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It's no ALIEN!
Alien was a unique film. Unlike today's sci-fi blockbusters which rely on computer-generated effects, loud eyeball-blasting, eardrum-splitting explosions, Alien took a different approach. What made Alien work so well was QUIET, SIMPLE TERROR. Special effects were kept to a minimum. Not one gun was fired. Mood, plot, and character development were everything. The storyline was SIMPLE...The crew goes out to investigate a signal. They unknowingly bring back an alien life form which proceeds to kill off crew members one by one. That's it. SIMPLE! We, the audience, sat and witnessed the TERROR build with QUIET intensity in Ridley Scott's masterpiece, which, in my estimation, will always be the perfect film. Unfortunately, there will never be another like it. Switch to Prometheus, which is everything Alien wasn't. I really wanted to like Prometheus and I entered the theater with every expectation that I would love it. After all it was Ridley Scott. However the plot was so incredibly convoluted I started to get bored. From the outset, I was confused. Who was the alien? What did he drink? Why? What happened to him? Why? What did that scene have to do with anything? When a movie starts off with a bunch of unanswered questions and continues on that path, it's usually a bad sign. It was. I sat there watching scene after disconnected scene as my disappointment grew. Disappointment - not terror or suspense. Where was the intensity? There was none! Not even twelve hours have passed since I saw Prometheus, and, in my mind, it is already a forgotten film. Too bad Ridley. I expected so much more.
The Outcasts (1968)
I remember this series well and watched it faithfully. I particularly liked the character played by Otis Young. As I recall, he was handsome and strong and a wonderful actor to boot. I especially enjoyed the relationship between the two main characters. I also recall Gloria Foster playing his wife and, as always, she made a strong impression on this viewer. Twenty-five years or so later, she played the Oracle in The Matrix 1 and 2, but, unfortunately, she passed away before Matrix 3. I know the series wasn't on for more than 1-2 years, and I distinctly remember being extremely upset when it was canceled. If this series is available anywhere, in either format, I'd love to own it.
Diary of a Mad Black Woman (2005)
Boy, Was I Wrong ! ! ! ! Fantastic Film ! ! ! ! !
I am a BIG fan of Tyler Perry's plays, and I have all of them on DVD (see tylerperry.com). I honestly didn't think the movie version of Diary of a Mad Black Woman would even come close to the original stage play. BOY WAS I WRONG ! ! ! ! Tyler has definitely outdone himself this time. I saw the film Saturday and then went back on Sunday to see it again. DOAMBW is a terrific film which ably covers the plot of the original story, only it effectively intensifies all of the emotions of the characters while taking viewers on a roller-coaster ride. I dare anyone to see this film and not react emotionally to Helen, Charles, Orlando, Madea, and the other characters in the film. You really can't NOT react. In fact, both days I went, everyone in the both audiences - young, old, male, female, black, white, (and in- between) - all were caught up in the film. People laughed, cried, yelled, cursed, howled, and shouted at the screen ! ! I haven't seen this much audience reaction throughout a film in decades! I hope this film will be a vehicle for those who don't know Mr. Perry's work, to check out his stage plays. They are all MUST SEE's! Don't miss this film!
The Associate (1996)
I just saw The Associate yesterday for the first time. I'm not really sure I ever even heard of it before, but my reaction was WHAT A FILM, HOW DID I EVER MISS THIS ONE! Whoopi, as always, did a great job, this time portraying a smart, hard-working financial whiz who must resort to subterfuge in order to get the "props" that have otherwise eluded her. The clever script and wonderful array of characters made this an enjoyable viewing experience. I especially enjoyed Kenny Kerr's character. Simply Beautiful! Austin Pendleton, Bebe Neuwirth, Dianne Wiest, Tim Daly, and Eli Wallach each contributed to the fun. I hated to see it end. Let's hope Whoopi makes more films of this ilk.