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Journey's End (1983)
This was pretty amazing and very touching...
I didn't realize it was based on the 1930 movie of the same name. Although it has been 26 years since viewing this made for TV version, I remember how poignant and gut wrenching as well the interaction of all the characters were. It is set in a British bunker during WWI with very little movement from this central scene. Everyone is in and out of the bunker, and they interact in both war time, professional ways as well as suffering their own humanity in personal ways. Nothing appears to be going very well in the war, and they are hard pressed on every side to keep their sanity and composure in tough times. War is Hell, and this is a fine example of how a small group of men attempted to both fight a war and fight for survival even among themselves. I'd love to see it again.
The Incredible Mrs. Ritchie (2003)
This was a wonderful, clean, touching, movie, and I thank Showtime for airing it. It wasn't the usual garbage type of movie they will sometimes actively promote. The whole premise of the movie is restoration, nurturing, and forgiveness. It certainly brings all that to the screen in a wonderfully delicate manner, and I loved seeing the emotions that seemed so real.
Kevin Zegers could be the reincarnation of Leonard Whiting of "Romeo and Juliet(1968)" fame. What a cutie and great actor! Gena Rowlands is excellent, as usual, and I can't wait to see her "Wild Iris" on Showtime tomorrow.
Murder in Greenwich (2002)
This really told a story...whether completely factual or not.
I was quite impressed with the narration by Martha and how it pulled on the emotional heartstrings of the audience as well as how it must have impacted the family. The forward-backward motion of the storyline was well-done, and normally I don't enjoy movies with the flash-back/flash-forward effects. I felt during the whole evolution of the movie that "surely Tommy did it". It leaves you with a sense of how these people lived their lives almost totally devoid of each other and the consequences of not having any desire to answer the question, "It's 10 o'clock. Do you know where your children are?" And furthermore, "What the heck are they doing?"!! Or "Do I care?"!! Rich, spoiled brats literally getting away with murder. Or so they thought.......
Serving Sara (2002)
Walked out after 50 minutes. Did it get better somehow?
This was the worst waste of time of actors, directors, producers, stunt people, theater ticket sellers/takers, concession stand workers, theater cleaners, theater patrons, etc., etc., etc. Predictable, poorly acted, poorly written, said the next lines in my head before they came (except for the trashmouth ones), saw the next scene coming before it happened, and finally couldn't take it any more. Golly, I PAID to see this movie? Again, what a waste of time. Nuff said. Save your money for something worth seeing---like a remake of "King Kong"!
Lone Star (1996)
What a powerful movie to not have been noticed.
I went to Blockbuster to rent "Wonder Boys", "The Contender", and "Almost Famous", but I had noticed this movie on the Frances McDormand list of filmography. I'd never heard of it and didn't expect much, so you must imagine my surprise to find that this was by far the best of my selections that day. I didn't like ANY of the first three movies, but "Lone Star" just blew me away in the masterful weaving of plots, sub-plots, flashbacks (which I'm not always a fan of), and personality conflicts. I'm a native of Texas, so I know much about the border history. This movie tells a great tale of how many survived and didn't survive. Interesting to note the bitterness of Mercedes insisting that all those around her "only speak English. This is the United States!". I will purchase this movie and watch it again and again. I didn't pay close enough attention at the beginning of the movie during the setup as to who was whom, and I found myself lost later on as to who had actually died and who had been the bad guys. This was my fault and not the movie's. John Sayles was nominated for Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen but did not win. What are these people thinking in the Academy when they vote? McDormand's 5 minutes on the screen were great as usual. She is one my favorites since "Fargo". Chris Cooper really holds everything together, and everyone else in the film is perfectly cast and characters expertly portrayed. Highly, I say highly, recommended!! Aloha