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|16 reviews in total|
12 Angry Men does not obfuscate its theme with superficial clash-and-bang, chill instilling spoofs which leave viewers tremulous after the feature like sweet chocs leave children appeased yet inevitably desirous of more. Exploitation of special effects and the plethora of augments which bog Hollywood main-stream projections leaving the essence of the plot line non-existent or heavily in question is not exercised in Sidney Lumet's sublime and profound production. 12 Angry Men plays spontaneously in accordance with the nuances of a dozen jurors who have, placed before them, a case which involves powerful yet questionable evidence against a young man who presumably murders his father. Eleven of the jurors find the testimonials of the only two alleged witnesses incontrovertible while one dares to differ and hence through impartiality and a strive to revivify the loose pieces of evidence which feebly serve to incriminate the accused, bolsters the rest of the reluctant jurors to spend several hours of self-sacrificed time for arriving at the most logical conclusion. The performances in the film are starkly genuine and each actor fits his respective role like a glove. No other film of it's classical era and genre may best serve to enlighten, entertain and stupefy you than this internationally loved and strongly enduring saga of courage, recalcitrance and what it means to indulge a reasonable doubt in a situation of life and death.
Pulp Fiction is merely a stage of randomness accentuated by ironies and goofs intertwining the roles each brilliant actor in it plays, not as a specific person. But as normal people. It was with a sense of quirky, cynical normality void of the formulaic prosaicness in cliché action flicks, that Director Quentin Tarrantino instigated the production, and hence boosted his fame into a household name of Pulp Fiction. Each actor plays a strong mental part in a precarious and cavernous compilation of events, which in a formulaic sense of direction would conclude idyllically with the bad guys locked away and the good guys grinning ear to ear.. But here's the ingenious twist to it.. There are no 'good guys' in the film! With witty mockery in his tone, good camera angles and blundered events, Quentin Tarrantino presents us with a cast of people who appear perfectly normal and then twist on a downward, devilish spiral. Simply said, Quentin Tarrantino castigates the formulaic 'good guy' in cheap action flicks with solid good to bad guy transitions inherent in each one of the most memorable cast of actors of the '90s. Tim Roth's Ringo and Amanda Plummer's Yolanda are just two characters whose quirky discussion at an average bar paves their identities from good to evil as Ringo deduces that robbing a coffee shop can be just as lucrative and more subtle than a bank heist. The last scene of the movie plays brilliantly to this effect as Jules and Vincent alleviate the situation. Quentin Tarrantino beautifully intertwines the story of Jules and Vincent in the coffee shop heist by showing us their random discussion of hamburgers and their translations overseas. Their stories along with the dazzling choreography of Mia and Vincent at a Saturday Night restaurant sets a stage of purely inspired abnormality. In order not to give away the rest of the plot of the film which has been generally known and globally discussed since the year of its release, I will cut my comment short by saying that if you wish to see anomalous directing, decked with a cast that is anything but incompetent, see this now..
The Godfather, as so many before me, and so many after me will stipulate and emphasize is more than a family's way of life through crime. It not only projects the ironies, debacles, rises, falls and basic aspects of corruption but reveals the true meaning of family. Yes, it might seem odd and disturbing to allude to a people of invidious and ulterior principles to 'family', but when we characterize the word as an interface of love, commitment and connections through blood, no other type of portrayal is more symbolic than the Godfather. I will not bore and weigh my comment down through superfluous lines of the general story of the Godfather as so many others have done (and in better terms than I could possibly ever write). Rather, I will address a controversy which has spread amongst all fans of this enduring classic around the globe. In what way is the Godfather a reflection of family? Well.. to begin with the Corleones are family through blood. On a less literal level how does the Godfather epitomize the moral ethics of 'family'? The main component of a strong and progressive family is commitment. People may generally say 'Everyone knows that the most important part of a family is commitment', but this is where they are wrong. Most relationships in America are based on love or in a more ephemeral sense, infatuation. Commitment seems to be the more onerous and tedious part of love, simply because it is harder to sustain. In order to sustain a commitment one must be accustomed to routine. In order to get accustomed to routine it is imperative to have and hold an interest. Interest is where most love relationships break down because it simply cannot last. Most people are far too capricious to maintain an interest in anything (even as important as keeping a commitment in order to raise a family) for too long. This is where the forbearance of the Corleone family is outstanding. Through profitable business exploitation and singularly successful organized crime the Corleone's omnipotent infiltration of businesses often invoked anger in affiliate mafia groups seeking status elevation which ultimately resulted in the assassinations of Don Vito and Santino Corleon. Even at the breach of these two losses Michael Corleone readily steps up to the plate as the new Patriarch with rigor to supplant his former indifference. In just bloated proportions to 'ordinary' families in which commitment sacrifices time and money, commitment for the Corleones demands a greater sacrifice which is never too great for them to give. This is a sacrifice of life and security. Where the normal American family finds a sanction away from crime, the geography of their bounds is dwelled on by Corleones
There is nothing that I can say or add that will testify to the
greatness of this cinematic masterpiece. Many of the viewers here,
considerably older and more familiar with writing critical reviews have
already decked this work of art with all the glistening lace of
high-brow comments it deserves. Still my concise and modestly candid
opinion can nudge itself comfortably in the microcosm of viewer
appreciation. I can start by saying that I saw this film two years ago
and although I haven't seen it since, the theme and acting is so livid
and memorable that it's as if I saw it yesterday. Ken Kessey's novel
provides the essence of the story which is beautifully woven and
crafted into first person through the perspective of Chief Bromden.
Fans of the novel are not only delighted by the crisp, descriptive
rendering of Chief's character but also of the characters of the
patients of the ward of whom protagonist Randall Patrick McMurphy
consists. He at once rejects the policies of the ward which are
distinctly aimed at subjecting the patients to a systematic, vegetative
mode of life from which there is no escaping. There were scenes in the
film when tears welled from my eyes mainly when the other patients
acknowledged that they were free to leave the ward at any time, but
were afraid. The famous 'you should be bird-doggin' chicks and bangin'
beaver' quote from McMurphy after he is stunned by patients' divulgence
made me smile at its humor but sympathetic towards his situation.
The ward staff are also beautifully rendered and at once realistically strict and unflinching in their tempers. The chief of staff, Nurse Ratched is the most implacable of the ward employees as she does her best to suppress the freedoms of the patients to as great an extent as possible. McMurphy rivals her, or as the book indicates, is at war in a battle field over her strictures and insinuations. The climax of their dispute seems to end when McMurphy is strangling the life out of her with his hands like vice grips delving her throat until the blood flows to her face and cheeks. At this juncture, there seemed a remote chance that McMurphy had won the battle, but here, Ken Kessey shows Nurse Ratched's despotic wield of authority. Although it seems destined, the death of McMurphy's mind through lobotomy and then his physical death at the hands of the chief conclude the film on an idyllically sad note.
Randall Patrick McMurphy's fictitious existence is just a small example of the mavericks in society who have risen up against powers which threatened to be far greater than their own. They have stood at the doorstep of impossibility and shattered it through courage and forbearance.
The only James Bond story for which Albert Broccoli never obtained the
rights is Casino Royale. Those are held by Charles Feldman, who,
following the success of Dr. No, From Russia with Love, and Goldfinger,
decided that he wanted to make his own Bond film. After commissioning a
script, he began casting. When attempts to "borrow" Sean Connery from
Broccoli came to naught, Feldman decided on a radical change in tone.
Instead of making Casino Royale a "straight" movie, he chose to attempt
The opening is promising. We are introduced to the "real" Sir James Bond (David Niven), a retired "pure spy" who is horrified by the outrageous activities of the agent currently assigned his name and number. M (John Huston) appeals for Bond's return to active duty. Spies all over the world are being killed, and the governments of the Soviet Union, France, the United States, and England have temporarily set aside their differences to combat SMERSH, the criminal organization suspected of the murders. At first, Bond refuses, but, after M is killed, he changes his mind and agrees to come back.
For twenty minutes, Casino Royale is clever, witty, and exacting in its satire. The conventions so popular in the official Bond movies -- the gadgets, the women, and the cars -- are skewered with relish. Bond is a reserved twit with a stutter who looks and acts nothing like the dashing Connery version, and his contempt for the "tricks of the trade" is plain.
Unfortunately, after the introductory sequences, Casino Royale begins a downhill slide. It gets progressively sillier and more incoherent until it's impossible to keep any of the plot elements straight. Worse, with only occasional exceptions, the humor ceases to be funny, and the whole production degenerates into absurdity. By the ending, just about every agent has been renamed James Bond, including Peter Sellers, Charles Cooper, Daliah Lavi, and a chimpanzee. There are other Bonds as well: the daughter of Sir James and Mata Hari, Mata Bond (Joanna Pettet), and Sir James' nephew, Jimmy Bond (Woody Allen).
Five directors helmed this production, and it shows. Casino Royale is poorly-paced and the transitions are largely ineffectual. Each segment has a different main character, so the overall effect is like cobbling together five short episodes, then devising a ludicrous ending to resolve them all. It doesn't work, and the viewer is left scratching his or her head, wondering what's going on.
Three "legitimate" Bond actors crossed between the official series and Casino Royale. The most notable is Ursula Andress, the femme fatale of this film, who played Honey Ryder in Dr. No. Vladek Sheybal, who has a small role here, was SPECTRE agent Kronsteen in From Russia With Love. And Angela Scoular, Casino Royale's Buttercup, appeared in On Her Majesty's Secret Service as one of Blofeld's allergy girls.
By far the best element of Casino Royale is Burt Bacharach's score. Light and upbeat, it's the perfect musical companion for a spy spoof. Neither John Barry nor the "James Bond Theme" is missed (although a Barry tune can be briefly heard -- Bacharach uses the title track from Born Free during a scene with some lions).
Despite an impressive cast that includes such notables as Niven, Sellers, Allen, Orson Welles, Jean-Paul Belmondo, and Jacqueline Bisset, Casino Royale is too ridiculous and muddled to be of more than passing interest to real Bond enthusiasts. The few good aspects of this farce are vastly outweighed by the bad. Besides, given how close some of the Bond movies have come to self-parody, it's questionable whether an outright satire is warranted.
The following comment surmises the Classic book: The Grapes of Wrath by
John Steinbeck, but also pertains to scenes and events from the award
winning 1940 picture.
John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath is a stunningly realistic account of the daunting lifestyles of mid-western and southern farmers, who after having endured the vicissitudes of several consecutive years of drought and the lack of crop growth are compelled to relinquish ownership of their properties and move west for the prospect of a frivolous life, where fruits and vegetables are abundant and where labor is easy and prevalent. The historical significance of this movement is portrayed through the eyes of Steinbeck's memorable fictional characters: Casey, Tom Joad and his family. Having been recently released on parole from prison for the execution of a man, Tom Joad is keen on returning to his family once more. The identity of the man Tom has killed remains undisclosed throughout the book due to the fact that the significance of Tom's atrocity is not of the man he killed, but the reason he killed him. John Steinbeck built his book on characters with dormant animosity. The poor yield of the crops, the famine and pessimism of the future has all amounted to irrational wrath and unconventional violence. On his journey homebound Tom confronts a listless figure with his back against a tree bark and is surprised to discover that the person is none other than Casey, the preacher. Casey enlightens Joad that he is no longer a preacher and has given up a life of piety for the life of a "normal man". Here again, the ingenuity of Steinbeck's plot is witnessed, because the preacher's neglect of God shows that he unequivocally faces the predilections and dilemmas of the common people. He being a pastor does not make him exempt of the impending crisis soon to befall. By the time Tom Joad and Casey have reached Tom's former abode, they perceive that it has been abandoned and has been left to decay and disintegrate in putridity. When Tom asks a fellow farmer as to what has become of his family, he is aware that they have relocated elsewhere and are planning to embark on a tedious exodus west in a few days time. The grapes of wrath are beginning to plant their roots.
Tom and Casey reach Tom's family by nightfall and Tom asks his mother when they were to leave. She replies that they were to leave tomorrow morning. He then inquires whether or not they would have left, had he still been in prison. Tom's mother (alluded to as Ma) assures him that they would have dispatched an epistle. Now Steinbeck addresses the dire earnestness of the situation, by showing that Tom's family would have went west, whether he was in prison or not. When Tom's capricious grandpa adamantly rejects to moving west with the rest of the family he is knocked unconscious and sprawled upon the tarpaulin, which furthermore shows the vital importance of the move west. Soon after their departure, Grandpa falls ill and later succumbs to his sickness. He is given a banal burial, and the family along with Casey moves on, showing that even death would not intervene with the necessity of a better life out west. Later in the story when Tom's grandmother falls ill, the truck stops in front a checkpoint and an officer peruses about the items and occupants on board. Tom's mother ardently refuses for the mandatory checking, claiming that there are no liquids on board and that they have an ailing woman who is in need of critical medical attention. The officer permits them through out of maudlinness and when the rest of the family realizes that the grandmother is deceased they ask why she never informed them. She replies that she was scared the guards wouldn't let them through if they had known it was so, and once again we are blatantly witnessed to the importance of the migration west.
From thence forth the family is labeled as "Okies", not pertaining to the place of their birth, but a bias slur, generalizing them as simpletons who have neither food nor work, and ramp about the country pleading for undeserved privileges and necessities.
Goaded on by the lack of food and substantial work, the Joads reach California. Pa says something along the lines of "It will all be better once we get to California." and Tom replies that "We are already in California", signifying that life for them in the Midwest would be no different from life in California. Acres upon acres of plentiful fruits and vegetables which were not of their possession, but of the possession of the affluent, avaricious landowners were a mere ploy in the eyes of the Okies. They were there, redolent, serene and glistening, mocking the "Okies" for having come all that way merely to perceive something they would never have the ability to obtain. The grapes sagged on the branches of the Californian bushes. Troubles sagged on the hearts of the Okies and the wrath intensified into pure rage. The grapes of wrath had sewn their stalks in the hearts of the Okies.
Envy and spite instills within the former preacher Casey, to audaciously strike a cop who arrives to intentionally conjure trouble out of his own initial contempt. Casey is sent to prison and the family resumes in search of work and solace. Solace is found when the family reaches a stable government camp, where not only are hot baths and commodious tents bourgeois accessories but the affable people accentuate the atmosphere. The realization that life in the government camp is ephemeral goads the Joads onwards once more and Steinbeck idyllically portrays his use of deception by making his readers believe that a glorious life is prevalent when in all actuality it is not (he uses this style in Of Mice and Men as well).
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Having seen this film almost every other week for approximately five
years, I think its time to express my true opinion on one of Martin
Scorsese's finest finest film. In this iconic mobster film, Martin
Scorsese idyllically illustrates the corrupt, avaricious and precarious
lives of three mutual, malevolent partners who orchestrate brutal acts
of irrational violence to procure money, take on business ownership,
and establish naval and trucking deals to generate gargantuan sums of
money. The first scene is imperative, because it brings the entire film
into a whole new perspective. The word "mafia" is used scarcely in the
film, if not used at all, because the first scene sums up the identity
of the protagonists in such a sublime way. It begins with an opaque
image of an old vehicle rambling along a recently paved road out
skirted with dead, scraggly trees. An audible thump, followed by the
revelation of the blood deluged man whose lying in excruciating pain in
the trunk and the beginning narrative along the lines of "wanting to be
a gangster" set the entire saga in motion.
We learn that the narrator has always wanted to be a gangster and followed by this want comes scenes of his early childhood life where he personally ran errands for smalltime mobs located in various fronts ranging from pizza parlors to restaurants. The first jobs were banal.. Innocuous store owners who refused to relinquish their businesses to the mob need only have their car windows smashed before their minds were changed. Periodically it would require more effort, such as the immolation of their vehicles altogether but they would give in sooner or later. This is where the narrator played his role. The insignificant errands, the parking of cars, the dismembering of cars and the conflagration of cars were all atrocities executed by him, but overall orchestrated by the mob. The narrator's childhood life plays an imperative role to his participance in "real mafia business" because it shows how ultimately necessary this life was for him. As directly quoted: "For them(the narrator's parents) the cabstand was just a part time job, but for me it was definitely full time." That's all I wanted to do. Manipulated by the propaganda that mob life was his destiny he isolates himself from the face of reality and follows his own fabricated truths. Due to the fact that working for the mob and being a gangster was so essential to him, he began disassociating himself from his parents at an early age and following his own whims and paths to success, until finally he had grown so attached to the strictures of mob life that he returned home to his mother one day in a stately suit, tie and considerably opulent formal shoes only to be remonstrated by his mother for "looking like a gangster". Another moral factor which eventually dies within the narrator in his childhood life is sympathy. When a man runs along the sidewalk, erratically vociferating that he has been shot, the narrator who is, at the time in the mob's pizza parlor, succors him, due to the fact that he had never seen a person shot and bleeding before and he "felt bad for the guy". In his adolescent life, the narrator meets and becomes very affable with James Conway (Robert de Niro) who is one of the main mafia mob leaders right under Pauline. Again his involvement increases and by the time he is an adult, the narrator is executing trucking heists on an underground market near the airport, a very lucrative underground market where Pauline gets the most for his "protection" the mobsters get their cuts and the trucking companies are deprived of their earnings.
Later the narrator marries and becomes involved more in more, in heroin deals, a bank heist and the assault of a certain man who lands both Jimmy and himself and prison.
Followed by the memorable and comical histrionic performance of Joe Pesci as Tommy deVito and the interesting classical music which arbitrarily plays during scenes of the narrator's early childhood and later in softer tones throughout the villainous executions of mobster deals and altercations, Goodfellas is an iconic classic which is categorized with other timeless classics such as The Godfarther part I and II and Pulp Fiction.
A succession of atrocities are perpetuated by a sacrosanct and
ingenious yet lethal antagonist. These atrocities are associated with
the seven sins: pride, envy, gluttony, lust, wrath, greed and sloth. By
illustrating a stunning depiction of the seven sins in virulent,
grotesque and disturbing scenes the serial murderer (Kevin Spacey)
expounds his actions as a trivial facilitation towards the cleanliness
of an already corrupted and evil society.
Intent on pursuing justice and alleviating their own curiosities, Detective Lt. William Somerset (who at first stipulates his leave after 20 years in the force) and David Mills (Morgan Freeman and Brad Pitt)are presented with an array of misguided and inconclusive pieces, amalgamated by the killer himself. As the clues build further and further, Detective Lt. Somerset sustains a consistent methodical approach (although periodically vagued by a contradicting whim to retire) to the deciphering of these enigmas, but the impetuous David Mills aspires for instantaneous results. Finally, when both have practically given up hope for lost, the unexpected occurs, and an alarming twist of events which keeps the viewers on their seats unfold.
In Pride and Prejudiced authored by Jane Austen, we find a social event
that sets the stage for the remainder of the book. Mrs. Bennet gives a
party at Meryton in order to find husbands for her five daughters. One
of the guests is Mr. Bingley, a rich young bachelor from Netherfield
Estate. He proves to be a lively agreeable gentleman whop dances with
many girls but seems to have his head turned by Jane, one of the Bennet
sisters. The protagonists, Elizabeth Bennet and Darcy clash for the
first time at this first ball at Meryton.
At the ball, Elizabeth is refreshingly frank to Darcy. Darcy offends her with his aloofness and elusiveness practically dubbing her ugly in public. Elizabeth rebuffs him rejecting his offer of a dance. As the wealthy and handsome Darcy is unaccustomed to effeminate remonstrance he becomes intrigued by Elizabeth's demeanor. To cover his confusion he continues to insult and banter Elizabeth He cannot help but contrast her honesty with the worshipful adoration to which he is usually subjected and which bores him tremendously.
At subsequent social events Darcy begins to notice Elizabeth's attributes- her wits, intelligence, her refreshing and impressive personality, even her attractive eyes. Elizabeth has been poisoned by Wickham. Wickham has fed Elizabeth the mendacious saga that Darcy purloined his hereditary affluence. Following the ball, Elizabeth engages Darcy in verbal bouts in which he endeavors to outwit him in cleverly expressed views always spoken with utmost courtesy. Darcy is unaccustomed to such braveness from women. In a subsequent ball, Elizabeth and Darcy dance together, but Elizabeth and Darcy consists of politely phrased put-downs.
As Darcy grows more interested in Elizabeth and as she resumes her verbal diatribes with him, her original bias towards him brought on by Wickham's fabrications, begins to disappear. When Lidya runs away with Wickham and thus exposes her family to scandal, Elizabeth's resistance to Darcy inevitably evaporates. He pays Wickham's gambling debts with as much as $10,000 pounds inducing him to elope with Lidya, thus isolating him from the ignominy of scandal. When Elizabeth realizes that it was Darcy rather than Mr. Gardner who saved her family from scandal she is deeply moved. This leads to Darcy's acknowledgment that it was he who put up the money out of love for Elizabeth.
The ball at Meryton while not an elaborate affair, occupies a level of surreptitious auspiciousness in the novel, for it is at the ball that Elizabeth and Darcy, the protagonist and the temporary antagonist, meet for the first time, setting the stage for the development of their relationship which stems throughout the novel and establishes that the relationship founded on antipathy and prejudice can eventually turn into mutual affection. It lays the grounds for the immense satirical relationships of the time. Prior to Austen, romantic novels consisted of beautiful and insipid heroines, ready to throw their lives away on men. Elizabeth Bennet's boldness sets her as an audacious apostate, so that the novel instead of degenerating into a tabloid romance becomes a classic with confrontation between the hero and heroine rather than prolonged capitulation.
This video game received a **** out of *****
Grand Theft Auto Vice City, the fourth installment to the mercilessly virulent, notoriously unparalleled, and timelessly enjoyed Rockstar Games and Take 2 Interactive Grand Theft Auto series in many ways transcends its prequel. Grand Theft Auto III was developed on a slightly varied perspective; the player perpetuates acts of ineffable malice through the taciturn Claude (did they lack the budget to hire a vocalist?) in the gargantuan virtual world of Liberty City, where the Mafia Crime mob(virtually maligned to the real family) pushes drugs and kills one another for elevated self esteem.
Tommy Vercetti departs this corrupted city and aspires for acclamation and affluence in the aesthetic island of Vice! Where the city compromises in virtual geographic expansion of its prequel, it makes up in accommodated versatility. A variety of opulent schooners and boats have been added, supple and surprisingly realistic motorbikes and helicopters, not to mention simple aviation transport (which may only take off and land in water..). Other than these unique additions, the game remains unequivocally identical, in guns and ammunition, mission plot outlines, and radar/health bar placements on the screen.
Just to add...Grand Theft Auto: Vice City may be dramatically altered in map form, vehicles and even character apparel and facial appearance with the application of downloaded or initially made mods on the PC console. But the game remains widely enjoyable on non-PC consoles (Playstation 2..Xbox..) where the graphics and acoustics are inarguably more advanced than the PC platform..
What can be better (for mature people 17+) to unabatedly rain scorched rocket pellets on pedestrians from a heli-pad or to inadvertently slaughter the clerical worker at AmmuNation? It's needless to say that Vice City provides satiable, prolonged and addicting entertainment.. 9/10
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