Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Happy-Go-Lucky (2008)

A British comedy drama directed by Mike Leigh, starring Sally Hawkins and Eddie Marsan.
An elementary school teacher takes driving lessons form an angry man.
This wasn't painful, but it sure wasn't any good. The plot was not focused. There was so much other stuff going on besides the main story. There were also far too many characters that were not involved in the main story. The technical aspects seemed fine. I just thought it was very desultory. Sorry for not writing up a storm about this crappily mediocre movie, but I have more important things on my mind right now. I rate this poor.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

All or Nothing (2002)

A British drama directed by Mike Leigh, starring Timothy Spall.
A family living in an apartment building has problems. The father is a lazy taxi driver, the son is lazy and morbidly obese and the daughter is a cleaner at a nursing home whose elderly co-worker is trying to get a date with. Their neighbors have problems as well.
This was basically a two hour treatise on human suffering. The plot went downhill the whole way and the characters degenerated into the tragic conclusion. It wasn't good enough to notice any visual style and the dialogue was barely audible. This is a common problem today: video with bad audio. I watch stuff and think "did they even look at the waveform for this?". Player audio normalization can only correct so much and the errors are so gigantic. Maybe that is my calling: audio technician for videos. My little thing to do that would make the world a better place. I had hoped for better, but such a problem cannot be ignored. Overall, this was bordering on painful to watch. According to the title, this family chose nothing and so did the sound technician. I rate it bad.

Career Girls (1997)

A British drama directed by Mike Leigh.
A woman goes to visit her roommate from college for a weekend. While there, the pair run into other people they knew from that time period.
This was amazing. The plot started off really slow and barely made any sense. I didn't even connect who the characters were at first. As the film progresses, everything comes together. The characters develop back-story through flashbacks and the plot takes form. That is not an easy task. The video was done in different styles for the past and present. The past was darker, with less contrast and saturation. The present was bright, clear and "new movie too perfect". The audio was a little odd for me. Because of the British accents and use of regional slang, I didn't understand everything that was being said. It didn't seem like a worthwhile film at first, but by the end I really liked it. Overall, brilliant. I rate this awesome.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

The Class A.K.A. Klass (2007)

An Estonian drama directed by Ilmar Raag.
A high school boy is picked on by other students in his class. One of his former tormentors decides to protect him from the others.
This was not too shabby. The plot definitely held my attention all the way through as the action escalated. The two dynamic characters were good, but the others were very static. The video style initially caught my eye, but got buried by the plot eventually. The soundtrack seemed appropriate, but was very limited. Only techno. The pacing increased through the duration in line with the action. Overall, a decent flick. I think that it conformed to the school violence fad that was going on at the time though. I rate this adequate. You may want to check it out.

Malcolm X (1992)

An American drama directed by Spike Lee, starring Denzel Washington, Angela Bassett and Delroy Lindo.
The life of the idealist leader, Malcolm X is shown. It includes his criminal career, jail time, conversion to Islam, career as a public speaker and his death.
This was one of the longest and most serious films I have ever seen. I think that the director and leading actor were the absolute best choice in this case. Their familiarity with the subject matter and similarities with the man the story was based on make them the correct men for the job. The plot was long. I had to take many breaks to get through 3 hours and 12 minutes. The characters were identifiable and the main character was extremely dynamic and well-developed. I think that they tried to be as historically accurate as possible while showing possibly unknown personal aspects of Malcolm's life that fill out the story. There were beautiful camera shots included, but also some "forgetting to remove the lens cap" scenes. The picture was a moving shot of Malcolm going down the street very smoothly, like he was floating. Another shot to mention was the KKK members riding into the moonlight in the beginning. The audio was good, with clear dialogue, orchestral cinematic music and pop music of the time period being depicted. I think they did an awesome job making this film. So much so that the racial issues will not be discussed here. My only real complaint is the lengthy duration. Overall, this exemplifies what I'm looking for as far as technical aspects and production value are concerned. I rate it good, but will not be watching it again.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Bamboozled (2000)

An American comedy directed by Spike Lee, starring Damon Wayans and Michael Rapaport.
An educated and intelligent black screenwriter is asked to make a "nigger show" by his wigger boss.
This was pretty cool for like the first 3/4. I didn't like the ending. The characters were type-cast and the plot held my attention with frequent and overt racial stereotypes. The TV show that they made was hilarious! The racist cowboy within me enjoyed this a great deal. The tap-dancing star of the show was my favorite character because he performed best when the show began and his character was developed more than others. If you are interested in racist stereotypes about people with dark skin, this is for you. It blew Coonskin (1975) out of the water in that department. I rate this awesome for being extreme.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

An American Werewolf in London (1981)

A British American horror fantasy directed by John Landis.
A young man traveling in Europe with his friend is turned into a werewolf after stopping at a bar. The friend is killed and the man is hospitalized. He falls in love with the nurse, but sees his dead friend appear and speak with him. Then the moon becomes full.
This was pretty cool for the date. The plot definitely held my attention and I liked the few main characters, although they were somewhat under-developed. The video style was in the vein of classic monster movies. They showed werewolves as little as possible, mostly using shots of the victim running from the point of view of the wolf. There was a very cool transformation scene that was accomplished with editing, physical effects and a puppet. The soundtrack really stood out with oldies tunes that had a moon theme to the lyrics. I have to rate this awesome because I can't type much negativity about it and enjoyed watching. This would be a good one to see.

¡Three Amigos! (1986)

An American western comedy directed by John Landis, starring Steve Martin, Chevy Chase and Martin Short.
Poor Mexicans who are afraid of a bandit gang see an American film and think that it is real. They send a letter to the heroes, who show up, thinking that they are responding to an acting gig.
This was actually funny. The plot was typical of the mid '80s and the characters featured famous comedian/actors of the time. A time when part of being a good comedian was being a good actor. The technical aspects were fine. What impressed me most was that I got the humor and found it funny. I may be dating myself by liking '80s slapstick humor, but who cares? Not only could they act like fools, they could also deliver serious lines with conviction. Overall, a fun movie to watch. I rate this good because there is SO MUCH that is infinitely horrible that this is bordering on wonderful.

The Private Life of Henry VIII (1933)

A British drama directed by Alexander Korda, starring Charles Laughton.
The king is always unhappy with his wives. He gets rid of them and then is pressured into marrying another.
This was really dull. The plot did not hold my attention and there were only two main characters. The video style was prehistoric, but the sound was actually not bad. A little quiet, but it didn't have pops, clicks or audio artifacts. The only thing worth noting is that the king always got angry and kicked the barber out as soon as shaving cream had been applied to his face. Overall, just not a good movie. I rate this bad.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

The Four Feathers (1939)

A British war film directed by Zoltan Korda.
A British soldier assigned to India resigns, but feels like a coward for doing so. His army buddies send him white feathers to signify this "coward status" and he sets out to prove them wrong.
This was not so great. The plot barely held my attention. The three main characters were developed fully though. We've already been over how I like oversaturated technicolor video and the audio was similar to The Drum (1938). It was cranked to distortion levels and again ended in blown-out gunfire. There was a running joke with an old man telling a repeated story at the dinner table and using food to represent people (picture). Overall, not so hot. I rate this poor. You might not want to watch it.

She Hate Me (2004)

An American drama directed by Spike Lee, starring Anthony Mackie, Ellen Barkin, Monica Bellucci, Brian Dennehy, Woody Harrelson, Bai Ling and John Turturro.
A man who works at a company that is developing a cure for AIDS has his assets frozen because he called in an ethics violation of his co-workers. Faced with no work, he falls into a business of impregnating lesbians for large sums of money.
This was very well-made. I tried to watch it with as open a mind as I could. The plot did hold my attention and the few main characters had some development. There was an absolute army of extras. I liked that there was some humor mixed in at various points of dialogue. The video impressed me with creative use of compositing. The soundtrack was minimal, but appropriate. There were a few short sections of foreign languages with no subtitles, but they did not effect the plot. Alright, racist cowboy time. There were some sections of this film that were geared toward an audience with darker skin than mine. The title is a dead give-away of this fact. The way that certain conversations were heart-to-heart talks and also heated arguments was one of these. Honkies ain't be lying down for that shit. The lighting on certain scenes was also "not how white people do it". When us white folks cook dinner, we tend to turn the kitchen light on. I'm not saying that people with lighter skin are better than those with darker skin, just different. Overall, pretty decent, but definitely for a certain type of audience. I rate this adequate, mostly for the compositing.

Monday, May 23, 2016

The Drum A.K.A. Drums (1938)

A British war film directed by Zoltan Korda, starring Sabu Dastagir.
A young prince in India tries to help British soldiers who are being tricked and led into a trap.
Sabu brings such life and energy to the screen. Unfortunately, that is the only positive point for this film. The plot was murky and failed to hold my attention. There were two good characters: Sabu and the drummer boy. Everyone else was extras. I really like the technicolor video, as I have previously stated. The audio was not bad, but definitely not good. I could hear everything because it was all turned up, bordering on distortion. This is what made the final scenes so difficult for me. Here we are with cranked audio breaking up and what happens? Massive barrages of gunfire! DFYTYXSTJHRSXXRT!!!!! AAAAAAAHHH!!! TDTURSATEZHILFTYSDTHVFS!!!!! It was pretty bad. Overall, you would be much better off watching Jungle Book or The Thief of Bagdad to get your Sabu fix. I rate this poor.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

An Ideal Husband A.K.A. Oscar Wilde's An Ideal Husband (1947)

A British drama directed by Alexander Korda, starring Paulette Goddard and Michael Wilding.
A politician sold classified papers long ago in order to become the rich and respectable man that he is now. A woman who knows about this tries to blackmail him into supporting her scheme that he previously disapproved of.
Boring and outdated. The plot did not hold my interest and I did not care about the characters. One thing to note is that one of the leading female characters was well on her way to developing saggy jowls (picture). The old technicolor style of video was actually kind of cool. The bright and oversaturated colors caught my eye initially. There was some sloppy audio editing with clicks everywhere and a very strange sound at one point. Overall, not what I like to watch. It now becomes clear why I had so much trouble finding anything from the Korda brothers' filmography. I turned it off at 44 minutes out of the hound and a half duration. In accordance with my turnoff policy, I rate this shit. DO NOT WATCH!

The Castle of Cagliostro A.K.A. Rupan Sansei: Kariosutoro no Shiro, Lupin the Third Castle of Cagliostro (1979)

A Japanese mystery adventure anime directed by Hayao Miyazaki, starring Yasuo Yamada, Kiyoshi Kobayashi and Sumi Shimamoto.
A thief and his friend are looking for adventure when they happen to rescue a princess who drops a special ring. The thief already knows the princess and follows clues that he learns from the ring to find her. She is engaged to a count who runs a money counterfeiting operation. The count calls in the thief's nemesis, Inspector Zenigata to prevent the thief from disrupting the wedding.
This was alright. It seemed to be a mixture of the team who made Lupin III and Miyazaki style. I could almost see the boundaries where they met on-screen. The most obvious instance is of Lupin and Jigen sitting on a Miyazaki set. The plot held my attention, but you really have to have seen some Lupin III to appreciate the characters. The funniest joke was Lupin swimming up a waterfall. Overall, pretty much as expected. I rate this adequate.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Porco Rosso A.K.A. Kurenai no Buta, Crimson Pig (1992)

A Japanese war comedy anime directed by Hayao Miyazaki, starring Akemi Okamura and Akio Otsuka.
A WWI fighter pilot has been turned into a pig. After rescuing a child swimming team from pirates, his plane is shot down by an American. He enlists the help of his mechanic's granddaughter, who accompanies him as he seeks revenge on the American pilot.
This was actually pretty good. I had been reluctant to watch it because it sounded boring to me, but am glad I saw it. The plot held my attention and the main characters were unique and memorable. Animation style was Miyazaki. There was one scene with a "shot" from a plane circling part of a castle that really impressed me. Animating a changing perspective like that is no easy task. I watched a dubbed version in English and the audio was clear. The soundtrack was pushed far into the background so that dialogue could take over. Hayao Miyazaki is on my list of those who can do no wrong. Overall, it was very well-made and I ended up liking it. I rate this good. If you've been putting off watching it like I was, maybe it's time for a viewing.

My Neighbor Totoro A.K.A. Tonari No Totoro (1988)

A Japanese fantasy anime directed by Hayao Miyazaki, starring Chika Sakamoto and Noriko Hidaka.
Two sisters move into an old rural house with their father. The mother is in a nearby hospital for undisclosed reasons. After hearing rumors of the house being haunted, the girls stumble upon strange creatures that they may be imagining and may be real.
This is one of the classics of the genre. Although it is geared toward a very young audience, the animation is great and the fantasy element is interesting. The plot was a little vague in some areas and this may have been intentional. The characters were all very good and fit their roles correctly. I watched the Disney English dub version. My favorite part was the cat bus. Overall, a regular anime that's fun to watch, but not very thought-provoking. I rate this good.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Goodbye Uncle Tom A.K.A. Addio Zio Tom (1971)

An Italian mondo film directed by Gualtiero Jacopetti and Franco Prosperi.
A historical tour of slavery in America is shown. Interviews with slave owners show different aspects of the practice.
This was alright. The plot was non-linear and there were no consistent characters. The video was pretty good, with very graphic close-ups and panning helicopter shots. The audio was atrocious. The dialogue was generally too quiet and not very good quality of recording. The soundtrack was loud, repetitive and annoying. There were some female anatomy points as the female slaves were mostly topless and the slave breeder was striving for breast quality. To be totally honest, even this racist cowboy found the treatment of the slaves almost too cruel to watch. Overall, the production quality hampered the content. I rate this o.k.

The Wind Rises A.K.A. Kaze Tachinu (2013)

A Japanese animated drama romance directed by Hayao Miyazaki, starring Hideaki Anno and Mirai Shida,
A boy grows up to be an aeronautical engineer and falls in love with a dying woman. He has dreams of conversations with an Italian engineer in which they discuss airplanes.
This was not too shabby. The plot was a little on the dull side for Miyazaki. The characters were good though. As with all of his works, it had that trademark Miyazaki style of animation that I like. What was missing here was the strong fantasy element that is so present in the other films. Overall, it was well-made with beautiful animation, but nowhere near as wild and interesting as other works by this director. I rate it adequate.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Turbo Kid (2015)

A New Zealand Canadian adventure directed by Francois Simard, Anouk Whissell and Yoann-Karl Whissell, starring Michael Ironside.
A teenage boy rides through a post-apocalyptic wasteland on his BMX bicycle. He befriends a female robot and a one-armed arm wrestler and together, they struggle against a ruthless gang leader who controls the local water supply.
This was pretty bitchin'. The friend who recommended Kung Fury told me to watch it, so I knew it would be a positive experience. The plot held my attention and I really grew to like the well-developed characters. The video was all nicely done with special effects out the wazoo. The audio featured audible dialogue and a 1980s synth-pop soundtrack. If you like '80s nostalgia done in a 2015 style, this is for you. Overall, marvelous. I rate this awesome. Watch it!

Monday, May 16, 2016

Ride with the Devil (1999)

An American war film directed by Ang Lee, starring Tobey Maguire, Jewel, Jeffrey Wright and Tom Wilkinson.
A group of southern militia fight the north during the civil war.
Boring. Most war films are all the same. The civil war is probably one of the worst, second only to WWII. The plot was meandering and murky with way too many characters that were not developed. The technical aspects were fine. I could hear and see what was going on, but what was going on was of no interest to me. I turned it off at 1:31/2:12 (in hours and minutes). In accordance with my turnoff policy, I rate this shit. DO NOT WATCH!!!

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Life of Pi (2012)

An American adventure directed by Ang Lee, starring Irrfan Khan and Gerard Depardieu.
A teenage boy from India falls into a lifeboat as the ship he is traveling on sinks. He is shortly joined by a zebra, monkey, hyena and a tiger. Due to conflicts on the lifeboat, the young man survives at sea alone with the tiger for a very long time.
This was amazing! Such style, such grace. The plot held my undivided attention for the entire two hour duration. The two main characters (Indian boy and tiger) were developed well and their relationship was explored in great detail. The pacing was dynamic, with highs and lows at good intervals. The video style was wonderful. I know there was compositing done, but don't care which scenes were involved in computerized manipulation. The audio was good, with appropriate music. There was a short section in Indian with no subtitles, but the rest was audible and featured an appropriate soundtrack. This ranks up there with The Fall (2006), Kill Bill and other such wonders of modern cinema. I wish I could watch stuff like this all the time, but that brings up the existential argument that Beavis and Butthead worded so well "if nothing sucked, and like, everything was cool all the time, then it’s like, how would you know it was cool?". Overall, this is what I'm looking for to give my top ratings to. I rate this best. WATCH IT!!!!!

The Wedding Banquet A.K.A. Xǐyàn, Hsi yen (1993)

An American Taiwanese drama directed by Ang Lee, starring Winston Chao and Sihung Lung.
A Chinese man is living with his gay partner in New York City, but his parents in China are pressuring him to marry a woman. They arrange a fake marriage with a young Chinese woman in New York so she can get her green card, but things don't go as planned.
This was really sappy. It was well-mad and there were a few funny moments though. The plot held my interest, but was not what I would have liked to watch. The characters were identifiable, but not all that well developed. The video and audio were good. This is another instance of part Chinese part English and another instance of Sihung Lung playing the grandfather. The pacing was moderate, but surprisingly fast for this type of subject matter. Overall, not what I like watching, but not bad. I rate it o.k.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Pushing Hands A.K.A. tuī shǒu (1992)

A Taiwanese drama directed by Ang Lee, starring Sihung Lung.
An old Chinese Tai chi master is living with his son's family in America. The son's wife is a writer who doesn't like the old man. At the Chinese school where he teaches Tai chi, he meets a cooking teacher in a similar situation.
This was pretty cool. I was laughing through most of the beginning as the writer and martial artist had non-verbal disagreements in their house. The picture is the writer trying to tell the martial artist not to put aluminum foil into the microwave, but neither speaks the other's language. The plot held my attention all the way through and the characters were unique and memorable. I didn't notice anything that stood out about the visual style, but it was all done quite well. The audio was split between English and Chinese with subtitles for everything. The climax took the form of a kung fu action scene, but I won't spoil any more than that. Overall, this is worth watching. I would go as far as to rate it good and probably watch it again sometime.

Lust, Caution (2007)

An American Chinese Taiwanese drama directed by Ang Lee, starring Tony Leung Chiu-wai.
A group of theater students become political spies. The young woman chosen to infiltrate the enemy's house falls in love with their target.
This was really long and mostly boring. The non-linear plot got confusing because of the length and the characters were difficult to differentiate because of the limited range of costumes. I'm not trying to be racist and say "I can't tell the chinks apart", but they were all dressed the same, acted the same and were sporting the same hairstyles. There were even two characters named Mr. Yee. The first one got killed and here comes another just like him! It was either that, the non-linear plot going back to when he was alive or they reanimated his corpse. There was one major action scene involving Mr. Yee in the house full of theater students who want him dead. The video was all really good. They accurately created Hong Kong of the 1940s with correct costumes, vehicles and by using the correct settings. The audio was good and it had good subtitles. The subs were a little fast, but accurate. The sex scenes were relatively graphic. We see everything except genitals, including some very erect female nipples. Overall, not the most coherent or interesting movie I've ever watched. I rate it o.k. for being well-made, but not holding my attention.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Taking Woodstock (2009)

An American drama directed by Ang Lee.
A young small-town politician invites the woodstock crew to hold their event in his town. He boards the crew at his parents' motel and wanders around during the concert.
This was pretty desultory. The plot seemed to follow the outline of the actual event and the characters were secondary to that. The main character and his parents were slightly developed. The video style mirrored the 1970 documentary film, Woodstock. It featured split screens of different scenes taking place at the same time. There was some compositing/special effects, but I don't want to spoil that part. The pacing was moderate to relatively quick and there was nudity. Overall, nothing to get excited about, but not bad. I rate it o.k.

Eat Drink Man Woman (1994)

A Taiwanese drama directed by Ang Lee, starring Sihung Lung.
An aging chef who is losing his sense of taste has his three adult daughters living with him. Although all of their past relationships have failed in various ways, new romantic opportunities open for them.
This was really long and the pacing was very slow. The camera-work was excellent. It showed very detailed depictions of traditional Chinese cooking and somber views of the house interiors. The plot was complex and the characters were very well developed. Unfortunately, the daughters were difficult to differentiate for me. The general style reminded me of watching Bong Joon-ho's films. I can only imagine that Ang Lee was a major influence on him. Overall, this was worth watching, but a tad slow for my tastes. I rate it adequate.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

The Wanderers (1979)

An American crime drama directed by Philip Kaufman, starring Karen Allen.
A high school gang in New York City act like who they are. There is a new member, an old member switches gangs, a girlfriend gets pregnant, there are parental problems and a rumble.
This was pretty good, but I could swear I've already seen and reviewed it. The plot held my attention and I liked some of the multitude of characters. The video was pretty good for 1979 and the audio was appropriate. I think they went a little overboard on the dated and overplayed pop songs, but some people might like this movie for that. My favorite gangs were The Baldies and The Wongs (don't fuck with the Wongs). The ending brought back ideas and themes from the beginning. Overall, damn good for war & sex Kaufman. I rate this good. Watch It!
"war & sex Kaufman" is my commentary on his filmography as a whole. Those are his two main themes besides incredibly long durations. The majority of his films feature photographers and writers having sex during a war for over two hours.

The Unbearable Lightness of Being (1988)

An American romance directed by Philip Kaufman, starring Juliette Binoche, Lena Olin and Stellan Skarsgard.
A doctor has his own harem during a communist regime. The women are local artists and the photographer concubine gets in trouble for political pictures.
This was really boring. The plot did not hold my interest and the characters were difficult to keep track of. Technical aspects were fine. Everything looked and sounded alright. The only things to point out were the old man's pig and some various female anatomy points. Overall, not worth watching. I rate this poor.

Saturday, May 7, 2016

The Outlaw Josey Wales (1976)

An American western directed by and starring Clint Eastwood.
A man's family is killed in the civil war. When the north wins, he refuses to surrender and begins running from or killing any men sent to track him down. He is first accompanied by a fellow soldier, but later befriends an old Indian chief, squaw and the remains of another family broken by war.
This was not too shabby. The plot was epic (not to mention the length: more EPIC!) and had tons of room for many characters to be well-developed. They were also memorable. To help things along, action scenes and gunfights break up the story drama at good intervals. There was lots of good camera-work showing beautiful outdoor scenes, but also some very bad camera-work. "Let's shoot in this log cabin with no lights!" The audio was good and subtitles were almost unnecessary, but appreciated. Overall, this is what I'm looking for in a solid green rating. A little bit long, but I'll let that slide. I rate this good. Watch it!

Friday, May 6, 2016

The White Dawn (1974)

An American Canadian adventure directed by Philip Kaufman, starring Warren Oates, Timothy Bottoms and Louis Gossett Jr.
Men from a whaling ship crash and are rescued by eskimos.
This was amazing compared to most of the other Philip Kaufman films I've seen. The whaling sailors blend into eskimo society in varying degrees. The blonde guy goes native, the black guy is neutral and the bearded guy wants to leave. Technical aspects were fine with subtitles for eskimo language. The plot actually held my attention and the characters were interesting. As is standard for Philip's work, there were sex scenes and nudity. No female anatomy points were earned though. Overall, a triumph for piss-poor Kaufman. I rate this good because it's actually worth watching compared to his other crap.

Henry & June (1990)

An American romance directed by Philip Kaufman, starring Fred Ward, Uma Thurman, Richard E. Grant and Kevin Spacey.
A strumpet in France sleeps around her circle of friends. Around and around and around.
This was terribly boring. I don't like romance and the duration of just over two hours made it seem like it would never end. It was not painful to watch. The technical aspects were good, but the plot failed to hold my attention. Gratuitous sex scenes helped a little bit, but were no substitute for adventure, travel and action. The characters watch Un Chien Andalou, which I thought was cool. There was also a marionette puppet that added brief moments of interest. Even Uma Thurman was unable to spice up this snooze-fest. I'm beginning to dislike Philip Kaufman. Overall, not what I like to watch. I rate this poor.

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Hemingway & Gellhorn (2012)

An American war romance directed by Philip Kaufman, starring Nicole Kidman, Clive Owen and Lars Ulrich.
Ernest Hemingway has a romantic relationship with Martha Gellhorn, a war correspondent during WWII. Their relationship is not always stable, but they travel the world together.
This was so long, so boring and so not my thing. I don't like romance flicks and I don't like war flicks. Add the two and a half hour duration and we're talking distraction city. It literally took me from 11:45AM until 10:30PM to get through this and that's on my second try. The plot did not hold my attention at all. The characters were acted well. I was convinced that "old" Gellhorn was acted by Sigourney Weaver, but this was just not the case. The video transitioned between vintage black & white to modern HD color and included everything in between. The audio on the version I watched was slightly quieter than normal, but sounded decent to me. The technical aspects were alright, but I wish they had maintained a constant video style instead of this transition stuff. Overall, I hated it because of content. I rate this bad.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Twisted (2004)

An American mystery thriller directed by Philip Kaufman, starring Ashley Judd, Samuel L. Jackson and Andy Garcia.
A newly promoted female cop's boyfriends are being serial killed.
Another cop movie. Didn't we get enough of this in the '80s? Too bad they didn't have a courtroom scene. The plot and characters were some of the stalest I've ever experienced. The video and audio were clear, but what does that matter in this situation? Overall, terrible. I rate this bad for repeating used up cliches. I watched the whole thing, but it was not pleasant.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Quills (2000)

An American British German drama directed by Philip Kaufman, starring Geoffrey Rush, Kate Winslet, Joaquin Phoenix and Michael Caine.
A writer is imprisoned in an insane asylum. He writes lurid tales of sex and violence. When he produces a play about the misdeeds of the new owner of the asylum, the benevolent Abbe is pressured into silencing the writer's pen.
Sex innuendo so over the top, such foul-mouthed scoundrels I hope they don't stop. This short poem was composed at the beginning of the film and they did not stop indeed. Things only got more shocking and graphic as time went on. Obviously, I liked the plot and characters. They were right up my filthy alley. The men were all insane except the Abbe. The women were all strumpets, promiscuous whores and prostitutes. There was even a cameo by a dwarven prostitute. In the picture above, the writer has just penned a story on his clothes, using his own blood. Video style was trumped by the action and dialogue to the point that I didn't notice how good it was (and it was good). The audio went a little awry in places when too much was going on, but was mostly great. The overall style is what impressed me. It was how everything came together and blasted into a climax. Female anatomy points! I almost forgot! The lead actress earned them at the end, reminding me of a Princess Bride quote about "perfect breasts". Overall, this is wonderful. A true joy and honor to behold. I rate this best. WATCH IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!