Barb Bretz

Film & Book Reviewer

Friday Film Reviewer & Monthly Book Reviewer

Six years after "Wreck it Ralph" Disney has released a sequel. Barb Bretz has your Friday Film Review.

I’ve been eager to see Disney films in the past but “Ralph Breaks the Internet” was not at the top of my must-see list or even on my list but Ava and Ella, my 8 and 12-year-old companions selected it. (Ella has this thing about seeing Christmas movies before Thanksgiving which eliminated my first choice of "The Nutckracker and the Four Realms."

If you enjoyed the story told by the book and film Hidden Figures, put this book on your reading list. The Woman Who Smashed Codes tells the very true story of Elizebeth Smith Friedman, who along with her husband William..... were the greatest code-breaking team ever.

I love historical fiction but in this case The Woman Who Smashed Codes  is historical but very, very factual.

Saturday Film Panel - September 15, 2018

Sep 15, 2018
Monika Guendner/KPCW

KPCW host Rick Brough is joined by the self-proclaimed Rick's Flick Chicks Barb Bretz, Katy Wang, and Linda Jager to review summer movie experiences, Sundance films playing in Park City, and Oscar talk.

When a film is based on a true story with a well-known successful ending it’s a challenge to take an audience on a tension-filled journey but “Operation Finale” completes that mission.

I developed an avid interest in WWII history while living in Germany I’ve visited numerous monuments, museums and concentration camps trying to get my head and heart around the reality of what happened during those times.

It’s one thing to know the facts another to have sympathy for victims, but incomprehensible to relate to the lasting horror and heartbreak of survivors.

If you're ready for a little bit of cheese, a whole lot of charm, a fun story told by a great cast and set to pop music....head out to "Mama Mia; Here We Go Again". Barb Bretz has your Friday Film Review.

"Mama Mia; Here We Go Again" is a joint British and American venture, filmed in Croatia and at studios in England. It premiered in London on July 16 and in the USA four days later .....a decade after its predecessor's 2008 release.

It is in the unique position of being a PREQUEL and a SEQUEL to the original and performs both functions well.

Is the hunger for far-out religions, fake news and fantasy embedded in our national DNA? Author Kurt Anderson lays out a case for that possibility in his book FANTASYLAND: HOW AMERICA WENT HAYWIRE...A 500 Year History. Here’s Barb Bretz with this month’s book review.

You will fall in love with awkward and totally endearing Kayla Day…. as she navigates the last week of her eighth grade year. Here' s Barb Bretz with your Friday Film Review.

27 year old writer/director Bo Burnham did stand-up comedy for 10 years before debuting at Sundance 2018 with his first film EIGHTH GRADE. At age 16, Burnham videotaped himself performing two comedic songs and posted them on Youtube to share with family. They got reposted to a site called and became an overnight sensation.

Novelist Celeste NG  is a New York Times Best-selling author two times over with her second novel LITTLE FIRES EVERYWHERE.  Barb Bretz has this month's Book Review.

I've decided to give you a “Two For One” this month and recommend both of Celeste NG's first two novels. I only discovered NG last year..... although her first novel... EVERYTHING I NEVER TOLD YOU.... was the Amazon book of the year in 2014. As soon as I read it I looked for anything else by the author.

THREE IDENTICAL STRANGERS is a documentary about triplets separated at birth. It’s dramatic and delightful, until it becomes dark and disturbing... Barb Bretz has this week's Friday Film Review.

Leslie Thatcher and I interviewed director Tim Wardle on KPCW’s Sundance Reel. I’d screened the doc several days prior in a packed house of 500. We were unprepared for the depth of the story, which by the end, had us in tears…the sniffing...sobbing kind.

"Foxtrot" was the Israeli entry for Best Foreign Film at the 90th Academy Awards. Here's Barb Bretz with your Friday Film Review:

Black Panther, the superhero blockbuster about the Marvel Comics character of the same name, continues to create box office magic.  Here's Barb Bretz with your Friday Film Review:

The Greatest Showman is a musical drama about the life and achievements of legendary P.T. Barnum -- and a feast for the senses. Here's Barb Bretz with this week's Friday Film Review. 

Packed with symbolism and social issues, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is creating Oscar buzz in several categories, including Best Film of the Year. Here's Barb Bretz with this week's Friday Film Review.

Film Roundtable

Get the lowdown on what summer movies were disappointing and which ones should be put in you video que this fall. Panelists Mark Harrington, Barb Bretz and Linda Jager join host Rick Brough to confess films they haven't seen yet and look forward to films of the fall and winter (including Subdance!)

Jane Perkins, co-founder of Park City's own High West Distillery, has combined her knowledge of whiskey and her love of the history of the old west as the basis of her first book, Golden Elixir of the West: Whiskey and the Shaping of America. Here's Barb Bretz with this month's book review.