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​Parenthood 0 E. Messinger Parenthood Movie/TV Show Being Reviewed: Howard, R. (Producer). (2010). Parenthood [Television Series]. Los Angeles, CA: NBC Universal Television Distribution. Reviewer: Erik Messinger Genre: Comedy, Drama   Movie/TV Show: TV Show   Suggested Age Range: Everyone Subject Headings: Aging, Career, Communication, Family Dynamics, Learning Disorders, Relationships Review: The TV series Parenthood follows three generations of the Braverman family set in California. The show highlights the patriarch and matriarch Zeek and Camille Braverman and their four adult children, Adam, Sarah, Crosby, and Julia along with their respective families. The four Braverman siblings share their own journeys of joy, headache, and heartache of parenthood as they navigate their personal lives with the struggles of those around them. As their parents deal with marital and aging issues, the four siblings lean on each other and their families while tackling various individual and family challenges that life throws at them. Throughout the six seasons of this series, many themes are present that counselors can utilize with a variety of clients. The largest theme is family dynamics as the Braverman family deals with learning disorders, children experimenting, moving to college, and having to take care of parents as they age. This show has the potential to show clients that all families struggle with various problems and concerns across the lifespan but support and trust help to keep the family unit strong and intact despite obstacles. Clients of multiple ages and backgrounds can observe how each family member has a unique story that highlights their triumphs and failures but find support within the family. Additionally, this series can be used when teaching family systems counseling as multiple subsystems are observed throughout the course of the show. This show can elicit a lot of strong emotions and should be processed appropriately.
by E. Messinger
Friday, November 22, 2019
Moonlight 0 J. Shannon Moonlight Movie/TV Show Being Reviewed: Romanski, A. (Producer), Gardner, D. (Producer), Kleiner, J. (Producer) & Jenkins, B. (Director). (2016). Moonlight [Motion picture]. New York, NY: A24. Reviewer: Jordan Shannon Genre: Drama   Movie/TV Show: Movie Suggested Age Range: Adults Only Subject Headings: High School, Male Lifespan Development, Poverty-Urban, Racial/Ethnic Identity, Sexuality, Substance Abuse-Drugs Review: Moonlight (Romanski et al., 2016) is a film that explores the life of a young African American man across three life stages; childhood, adolescence and early adulthood. In the film, themes of masculinity, sexuality and race influence the main character, Chiron. Masculinity is linked to being tough, both physically and emotionally, and heteronormativity remains the unspoken, assumed identity of all males. Any diverging from these ideals is then met with sharp resistance from community and even persons who want to navigate those boundaries as well. Chiron experiences these resistances very early on from childhood. As he plays football with friends, he is quickly accused of being weak or soft when he hesitates to play. He even questions his own sexuality in a conversation with a prominent male figure and drug dealer, Juan. As he gets to adolescence, the resistance becomes worse, as he is bullied often from his peers for not being willing to chase women. He eventually develops a romantic intimate relationship with another peer, Kevin, but upon the culture of masculinity, he too resorts to bullying Chiron when they are in front of their peers. Throughout the film, we see Chiron embrace his sexuality, then depart to embrace the cultural masculinity as he becomes an adult, which influences him to conceal those queer and intimate moments he held in childhood and adolescence. The intersection of racial identity, heteronormativity, masculinity, and socioeconomic status impact each character on a level that results to further marginalization. As counselors and counselor educators, we are obliged to be leaders that acknowledge power, privilege and oppression and more importantly how those three impact out students (Ratts & Greenleaf, 2018). Movies such as these can teach us about how traditionally marginalized populations can further perpetuate oppression and the need for us to dismantle these systems. Given that there is already a use of film in pedagogy, it stands that Moonlight can aid in helping counselors in training explore how they are helping their students and clients understand their own identities. More importantly it can provide help for our counselors can engage in culturally-responsive action.
by J. Shannon
Thursday, November 21, 2019
6 Balloons 0 V. McGaha 6 Balloons Movie/TV Show Being Reviewed: Houseman, S., Dinerstein, R. M., Carolin, R., Kiernan, P., & Tatum, C. (Producers). (2018). 6 balloons. [Motion Picture]. Los Gatos, CA: Netflix, Inc. Reviewer: Valerie McGaha Genre: Action, Drama Movies/TV Shows: Movie Suggested Age Range: Teen, Adults Only Subject Headings: Communication, Crime, Depression, Grief & Loss, Heath/Wellness, Relationships, Self-injurious Behavior, Substance Abuse-Alcohol, Substance Abuse-Drugs, Trauma  Review: 6 Balloons is a movie that highlighted the main character, Seth, who abused heroin and oxycodone with daily frequency and began using drugs in his early 20s. The movie depicted him purchasing 6 balloons of heroin and used intravenously. Seth’s mental functioning was poor and he experienced physical withdrawal as evidenced by shaking, sweating, vomiting, and cognitive difficulty. Seth obsessively thought about using heroin. His interpersonal relationships with family were impaired. Seth’s educational level included a high school diploma and some college attendance. During his studies in college, Seth was employed in construction work. Despairingly at 21, Seth began using Oxycodone which led to academic decline and school dropout. Despite the support of addiction rehabilitation programs and supportive family, Seth continued using drugs. 6 Balloons can be a great resource for beginning counselors, clients, and family members impacted by addiction. Counselors can address the effects of heroin related to suicidal and/or homicidal thoughts. Counselors can highlight Seth’s resilient qualities, addiction risks and relapse vulnerability, and protective factors towards recovery. Counselors and clients can examine positives of Seth’s past employment, his former academic goals, and familial support. A positive caveat for counselors and clients to explore former college attendance is to create career options and employment-related opportunities. Counselors can explore 6 Balloons to understand the sister’s failed strategies in addiction intervention and provide addiction psychoeducation and strategic family therapy. Lastly, 6 Balloons can help counselors and clients to identify and effectively cope with addiction-related social stigma and challenging inaccuracies.
by V. McGaha
Saturday, August 17, 2019
The Office 0 V. McGaha The Office Movie/TV Show Being Reviewed: Daniels, G. (Producer). (2013). The office [Television Series]. Van Nuys, CA: NBC Universal Television Distribution. Reviewer: Valerie McGaha Genre: Mockumentary Sitcom Movies/TV Shows: TV Show Suggested Age Range: Teens/Adults Subject Headings: Office Dynamics, Career, Interpersonal Relationships, Multicultural/Cross-Cultural Issues, Relationships, Sexuality Review: Stanley Hudson, age 55, was a retired salesperson from Dunder Mifflin. Stanley, an African American male, had a socially conservative outlook and had difficulty with employment changes and career progression. He identified in the past as being interested in the Black Panther Party and Black culture; however, he did not embrace racially-based topics. Stanley identified one person who served as a close colleague and friend in the work setting named Phyllis Vance. He disclosed a turbulent work environment and conflicting tensions with his supervisor, Michael Scott. In addition to his lack of interpersonal skills and flexible employment relationships, Stanley has experienced various health problems impacting employment performance and personal satisfaction. These health problems include: diabetes, cardiovascular problems, poor dietary behavior, and lack of physical activity. The focus of Stanley with Dunder Mifflin can provide career exploration and change. Counselors can utilize the Person-Environment Fit model to examine Stanley’s engagement, productivity, health, and wellbeing. Counselors who provide client career assessments may empower employment productivity and self-efficacy and reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression. The Person-Environment Fit model may help Stanley with decisions regarding retirement and post-retirement goals and highlight current hobbies. Additional counseling aspects related to Stanley are socioracial narratives and ethnic cultural implications in majority White employment settings. The adjustment and comfortability for minorities in a majority White work setting may limit employment success and hinder intercultural relationships. Thus, examining bicultural work experiences, white privilege, and systemic discrimination using the Person-Environment Fit model may enhance Stanley’s transition towards retirement.
by V. McGaha
Monday, August 12, 2019
Philadelphia 0 V. McGaha Philadelphia Movie/TV Show Being Reviewed: Demme, J.& Saxon, E. (Producers), & Demme, J. (Director). (1993). Philadelphia [Motion Picture]. Culver City, CA: TriStar Pictures Inc. Reviewer: Valerie McGaha Genre: Drama Suggested Age Range: Everyone Subject Headings: Anger, Career, Communication, Family Dynamics, Grief & Loss, Heath/Wellness, Multicultural/Cross-Cultural Issues, Relationships, Sexuality, Social Justice Review: The movie Philadelphia highlights Andrew Beckett, a male in his mid-forties and an attorney employed in a law firm is diagnosed with Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS). Andrew interpersonal social support consisted of family, friends, and his partner Miguel. Andrew hid his homosexual status and illness from employers and fellow employees. Andrew was terminated due to missing paperwork; however he believed his termination was due to workplace discrimination and homophobia. Compelled to seek justice for employment termination, Andrew decided to seek legal representation of a law suit against the law firm; however experienced difficulty seeking an attorney. Eventually, an attorney named Miller agreed to represent Andrew and won the legal suit. Throughout the movie, Andrew developed a close, respectable friendship with his attorney and he strengthened family/partner communications prior to his death. Philadelphia is an essential movie for counselors, interns, and clients to examine HIV/AIDS stereotyping and workplace discrimination. Counselors, clients, and family members can explore historical comparisons of HIV/AIDS viewpoints to improved medical treatment, reduced biases, and enhanced relationships. Counselor Educators can strengthen their education on equal employment guidelines and protective factors against discrimination. Clients and family members impacted by HIV/AIDS can view Andrew’s resilient and brave qualities in justice motivation. Lastly, counselors can support clients, relatives, and friends towards a loving, supportive environment and offer grief counseling. The powerful scenes of Philadelphia highlight family support and reunification and unconditional love in the acceptance and preparation of Andrew’s death.
by V. McGaha
Friday, August 2, 2019
Traffic 0 V. McGaha Traffic Movie/TV Show Being Reviewed: Zwick, E., Herskovitz, M., & Bickford, L. (Producers), & Soderbergh, S. (Director). (2000). Traffic [Motion Picture]. United States: Bedford Falls. Reviewer: Valerie McGaha Genre: Emotional Thriller Suggested Age Range: Teens, Adults Subject Headings: Depression, Family Dynamics, LGBT Issues, Grief & Loss, Military, Multicultural/Cross-Cultural Issues, Relationships, Sexuality Review: In the movie Traffic, Caroline Wakefield, a 16-year-old Caucasian female was an only child, attending a private school, Caroline was reared in an upper-middle class family, and her father was highly respected and employed in criminal law enforcement. Academically and socially, Caroline demonstrated high scholastic achievement in which she ranked third in her graduating class and was active on the following school teams: math, swim, and poetry. Caroline experienced a life-changing decision to abuse drugs, resulting in reduced motivation in school observed by low grades and defiant, self-destructive behavior. Caroline befriended a classmate, where they shared alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, and heroine. Traffic can be a great resource for beginning counselors, clients, and family members impacted by addiction. Throughout the movie, Caroline displayed academic achievement and self-destructive behaviors through substance abuse as a means of escape. The movie was an inspirational, yet heart-breaking reality of what youth in our society could go through who have talent; however, our youth may fall victim to drug experimentation and develop substance abuse.  Mental health professionals can highlight Caroline’s resilient qualities and risk/protective factors towards drug addiction and sustained recovery. The opiate epidemic among our youth continues to increase. Caroline provided education for our youth in understanding how opiates can impact a persons’ life at a young age. Counselor Educators can provide counseling and psychoeducation to individuals, family members, and adolescent students on common stereotypes and misconceptions of substance use/abuse associated with problem behaviors and poverty-stricken youth. Counselors can provide a strength-based mental health counseling model for strength development, empowerment, and productivity. Caroline was academically talented and appeared intelligent, which would prove helpful in drug intervention and continued substance recovery. Despite the parents of Caroline facing the horrific reality of their daughter’s substance abuse, academic failure, and physically sabotaging behaviors, the parent’s unconditional love provides support towards Caroline’s recovery. Counselor Educators can implement strategic family therapy in the treatment of substance use disorders towards recovery-oriented systems of care.
by V. McGaha
Friday, August 2, 2019
Paris Is Burning 0 H. Peters Paris Is Burning Movie/TV Show Being Reviewed: Livingston, J. (Producer), Livingston, J. (Director). (1991). Paris is burning [Motion picture]. United States: Academy Entertainment, Off White Productions. Reviewer: Harvey Peters Genre: Documentary Suggested Age Range: Everyone Subject Headings: LGBT Issues, Multicultural/Cross-Cultural Issues, Poverty: Urban, Racial/Ethnic Identity, Sexuality, Social Justice Review: Paris Is Burning is a documentary which was filmed in the mid-to-late 1980s. This film chronicled New York City’s ball culture, which is an underground queer community competition where people walk (i.e., compete) for prizes, trophies, and recognition. The balls were developed in an underground queer culture mainly comprised of multiple marginalized intersecting social locations, such as affectional/sexual orientation, gender, race, ethnicity, gender identity, gender expression, and socioeconomic class. Thus, the documentary showcased a subgroup within the queer community. In documenting the lives, narratives, and culture represented within the queer ball scene, the documentary highlighted the unique language, practices, relationships, and culture, which has more recently been integrated and appropriated by queer and heterosexual culture. This documentary can be utilized in many master’s or doctoral level counseling courses or topics, such as multiculturalism, social justice, family systems, and clinical supervision. The documentary focused on the intersections of multiple social locations, which exposes counselors to a community that has many strengths, resiliencies, unique qualities, and oppressed experiences. Thus, the documentary can be used to engage in dialogue, expose students to a new culture and concepts, and highlight the importance of intersectionality. However, it is crucial that the instructor or classroom facilitator engage in critical and responsive dialogue, as well as processing the experiences and learning points of their students. Given the richness and complexity of the documentary, it would be important to consult, further research, and provide resources before using this documentary in a classroom or lecture.
by H. Peters
Monday, February 4, 2019
​One Day at a Time 0 A. Reyes One Day at a Time Movie/TV Show Being Reviewed: Lear, N. (Producer). (2017). One day at a time [Television series]. Los Angeles, California: Sony Pictures Studio. Reviewer: Ana Reyes Genre: Comedy Movies/TV Shows: TV Show Suggested Age Range: Teens/Adults Only Subject Headings: Depression, Family Dynamics, LGBT Issues, Grief & Loss, Military, Multicultural/Cross-Cultural Issues, Relationships, Sexuality Review: This Netflix-original series highlights the experiences of a multi-generational Cuban-American family living in the same household. The main character, Penelope, is a working Army veteran raising two children with assistance from her mother. The grandmother, Lydia, is a traditional Cuban matriarch caring for her daughter and grandchildren. Alex is the youngest child exploring his cultural heritage and family’s immigration story. The oldest child, Elena, is a straight A student who is exploring her sexuality. As she prepares for her sweet sixteen, she confirms her sexual identity to her brother and comes out as a lesbian to her grandmother, mother, and father. The show’s development reveals the mother and grandmother’s process of acceptance and greater awareness of sexuality and lesbian sexual identity. This series provides counselors with an opportunity to witness and experience the dimensional experiences of multi-generational Latinx families living in the United States (U.S.). The gender neutral term Latinx is often used when referring to individuals of Latin American descent. The series also highlights some of the most salient experiences of Latinx families, such as acculturation, language(s) barriers, immigration issues, sexual identity, and generational differences. This series encourages counselors to engage in critical thought regarding family systems and how each member of the family is experiencing the sociopolitical context of the U.S. while identifying possible clinical implications and resources. Counselor educators could use some video clips from this series in multicultural counseling courses to discuss the interplay of the intersectionality of various identities.
by A. Reyes
Wednesday, January 24, 2018
Hidden Figures 0 K. Bledsoe Hidden Figures Movie/TV Show Being Reviewed: Gigliotti, D., Chernin, P., Topping, J., Williams, P. (Producers), & Melfi, T. (Director). (2016). Hidden figures [Motion Picture]. United States: 20th Century Fox. Reviewer: Kenya Bledsoe Genre: Drama Movies/TV Shows: Movie Suggested Age Range: Parental Guidance Subject Headings: Career, Female Lifespan Development, Multicultural/Cross-Cultural Issues, Racial/Ethnic Identity, Racial/Ethnic Politics, Social Justice, Trauma Review: The implementation of expressive techniques in counseling (e.g., cinema, music, art) have been instrumental to the counseling profession, positively impacting counselors and the quality of work with their clients by positioning them to broaden their perspectives and obtain and deeper understanding of life altering experiences (Bradley, Whiting, & Hendricks, 2008). Hidden Figures is an inspirational, biographical film that highlights three African American mathematicians, Katherine G. Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, and Mary Jackson, and their invaluable contributions to NASA during the early years of the United States’ space program while intensely preparing for John Glen’s historic launch into orbit. These three women, like so many African American women, encountered extreme racism, segregation, discrimination, and sexism. This film provides a vivid depiction of social injustices for African Americans and women in the 1960s. Fortunately, these courageous and determined women would not be dismayed, choosing to persevere despite demeaning work conditions, as well as adversity across the nation. These three women chose to remain focused on their career aspirations and goals, drawing strength and support from their families and friendship with one another. In the November 2016 issue of Counseling Today, Dr. Catherine Roland urged counselors to re-evaluate, accept, and activate our resilience as human beings. Thus, the author encourages counselors to inspire their clients to do the same. Counselors can assist clients with recognizing their unique, personal attributes and so they can tap into the necessary grit needed to overcome adverse situations and pursue personal and professional goals and aspirations. Movies like Hidden Figures can also inspire clients to push past discrimination and social injustices in pursuit of their personal and professional goals and aspirations. Reference: Bradley, L., Whiting, P., & Hendricks, B. (2008). The use of expressive techniques in counseling. Journal of Creativity in Mental Health, 3(1), 44-59.
by K. Bledsoe
Wednesday, January 24, 2018
Born This Way 0 V. Maneev Born This Way Movie/TV Show Being Reviewed: Webster, K., Burt, J., Goldschien, G., Korkolan, L., Lane, J., Murray, J. (Producers),…& Hennessey, B. (Executive Producer). (2015). Born this way [Television Series]. United States: A&E Network. Reviewer: Victoria Maneev Genre: Documentary, Reality TV Movies/TV Shows: TV Show Suggested Age Range: Everyone, Parental Guidance Subject Headings: Multicultural/cross-cultural issues, Relationships Review: The first episode of Born This Way aired on the A&E Television Station in December 2015. This documentary series features seven young adults born with Down syndrome. The series follows Elena, Megan, Steven, Sean, Rachel, Cristina, and John as they navigate through life. The show details their trials and tribulations while providing educational moments that are invaluable to viewers. The show unravels many topics that show the complexities and raw emotions of the characters. According to A&E’s description “Throughout the series, they pursue their passions and lifelong dreams, explore friendships, romantic relationships and work, all while defying society’s expectations” (A&E). The show also shares the perspective of the parents. The parents share the joys and challenges experienced while raising a child born with Down syndrome. Among the topics discussed are: independence, romantic relationships, career, family, and dealing with a wide range of emotions. As an individual in the rehabilitation counseling discipline, I was initially skeptical about the show. I thought that the producers of the show would exploit or make fun of individuals with Down syndrome. Instead, the show’s level of authenticity defied my expectations. It illustrated how individualistic the diagnosis of Down syndrome can be. The show is well done, funny, heartwarming, sad, genuine, and authentic. I would highly recommend it to both counselors and counselor-educators. This show can help counselors in practice to better understand individuals with Down syndrome. It can also be utilized by counselor educators when teaching about various disabilities in the classroom setting. Additionally, counselor-educators can explore psychosocial aspects of Down syndrome with their students.  
by V. Maneev
Monday, February 20, 2017
​In Treatment 0 K. Wereszczynska In Treatment Movie/TV Show Being Reviewed: Garcia, R., Levi, H., Ori, S., & Bergman, N. (Writers). (2008). In treatment [Television Series]. Los Angeles, CA: Home Box Office, Inc. Reviewer: Kasia Wereszczynska Genre: Drama Movies/TV Shows: TV Show Suggested Age Range: Adults Only Subject Headings: Alternative Therapies, Anger, Anxiety Disorders, Bipolar Disorders, Body Image, Career Counseling, Codependency, Depression, Divorce, Eating Disorders, Grief & Loss, Heath/Wellness, Multicultural/Cross-Cultural Issues, Personality Disorders, PTSD, Racial Ethnic Identity, Relationships, Self-injurious Behavior, Sexual Abuse, Sexuality, Substance Abuse, Spiritual Journey, Social Justice, Trauma Violence-assault, Violence-domestic Review: As counselors, we have an obligation to serve our clients to the best of our capacity, which includes being knowledgeable of best practices (American Counseling Association, 2014). As such, counselors in training routinely undergo thousands of hours of supervision across various mediums. With improved technology, the field has begun to rely more on video and audio-recorded sessions as well as educational videos. These videos, in particular, have become ever more effective toward teaching counselors in training necessary microskills to help them develop into effective professionals. Although a dramatization, the television show In Treatment provides a realistic portrayal of clinical sessions in the span of 30 minutes. This Home Box Office (HBO) original television series features psychologist Dr. Paul Weston. Each episode depicts a single session and continues to follow clients in succession. Like most counselors, Dr. Weston works with a diverse range of clients by way of demographics and presenting issues and concerns. Throughout the sessions, Dr. Weston demonstrates a diversity of approach, ranging from CBT to person-centered to reality-based approaches. Of particular importance to the counselor-in-training is seeing how an integrated approached specific to each client is necessary for successful therapeutic outcomes. As he works through these issues, counselors bear witness to how even the most experienced professionals must continue to not only look within themselves, but also seek outside support to maintain a professional relationship. Thus, the program is educational, as well as entertaining, leaving counselors with their own clinical considerations to ponder.  
by K. Wereszczynska
Monday, February 20, 2017
Yelling to the Sky 0 V. May Yelling to the SkyMovie/TV Show Being Reviewed:Mahoney, V., Mulligan, B., Dickersin, G., & Houslin, D. (Producers), & Mahoney, V. (Director). (2011). Yelling to the sky [Motion picture]. United States: MPI Media Group & Front Row Film Entertainment.Reviewer:Simone MayGenre:DramaMovies/TV Shows:MovieSuggested Age Range:Teenager (13+)Subject Headings:Anger, Depression, Family dynamics, Grief & loss, High school, Multicultural/cross-cultural issues, Poverty-urban, Relationships, Self-injurious behavior, Substance abuse-alcohol, Substance abuse-drugs, Trauma, Violence-domesticReview:"Yelling to the Sky" is a 2011 American drama written and directed by Victoria Mahoney. The movie depicts the lives of two biracial female siblings struggling to survive in an unstable environment. Sweetness, the younger sibling, is bullied, stands as a victim and witness to her alcoholic father’s abuse towards her mentally ill mother, and is a witness to the murder of her friend Roland. Sweetness’ life spirals downward as she adopts the role of a fearless, apathetic, and rebellious teenager who is seeking to find solace through maladaptive behaviors. As the film concludes, Sweetness turns a new leaf. She develops a new heart and a new attitude, choosing to reconcile differences with her bully and her father, alter her social circle, and attend college."Yelling to the Sky" offers a storyline fitting for individual and group counseling. “Yelling to the Sky” displays the harmful effects of unhealthy behaviors such as bullying, violence, drug activity, gang involvement, impulsivity, and unhealthy decision-making. The film also shows the power of resilience, love, support, forgiveness, and reconciliation. An individual or group who watches “Yelling to the Sky” will explore grief and loss, whether it involves the physical, mental, or emotional loss of a friend or loved one, the importance of building healthy relationships, the ability to regain strength after an abusive relationship, and the power of redefining oneself and his/her destiny. “Yelling to the Sky,” offers a realistic view of struggle and success. 
by V. May
Thursday, December 15, 2016
Inside Out 0 A. Fifield Inside OutMovie/TV Show Being Reviewed:Lasseter, J. (Executive Producer), Docter, P., & Del Carmen, R. (Co-Directors). (2015). Inside out [Motion picture]. United States: Pixar Animation Studios.Reviewer:Andrea FifieldGenre:AnimatedMovies/TV Shows:MovieSuggested Age Range:EveryoneSubject Headings:Anger, Communication, Depression, Female lifespan development, Family dynamics, Grief & loss, Heath/Wellness, RelationshipsReview:Inside Out cleverly portrays the basic emotions of Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear, and Disgust as beings that live inside 11 year old Riley’s mind and regulate her emotional experience. Riley is forced to move to San Francisco with her family and experiences emotional strain as her inner beings wrestle with how to interpret her new situation (IMDb, 2016).  As Riley is faced with more challenges, she experiences other, more painful emotions, culminating in a crisis when Riley decides to run away. Ultimately, Riley learns the value of feeling/expressing ALL emotions as a way to fully experience the world, to signal when something is wrong, and to ask for help.This movie is useful for any client (who appreciates animated films) who has difficulty expressing emotions, or who has been taught to believe that one should only express "positive” emotions. Similarly, the film would be a great basis for debate in a counselor education course, where students can debate the role of emotions, thoughts, and environment/ecosystem in a person’s life, and in the counseling process. Processing of the movie would be critical, however, to ensure that clients/students do understand the lessons revealed by the end of the movie, namely, that all emotions serve a purpose, and that appropriate expression of emotions is a good thing.Reference: IMDb (2016). Inside out: Plot summary. Retrieved from http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2096673/plotsummary?ref_=tt_stry_pl
by A. Fifield
Thursday, March 3, 2016
Fried Green Tomatoes 0 E. Bond Fried Green TomatoesMovie/TV Show Being Reviewed:Avnet, J. (Producer and Director), & Kerner, J. (Producer). (1991). Fried green tomatoes [Motion picture]. United States: Universal Pictures.Reviewer:Emily BondGenre:DramaMovies/TV Shows:MovieSuggested Age Range:TeenSubject Headings:Aging, Female lifespan development, Grief & loss, Racial/ethnic politics, Relationships, Social justice, Violence-domesticReview:This film is based upon the novel "Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe" written by Fannie Flagg. It simultaneously tells two stories of dynamic female friendship, strength, and resilience. The present story revolves around Evelyn, a middle-aged housewife from Alabama attempting to transition from empty nest into a new career and a more fulfilling relationship with her husband. Evelyn meets Ninny, a local nursing home resident. These two women from different times and worlds become fast friends as Ninny begins telling Evelyn stories of Idgy and Ruth, two women from the south who owned a successful café and maneuvered through trials and tribulations of their own time and lives. Evelyn is ultimately inspired and motivated to begin making changes within her own life.Throughout the movie, many themes are identifiable that can be useful for counselors with a variety of clients including: re-writing stories/narratives, feminism, multi-cultural issues, spirituality, and grief and loss. The most profound themes are resilience and the strength that can come as a result of the support of friendship, love, and connection. I believe this film has the potential to be particularly powerful, useful, and effective with female clients. It is applicable to an array of life and transitional experiences and issues particularly during life stages and transitions occurring from adolescence through older adulthood. There are issues that come up in the film surrounding segregation and racism as well as domestic violence amongst other obstacles and challenges faced by both sets of women in both stories and times.  
by E. Bond
Wednesday, February 24, 2016
This Is Where I Leave You 0 H. Duke This Is Where I Leave YouMovie/TV Show Being Reviewed:Levy, S. (Producer/Director), Weinstein, P., & Levine, J. (Producers). (2014). This is where I leave you. [Motion picture]. United States: Spring Creek Productions.Reviewer:Heather DukeGenre:DramaMovies/TV Shows:MovieSuggested Age Range:Adults OnlySubject Headings:Communication, Divorce, Family dynamicsReview:The focal point of this movie is geared towards the ups and downs the Altman siblings encounter in their personal lives and unwittingly demonstrates the power of sibling bonding and rivalry. The Altman siblings are classified as disengaged due to their lack of communication with each other. Their mother Hilary Altman knows that her adult children need to reunite and grieve the recent loss of their father. They are reluctant about reuniting because they feel ashamed of their personal life choices. Deep down inside, their mother feels they need one another especially since the passing of their father. She decided to plan a shiva. This ceremony is a Jewish tradition that honors the passing of loved ones. Family and friends reunite for seven days to share stories and have a feast.This movie can be utilized as part of counseling practices when assisting adult clients with certain family issues such as hierarchy structure, loss of a parent, gender issues, and the power of sibling bonding and rivalry. The shiva ceremony hinges upon the Narrative Model because of its storytelling component. If clients can observe how the Altmans handle their grief through humor and storytelling, they may begin to share and heal the grief they are currently experiencing that pertains to their loss of a loved one. Additionally, this movie can assist professors who teach family counseling courses because it focuses on family systems, specifically sibling subsystems. Use of this movie to address grief and family issues is not appropriate with some clients and should be used with caution. 
by H. Duke
Wednesday, February 24, 2016
Groundhog Day 0 C. McNaught Groundhog DayMovie/TV Show Being Reviewed:Ramis, H., Albert, T., Rubin, D., Murray, B., MacDowell, A., Elliott, C., Tobolowsky, S., ... Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment (Firm). (2002). Groundhog Day. Culver City, CA: Columbia TriStar Home Video.Reviewers:Chris McNaught & Philip ClarkeGenre:ComedyMovies/TV Shows:MovieSuggested Age Range:Parental GuidanceSubject Headings:Anger, Depression, Grief & lossReview:Groundhog Day is about living the same day, over and over. Phil (Bill Murray) is a weatherman sent to Punxsutawney for the fourth consecutive year to cover the annual groundhog festival. After doing a barely acceptable job as a reporter, he is ready to go home, but instead is stopped by a snowstorm. When he wakes up the second morning, and every morning after that, he is forced to experience Groundhog Day. Understanding that he can do anything without repercussions, Phil engages in unhealthy activities. After learning some valuable life lessons and the importance of being genuine, Phil is finally allowed to progress to the day after Groundhog Day (IMDb, 2016).On the surface, Groundhog Day seems like a simple comedy with a simple plot and message. It is, however, a deeply philosophical movie centered around the process of grief and loss. Through the timeline of the movie, Phil moves through the five stages of grief as outlined by Kübler-Ross in 1969. From a logotherapy perspective, Phil creates meaning in his life. This film could be useful for counselors learning about grief and loss stages and existential struggles. Keep in mind that the movie does portray multiple suicide attempts. As always, use your judgment to determine if this film might help or hinder your learning process as a counselor or counselor-in-training.Reference: IMDb (2016). Groundhog day: Plot summary. Retrieved from http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0107048/plotsummary?ref_=tt_stry_pl
by C. McNaught
Wednesday, February 24, 2016
Transparent 0 C. Chan TransparentMovie/TV Show Being Reviewed:Soloway, J. (Producer). (2015). Transparent [Television series]. Los Angeles, CA: Amazon Studios.Reviewer:Christian ChanGenre:Comedy DramaMovies/TV Shows:TV ShowSuggested Age Range:Adults OnlySubject Headings:Aging, Body image, Family dynamics, GLBT issues, Grief & loss, Multicultural/cross-cultural issues, Relationships, SexualityReview:This Amazon on-demand television series features the developmental journey of a transgender woman, the challenges in coming out, and the resulting effects on family members and relationships after disclosing the transition. The word transgender refers to a person who identifies with a different gender than the gender assigned at birth. Previously, she had attempted to live to society’s standards as a man, where she dressed in men’s clothing and married a cisgender woman (an individual who identifies with the same gender assigned at birth). However, she struggled with this identity throughout her life. After intentionally and accidentally disclosing to her children and previous partner, she is forced to negotiate how to live openly and how to communicate her identity to others. The series also provides context on the development of other characters, including the eldest daughter who leaves her male partner to be with a woman and the other two siblings learning how to live with their father identifying as a transgender woman. Counselors will find the series valuable in thinking critically about transgender issues, how both relationships and family alter due to the coming out and transition processes, and the loss associated with changes in identity. The series also exemplifies the dark reality that exists both for individuals in the transgender population and the family members' perceptions of transgender identity meaning-making. The series highlights important sociocultural aspects in identity development, queer and transgender issues, intimate relationships, and family systems, which are all relevant topics for counseling practice and counselor education.
by C. Chan
Wednesday, November 25, 2015
One Tree Hill – “With Tired Eyes, Tired Minds, Tired Souls, We Slept” 1 R. Danner As a big One Tree Hill fan, I couldn’t agree more with this review as it highlights the importance of a counselor’s role in helping others with suicidal thoughts and actions, grief, bullying, etc. As you mentioned, it is important for school counselors to know the signs and symptoms of things such as suicide to, as you said, “intercede before any violent behaviors could take place.” While I find this very important, I would also like to point out the role of the school counselors in helping educate and communicate with other students. Much of the episode and episodes to follow included a character named Mouth, who used to be Jimmy’s best friend. Mouth spends a lot of time trying to understand what happened, when Jimmy became so depressed and isolated, and how come he didn’t notice any of this. In addition to recognizing the signs themselves, school counselors should also be helping teach other students to be able to identify these signs in others, to prevent future violence or seek help for a friend in need. Counselors should not only help students like Mouth process these events after the fact, but also help educate students about signs of someone in need of help before an event like this can even occur.
by A. Lessard
Tuesday, May 14, 2019
Anger Management 2 N. Thomas You are welcome for the resource. I think seasons one and two will be most useful to address Tuckman's theory.
by N. Thomas
Monday, March 9, 2015
The Laramie Project 1 A. Craft Thanks Amanda. This looks like a great resource!
by C. Wolf
Wednesday, February 18, 2015
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