3 items from 2015
Everything in Max Renn’s life is beginning to pulsate. First the Betamax videotape sent to him by one Bianca O’Blivion, which seems to breathe in his hand as he removes it from its beige packaging. Then Max’s television, squatting in the corner of his apartment, appears take on a life of its own: veins twitching, the screen bulging to the sound of a woman’s voice: “Come to me, Max. Come to me...”
David Cronenberg’s Videodrome, released in 1982, is loaded with violent and startling imagery like this. Like Apocalypse Now, its very narrative seems to disintegrate as its morally suspect protagonist Max Renn (James Woods) embarks on a journey into his own heart of darkness: a fascination with the origins of a video signal soon leads him to a world of corruption, »
Our look at underappreciated films of the 80s continues, as we head back to 1988...
Either in terms of ticket sales or critical acclaim, 1988 was dominated by the likes of Rain Man, Who Framed Roger Rabbit and Coming To America. It was the year Bruce Willis made the jump from TV to action star with Die Hard, and became a star in the process.
It was the year Leslie Nielsen made his own jump from the small to silver screen with Police Squad spin-off The Naked Gun, which sparked a hugely popular franchise of its own. Elsewhere, the eccentric Tim Burton scored one of the biggest hits of the year with Beetlejuice, the success of which would result in the birth of Batman a year later. And then there was Tom Cruise, who managed to make a drama about a student-turned-barman into a $170m hit, back when $170m was still an »
Written by Takeharu Sakurai & Sachiko Ōguchi
Directed by Takashi Miike
I’ll come right out and say it: Takashi Miike’s Ace Attorney, based on the first entry of the popular Capcom video game series, is the single-best cinematic adaptation of a video game property of all time. Now some of the more snide readers out there will no doubt think that this a pretty low bar to clear. There’s at least a partial truth to that: the current all-time champion of video game (henceforth Vg) movie critical acclaim is 2001’s Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within, coming in at a cool 44% on Rotten Tomatoes (not that the Rt metric is reflective of quality in any capacity, but that’s another discussion for another time). While the movie was a watershed moment from a technical standpoint (it had some of the most impressively detailed CGI in movie »
- Derek Godin
3 items from 2015
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