The horror of Bobby Seale’s gagging by Judge Julius Hoffman in Aaron Sorkin’s timely film, The Trial of the Chicago 7 is an image of what Black Lives Matter is fighting against. It’s an image of how being silenced provokes rage. The history and trial speak for themselves. But, as a psychoanalyst, I can talk about how personal historical forces in your mind sometimes create violent opposition to speaking out, thinking for yourself, and being who you are. You, any of us, can feel we’re “on trial” for our thoughts if we go against what we’ve been taught we “should”...

Director Tom Hopper’s beautifully conceived film, The Danish Girl, begins and ends with artist Einar Wegener’s paintings of barren trees. The barrenness in these trees tells volumes about the lonely depletion of a self when the real self is split off and hidden. The story of artist Einar Wegener’s courageous transition from male to female, together with Eddie Redmayne’s tour de force performance as Lili Elbe, offers timely support to counteract the still current and often egregious misunderstanding and mistreatment the transgender population suffers. Yet as a psychoanalyst watching the film, I was rivetingly aware of how Lili’s emergence speaks...

Each time I watch a film, my psychoanalyst’s mind begins to construct the same kinds of understandings I might give to my patients. Here is a recap of my psychological thoughts on tonight’s Oscar Best Picture Nominees and a few films in other Categories. 2015 has been a great year for actors and directors at their very best. BOYHOOD:  Feeling Stuff Is The Point Of Life … Linklater’s interest in realities underscores the fact that life is anything but seamless - a pretty harsh and at times discouraging truth. But, the director also gives us a not-insignificant take-away gift voiced by Mason...