Articles by Barry Wurst II


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Waikiki

When we meet Kea (played by Danielle Zalopany), she’s working as a singer in a karaoke bar, living in her van and broke. Her ex shows up during her shift and is furious about her working in a place filled with sleazy patrons. Not long after, Kea drives off and makes a terrible mistake. In…

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Cane Fire

“Cane Fire,” the new documentary by Anthony Banua- Simon (who directed, filmed and edited), starts with the search for the long out-of-print, “White Heat,” a 1934 drama, which was the first film shot on Kauai. Interviews with Banua-Simon’s elderly Uncle Henry and others within his circle become the starting point for this documentary. It becomes…

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Let Him Go

Kevin Costner and Diane Lane star as George and Margaret Blackledge, an older couple who are coping with a sudden tragedy. When their eldest son dies, their widowed daughter-in-law remarries an abusive lout, who unexpectedly moves her and his young stepson out of state. Ma and Pa Blackledge, who have an extreme affection for their…

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Aloha Surf Hotel

At the start of Stefan C. Schaefer’s “Aloha Surf Hotel,” Tai Alonzo (played by stand-up comedian Augie Tulba) has hit rock bottom. Alonzo, a one-time surf legend-turned-college-student, has just lost his support from a university, is unemployed, has a daughter to support and a van with everything he owns being towed away. His one shot…

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Antebellum

“Antebellum,” the racially charged horror film from writer/directors Gerard Bush and Christopher Renz, opens with this quote from William Faulkner: “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.” Then we see a traveling shot, done in one take, in which the camera covers the daily operations taking place on a vast slave plantation. We…

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The Haumana

The late Keo Woolford was a charming, extremely versatile actor who was best known for his role as Sgt. James Chang, which he played on the latest and extremely popular version of “Hawaii 5-O.” Woolford, who tragically died in 2016, at the age of 49 (due to a stroke), had an impressive stage career, left…

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A Hidden Life

At the beginning of Terrence Malick’s “A Hidden Life,” Franz Yagerstatter (played by August Diehl) is returning home to his family. Living in Austria during the early days of Nazi recruitment and the war to come, Yagerstatter has been training as a soldier but finding his conscience at a crossroads and wanting nothing to do…

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