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Soul Surfer (2011)
This is Hawaii, right? So why are all the people in the movie Caucasian?
Soul Surfer is a feel-good inspirational movie.
But there are virtually NO Hawaiian-descent people in the film at all!! Last time I was in Hawaii, I sure remember seeing lots of Hawaiians!
And another thing: WHY are virtually ALL of the females in this film blonde? The only non-blonde female (excluding background people) was that mean brunette girl in the surfing competitions.
Wonder Woman (2017)
Gadot breathtaking, but why do the Germans speak English ??
Wonder Woman is a good movie. Gal Gadot is incredibly stunning and steals the show in the title role.
But for heavens sake, WHY do the German military personnel speak English in this movie?
And don't you just LOVE Chris Pine's British accent? As in ... NONE at all, despite the fact that he is playing a British officer!!
Joe Kidd (1972)
Eastwood and Duvall in the Owens Valley
"Joe Kidd" is not a great western. It does have some good acting, most notably from Clint Eastwood and Robert Duvall. It supposedly takes place in New Mexico, but anyone who has been in the area of Lone Pine, CA in the Owens Valley will recognize the landmarks; there are a number of scenes in which Mt. Whitney can clearly be seen in the background.
The plot is largely secondary here; the film is essentially about a corrupt bunch of white landowners who use a crooked sheriff and court system to keep the Mexicans from land that is rightfully theirs, and the Mexicans' struggle to get their land back by any means necessary.
This film is worth a look if you have nothing better to do on a Saturday afternoon. Lovely Stella Garcia is simply delicious as one of the Mexicans fighting for their land rights; seeing her strut her stuff around in this flick makes an otherwise-boring movie quite watchable, sort of like Raquel Welch in "100 Rifles".
The Black Orchid (1958)
Entertaining And Gripping, And A Good Early Film For Ina Balin
"The Black Orchid" is about a widow (Sophia Loren) of a murdered mobster, who finds new love in the widower who lives next door, played with great verve and humor by the always-good Tony Quinn.
The Quinn character's barely-grown up daughter (Ina Balin) lives with him and she strongly disapproves of him getting involved with a gangster's widow, even going so far as to lock herself in her room for days on end in protest.
This was one of the lovely Balin's earliest screen roles, and I thought that she was very good and convincing. Even in scenes with gorgeous Sophia Loren, Ina's beauty and radiance were absolutely intoxicating!!
The film also has many comedic moments, including the trip that Quinn and Loren's characters take to the boarding school where her son is attending.
The end of the film, in which the two women settle their differences and make breakfast together, is very heartwarming and downright charming.
Now, how would you like to have had Sophia Loren and Ina Balin prepare breakfast for YOU ??!!!
Pretty Good But Dragged In Middle
I enjoyed "Hook" a lot; Dustin Hoffman and Julia Roberts really stood out in this film.
My only complaint is that there was too much silly playing between the lost boys and Peter in the middle of the film, and I feel that this became rather monotonous. I would have liked to see more interaction between Peter Pan and Captain Hook, and also more screen time for the Captain Hook character generally.
Also, Neverland is supposed to have pirates and Indians in it, and there WERE a LOT of pirates. But I never once saw an Indian.
Maggie Smith was a fine actress and it is always great to see her on screen.
I thought that the end of the film, with the old man flying out of the house, was kind of nutty and really unnecessary, a la the all-too literal ending of "Cocoon", in which the senior citizens are shown flying away in an alien spaceship.
My problems with this movie, though, are minor, and I generally consider this a very good fantasy film for kids and adults--at least those of us who never quite grew up--alike.
The Living Daylights (1987)
Dalton the Best Bond
I like Timothy Dalton best of all the actors who have played James Bond, because he is the only one to act like a real human being--with real human attributes and real human frailties. Connery and Brosnan are too uncaring and cold, and Moore was such a clown, particularly in the last 2 or 3 of his films. Lazenby was probably underrated but not in the part for enough films to get a real gage on. (I have not yet had the opportunity to see the new film with Daniel Craig, so I cannot comment on him now.) But Dalton acts like a real person in the part. Though some might consider this a detriment to the role of 007, it makes his 2 films at least somewhat more plausible than all of the others and his touch of humanity is quite refreshing, in my view.
The villains are not the strongest in this film, but it has the best love story since "On Her Majesty's Secret Service".
Maryam d'Abo is a terrific, heart-melting leading lady; I rank her right up there with Izabella Scorupco from "Goldeneye" as the 2 best bond women ever.
And the recurring role of Walter Gotell as General Gogol is always welcome.
All in all a great show.