Reviews written by registered user
dzkaplan

10 reviews in total 
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As Sweet as it Sounds, 6 July 2006
8/10

Ice Cream Sunday is a terrific concoction from the always entertaining auteur Derek Rimelspach. The story of a young girl whose dreams intertwine religion and desert is a fine fable for all ages. Shot on DV, Ice Cream Sunday is a fantasy using dreamy imagery and Rimelspach's fluid direction deftly guides the viewer through a most pleasant (albeit short) journey. Having seen some of Rimelspach's darker shorts I was most impressed by the director's ability to move from heavier to lighter material without losing his unique vision. Like David Lynch's shift from Blue Velvet/Wild at Heart to The Straight Story, Ice Cream Sunday show's that Rimelspach is capable of a wide range.

2 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
If only I had not read the book!, 10 December 2005
5/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

A few years ago I read Anita Shreve's novel and was moved and even floored by this story. When I heard about this film I was excited by the cast and director. This film never seemed to come out theatrically and I wondered why. Well it wasn't because of the powerhouse cast! The story told in the movie differs from the novel in one too many crucial ways. What was profound in the book seemed a bit silly on screen. And the conclusion... puh-leeze! Sarah Polley was excellent, however, and the late Katrin Cartledge once again created a fascinating 3-dimensional character. Vinessa Shaw was also a standout in her small yet crucial role.

It's just too bad about the story! Why couldn't it stay closer to the novel? Who was the studio worried about offending?

7 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
Unexpectedly Uprorious, 2 June 2005
7/10

Watch this movie with no expectations and you'll end up howling with laughter! The Youngest Profession sets it's silly tone early on and never threatens to take itself too seriously. It was clearly made for the hoards of young early 1940's fans who are here given center stage. Though the film does have a sit-com feel and plot, the witty writing and game cast make it all seem fresh and new. Poor Virginia Weidler may be grating at times but she's surrounded by such game pros (especially Agnes Moorehead) that it's a pretty moot point. The star cameos are publicist's dreams. Thankfully, they also do not seem out of place in the wacky world this film so fondly creates.

1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
What? No Oscar nom for Lange?, 16 November 2004
9/10

Realism reigns supreme in this terrific melodrama. Despite a somewhat odd pace, Men Don't Leave manages to build into a remarkable journey for the viewer. This is in most part due to the wonderful work of an ensemble anchored by Lange. As a strong, pragmatic yet fragile widowed mother of two, Lange hits every emotional bullseye. I couldn't help but root for her-and cry with her-as she struggles to keep her small family (as well as her own sanity) intact, despite seemingly unsurmountable odds. Lange is aided by a top notch ensemble. Joan Cusack is hilariously disturbing as the no-nonsense nurse who dates Lange's teenage son, played by Chris O'Donnell. O'Donnell and Charlie Korsmo (as the younger son) both manage to astonish in their heart-tugging roles. A scene in which O'Donnell breaks down in front of Arliss Howard shows why the young actor would soon become a huge star. Props also go out to Kathy Bates, marvelous as Lange's tough-as-nails boss.

1 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Even seeing clips brings tears to my eyes, 10 July 2004
10/10

Marlon Brando's recent death has once again brought attention to this outstanding cinematic gem for the ages. The clips from "Streetcar" that have run constantly on television during rememberances for the actor had such a powerful effect on me that I was moved to tears. And these teardrops were not for Brando. They were for the beauty and timelessness of this movie that never seems to lose any of it's magical quality. The raw, ferocious chemistry between Brando and Vivian Leigh sends an electrical shockwave through my body each time they share a scene. The beauty of the sets and Elia Kazan's deft direction sweep the viewer into a story so alive that it never really leaves you. The seductive use of sound, the supporting cast... If only one movie could be called "perfect," this would be the one.

1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Dark, scary, disturbing, funny and sexy!, 29 May 2004
6/10

Interesting early short by Derek Rimelspach showcases the director's many talents. The story of a once ambitious filmmaker, now blind, who recounts his life through flashbacks may be heavy indeed. Yet Rimelspach manages to infuse the right amount of humor and unique camera angles so that his film never becomes heavy-handed.

Tim Burhene, in the lead role, is as dark and sexy as the material. Like the story itself, Burhene and his character strangely become more attractive, and surprisingly universal, as the movie unfolds. I was fortunate to see this film recently on a big screen--where the many nuances in story and character were not lost. I hope to see this one again!

6 out of 6 people found the following review useful:
A Bullseye for the Creative, Ambitious and Great Mary Pickford!, 15 March 2004
9/10

If you have never seen a Pickford film, this Artcraft Production is a perfect introduction to the star's versatile talents. In her dual roles as Stella and Unity she displays a range and depth of emotions hardly seen in films of this era.

Pickford was drawn to this story immediately after screenwriter Frances Marion suggested she read the novel. Pickford's labor of love in getting this book to the screen is evident in every scene. Art Direction and sets are superb--subtle yet surprising and stylish, even smartly humorous at times. It's a fine production throughout and, astonishingly, even the special effects hold up well today.

Truly fine film--except for that pesky boom mic.!, 2 October 2003
7/10

This film is unique in many ways. What I liked most is the effect that has lingered with me since I saw the movie last week. It's a feeling that I was in Japan with some people I got to know--but now that I'm home I miss them and wish I got to know them better. So much was said without dialogue: A smile, a glance, a yawn. Both the leads were perfect. Not flawless characters, but real and likeable people.

But why the boom mic in so many scenes? Was everything done in one take? Couldn't the tops of the shots be cropped? Did nobody notice?

This came sooo close to being a perfect movie. But that intrusive, pesky boom forced me to give Lost in Translation a "7".

I truly hope things will be cleaned-up for the director's cut.

5 out of 6 people found the following review useful:
An Antique Gem With Many Facets, 19 January 2003
8/10

I just watched this film for my first time on Turner Classic Movies. Unfortunately, the version I saw was several minutes shorter than 73 min.--so I'm not sure what I missed. Hopefully there was a scene near the finish so the ending wouldn't have seemed so abrupt. I rated the film an '8' anyway. In a showcase for vintage comedic movie acting, director Mack Sennett lets two comedic giants shine. Marie Dressler is tubs of fun in the title role. Strong as Popeye yet more clumsy than Kramer, Dressler is a walking disaster who, thankfully, has Lady Luck to guide her. Her performance seemed a bit Vaudeville at first but she quickly grew on me. By the time she danced drunk I was completely won over. An underdog with a heart of gold who can take care of herself, thank you. Mabel Normand also registers strongly in her nameless role. Though at 20 she was the youngest of the star trio, Normand was the film veteran of the group. It shows in her ease and manner and still modern screen personna. She knew a little could go a long way. Chaplin seemed miscast. I kept thinking a more handsome cad (Wallace Reid?) could have been funnier. Still... He's Chaplin.

Frida (2002)
0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
The most perfect film I've seen in years, 14 December 2002
10/10

Wow! Hayek's perf and Taymor's direction must be seen to be believed. This is the most perfect film I have seen in years. As a bio, as drama, and as art it's all top-notch. Hayek boldly embodies Kahlo and, amazingly, trancends all impersonation. Her character is so real and sensual that despite being up on the screen I felt I was able to smell her breath and even touch her skin. Among the rest of the terrific cast I was especially impressed by Valeria Golina as Diego Rivera's ex-wife.