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Follow the money.
Hammer horror written by the great Jimmy Sangster (The Curse of Frankenstein, The Horror of Dracula).
This is a film that compares well with later films like Gothika and The Sixth Sense. It shows that Hammer does not always have to rely on gore and sex, and can in fact make a psychological horror film that entertains.
It may not be the best of Hammer Horror, and it certainly isn't the best that Jimmy Sangster has written, but it is still a good film and you should see it at least once.
Jennie Linden (Women in Love, Dr. Who and the Daleks) as Janet did a good job.
The Kiss of the Vampire (1963)
You keep away from here, or we'll set the dogs on you!
This Hammer Horror film opens with a funeral that really sets the tone. It was slow and, even though we have seen the scene a million times, it manages to show it in a different way. It was marvelous.
I have seen many vampire films, and I certainly know what to expect, but this is a Hammer film and we can expect some differences that make it worthwhile.
The ending was a real surprise and something I had not seen done before.
A lush 19th-century-setting, masterful direction, and vivid special effects intensify this spooky Hammer Films chiller.
Machete Kills (2013)
Try not to be distracted by the cleavage and the hairspray. That's part of my cover.
Just when you think that killing couldn't get any more violent and pervasive, they amp up the carnage with maximum blood and gore.
Danny Trejo returns to action as Machete when the President of the U.S. (Charlie Sheen) recruits him to take down Voz (Mel Gibson), a maniacal billionaire bent on spreading war and anarchy across the planet. Before Machete can take down his schizophrenic target, he finds himself doing battle with host of sexy assassins.
While the blood flows freely in the film, the flesh is surprising slim. Thankfully, Alex Vega sports some sexy lingerie, spilling some sweet cleavage. Michelle Rodriguez, Amber Heard, and Lady Gaga also lend some helping cleavage to keep the film from being a total gore fest. But, no nudity? What a disappointment.
I am happy. I'm happy with you, like this. It's my way of being happy.
This film was adapted by the director and Ghalaya Lacroix from the graphic novel by Julia Maroh.
Many will be turned of by the NC-17 rating given this alluring three-hour drama. It is unfortunate that they will miss a creative and well-acted story about the explosive firepower of sexual desire as a tricky force that can bring both gratification and frustration, sweetness and bitterness, pleasure and pain.
Adele (Adèle Exarchopoulos) and Emma's (Léa Seydoux) affair covers this turf and more as the younger girl's experience of first love becomes a rocky journey filled with ecstatic highs and scary and lonely lows.
Both actresses won the coveted Palme d'Or award in Cannes. The first time it has been given to two actresses. Exarchopoulos was also the youngest winner ever.
Død snø (2009)
Ein! Zwei! Die!
Now, this is the perfect movie to watch during the Winter Olympics.
Eight medical students on a ski vacation in Norway. You know they will have some fun, but the real fun will be a surprise to them.
Vegard (Lasse Valdal) goes out looking for his girlfriend Sara (Ane Dahl Torp), who was to join them after cross country skiing. He becomes concerned when a passing local tells of Nazis probably dead in the mountains. All the laughing and partying quickly ends as Chris (Jenny Skavlan) disappears, and they find Sara's backpack. Poor Erlend (Jeppe Laursen). What they did to him! Vegard find Sara, and more than he expected.
There are Nazi zombies everywhere, and everyone is fighting for their lives. Lots of blood and gore as you would expect, but humor also, as well as an innovative use for Duct tape. The zombie makeup was fantastic!
Just when you think it has reached the ultimate in gore with a chainsaw, axes, and a snowmobile, it goes even higher. Rambo had nothing on Martin (Vegar Hoel)!
Best Zombie movie I ever saw.
Reda, you're going to get your apocalypse.
I have a thing for Jean Reno. Ever since I saw him in Godzilla, I have been searching for his films. This is the completion of Crimson Rivers, and it is great.
No, it won't win any awards, but it's enough to see Reno as Commissionar Niemans again, strongly supported by Benoît Magimel (The Piano Player, The Child of the Night), Camille Natta, and the ever evil Christopher Lee (Wicker Man, Lord of the Rings).
Lots of blood and a weird story based on end times and a book supposed written in God's hand. Heads roll, people are nailed, and monks fly through the sir.
Fantasy? Oui. Reno est magnifique. C'est tout ce des sujets à moi.
Dallas Buyers Club (2013)
Let me give y'all a little news flash. There ain't nothing' out there can kill f*ckin' Ron Woodroof in 30 days.
Matthew McConaughey is amazing as Ron Woodruff, a foul-mouthed Texan electrician and rodeo rider who is addicted to drugs and sex. When injured on a job, he is taken to the hospital in 1985 where he learns from two doctors (Denis O'Hare and Jennifer Garner) that he has contracted HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. They estimate that he has 30 days to live and tell him to get his affairs in order. Woodroof cannot believe he could have that disease. He storms out of the hospital convinced that they screwed up his blood tests.
Ron buys AZT from a hospital orderly, and when that dries up he heads to Mexico. He is advised that AZT is toxic and is put on a regimen of supplements. He finds that this alternative treatment helps him, and he returns to Texas with a car load of the supplements. He partners with Rayon (Jared Leto), a drug-addicted transsexual he met in the hospital, and soon they are recruiting AIDS patients in support groups. To avoid being accused of selling non-FDA approved treatments, they set up the "Dallas Buyer's Club." Members pay $400 for all of the treatments they need. Before long, Ron is traveling the world for experimental drugs to add to his offerings.
The government comes down on him like a ton of bricks - the FDA, the IRS, Big Pharma - everybody wants to shut him down.
This movie is based upon a true story, and it is fascinating. McConaughey and Leto give Oscar-worthy performances.
Your eyes are full of hate, forty-one. That's good. Hate keeps a man alive. It gives him strength.
The ultimate sword and sandals flick. What could possibly be said that hasn't been said many times before. "You can have my chariot when you pry the reins from my cold dead fingers."
11 Academy awards, including Best Picture, for an epic with over 15,000 extras for the chariot race alone. A tale of change and forgiveness. Charlton Heston crying, "May God grant me vengeance!" at one point, and watching the transformation.
Of course, this is not just the story of Judah Ben-Hur, but of Jesus. He is ever present, but we never see his face. He walks among us, and changes the heart of Ben-Hur, and many others.
The film has many interesting characters apart from the celebrated actors like Heston and Stephen Boyd. Sam Jaffe, Hugh Griffith and his horses, and more.
A timeless classic.
Before the Rain (1994)
I wanted to take a vow of silence, like you. But this heavenly beauty merits words.
There are a lot of trashy films and sub par performances out there. Soon we will learn who was the worst for last year. Among the contenders are Johnny Depp for The Lone Ranger, Ashton Kutcher for Jobs, Adam Sandler for Grown-Ups 2, Jaden Smith for After Earth, and Sylvester Stallone for Bullet To The Head, Escape Plan and Grudge Match.
It is films like Before the Rain that makes movie going worthwhile and makes us forget the junk that assaults our senses.
When we hear about Bosnians, Croats, and Serbs, we have a tendency to tune out. What do we care? It's not out war. But this film will put it in perspective in a way that you will care because all war is our war.
Oscar nominated for Best Foreign Language Film, we will have to face the fact that we are often consumed by hate to the exclusion of all else. As long as that exists, we will be constantly at war.
All Is Lost (2013)
I fought 'til the end, I'm not sure what this worth, but know that I did.
Watching this film, I was immediately reminded of the great performance of Tom Hanks in Cast Away. Left to die alone, with the possibility of no one knowing what happened must be a terrible experience. We are social creatures, and we like having loved ones around when the time comes.
Hanks was a likable character, more than I can say for Redford. Eschewing dialog may have been a mistake. We see nothing endearing about Redford, and, frankly, I couldn't wait until he succumbed to the sea.
Anyone could have played this part, and to list Redford up with Hanks in Captain Phillips is ludicrous.
When I think of it, watching someone try to feed his family and keep a roof over their heads will getting minimum wage is a much more interesting survival story.