggered some fond memories of my youth.

The film does have some problems with its pacing, but the energy jumps up when any of the three female leads are on screen. Fanning and Gerwig are both solid, especially since neither one of them were born in the time the film takes place. But it is Bening, one of our most overlooked talents, who shines here. She mines her emotional depths as she tries to find ways to connect with her son while still trying to maintain a lifestyle she has reluctantly become accustomed to. It is one of her finest performances and one I sincerely hope the Academy recognizes this year.

Film Review “Men, Women & Children”

Starring: Rosemarie DeWitt, Jennifer Garner, Judy Greer, Ansel Elgort and Kaitlyn Dever
Directed By: Jason Reitman
Rated: R
Running Time: 119 minutes
Paramount Pictures

Our Score: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Before the lights are dimmed and the movie begins, nearly every single person was looking at a smartphone, whether it is their own or simply sharing with the person next to them. They sat still with their fingers plugging away at a text or simply transfixed by a viral video. Some played mindless games while others, like me, were checking Twitter. It wasn’t always like this. I remember entering a movie theater and having to have a interpersonal conversation while easy movie trivia flashed on the screen. Things are different now, our lives, communication and feelings are all affected by technology and “Men, Women & Children” gives us a blunt look at its influence.

First we meet Don (Adam Sandler) who’s sexually dissatisfied in his marriage and resorts to Internet pornography to service his needs. His wife Helen (DeWitt) is also unhappy, but has yet to find a way to service her needs. Their son is also setting himself up for a life of porn addiction and a fervent discipline for touching himself. The other kids at school are slightly saner. There’s Hannah (Olivia Crocicchia), who gloats about her sexual conquests, and aspires to be a model. Her mom, Joan (Greer), supports these dreams and aspirations in the creepiest way possible, helping her daughter set up an online website to upload risqué photos.

The craziest parent, believe it or not, is the one who stalks her own daughters every cyber movement and reads through page after page of online chat. Patricia (Garner) believes the Internet is a vast, scary, and dangerous place for her daughter, Brandy (Dever), needless to say, is a social outcast at school because her life is under a miscroscope. Oddly enough, she draws the attention of Tim (Elgort). He’s lost meaning in life, recently quitting the football team and finding comfort in his online gaming friends on the massive multiplayer game, Guild Wars. His mom abandoned him and his dad, and as much as he’d like to still talk with her, she blocks on him on social media to prevent his prying eyes from seeing her fabulous new life without them. He doesn’t get much in the way of comfort from his Guild Wars pals who respond to his maternal predicament with “is she DTF?” (I’ll let you look that chat speak up for yourself if you don’t know what it means)

It may seem like a lot to handle (I know trying to explain it was), but Reitman weaves it all smoothly. He manages to give us a contemporary, albeit crude, look at a dysfunctional nuclear family, the overbearing parent, the single parent balancing their own personal despair and their child’s misery, eating disorders, and how these have changed as we’ve evolved from face-to-face talking to texting. It’s not a red flag of danger on where we’re headed, but more of a reminder that we can still be cruel, insensitive and clueless no matter what the means of communication are.

Instead of fixing their marriage and finding that old spark (or Hell, even divorce), Helen turns to online adultery and Don finds an escort through a website. It’s not a condemnation of these websites; married people aren’t the only ones who use these kinds of websites. It’s pointing out how the means to cheat have been filtered through a different way. The old form of peer pressure for students now comes through online help forums and websites pressuring young girls into a particular body image or thought process. Even the classic teen romance bubbles through talking on Tumblr, but the traditional means of affection remain intact. Technology has yet to replace human contact…yet.

“Men, Women & Children” has a bizarre ensemble cast, but I may only be saying that because this is Adam Sandler’s second dramatic role in a career spanning way too many fart jokes. Elgort shows off his range by become a sullen woeful soul, a complete opposite of his charismatic and witty character in “The Fault in Our Stars”. Dever, who I haven’t seen in anything else to my knowledge, is really good here along with Garner who seems borderline psychotic. I would have loved to see more interactions between those two. There’s simply not enough time to go too far into their lives, but I had an feel that this kind of movie could easily be transcribed into television format in today’s golden age of TV dramas.

“Men, Women & Children” is an Instagram snapshot into our digital lives, which runs the risk of being dated within a matter of years. Its social observations are long lasting though. It’s definitely a conversation starter about a topic that needs to be talked about before we fall into the archetypes we seen in this movie. Something tells me it won’t though. As soon as the first line of credits began rolling upwards, people immediately whipped out their smartphones.

There’s simply not enough time to go too far into their lives, but I have a feeling that this kind of movie could easily be transcribed into television format in today’s golden age of TV dramas.

Win Advance Passes to The Kansas City Premiere of Jason Reitman’s “Men, Women and Children” [ENDED]

Media Mikes has teamed up with Paramount Pictures to give (50) readers a chance to win a pass for (2) to attend the Kansas City premiere of the new film “Men, Women and Children.”

All you have to do is go to and register. On October 12, 2014, (50) random entrants will be selected and notified by email. Good luck!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014
7:30 p.m.
Tivoli Cinema
Kansas City, Missouri

Opening Date: Friday, October 17, 2014
Official Website:
Twitter: @MWCMovie #MWC
Rating: Rated R for strong sexual content including graphic dialogue throughout-some involving teens, and for language.

MEN, WOMEN & CHILDREN follows the story of a group of high school teenagers and their parents as they attempt to navigate the many ways the internet has changed their relationships, their communication, their self-image, and their love lives.


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DVD Review ‘What Women Want (2011)”

Directed by: Chen Daming
Starring: Andy Lau, Gong Li,
Distributed by: New Video Group
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Running Time: 116 minutes

Overall Score: 4 out of 5 stars

When I heard that there was a Chinese remake of the Mel Gibson starer “What Women Want”, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I am a big of of Andy Lau and Gong Li though, so right off the bat I was interested. Well I was definitely surprised since I enjoyed this film very much. The story was similar to the US version but had more of a new interesting feel added to it. It was funny and also had some good drama as well.

We follow Sun Zigang (Andy Lau) who works as an advertising agency and gets a new boss. The thing is the boss, Li Yilong, is a woman and threatens Sun’s position. During their first meeting Li suggests that in order to be able to sell their women’s products that the men should use the products first. After a freak accident Sun is slightly electrocuted, survives but now can hear all women’s thoughts. He uses this to get a head at work but ends up falls for his boss in the process.

The film runs a little long at around two hours but overall is very entertaining. My only real negative comment is that the DVD does not come with any special features at all. Even though it lists the Mandarin audio track with English & Chinese subtitles, but it is not a bonus feature and is in fact the only audio track available. Besides that I would definitely recommend this film.