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3-Day Weekend (2008)
Screenwriter... Screenwriter ?
Was there ever even a screenplay? Much less a credible screenwriter?
What a waste of some reasonably decent acting talent to put them in front of a camera and give them absolutely nothing to do. Irrespective of how many "meaningful" and heart-warming tunes you embed beneath your "dialogue," you need a foundation of a story that at least has a modicum of substance . Or at the least, hints at it. Other than male nudity that is as "coy" as is the presumed "plot."
A shame, indeed. This director (/screenwriter) actually produced a far better product with his "Long Term Relationship." It's hard to believe that this vacuum of a film came from the same man.
Possible spoiler: The only reason I gave it a two is because of the somewhat cute turn when the hustler arrives and was recognized by many others. That was the only element that caught my attention and gave me a moment (albeit fleeting) of hope that this flick might develop into something worth the time. Not.
Running Springs (2006)
Just how does something this bad ever get made?
Superficial and trite are frankly compliments when it comes to describing this piece of crap. Not even of the melodramatic "quality" of an after-school special.
Then there are the production "values." The Sound Editor was either in a coma or was seriously on drugs - or had just sustained a C-4 explosion two feet from his head when he coordinated this "film." Obviously, the Photography Director was laboring under the same set of afflictions.
No matter how much I hoped that this train wreck would find some redemption, it just kept piling up on its own tracks of dreck.
Let's Get Frank (2003)
A great presentation. Well constructed, excellently paced, and an overall unique look into a man of stellar abilities, credentials, and accomplishment during one of the most vile moments in the history of our democracy.
An excellent behind the scenes narrative on the workings of government. A phenomenal expose of the hatred at the foundation of the Republican attempt to remove from office a President for the most specious of reasons and predicated upon the most evil and sordid of political motivations.
Kudos to a great man, Barney Frank. For his many decades of work on behalf of all Americans. And for his life of excellence, honor, candor, and honesty.
Ben & Arthur (2002)
Just How Bad Can A Film Be?
...well, pop this into the DVD, waste an hour and a half of your life that you will never get back, and find out.
Acting? What acting?
Production values? ...Production? ...Values?
Story? Don't get me started.
After many years of posting on IMDb, I never thought I would see a film so bad that I truly wished for a lower rating than one. I always have found at least a reason or two to see merit - if only in the intent or the effort of the writer, the director, the cast, or the producer?
In this case, they're all the same guy (!) who really needs to get a handle on the fact, at least as demonstrated by this worthless waste of video tape, that he has no talent. I mean it would be a reasonable excuse if this were some junior high schooler's "production" for his first cinema class, but the referenced "artist" behind this dreck was twenty-six at the time of this miscarriage.
Just how did this ever get made? Who in their right mind ever wrote a check for this? Moreover, don't let the box cover fool you: there's not even anything that remotely resembles a good sex scene or any good "exposure" of the hunk on that cover.
Two final items: there was one second when this "film" had redeeming value: the aforementioned "talent" gets roundly punched out by his lover. I cheered! And, I did learn one thing from this "film.". There are times when something is so very bad that it is, indeed, truly very funny. But not in any comical manner; it's just sadly humorous. Very sadly humorous.
Bob Roberts (1992)
The History Of The Present Day
An amazing work!
Twice I had to confirm the release date of 1992 since this film's precise and uncanny applicability to the events of this last year were amazing. The political dynamic under which this country suffers today - along with the cabal currently installed in the White House that employed precisely the same tactics as defined in this film - were recreated, or more accurately foretold, with an uncanny truthfulness, precise focus, and vivid clarity.
Tim Robbins' direction, writing, and acting were all phenomenal; I never really fully appreciated his talent and brilliance until this film; Gore Vidal's contribution was a special treat from both a fine actor and a remarkable intellect.
Well worth the time - and a replay or two to capture, fully, all of the nuance and insight of this fine work.
In the Year of the Pig (1968)
Brilliant Piece of Work
One of the finest films on the subject.
Its condemnation of the Vietnam massacre - which was orchestrated and conducted by America in but one of its worst hours (to be exceeded only by the current evil now taking place in the sands of Iraq) - is as subtle, historically accurate, and artful as it is overwhelming.
The capture of so many of the historical figures of the day in this work, on both sides of the issue, is a treasure to be protected for future generations to study and over which to weep.
Should you find it, it is well worth the rental and more than worth the time. Pass it onto friends at this most crucial moment in our History - along with "The Fog of War," yet another brilliant study of the fallacy of "America. Right or Wrong."
The Last Year (2002)
Just What Were They Thinking?
Beware any movie that markets itself as being helmed by an "Acclaimed Director" - who has but one other vanity piece to his credit. Or, a film that bills its actors in the closing credits as "Our Talented Cast." Talk about compensating!
The production values : none.
The acting : would have been laughed off the auditorium stage at the High School Senior Production.
The script : rejected (irrespective of its subject matter) by even the most desperate after-school special.
A true waste of potentially very decent subject matter that deserved far better and competent treatment all the way around. So trite, so saccharine, so mawkishly sentimental, so poorly executed as to be patently offensive.
Not only: "what were they thinking?" But, why was the time and the money wasted on this production? Was there not an adult around when this train wreck was leaving the station?
Friends and Family (2001)
Too PG To Be Proud
Much too cute for it's own good. It could have been so much more in the hands of a capable Writer and Director. A shame that apparently they could not be found.
Not a kiss between the main characters and this is presumed to be a gay film? Hardly even a damn or hell - much less anything truly representative of the authentic language of the genre.
It's a shame because this might have been a good flick - the premise was a winner - but the Director and Writer's juvenile compulsion to Disneyfy this work was an abject failure. It's nothing more than a cartoon; and a poor one that embarrasses the quality of the acting talent involved. Insulting to a any audience too, much less a gay one.
Oh yeah, the Director's commentary on the DVD is a hoot and a half. Talk about control issues and being rather impressed with herself. You then start to understand where this film went wrong....when they picked that Director and failed to let the writer graduate from the pre-school playground.
The Laramie Project (2002)
A work that is exceptional both in terms of its structure and in terms of the unique nature of the presentation. It brings into sharp focus many of the complex elements of a horror like this and the profound effects which it has on the many disparate participants.
The quality of the acting is superb evidencing a dedication to the material that goes beyond mere craftwork; many of the performances are obviously from the heart and the soul. Dylan Baker, Amy Madigan, Jeremy Davies, Peter Fonda, Joshua Jackson, and Camryn Manheim are stellar. The courtroom speech by Matthew's Father is historical. The direction is challenging and engaging.
It takes a truly cold, trite, and hardened heart to dismiss such a moving film predicated solely upon the prejudices, regressive political posturing, and obvious homophobia brought to such dismissals.