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I've been reading many of the reviews and comments here and the message boards by many who just don't get it or seem to have a sense of humor. I first saw this movie at the drive-in when I was a young boy. My parents didn't have to keep telling us to cover our eyes unlike the movies of today. You look at many of the movies like Ghostbusters, Click etc. where they just had to stick in inappropriate scenes unlike the family movies back in those days.
You also have to place yourself during the middle of the Cold War in the 60's when the belief was that all Russians were evil and wanted to destroy us. Even a cartoon like Rocky & Bullwinkle, with the characters Boris and Natasha, was teaching us the Russians were evil and this movie comes around showing they are as human as the rest of us and pokes fun as to the paranoia and suspicion that let's everyone's minds run away from them.
I guess I'm old fashioned though because I just don't get today's movies which runs short on a plot and reality and just can't help with all the CGI, massive explosions and massive gunfights.
The Call (2013)
Save your money
Are the days gone when Hollywood could turn out a good movie and not fill it with a bunch of cliché's and utter ridiculous? I too was looking forward to seeing this movie after seeing the trailers but was very disappointed. A young girl calls 911 because of someone breaking into her residence. An officer is immediately dispatched and in a large metropolitan area it's taking 8-10 minutes to get there? The girls house is rather big and dark but of course the suspect goes right to the bedroom she's hiding in then when he hears the phone from downstairs, he pinpoints it right back to that room and under the bed? You also have a major police department with a large communications center. You have separate people who take the 911 phone calls and type in the information which is then transmitted to the separate and actual dispatchers but here we had Halle Berry doing both. And does it instantly go dark in California at a certain time? The officers are at the suspects residence and determine he has a cabin in the woods. It's still light out but when they raid the cabin, it's completely dark. Did they stop off to have dinner first, get caught up in rush hour traffic, the helicopter and it's thermal imaging system was in the shop?
Then the most ridiculous part was Berry showing up herself and checking the cabin then when realizing this is the location he was calling from, does she call 911 or her boyfriend? Nope, she has to investigate further and of course,she has to drop her phone but rather than getting in her car and driving to the nearest checkpoint, she has to be the hero then vigilante. God I miss the movies of my generation!
Not going to last
I really wanted to like this show because Dennis Quaid, Jason O'Mara and Michael Chiklis are in it but it's a little too far fetched. A ranger is plucked from his ranch and becomes instant sheriff? I can picture the ACLU and Justice Department being all over someone like this if they existed in real life, the way he walks around with his unlawful use of force, entering property without a warrant etc. I can also imagine what seeing 3 cowboys with rifles entering a casino will do for the tourism.
Then you have the brother and son walking around, asking suspects questions etc., what experience and authority do they have? Has anyone ever heard of the U.S. Constitution that even existed in 1960? It's like I'm watching Walking Tall meets Walker-Texas Ranger. I would say the only difference between these characters and the thugs is that these characters have a badge but I don't even remember seeing any of them wearing one. Maybe it would've worked better had the series been set in 1860 instead when the west was lawless in many of the territories, no ACLU to worry about.
There's just too many Hollywood clichés. I had expected far better from Dennis Quaid. I told the wife I would give it one more episode but I don't expect any improvements nor this show to last.
NYC 22 (2012)
Good series despite some issues
This is the only show I watch on network TV, which isn't saying much. It has that Jack Webb sense about it in which they show a more polished department and officers, which are always so helpful and has the time to dedicate to the little stuff and solves every crime. These officers are not rookies, they're supercops, able to solve every crime in a single bound or should I say....60 minutes! It does give you a slight insight of the people real police officers have to deal with on a daily basis and the emotions they must feel, now only if they could develop sensorsmell for the TV. It'll have you fleeing your homes.
I was disappointed with one episode in which it looked like the series was heading for most of the officers to start having relations with their partners or other officers in the same precinct. This is why I only watched NYPD Blue for a couple of seasons, it was turning into a soap opera just as ER did and all these other drama's. Why the writers in Hollywood have to ruin these shows is beyond me but if they continue down that path with NYC 22, it'll last as long as Brooklyn South. And for us old fogies, can you lose the opening theme song?
My wife rented this movie last week and had I seen it in the theaters, I would've walked out because it was that bad. I know this character has issues but he was just annoying throughout the whole movie and the way he was portrayed just ruined the whole thing. I kept asking myself as to why the mother wasn't getting him professional help because his character certainly needed it.
The premise of the movie in finding what the key went to and how he eventually tracks down the owner was really far fetched. Also, if this was real life, someone should be calling Child Protective Services on the mom because her young son is out walking the streets alone and she doesn't know where he is at all times? I guess he's the male version of Dora the Explorer.
Cops and Robbers (1973)
Very good movie
Cliff Gorman and Joe Bologna play 2 cops but they can be just about anyone else in any profession. Just 2 guys trying to make a living and support their families in the craziness of New York City. Even though they are corrupt, you can't help but feel sorry for them because all they are trying to do is survive. We soon find out that everyone else is just as corrupt, from the grocery store manager who justifies walking out of the store each day with a sack of groceries as a "prerogative of my managerial position", to the executive and his secretary at a Wall St. securities firm padding the amount stolen so they can keep a little for themselves to the crooked mobsters who weren't going to let anyone keep the money in return for the stolen bonds.
This was just a nicely made, lighthearted movie with a good cast of actors and takes us back to the 70's. There's no sex scenes, no wild ridiculous explosions, no actors doing the physically impossible, no computer generated graphics, just a nice clean (and corrupt) movie. It's movies like this that Hollywood needs to go back and remember a time that you had quality, and not quantity with the garbage they are throwing into them today.
I would like to see this movie released in Blu Ray and with the scenes added that regular DVD version cut.
Red Tails (2012)
One of the worst!
Horrible movie which did the same for The Tuskegee Airmen (1995) that Pearl Harbor did for Tora! Tora! Tora! Watching the movie, I felt like I was watching a Playstation game. The computer generated graphics were so unreal looking, unlike past WWII movies like Memphis Bell, Flags of our Fathers and Letters from Iwo Jima. I expected far better from George Lucas but he made it look as if I was watching another of his Star Wars movies and his pilots were attacking the Death Star. There was also just too much unrealism like the P-40's appearing far superior to the ME 109's when in reality, it was the other way around. Or the four P-40's attacking the Luftwaffe base and practically destroying the whole base with little damage to themselves. Or the P-51 attacking the German destroyer causing massive explosions all throughout the ship, not to mention that by 1944, German surface ships were pretty much non-existent. And the B-17 bomber was a tough airplane and not brittle like the movie made it to be with wings sawed in half from enemy bullets. I also couldn't buy one of the white POW's who escaped with one of the Tuskegee airman (Junior), showing up at Ramstein air base to give them back Junior's dog tags then later on, Junior appearing back at the base. They were also very heavy with the touchy feely music throughout the movie.
The history of the Tuskegee Airmen is a great story to tell but this movie did a disservice and all too predictable. It's just too bad that movies drawn from historic events cannot be portrayed that way and instead, have to be Hollywoodized! This must've been a major disappointment for Cuba Gooding Jr., who starred in The Tuskegee Airmen.
Barney Miller (1974)
Barney Miller is my favorite show of all times. It's too bad that this show is locked away in some studio vault rather than being shown as re-runs. Unlike M*A*S*H, which started to get dry past the 1976 season and focused less on comedy and more on leftist views, Barney Miller got better. Although it was completely unrealistic in the way detectives work, handling calls that patrol officers, not detectives handle, it was very realistic into the type of people that police officers deal with on a daily basis and the human emotions that go along with it. The show continued to stay solid, despite losing some excellent regular cast members like Gregory Sierra (reasons unk), Abe Vigoda(TV show Fish) and Jack Soo(passed away). My fault with the show is that they brought in so many new detectives that you came to like but were gone after a few episodes - Detectives Wilson, Licori, Wentworth, Battista and Dorsey, but it's still not enough to diminish my feelings about what a great show this was and I still enjoy watching it on DVD today, as I did on regular TV when it first aired.
A Midnight Clear (1992)
Very well done movie
I first saw this movie when it came out in the theaters and have the DVD, which I watch every December. I thought it was very well made but was very disappointed when I learned this movie is not factual but a work of fiction, based on the book by William Wharton who was 19 in 1944. The movie was unlike those phony John Wayne type war movies of the 50's and 60's. This movie showed the soldiers fears they had to deal with and the conditions for which they lived. Their brief stay in the Château must've been a life of luxury compared to living in a tent back at base or manning a foxhole on the front lines. Frank Whaley's dying scene seemed so real, unlike all those other phony Hollywood war movies from the years mentioned where the soldier clutches their wound, falls to the ground and gives a passion speech before peacefully dying.
The one posters comments from his father of "I was a political prisoner of Franklin Delano Roosevelt" is disturbing and he must not have made it to liberate the concentration camps to understand why we were there and fought the Germans. This review could very well be in German if not for FDR and the blunders made by the Japanese and Germans.
So So movie
I'm glad a movie was made about the sinking of the USS Indianapolis but as usual, Hollywood has to screw it all up and use fictional characters, with the exception of Captain McVay, and fictional incidents. For instance, Richard Thomas's character was called Lieutenant Steven Scott but was based on Dr. Lewis Haynes. Why can't Hollywood just tell the story as it really happened and use real names like they did with Capt. McVay is beyond me.
I saw this movie first before reading the book "In Harms Way" which really gave you insight as to what happened and the negligence on the Navy's part. The Navy failed to give Cpt. McVay the intelligence it had that Japanese subs were in fact lurking along the Peddie route he was taking. A US destroyer had been sunk in the vicinity a week earlier. This is information Navy Commodore James Carter knew about but did not give Capt. McVay, even as the two met prior to the Indy setting sail.
Secondly, Capt. McVay had requested a destroyer escort for his route to Leyte since the Indy did not have any sonar gear and destroyers did, but he did not get one.
When the Indy was struck by 2 torpedoes, several messages of being struck by torpedoes and her sinking and coordinates were in fact picked up by 3 different radio stations on Leyte. Several tugs were dispatched but 7 hours into a 21 hour trip, the tugs were recalled when Commodore Gillette, acting commander of the Phillipine Sea Frontier, learned they had been dispatched without his permission. No explanation was ever given to his reasoning. It also appears that at the time. it was the Navy's protocol to dismiss any messages that couldn't be confirmed as pranks. Commodore never followed up to see if the Indy had arrived as scheduled.
The whole thing was a travesty and a pattern of a Navy that always wants to fix the blame on everyone but itself, just like they did with the USS Iowa explosion. Of all the ships the Navy lost, why was Cpt. McVay the only Captain who was court-martial ed? Of course, Admiral Nimitz and Admiral Spruance were against a court martial and suggested a letter of reprimand however Admiral King, Chief of Naval Operations wanted a court martial and pressed Naval Secretary James Forrestal for one and he agreed. How ironic that Admiral King was the man pressing for a court martial when it was Admiral Kings incompetence that cost the lives of many merchant seamen along the east coast of this country in 1942 by refusing to deal with the growing U-Boat menace and only did so when the shipping companies were going to refuse to sail unless they received Naval escorts.
But Adm. King got his wish and Cpt. McVay was court martial ed and convicted on a charge of failure to zig zag despite a U.S. sub captain and expert on submarine warfare testifying that zig zagging made no difference in his ability to sink a target. Even the Japanese commander of the sub which sank the Indy was brought into testify and also stated he still would've sunk the Indy whether it was zig zagging or not.
This was not the Navy's finest hour though had it not been for a stroke of luck by Lt. Chuck Gwinn, piloting a PV-1. The plane had a loran navigation system but the antenna had broken off. A crewman had tried to make repairs in flight and Lt. Gwinn had gone back to help him. As he was making his way back, he happened to look out the window at the right time and saw the men in the water below otherwise it's most likely that every man in the water would've perished to the elements. Of course this was downplayed in the movie which shows Gwinn's character slipping just kicking back and looking at the side window though it did show what in reality, was a very tricky and one way landing.