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It could've been better. The intended visual effects (the look of an old film strip complete with faux poorly spliced visual, burn spots on the projected image) as a tribute to the old 60s, 70s Roger Corman style B-movies became distracting as the movie wore on. What made films like Army of Darkness and the original Dawn of the Dead interesting and fun to watch was that they pulled off the campy horror humor better, while to me, this movie was trying too hard to be cool. The dialogue was hackneyed and cheesy and usually when Willis or Taratino appear in a movie, it's a welcome sight but in here it was a yawner. There wasn't a single appealing character to care about. 5/10.
The Valachi Papers (1972)
Bronson the Mummy cant save this cornball movie
I watched the movie on demand on cable and its amazing that the Valachi Papers was released nearly within a 6 month time span of the Godfather; both films could not be further apart in the spectrum.
Bronson was all wrong for the part; the forced accents from all of the principals made it look and sound more like a skit from Saturday Night Live. It was just plain horrible. It was as if they were just trying to cover a time line as if they were doing a documentary. When you watch it, its presentation comes off dated, like a low budget 1950s style movie. The music is heavy and melodramatic.
This film should be remade with a director who can take his time and with writers who will work up a screenplay befitting this amazing story. I mean before Joe Valachis testimony, very few people knew the workings of La Cosa Nostra and it was years before J Edgar Hoover even admitted there was organized crime.
Blow Out (1981)
Biggest Piece of Crap I've seen in a long time
The movie is crap!!! The irony of ironies is that the soundtrack to the film has awful dated melodramatic music where no music or a select song or two from the times would've been better suited. The dialogue between Travolta and Allens characters is plain awful.
The opening scene was idiotic (I mean I know it was a campy movie farce but still, like if none of the sorority women not see this guy??).
A presidential hopeful is driving by himself without an entourage?? If the premise was to set him up with a floozy; then why shoot him? Why did Lithgows character kill that one woman the way he did when he knew it wasn't the gal he was looking for? Why would they erase all of Travoltas tapes and how could they have that much time to do it?? (If you want to do something quick, you set fire to the place. If you wanted to cover up something, you're not just going to steal a tire; you would execute Travolta and Allen the moment they left the hospital.
I'm sorry but this movie was extremely stupid aside from being poorly directed and acted.
Swingers on ripple
It is hard not to notice the similarities between the principals in this film and that of Swingers. However in Swingers the main characters, Mike and Trent, were a much more likable duo and far more interesting dimensionally. The character of Mike evolves from doubt and self loathing to becoming more confident and in the end forgets his former love and moves on.
In Sideways, Myles and Jack venture on what was to be a one week journey to the Wineries of Coastal California. Right at the onset of the film, you see Miles as someone who has a hard time telling the truth and Jack as someone who has a hard time accepting reality. Myles lies about his drive to Los Angeles to meet Jack, lies about his 'soon to be published book' and steals from his mother. During the course of the week, they meet up with Maya and Stephanie and lie to them about their intentions (Maya believes Jack about his plans to move to the Central Coast with her, and even Jack begins to believe his own lie while all along preparing for his marriage in a few days to his fiancé in LA).
When the bubble bursts and the women find out that their stay is transitory, Stephanie delivers the beating of a lifetime to Jack. At this point you think that maybe the characters would evolve into an awakening but nothing changes. Even as one of the only funny moments in the film transpires, Jack is at best shedding crocodile tears while brewing up a story he can tell his bride as to what happened to his face. As wedding day approaches, it appears everything is A-OK and Jack gets what he wants (delivering a wink to Myles at the altar). Myles meanwhile learns his ex is not only married but pregnant which sends Myles over the edge, drinking his vintage 61 in a styrofoam cup at a cheap burger joint.
It was hard to really feel any affection for any of the characters, even though the female roles were well written and Sandra Oh performed the scene where she confronts Jack with realism (you could feel her hurt). The principal characters never evolve or learn from their experiences. As good as a friend Myles is supposed to be to Jack, he cannot tell him the truth either.
Overall I give the film 3 out of 10.
The Beatles Anthology (1995)
History is written by the victors
I bought the Anthology on DVD from a Warehourse outlet (for a decent price I might add!), and spent the course of a week watching each individual DVD. While I remember watching it when it was telecast in 1995, there was a lot more detail and care put into the DVD including sound enhancement.
As pointed out in previous comments, there are some omissions in the re-telling of the familiar tale. My impression is that if Lennon were still alive, he would offer a less sanitized version of events. Keep in mind that when the documentary was aired by ABC (owned by Disney) there was a compulsion to 'keep it clean'. While the use of marijuana could be quickly noted, there was no way they were going to mention the heavier drug use (Lennons heroin and speed addictions), Epsteins homosexuality and anything from the wife's (girlfriends) POV. Missing were commentaries from the friends they made in Germany and other family members as well.
McCartney has often been criticized over the years for controlling the mythology of the Beatles, and fueling myths such as the Beatles being the first to use feedback on a rock and roll song. Now he is undertaking efforts to rename the order of composer on all of their songs from Lennon/McCartney to McCartney/Lennon. Part of the hubris in writing your own biography is that it is very convenient to cover up your flaws and mistakes as the 'sins of youth', rather than accept them for what they are and build from there.
Perhaps the remaining Beatles can rethink and create a revisionist version of their story that will not gloss over their imperfections and character traits that was part of what made them the seminal icon of Rock and Roll Superstardom.