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An Action Film For Lovers
With enough blood and gore to please any fan of action movies, and a unique love story to please the ladies, this is a great movie for couples to watch together. However, to truly comprehend the beauty of this film, you must see the European Cut.
The U.S. version is still a great movie, but it cuts out 24 minutes which contain much of the heart of the movie and most of what makes the film a work of art instead of the usual action fodder. Elements of the story which are only hinted at in the U.S. cut become the centerpiece of the story when the un-cut version is seen.
The two main characters are a recently-orphaned girl who is wise beyond her years and a hitman who is still an innocent. Their relationship unfolds against a backdrop of murder and revenge as director Luc Besson explores issues of age and maturity, good and evil, and the interplay of life, death and love.
The acting in this film is superb. Reno has an expressive face which conveys a myriad of emotions with great sensitivity and few words. He is cold as ice as the almost super-human 'professional', but his performance is most moving when he reveals his sensitive side. Watching as his wounded soul slowly begins to heal is enough to touch the heart of any woman, but it is handled so subtly that it never becomes too 'sappy'.
In her film debut, Natalie Portman turns in a performance that is beautiful beyond belief. She manages the transition from a frightened child to a woman capable of killing so convincingly that it makes the relationship between she and Leon not only believable, but understandable.
Gary Oldman is just the best psycho there is, and it is kind of nice to see him without all the strange makeup for a change. As a dirty cop in this film he personifies evil, and it is a joy to watch him do his thing.
The special effects are all you could hope for. Besson does great actions scenes - especially the explosions. There is also a lot of humor and when you throw in the tender love story - this picture has it all!
The Princess Bride (1987)
The Perfect Movie
This is one of those rare films that gets better each time you watch it. With something for everyone, The Princess Bride combines romance, action, adventure and parody to create the perfect movie.
Cary Elwes and Robin Wright are beautiful to watch and the story of their love is a wonderful backdrop to the adventure and intrigue played out in this story. Mandy Patinkin is wonderful as Inigo and gets to deliver some of the best lines in the film. Chris Sarandon is perfect in his role as the bad guy prince.
The plot is rich, with adult innuendos the kids will miss all together and levels of wit to entertain the whole family. The dialogue is full of very funny catch phrases- many of which are still part of my repertoire more than a decade after I first saw the movie. If you like dry humor and fast wit, The Princess Bride will make your day.
I have owned this video since 1988 and still watch it regularly - it has become my 'sick day' movie because it is such a joy.
Murder in the First (1995)
Moving story about a corrupt system
In this compelling drama Kevin Bacon portrays a petty thief who goes mad after spending 3 years in solitary confinement. The scenes in which he is beaten and tortured are painfully real and Bacon's performance is riveting. Without a doubt the best work of his career.