Change Your Image
Upload An Image
Crop And Save
Solid 1930's melodrama
Fascists seem closer to a dangerous, murderous alliance with the Nazi's, and, Italy almost seems to want to forget, living in a decadence that is of course a perfect, quintessential 'counterpart' to the increasingly corruption in politics,and, in fashions,becoming so, a sordid omen to the horrors that will sadly follow. But, money seem quite good, still, especially for the wealthy upper classes who are all sustaining Mussolini, ridiculously ignoring the imminent dangers, and all the immorality that will plague seriously Europe for well over a decade. We are in lovely Venezia (beautifully photographed by the great Armando Nannuzzi, with saturated tones, perhaps to remember 'Technicolor', then, just becoming famous?) still gorgeous piano teacher Carla Richter (Senta Berger), and, her young and, ambiguous son Renato (handsome Christian Borromeo) don't seem to be at ease with pretty much anything: i felt almost as if he was attracted by the mother, in any case they do not certainly seem to perceive a great future ahead. The script is a bit trite to give all this away at the beginning, but this was my impression. They are actually - despite the script again keeps on, mistakingly striving to depict them as immoral, and, morbid- the 2 more benign souls of the whole motion picture. The sexy piano teacher, who's been giving lessons to the gorgeous daughter Elena (Ornella Muti, perfecting casting, and, she was truly splendidly photographed, here, even though, i would have loved to see someone like Charlotte Rampling, or Therese Ann Savoy in that role), has also been 'amorally' trying to push the seemingly reluctant son Renato, into a marriage of convenience, with Elena, who gets just a kick out of the boy. Carla at this point gets to know the much darker side of one of the supposedly most 'appointed' and 'untouchable' families of that lovely Venetian Summer of 1938, and, she starts fearing for the worst: she is facing a true nest of vipers: not only having to face the rude, and, increasingly intimidating comments made against herself, and against Renato, she also gradually grows distraught by all the corruption surrounding the same family's friends, and society, all representing perhaps to her a major failure into her broken dream to see both herself, and her son Renato, in a much better 'social' position. But, here, the games aren't even those of a social commentary, here we are just in the middle of a true class discrimination, and we stand to the verge of the notorious criminal decadence that will bring the 2nd World war: it is all operated with cruelty, with morbid, and, sordid offenses, constantly perpetrated to all of those not accepting of their position, and dues. The extremely wealthy, and, obviously Fascist, aristocratic family Mazzarini, is composed (beside by the gorgeous Elena, who 'seems' also the most innocent of the bunch), also by the always classy Capucine, great as the manipulative, vampire alike mother, by Paolo Bonacelli, as usual, also excellent playing characters who want to appear loyal and lawful, when are instead just as corrupted, as much as they are slithery, and treacherous,and, of a son who's a bisexual misfit, who seems to indulge into opium, for the most part, creating trouble, and, enjoying to watch his sister making love with playboys! Trouble arises when Renato would just one day innocently (?) introduce the classic handsome stud, Mattia Morandi (great physique Du role, but not so well played by a wooden, Stefano Patrizi, from Visconti's 'The Conversation Piece') a studly friend who will bring with his own games the plot to an incredible series of convoluted, but, truly disconcerting turns, culminating to even a crime murder's mystery investigation, and, to a threat that could be enough to generate a so not sought International scandal. Now, unfortunately, as you may tell, the script is way too convoluted and contrived, however we must say also that this movie is just lovely to look at, extremely well produced, with a production design, sets, costumes, and, make up, cinematography, and, catchy original music from Vince Tempera,that are all just formidable! And, of course, all the stars are mostly great, and lensed with an almost incredible old fashioned type of allure, so if the story quite frankly never gets all completely together, and, there are too many things given away, and very few surprises, aside from the abundant dose of steamy, and, sometime truly morbid, sexuality, which, at the end, it ends up holding up a movie, that would have maybe liked to replicate the works of Luchino Visconti, or Patroni-Griffi, Bolognini, Liliana Cavani, etc., but, misses instead completely into what is a complete and necessary build up of a much stronger character's development, that would have helped giving to the film that boost, and, finally, a whole different tone, without having instead to rely for the most part in its erotic sideways, in order to keep the interest always up. Thanks again to what we should call a first class crew, sex and convolutions are never cheap, and always pleasant, if you don't mind erotic cinema of course, but it could have been a much more poignant film with a stronger script and director. Altogether, it is pleasant and always watchable, it has its own moments, and again its erotica is refined, and, as exquisite as its cast. And, i personally enjoyed it quite a bit. Over all, Senta Berger, Borromeo, Capucine, and Ornella Muti, especially, manage to always keep the show extremely interesting and sublimating.. But, it is not the masterpiece it would have clearly wanted to be. It is adapted by a novel by Peyrefitte called "The Piano Teacher" which was translated into Italian at the time as "Ritratto Di Borghesia in Nero"('A Portrait of Aristocrats in Black', more or less..) so to try to homage both Visconti's "The Damned", and Tinto Brass "Salon Kitty",and, try for the same commercial success those great movies obviously had, and, still are today so well known for.
Interstellar makes for great entertaining show, but lacks depth
I finally watched brilliant director's Christopher Nolan, "Interstellar", and, i found it rather enjoyable, extremely well photographed, with a style, and, skills rich of the uncommon finesse, so typical of Nolan's filmography, of which i am such a great admirer. I love "Memento", his first major film in 2001, starring a phenomenal Guy Pearce, and, i have seen all the following efforts, always finding them, extremely accomplished, and mature, even when going for more commercial fare, such as the Batman's franchise: in fact, i thought that Nolan managed always to bring his vision, and, his greater talent to the purpose of creating a major movie, aimed to all mainstream audiences, intelligently well made, and, way above the standards, while always maintaining a narration rich of invention, and, creative, innovative visuals, and, most of all, with top notch scripts. I also loved "Inception" which had gotten, if i remember, a mixed reception. I found it extremely clever, written with uncommon genius, and, considering not only the more obvious needs of glossy, wide distributed entertainment, but resulting as a great film shot with a virtuoso direction, of mind blowing, and powerful effect, not only presenting an unique, and appalling show, but, also handling feelings, and character's development, with an extremely touching grip. I did not feel as excited, watching "Interstellar", though, a movie i did not find bad by any means, but, that, for me, lacked the same profound, powerful strength, Nolan had previously shown, even in the Batman's movies, always so infused with his impeccable vision. "Interstellar" feels like a great show, but falls rather flat at the end, lacking emotional, cohesive force, and, feeling unaccomplished, despite its incredibly skilled crew, and, budget, its powerful presentation, and, special effects.I think the script lacks Nolan's usual personal, and, deeper attention to all characters, and, often relies strangely on some solutions, that feel derivative, and, very little original. Again, I will keep it short and sweet, since there are already so many reviews on here, that have said it all already, some feeling the same i have, and many others, who have instead appreciated the show. This movie for me failed to bring the same, unique, great direction, and writing, one would expect by Nolan, and, over all, it feels like since the get go, the main idea wasn't the most interesting, nor the most innovative, and, its further development did not help to make it into the great movie, one would have expected. However, it needs also to be said, that, considering the painful offer, and, the even worse level of production value, and new ideas, found in most American movies, in the past few years, even a not such accomplished, and, not so inspired film, such as "Interstellar", does make for, at least, a more well produced, and, entertaining, big budget, genre's production.
Interesting perspective ; at least a ground breaking attempt
"The Idiots" cannot be defined a masterpiece, however, as many others Dogma's films, holds itself very tight, thanks to the honesty expressed by the filmmakers, and, by the actors, all brilliant, so effectively introducing us into a dangerous evil that lays underneath a seemingly, quite accomplished, group of upper class Danish friends, and, their less than admirable habits, with a raw style, that may be upsetting or shocking to many, but, that indeed showcases perfectly the moralistic northern European society setting, with a grieving, somber tone, that grows silently potent throughout the film, with touching intimacy, and, an authentic, livid, and,truly dark storytelling, that results enigmatic at times, as much as, it is profound and visceral. The second half of the piece gets an unexpected turn, that many have found too graphic, but, that others have found instead a ground breaking, utterly knife sharp, and, clever twist, that does certainly condemn, without pointing specific fingers against politics, or too specific, and, cheap motives, but, that serves with great effect to help us to a rather penetrating identification of all main characters, resulting under this lens, as if they were all victims of vices, and, obscure perversions, perhaps,caused by a general, wrong perception of their existences, infused by a lack of feelings, and,of a respect,that feels almost invisible in our modern world, which here seems always so advanced,and, perfectly modern, yet progressively loosing more, and, more attention to the single individual, sympathy for the minorities, and, that, in general, survives with boredom, accepting without any objection, a sickening lack of real love, trying to cope with damaged, personal relationships, often just by forgetting, or numbing their isolation, while, unwillingly, breaking hearts, ideals, and, hopes. It is a movie that i would not recommend to everyone, but, to those who love a certain type of extremely stylized, personal type of Cinema. In the 'Art House' crowd, and, within mature, more intellectual audiences, searching for movies that make a difference, just with their unique voice, and, beliefs, "The Idiots" should not disappoint, but, make for a piece that depicts with awesome strength, a questionable society, that seems inept, failing to hear, and, to listen with more caring, and, involved sensibility to all, so creating a painful array of lost souls, which are composing such unusual, frightening shallow group of friends, plagued constantly by controversial upbringing's, and, by an horrifying indifference, so realistically playing against odds in this unique movie that's able to convey with vivid contrasts, a series of highly dehumanized morals, and, an even more dangerous lack of perceiving, or holding onto faith. "The Idiots" does not certainly fails to outline some modern, steel cold events, bringing the over all meaning of violence and isolation, interior despair, and sense of loss, to a very interesting, if highly disturbing afterthought.
Una spirale di nebbia (1977)
Interesting if not all came together portrait in black!
This movie is beautifully shot and exquisitely set, written, and served by the cast : and, just because there's always such a moralistic and disturbing content so typical of the bored Northen Italian upper class of the time ( mid 1970's) so well described and exquisitely, almost realistically, appointed here, that is why I so generously gave it a 7 out of 10 votes! Unlike the previous reviewer (now.. with all my respects, but Oh my God, have I ever, even read such a silly, puritanical , virtually pointless, and untrue review, over a movie that lastly seems to depend from the aberration of nudity and sex, themselves ?! Next time just go for Walt Disney, OK?). Sorry, I think actually this was a very psychological, and extremely erotic elaboration of a possible idea of a in depth research into the bored and yet hopeful love lives of a few wealthy, and constantly conditioned by the moralist of their "stale" time of reflux - just after a decade spent considering, or not , the counter culture - to choose lives so abruptly adverse to their real feelings: and, so sexuality here is key, and the exploitation of it through the unconscious, and the blame of a possible subconscious faith that becomes very much tragic and realistic, when almost as cutting a deep crack into the so hated routine of the frantically demised and shrewdly mannered lead characters, a real death comes with its embarrassing excitement to propose to each one of them, but even to a few, well described supporting roles, almost a motive of escape from the existential boredom they all live as if it were almost a golden cage, instead of a very much bourgeois trap, revealing them as many others had been before and will be made again,a not all so loving, not all so kind, not all so pretty, perfect and possibly aristocrat, group of friends, but if anything a very much more possible, flawed and lustful nest of vipers! And, it's here I believe, where this movie fails, unfortunately, and despite its extremely exquisite presentation, its very much critical and yet simply perfect idea, and the refined, always quite realistic (for the time of course!) description of mores and characters , lost ideologies, and vane passions, primarily all becoming an obsolete abuse, or an outraged act so heavily against themselves, finally, leaving obvious, that is, only what obvious it is,and has been for a long time, and, even to those who have such a hard time coping and dealing with it: decadence! Yes, the main true interest of our beautiful and pragmatically over chic, conservative protagonists is a tragic sense of self rendition, madly accompanied by a lack of self esteem, while only sheer violence and a rather lusted lecherous need to almost abuse themselves and others grows more and more so inevitable and manifesting the tired and uneasy living and hated kept secrets or positions of one another ! But, while this same idea would have shined in the hands of some great director like let's say, Michelangelo Antonioni ( oh God i would have loved to see what Antonioni could have made out of this, and what cast he would have assembled, without in any case wanting to take away from this more B movie cast, which however must be recognized for its almost incredible effectiveness and hard work!) becoming just a meditative parabola over the extremism of the social class and their lengthy decadent fall, in an atmosphere suspended almost among the divine and the unconscious, becoming probably a late 1970's rather sought closure to all of Antonioni's incommunicable'a outstanding dramas filmed in the early 1960's, this film staying rather consistently far away from that route, does not even embrace the genius and way more raw and provocative rebellion and true breaking ground attitude that a Lars Von Trier, 20 years later would take, with it's marvelously cruel and almost pornographic work of Art, in the U.S., of course, heavily censored "The Idiots" in 1999, one of the very best Dogma films ever made! In Eriprando Visconti's almost garnished and way too polished film, every thing stays instead inevitably uneven and on the surface for a true lack of strong inspiration and of intents, and very cautiously trying to scandalize the same classes ( such as our previous reviewer who was clinging on counting on the naked bodies instead of concentrating of what might have made him/her do so! ) of the times with probably the thanks of his producers and International distributors, which again at the time, might have seen in this badly managed if beautifully photographed Spiral, the only reasons of possible financial gains.
Confused, boring, troublesome and bothersome
A plot that doesn't sustain any of its premises, and, some artificial, trivial, and, rather unnecessary assemblage of so called 'controversial' situations, we can hardly bare enough to care, before even completing to watch just the first half of this disjointed film. Here, we are never even close to an auteur film's atmosphere, or that of a Lynch's type of 'narrative construction',rather, we are closer to the likes of some lurid tale, confusingly and quickly put together,and, bragging some pretentiousness! And, this is unintentionally(i hope!)carrying the responsibility to cheat even more audiences over the meanings of a truly inspired,and, inspiring, highly artistic, personal piece of film work, with, in this case, whatever preposterous mix of Gay sub culture and wrecked psychological over tones, you may regret trying to follow in the lousy developments,and, dialog, infesting this movie and its lack of firm direction or basic film rules,featuring just some acting that drags performances into almost juvenile portrays,bringing most players down to such a misleading, unfocused state where indicated acting may just come as handy,as it is indeed,the over all,general confusion, and, profane misinterpretation of the failed intents of this production! I can be making excuses for low budgeting,technical difficulties, and, all the detriments that Independent Cinema must unarguably face today to even make it to the completion of a project,but, i cannot making excuses when to hide the lack of identity, and, real personal vision of products, such as this one,someone would use the name "Lynch" as, just an excuse to sell some slow moving, undefined material, as artistically challenging, because that, "Pornography"is not! I personally resented some of the "over heated","tweaked" sequences, written more like keeping in mind a conversation between raunchy costumers of some seedy sex house, rather than having in mind a film that would like to introduce us to a dark thriller with stylish tones! "Pornography"sadly kept reminding me of how transparent were becoming, all of a sudden, the radical but simply basic lines and substantial differences,within such a mess, and, instead,the electrifying, galvanizing experience someone could still get by watching(and,i would quite frankly recommend dearly "re-watching" many greater films, to all of those folks still having doubts on whether,this film has nothing merely even resembling the works of Lynch and of other talented filmmakers, or not, since we should all, at least, be able to understand, how hard it is to accomplish even just a mere impression of those contemporary masters' work, and, with such different creative ideas, cultural back ground's, talent,and,imagination, they must be working with!),something like "Lost Highway" or "Mulholland Drive",or even the out standing works of another great European director, whose name, someone even dared to make, when talking about "Pornography"! Especially unsuitable in this case,in fact, it was to read or hear cited by some, at the time of this film's premiere,the name of extraordinary director, Michelangelo Antonioni (well known in the US, especially,for the frenzy, the trend he established so unforgettably, with the mesmerizing mystery,and virtuoso script,and camera work,carrying his intense,unique "Blow Up"released by MGM back in 1967, when there was still someone truly caring for the cultural faith of this Country),who indeed made also a phenomenal movie about an unusual,unexplainable disappearance of a key character, bringing up events, eventually going much deeper inside the interiors,and "the reality", to the point of introducing,a completely new story,from the one the movie had originally started with! That glorious achievement "L'Avventura",was shot in Italy in early 1960,and,still gives incredible thought provoking thrills,and, many reasons for collective meditations over the never ending links between filmmaking,and representation of relationships, cheating, alienation, and, other social commentaries,including last,but, not least,a disease we all may experience and share at various levels today, called incommunicable feelings'despair. Again, quite frankly, after having watched such ineptitude,just the thought of such directors,and, subjects,feels out of place and utterly embarrassing, since Antonioni's,and, Lynch's works, in my opinion,should just not even be mentioned, when going through the motions of "Pornography", ultimately, becoming only just fine example of how lost and awry a movie project with, maybe even too many ambitions, considering the material's potentials, may so tragically turn out to be,at the end. I could also object that Lynch has never even edited a nonsense shot,like the many abominable ones we have gotta sit through here, but, at the contrary, how there's always plenty of heartfelt,visionary,meditative moments,and, insightful,layered content, able to introduce anyone into a new World, new experiences,and, philosophical journeys opening up new horizons to our lives and minds. But, why shall i even bother to go on? Would i be doing any good? I obviously don't have anything against daring, independent producers and directors,quite, at the contrary, love and try to route for, prize, and, always welcome all the works of new talented folks, even when not all completely accomplished, such as the films of P.T. Anderson,but, even those of Steve McQueen,John Cameron Mitchell,Van Sant,or of Todd Verow,and, Everett Lewis,for example,whose,movies are never less than compelling, but, always taking us through a creative,emotional,and spiritual journey of discovery! In fact, i have even bought and watched "Pornography",in its full entirety, before judging it so harshly! However, it did raise only one important moral question,and, that was just the absurd,but, painfully true misconception, today convincing many to believe, in good or bad faith, to be watching art films,instead of just boring, misguided,and tawdry attempts at exploitative, sporadic,utterly sensationalistic filmmaking.
The Brides of Sodom (2013)
Sodom gets the fair treatment!
"The Brides of Sodom" is ironically very timely,controversial enough to enrage a few prude's, yet clever by not taking itself too seriously,despite what you will see! The story gets moved into a gritty future where Vamps(read"greedy,narcissistic society",glamorous creatures of the night common in Hollywood!)have taken over, starting to enforce pleasure, degeneration,encouraging consumerism, but, allowing none true freedom to those trying to live their lives far from the hypocrisy of a very corrupted system of superstition,unspoken hate,tragic secrets,alike fascist terror, dictatorships taking over financially shaky, uneducated Countries, whose power's been obtained with innocents' blood & fear perpetrating some of the worst crimes,such as, outrageous abuse of all laws & constitution: clear oppression's the ultimate scope.Now, this is certainly not a political film, but,it's a pity the creators hadn't followed more the original subtext, its moral, existential's key, just opting for a more commercial, less dangerously intellectual direction to please the fans of the Cult! Sensitive human,Samuel, who's made prisoner by handsome hunter, Eros,then, a sexual slave, by the lecherous Emperor of this tyrannical legacy,becomes clearly the main character,maybe a pretext to immediately show how lack of freedom is key to existences ruled by tyrants,even in a place where all customs seem to be "accepted" yet never fully granted, by the power,by its selfish, amoral code.Populated seemingly just by orgiastic courtesans, hot warriors&their tirelessly sexual obsessions, and the 2 handsome leads, ex model,executive producer,Domiziano Arcangeli,and,ex porn superstar,David Taylor(here, at his first mainstream acting role)seem wanting to"express"more with their glances, than with the words available by a strictly "Genre" script, however, one must say they certainly do make for one of the sexiest vampire's couples ever seen,at least in Gay/Bisexual's films, and, their smart director,exploitation Guru's, Creep Creepersin, who also wrote the script, does indeed not miss a beat to get the hunky Taylor attacking Arcangeli,then getting the 2 actors, pressured by very "human"needs,furiously getting a rid of their clothing, and, showing with fierce exuberance, all the skin they could possibly bare in one single frame, before erupting in effusions, so heavily erotic, they get to the limit of hardcore, in fact, i thought we were indeed getting close, but, at the end, they did always manage to end up carrying&holding themselves up, along the standard's of decency (at least for a NC-17rating of course),conveying within them an almost very true, dense sensuality,without ever,really trespassing that fine line,laying between legit acting, and,"the real thing" (like in the awfully sensationalistic "L.A. Vampires",a disappointment, from Bruce LaBruce).Very good, but, unfortunately the very contrived plot, never reaches for the deeper nature of its premise, that honestly feels almost forgotten,or simply not explored sufficiently, potentially having elevated this to a real experience,more profound,and,less exploitative! But, here it is exactly where the movie gets on fire:it has indeed plenty of beautiful moments,rich of1970's European Genre's suggestions to make for an entertaining, shockingly thrilling ride, especially for those who don't know how to appreciate Horror flick's, made with a provocative style!If,"The Brides of Sodom" is unashamedly filled with an extravagant mix of gore galore, an ensemble of Goth,S/M,and,its depiction of lurid events,typical of pulp narrative, but, of some of Anne Rice's novels,too, this movie becomes definitely most notable for its atmospheres, impeccably re-created,respecting quite the original's! And, thanks to a moody, dark,fine cinematography,its extremely "Caligula" alike scenes, offering even a sub plot set in post apocalyptic,nocturnal exteriors, where a stalking moon lights up bloody landscapes with sinister creatures, where our 2 main lovers are trying to celebrate some sort of "feral honeymoon", escaping from Eros's incestuous sister, a semi lesbian,quirky Princess,who's foolishly in love with her brother! Eventually, she would even take to bed mystic Samuel (he's half a Saint, half a whore, like in a John Ford's tragedy!),with the hope to save the Empire from the unforgiving cruelty of Dionysus(Dylan Vox), who's also extremely embittered by loosing Eros, to ex human Samuel! Eros made him into a vampire, to save his life, however, it's not all glowing at the Horizon, at the contrary, after the 2 hunks get an array of hot love making, impeccably delivered, we hit a very hard,unexpected twist,shifting the story,toward a whole new direction! Samuel now changes face, he's committed to find out about some deadly mystery linking the Empire to a frightening danger! And, so he becomes a dilemma of ambiguity, he will get himself in the graces of Dionysus,too, but to further in a plan, that may compromise everyone's future, if not executed. The Princess,searching for happiness, spends her nights, making love to gorgeous ingénues,lovely naked girls, brought to her, by the soldiers Satroi (performed by an ensemble of porn stars, and, some of the hottest underwear's models ever seen all together in the same movie!) in extremely gory, lesbian,or orgiastic greed, provoking her to slash the poor girls, with the fury of her insatiable fangs, and, that of her solitude! The movie(as you may understand)was for me, like more of a lavish,"tripper"odyssey, into the realm of Erotica, with unforgettable male sex scenes,and,a fine celebration of Euro's Horror's from the 1970's.So, if you are into a fun roller coaster's ride, that's happened to be cast with savvy intuition,featuring gorgeous hipsters,sexy witches, or violence's driven,filth obsessed courtesans(there's even Beverly Lynne,Skinemax's Queen performing a Nazi warden to an S/M's dungeon!),by handsome,muscular boys,with the help of their bosom's hot ingénues, in the semi nude,this makes for some show,displaying with a little malice,indeed (but who cares?) the decadence of an Empire, and its Fall (it seems,it's all fault, at the end,of Peter Stickles,from "Short Bus", who plays mute, but, extremely seductive "Book Keeper"), "Brides"will definitely give you more than an opportunity to spend one heated evening,without any of the usual clichés(must tell you,personally have enjoyed a lot more this one than those teased up,disappointingly flatter episodes, of something like"True Blood"),for sure a far more liberated"guilty pleasure",where either dreaming, or getting aroused by a clever combination of classic myths, Euro's exploitation at its most prominent, and, lush beauties,may have indeed its pay off!
Bruce Davison at the Asylum? OMG!
I could not even believe (when a friend had told me) that, a once talented and promising actor, like Bruce Davison was supposedly now making movies with the infamous Asylum! Well, i was wrong (not to believe)! He was/is, indeed!Asylum is well known to be the Z grade studio of Tinseltown, that one Sy/Fy, in a terrible, worrisome self destructive path, decided to give most of his movies, to get made to! Now, i am not in the Industry, but i happen to love Cult Films! But, if there's something Asylum knows very well, it's just how to massacre scripts, directors, crews in horribly cheap movies normally cloned out from some -already- mainstream stinkers! There's nothing worst for an actor of a certain name, like someone wrote before me, to appear in these films apparently! They say it's like a sign of full demise! By having (or shall i say truthfully: by not having been able to finish watching, despite trying real hard!)"seen" a few of those movies,since i do genuinely love Cult movies, i finally realized how Asylum destroys any sense of creativity or visual style, in favor of some of the cheapest, quickest, most annoying, and wildly boring narrative's and filmmaking ever to be "green lit"! Plots normally are so bad, they offend to behold, often they do owe an utmost discriminative undertone that mines jokes so cheesy, you'd never even hear 'em, in the worst Spearmint Rhino's joint, you'd ever had to go to! A truly offensive jamboree of fallen stars trying to pay,i assume, bills and mortgages,involved in malicious nonsense,producers think they'll be able to fix later,and, with bad, real boring CGI! Forget Corman, or better, rent Corman, or some good, old Euro's Exploitation from 1970's/1980's,instead! This is biting me and worst than ever, Sy/Fy is killing us all (it's a very well known fact, among Horror's and Sci-F's aficionado's) with this choice to grant to Asylum so much of their production! Who's making choices over there?Can they not see clearly, maybe? Only "Cinetel" used to make movies as bad as the Asylum's! Yet, there are so many interesting new (or older) directors, and, so much product, out there, you know? Yes, i mean, when you go to Fangoria, or even to some little Horror Film Festival, you're sure to get to watch some of those little campy,little cult jewels, that strive to get seen, afterward, instead, since, we normally cannot find them anywhere later on, while,we must take in all this oblivion, on the other hand! Who wants to punish us so bad? Oh boy! Then (back to point one!),find out that an actor like Bruce Davison, was making movies at Asylum! And, before i get a hold of one, he's now even directing them? So, had to rent this one, since was hoping that, maybe Mr. Davison had gotten some power to make something, at least, fun to watch! Man, was i wrong? One more time, stupidity, flat cinematography, flat everything, are all here, back again, very punctual, as usual, and, served or presented, i should say, in a not even so deceiving DVD's cover, complete, of course, of the same horrendously filmed scenes of killings, you have ever had to witness, and, so laughably shot, they must truly have thought (like someone else has said already,anyway) that they could have rescued them, with some of the cheapest CGI ever, instead of providing some professional SFX's on set! Really, too bad! I'd rather not talk about the plot,in the respects of Mr. Davison, but, this is frankly too much to behold! These movies don't even have a little sensuality, there's always such a painful sense of "castration", at the end, you are just left with the memory of such an impossibly bad acting (Look, when they even happen to hire some talented actor/actress by mistake, you are sure that you'll just get to see them in the back ground, while, the real cheese balls will lead on, instead! Why is that?), along with the same freaky (those yes, those are truly freaky indeed!) feelings of having been robbed, one more time, of your money! These thoughts are pretty much all about what's left, recurring way too sadly, in your back head, after watching the Asylum's productions! That's it! Wonder what is Sy/Fy doing, too? Anytime they have something a little better, you are sure it's coming either from Lions Gate or After Dark! Come on, those ones, without being true "examples" to follow, either, are most of the times, at least, some kinky, guilty pleasures (to watch)!Asylum's are just dead, trite, frugal and even bigot plots, directed, and cast like if it all had gone too bad, awry.. Like watching Sherilyn Fenn, who once worked with David Lynch, trying to act a few lines in this, wasn't enough of a detrimental experience, already! OK, now, i will just stop! But, i just hope that both Mr. Davison and Ms. Fenn get soon better assignments! And for us, fans, what do i hope? Uhm, Well, the movies are actually out there, people! Let's go to Film Festivals or Midnight shows, and, we will find them! Let's! Truly! Anything's gotta be better than this, sorry! And again, sorry, but, i have tried, and now, truly way too many times, so at this point, my feelings are truly sour and hurt! I won't do this again! I just want to claim my right to good, old campy Horror, back! Please! And then, I'd like to ask Asylum to please stop to get those atrocities out! People are complaining Worldwide! Just watch out!
Visually pleasing, but superficial, and TV alike..
Maybe because i know Michele Soavi as a Cult Film's director.Maybe because some of the reviews were so good, I would have never imagined that i was up for such a disappointment. Whichever my attitude towards religion(s) may be, I'm just watching a movie, for what it truly is and what i am able to truly perceive from it. I can only say that while, some visuals were vibrant and stylish as in some of Soavi's better works, especially, the script was instead, way too often lacking any depth or insight, and, any of that more profound research, it is so necessary to explore, when facing such historical complex themes! There was hardly any credibility on the characters and their motivations, or life styles, considering, especially, the times and places, where they were living and having to cope with (the Middle Ages, a very dark time of our History!). I understand that movies must be modernized, actually made understandable for audiences living at the present time, but, reducing a very insightful character like St. Francis,that, after spending years, living an uneducated existence, as the socially unaware, selfish and wealthy, privileged son of a rich and shady merchant, suddenly, after an incandescent and challenging epiphany happened while fighting a War he didn't even clearly understood, after coming home, realized the absurdity of any war or violence, and the hypocrisy of the times towards a World, until then, way too unknown to him, and, yet so large and vast to impress him to the point of becoming, as a result of a sense of extreme pity and virtue, one of the most famous rebellious young men ever, so ahead of his times, and, so clearly envisioning the absurdity, the corrupted Roman Catholic Church had done of the purest, most noble message and doctrine left by Jesus of Nazareth! So moved and so against the rules of his times, Francesco did what he could, abandoning everything he had: from its possessions, immediately given with generosity to the million of people then having to face misery and illnesses, for no apparent motive, other than the greed of a few powerful and (often) unlawfully enriched few families(like his very own) or members of the same Roman Church, who were neglecting the rights,all humans should equally have been given, and, were wildly insensitive to nature, and, its beauty often so violated by a foolish disrespect! Francesco, finally choosing to live in restraint, not only gave everything he'd owned, to the people, but,also started preaching to convince a few of his friends to do the same, at first, and, later, even trying to extend to others his extraordinary perceptions, taking him to incredible reveals and a strength so extraordinary to impress so many, becoming the enforcer of a new, and, singled out, Christian movement! This movie only partially achieves the interior and political "grandness" expressed in one of the strongest messages ever brought to Earth, by a very simple man! There are some spectacular moments, but, the direction results ultimately cold, and, extremely weak in its intents, maybe because of a narrative and cinematic mediocre style, that's completely non effective and deprived of a more personal enlightenment by taking on a story of a man, so deeply touched, to opt for extremely modern and unforgettable choices. While the music blasts like in a mediocre B movie, trying to copy Hollywood, without even having either that Classic filmmaking's mainstream force, nor its huge budgets, and, showing just an overview of way too many Historical references, resulting almost an inept, useless piece of work, plagued by an elusive script, filled with dialogs very often lacking authenticity or real sensibility, or spiritual consciousness. And at the end, this forgettably vacuous representation just shows so many flawed key choices and weakened intents, while, even its costumes and production design are often very much missing authenticity in favor of shock value or simple aesthetic needs, trying wrongly to cover up for all those emotional holes that ends up dooming this film made for TV, and, very much looking like a TV product of average quality, but, certainly, again so lacking cinematic strengths or more of a prime personal telling. I must say that was also quite surprised reading some of the naiveté of the comments who were so over estimating star Raoul Bova, playing St. Francis. While the actor gives here probably his best performance to date, he's still over all, often too wooden ,and most of all, emotionally insufficiently conniving to reproduce such profound challenging and life threatening choices, resulting, at times, almost fastidiously fake and more seemingly like a victim of the circumstances, more than a truly enlightened young man, touched by such infinite grace and vision. Bova lacks visibly any of the real qualities that only much greater actors could call, in order to believably portraying such complex ,and, at the same time fascinating realization, taking the character to its ultimate strength! He lacks the extraordinary cinematic quality, the actor of the Classic Zeffirelli's most famous movie about St.Francis, the aesthetic but truly touching, "Brother Sun, Sister Noon" was so profusely and naturally dispensing, and, he's miles and miles away from all the nobility and interior work, that, with impressive and penetrating acting force, Mickey Rourke had achieved so wonderfully, in the bleak and dark, yet way more truthfully conceived and historically reliable, Liliana Cavani's "Francesco", a very good and controversial movie, from 1989, so shamefully forgotten today, a movie that had also a much more clear vision and more personal interpretation of the story all together, and a phenomenal supporting cast, helping one of Rourke's most diverse performances, so successfully executed. This version is, at the very end, just like a little bit of a well done little homework, at times, even painfully "amateur" on its softness and sugary approach, yet often showcasing way too many pretentious images, and, exploiting story telling.
Excellent stylized show about those 24 Hour's Party people: a Showtime's true cult, to be rediscovered!
Zalman King's Chromium Blue was truly one of a kind, and so was the sadly missed Zalman King, a genius in mixing hip, innovative and creative themes with seriously slick looks, comedy, music, fashion, travels, erotica, genres bending TV, all so well made with the brilliant use of an incredibly rich and unusual cast and contents, in each episode! I have a feeling that this will be finally one day regarded as a true cult show, and, experience,too! I am sadly reading that some other Canadian reviewer reported this as being a non sense show, even concluding his or hers truly poorly conceived and utterly disrespectful lame vision and review, with the threatening:" avoid this like the plague"! How would you even think it makes it OK for you to not recommend, but, actually, to even so offensively disregard such a Show, that i know, for a fact, it's instead considered by way many more open minded audiences, who are clearly just a little more evolved than you are or were (I hope)! Vampires, Sheiks, and, even the Nazi's mixed with the hip hop crowd, gorgeous models, and, handsome thief's, gypsies and playboys, or just, more simply described, as, that now mythical, Millennium's "24 hours party people crowd", all lingering and happily mixing together in a show so unafraid of clichés, to be able to showcase even a truly flamboyant main gay character, one of those gays who used to be fun and avant-guard, creative and never dull, seeking to pursue new contradictions or to open up new wild journeys or fashions! Yes, an over the top, and, truly liberated, unapologetically politically incorrect, dancing and laughing off, merrily, every prejudice, a self humorous fashion stylist, such as, the brilliant Popo, very lovingly, well portrayed by the amazing Domiziano Arcangeli, with an understated comic vein. Or again starring even a sexy driver like the kick ass, high energy Maria (astonishing beauty Summer Altice ) who just does not wear an uniform, but, is an extremely eclectic young woman, who could be either a Top model, or even a Bond girl, when demanded, like when, on occasion, co-piloting , with a sophisticated butler (so wonderfully nailed by legendary British character actor, Ian Abercrombie) an helicopter or even a private jet, and, allowed to love aggressively men when she wants, and, to reject them when she doesn't want them or need them! There's also a young handsome billionaire, Henry Brooke, who's funding the whole adventure from the mysterious Castle, up to the Hills of what you'd love to think it"s Transylvania,and, where he's retired,after a life threatening motorcycle accident, now a constant virtual presence, to fully fulfill the most romantic parts of the show, and introducing, Viviam Vadim's resourceful, always classy, and, also extremely anti cliché heroine, who is a smart and clever, compassionate, yet wild and fun host to the guest stars, normally young, but romantically dissatisfied, lovely young ladies, coming on board, through the virtual Chromium Blue's site, and, after getting a complete makeover, immediately being set up, by the never exhausted, always spirited, Chromium Blue's clan for a dream romance which happens always with punctuality, but, never in the same fashion, allowing the multiplication of the genres here introduced! The guests here just mostly needed a break from the usual routine, to reconsider or even growing into themselves, before going back home, like after having spent a wonderful and unforgettable vacation, which is the whole , and, not so secondary, point of the Chromium Blue! Ah, isn't this all wonderfully riveting and exceptionally crafted and created? Yes, and, if the editing of the show isn't traditional, it is because it often follows more the "senses" or the psychological adventure and growth into this new life of pleasures, than the logic of the action sequences, that are really second to the message that so needs to be brought out loudly and extended to others with generosity, since, while it might be important to live and work, and, to have a life dedicated to accomplishments and goals, or simply having a family, it would be also as essential, to never forget, that wonderfully "youthful side" laying within ourselves, but, that once in a while, just kicks in to call our attention for a distraction, or a break, to just understand who we truly are and how we truly are living, and, I cannot imagine a place, possibly better than the always so blissfully rejuvenating Chromium Blue, with its foolish crew of happy people, always partying without remorse, but, always also working for us, like embracing a mission and never just some job! Very far from that, actually, there's certainly no doubt! I believe that there are so many people who have reconsidered the main theme of this show: it is already spreading some Cult resonance in the big cities, where this show has today many admirers who would like to "spread" to others the real fun yet life challenging message and philosophy, coming from the Chromium Blue and its wild and irresistible crew, so well orchestrated back then by Zalman King's unique eye for glamor and fashion, beauty and creativity, never forgetting that freedom of choice, in this case, obviously was meant as a form of providing us, with something so brave, so completely sharp and new, bringing us towards new poles and considerations, trends and social commentaries! But only now, in 2013 (over 10 long years later) this concept has, at long last, finally appeared, more and more so, in diverse, new trend setting shows, slowing, but, surely getting exactly to that same look and new narrative format ( which was back then considered obviously ahead of its time, to scare many) that was instead exactly where Chromium Blue, had already been, and, i stress, way over a decade ago! Time to rediscover the origins of a true, colorful, never ending, fun cult!
OMG: This is at the origins of Asylum, one of the most detrimental mini Studios ever!
This film is so bad, so deprived of any structure,or redeeming quality of sort, so uncannily aware or unaware, mostly, uninterested, i believe, of showing any visible filmmaking training, or just, even some simple education,for that matter,so demented, and, so badly shot, so poorly acted by people, whose non acting abilities,or whose faces are so lacking in any department of even frugal,passable modeling material, it would be almost impossible to find any worse, just even through a very accurately long lasting casting search, that all together, the whole thing comes out truly so depressing, and, demeaning, you may wanna give up on movies for a while, or, if you were just a little familiar with the Industry, you could only guess, such atrocity could have been made only by "that David Michael Latt", who has become these days (and, believe it or not, everything is still obviously possible,in this Country!) one of the "moguls" of a terrible,and, utterly detrimental, annoying, poisonous, little studio, that's making, supposedly, a picture every month, and, it is called "Asylum"! Oh well! lol But, what's even worse news than all the above mentioned, it is that the Asylum got itself a DEAL with the Sy/Fy Channel! And,that most of their films are even distributed largely everywhere, all over the World,in DVD! Now,after watching "something" so unbearably bad, such as "Killers", you may even be able to understand, why, lately, those Sy/Fy movies have been all so intolerably bad, some real stinkers, that are irritating a half of this Country, but, that are yet still getting made, and, not only for cheap, but, also, normally shot in a few rushed days, by crews resembling more a little group of juvenile students in shorts, coming from some suburban Film School, than even the most crude, smallest,independent pedestrian crew, of any other B grade Genre movie, where, at least, some semi qualified and passionate individuals would be at least trying to get ahead in the business,instead of messing up almost with some sadistic pleasure! And,shall we bother to mention,as well,that, here at "the Asylum",they normally use some "incredible" sets, such as hidden few woods,just out of the sight of the LAPD's police jurisdiction,so that the producers can even pocket the budget originally planned for shooting permits, and,then, for interiors,they move in, as a treat, in some of those untidy kitchens,in the apartment of one of those vapid PA's,they hire for way below scale, while,all the rest of the assembled,often, senseless footage, is edited in, with lots of other B rolls, or stuff shot (very, very badly)on a blue/green screen, and, helped with guts to look OK(since, at least, they've got to eventually put together some vaguely promising trailer) by some OK(when you're lucky..that is!)CGI work, normally virtually enhanced by a cheesy, bloated to levels of unconventional,and, previously unheard stupidity, music score, unintentionally laughable, wildly inappropriate,and, most of the times, recycled(obviously) from some "Gaudi" piece from a Studio film's library's left over,either robbed,or bargained down for a few bucks, and, a couple of "promised" favors. Now, if this is a winning recipe, they might have - and,this is a must say, too!- achieved,for the very first time in History,ever, the financially remunerative creation of the first D grade movie Studio,able to get away with murder(truly, of what "murder",you may now ask? But, "the murder" of the real movies,of course! That's what I'm talking about, and, yes, even of the D grade ones!),since, without any style or ambition, class or preparation, nor passion for,at least, some of the most mercenary cult elements, ever abused, but, just actually by using a series of basic standard, fraudulent short cuts in very bad filmmaking (if of that we can even still talk!) that, even people like Lloyd Kaufman of Troma's, would find way too plain, and,just a tad too cliché,to be at the end, even merely interesting, to bother in the making of a Z grade picture, out of each one of them! Yet,people keep on buying this crap,and,getting robbed,because of robbery, we are talking about,while,at the end of 'such presentations",they'd be discussing the end of what once was called the Golden Era of Hollywood, when, even D grade pictures had, at least, some dignity, and, if Corman was just a genius, at times, experimenting on a few LSD's bad trips,but, then producing little masterpieces,even someone clearly demented and disturbed,such as Ed Wood, had, at the very end of the day, a true mythical aura,next to all this! Just let me tell you, even a poor commercial for some of the cheesiest club in Reno,Nevada, could be easily Academy Award's material, by comparison to this Bologna, and, even with some right, and, appropriate argumentation's! That being said...