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6/10
A more whimsical cartoon from Disney.
16 August 2018
A Silly Symphony where a piper saves a town from rat infestation. However, he gets mad and takes revenge when the King refuses to pay him.

Lots of singing and sappy songs, with weird-acting characters and over-imaginative scenes. Definitely one of the more whimsical cartoons from Disney.

Grade C+
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Are You in the House Alone? (1978 TV Movie)
4/10
Misleading title and a slow story.
14 August 2018
A typical TV thriller where a teenage girl named Gail is harassed by a stalker with threatening notes and phone calls. This main plot point is distracted with the sappy subplot of Gail's dating life with her boyfriend, Steve. Her complicated relationship with her parents (played by Blythe Danner and Tony Bill) is more interesting and I especially liked the performance of Blythe Danner in the mother role (including the part where she says she does not want her daughter to settle down at an early age, but to find herself first).

The plot's pacing, though, is very slow and takes a long time to gain any suspenseful traction. When it does, the thrills don't usually last long. And, the title is misleading. Acting was subpar - OK to pass on this one.

Grade D
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5/10
A nightmare indeed!
14 August 2018
Mickey dreams that he gets married to Minnie, and then subsequently have 20 children together. Seems like a dream come true, with the perfect family in the perfect house, until the little rascals start trashing the place.

Not much plot to follow or laugh about here - just the kids throwing stuff around, misbehaving, driving Pluto crazy, and painting the house or all sorts of colors.

Mickey saying his prayers with Pluto before bed was a nice and sincere touch, though.

Grade C-
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A Howling in the Woods (1971 TV Movie)
8/10
Quite a suspenseful ride.
13 August 2018
Barbara Eden starts as Liza Crocker, who vacations in the woods to find her father and to get away from her husband, Eddie (Larry Hagman). But, she feels that much of the townspeople are quite hostile to her and wonders if there is a mystery or secret in the mists.

This is a pretty neat thriller that is quite intriguing once the secrets of the town start to take effect. The movie does start off quite slow, but once the plot thickens, it's quite a suspenseful ride.

Grade B
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The Tower (1993 TV Movie)
5/10
Movie is proof that machines can't run the world.
12 August 2018
This TV movie is proof that machines can't and shouldn't run the world. Here, an employee named Tony goes to his first day of work at a corporate high-rise, whose security system is run by a main computer with a mind of its own. When it fails to identify Tony as the new employee, and after several security breaches, it deems Tony as a security risk and attempts to terminate him.

A bit of an interesting plot with some thrilling moments in and there. But, the plot doesn't really hold its own as there is really no suspense built-up or character development. Paul Reiser appeared to be miscast in this movie, showing no real drama or emotion; he acted like everything was a joke around him. The female characters were OK and were humorous at times. The romantic subplot between the two character leads didn't mix in well with the main story, though.

Basically, this film appears to be a somewhat well-budgeted flick, but put together with haste.

Grade C-
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Nightmare on the 13th Floor (1990 TV Movie)
9/10
An appealing thriller about the unseen and eerie 13th floor.
10 August 2018
This is an intriguing TV thriller featuring a reporter who investigates mysterious events at a hotel after witnessing a murder in a secret 13th floor.

There is a built-up suspense from start to finish and the plot is well-paced, enough to keep the audience engaged and entertained. The acting was pretty good - I especially liked the sarcastic and devious performance of Louise Fletcher.

The eerie feel of the unseen and unmarked 13th floor gives off an exciting and thrilling feel, making you wonder what the place really holds. Just wished there could have been a slower suspense built-up when the floor was revealed.

Overall, an appealing little thriller.

Grade A-
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The Babysitter (1980 TV Movie)
4/10
Slow in delivery, with below average acting.
9 August 2018
This is a TV thriller where Liz Benedict (Patty Duke) hires 18 year-old Joanna Redwine (Stephanie Zimbalist) as her housekeeper and be a live-in companion to her daughter, Tara (Quinn Cummings). But, Joanna gradually manipulates everyone and attempts to break up the family.

The plot has some suspenseful moments, including the parts where a doctor tries to dig up dirt on Joanna's past, but much of the movie is mired by bad acting, slow pacing, and lack of attention grabbing scenes.

Patty Duke's character was extremely hopeless and annoying and William Shatner seemed disinterested in his role throughout the entire movie. Stephanie Zimbalist looks dazed throughout the story, while the most serviceable acting goes to Quinn Cummings.

There's really nothing thrilling about this TV flick. OK to pass on it.

Grade D
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7/10
Nice Disney take to Bizet's Carmen.
31 July 2018
This is a nice Disney take to Bizet's Carmen opera. Funny song and dance characters and catchy tunes. Not terribly entertaining, but somewhat of the more unique Silly Symphonies.

Grade B-
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8/10
Shocking Driver's Ed. Documentary.
30 July 2018
Saw this documentary in a private driver's education class, where I remembered the students being shocked by all the gruesome images of the aftermath of fatal car accidents. This definitely gives viewers a crucial lesson of driving safe and the consequences of reckless driving, including intoxication and not wearing seat belts.

Aside from the overzealous and overacting video editor, the CHP did a good job compiling this documentary.

Grade B
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9/10
An entertaining TV flick from beginning to end.
29 July 2018
This is an intriguing little movie, starring Robert Stack and Vera Miles as a couple who moved into the countryside with their daughter, into a nice home. However, someone or something doesn't want them there. What results are one mysterious occurrence after the other.

It's nice to see Stack in a horror/drama movie role - I'm more used to seeing him as the narrator of Unsolved Mysteries. He did a good and commanding job in his character, as did Vera Miles in hers. The plot was fast-paced from beginning to end - the thrilling suspense takes place almost immediately, leaving no room for boring fillers and subplots that drag.

Overall, a good, entertaining TV flick for a day at home.

Grade A-
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6/10
A cutesy cartoon.
28 July 2018
A cutesy cartoon featuring three sleepy children having misadventures on their shoe-boat in the sky, fishing for starfishes, catching comets, and trying to withstand the wind. Again, as with most of these Silly Symphonies, mot much of a plot - just musical scenes that is supposed to be charming to kids mostly. Adults generally would get some good laughs out of cartoons, but this one is strictly for the kids - nothing very entertaining about it.

Grade C
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6/10
Another song and dance Silly Symphony.
27 July 2018
Another song and dance Silly Symphony, this time featuring swinging monkeys in the jungle. Other creatures join in the fun as well, including hungry crocodiles. The monkeys' run-ins with other animals such as a leopard and snake were pretty funny as well. Over than that, another simple, average cartoon.

Grade C+
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9/10
A good movie that captures the tensions of the Cold War.
25 July 2018
Sean Connery stars as Soviet Union submarine captain Marko Ramius in this action film, a story about Ramius captaining his country's newest sub but violating Russian orders, heading for the United States instead. As a result, U.S. officials attempt to track down the sub and discover the captain's true intentions.

Though this is an action film, much of the movie's entertainment and intrigue stem from the built-up tension, character development, and suspense - from Alec Baldwin's Jack Ryan character trying to help the U.S. sub communicate with Captain Ramius to the subject of defection and warfare.

The film has an all-star cast including Connery, Baldwin, James Earl Jones, Sam Neill, Scott Glen, Tim Curry, Stellan Skarsgård, and Fred Thompson. Their spot-on acting demonstrated a good mixture of drama and humor.

The plot is well-paced and keeps you entertained from start to finish. It's a good movie that captures the tensions of the Cold War during its time.

Grade A
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The Haunted (1991 TV Movie)
9/10
A well done TV-made paranormal story.
24 July 2018
This was a nicely-done TV movie about a family whom, after moving into a duplex, experiences terrifying paranormal activities.

While ghost movies featuring haunted houses are a dime a dozen, this TV movie actually captures the tension and suspense that steadily built up to terrifying thrills as the movie progresses - from the female lead being the only one hearing noises to the entire family experiencing Poltergeist-like events.

The movie also uniquely touches different aspects surrounding the paranormal experience, from psychology to faith, and from the annoying press to full-fledged exorcism.

Overall, a well done TV movie with decent acting.

Grade A
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6/10
A simple haunted TV movie.
23 July 2018
This is a simple TV horror movie, with the generic script of a haunted house - young couple converts an old house into a bed and breakfast, but their plans are hindered with strange events in the building and in the surrounding areas.

The acting was OK and the plot's pacing was steady, with smacks of thrills and suspense here and there, but nothing that keeps you on the edge of your seat. Too many sappy moments between the two character leads, which takes away from the horror element of the movie.

Overall, an average TV horror flick.

Grade C+
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Popeye the Sailor (1960–1962)
7/10
Not a bad cartoon series.
21 July 2018
This is not a bad cartoon series, featuring Popeye the Sailor, who woos the skinny Olive Oyl while battling it out with his nemesis, Brutus. Definitely a cartoon that has dragged through the test of times, but a classic and somewhat funny one for the kids to enjoy. It makes eating spinach a delicacy.

Grade B-
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Matt Houston (1982–1985)
9/10
Nostalic and entertaining 80s crime drama!
19 July 2018
I used to catch this show when I was a kid in the 80s and remembered it to be an entertaining crime drama - a story about the wealthy Matt Houston (Lee Horsley), who oversees his family's drilling enterprises while getting into action as a private investigator. He pairs up with C.J. Parsons (Pamela Hensley) in his adventures.

Classic 80s nostalgia with decent acting, past-paced stories, and appealing plots. For the longest time, I couldn't remember the name of the TV show after it went off the air, thinking it might be Hart to Hart or Hunter. But, I was adamant that the lead male character had a mustache. Thanks to a little research on the internet, I've finally found the show's title, plot outline, and photos.

Grade A
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6/10
An overly done dino flick.
19 July 2018
This is the direct sequel to Jurassic World, a film packed with dinosaurs and plenty of chases and running around - providing the audience with popcorn entertainment and edge-of-your-seat experience. The plot is reminiscent of The Lost World: Jurassic Park - our protagonists try to save the dinosaurs and let them roam free in their natural habitat, while dealing with corporate officials who want to exploit them.

A somewhat exciting plot, but much of the action - both dinosaurs and humans - were overkill or overly done. The acting was OK, with Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard delivering for the film, while newcomers Justin Smith and Daniella Pineda gave overzealous and crappy performances. Jeff Goldblum gave a new reprisal of his Ian Malcolm role. There were some nice heartfelt moments with the dinosaurs as well.

Overall, again, an entertaining film, but overdone.

Grade C+
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The Little Prince (1978– )
8/10
Takes you away from reality.
18 July 2018
This little cartoon from Japan takes you away from reality - to a carefree world of the Little Prince, where get to see his many adventures.

Even though it was a Japanese TV anime series, I managed to catch episodes of it in one of those Saturday morning cartoons line-up in the U.S. as a kid. Not a bad show - entertaining for a kid.

Grade B
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Old King Cole (1933)
8/10
Very nice and imaginative.
17 July 2018
This is a really nice cartoon featuring an assortment of Mother Goose and/or storybook characters, from Humpty Dumpty to the Three Blind Mice and from Bo-Peep to Goldilocks, performing a song and dance for Old King Cole.

It's nice how the storybook characters come together like this in one big bash and its clever to see them literally coming out of their respective storybooks. Very imaginative.

Grade B
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Cry for the Strangers (1982 TV Movie)
8/10
Makes you not want to live in a small town.
16 July 2018
Patrick Duffy stars as a doctor who moves to a small town with his wife, where they experience strange events taking place and a sinister presence dwelling there. Seems like the entire town's out to get them.

It's based on a novel by John Saul, known for his mixture of mystery, horror, and diabolical genres.

Not a bad TV movie - has plenty of suspense and even some jump-out-at-you moments to keep you on the edge of your seat. The acting was a little cheesy at times, particularly that of the two children. But, the plot was well-paced and the overall movie was quite entertaining.

Grade B
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4/10
Probably one of the inspirations for Toy Story.
15 July 2018
This is probably one of the inspirations for Toy Story - toys coming to life in a toy shop, instigated by a spider who slipped into the shop during a snowstorm. Not much of story here - just a bunch of toys going and moving about. No humor, not much entertainment - just a lot of noise.

Grade D
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3/10
Weird and unfunny.
13 July 2018
This is a weird and humorless Silly Symphony featuring a bunch of dancing cannibals, who were about to cook one of its own, but then was interrupted by a lion.

An unorthodox and weird, plotless cartoon here that may not be suitable for all children. Not entertaining and not amusing.

Grade D--
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2/10
Not an appealing Silly Symphony.
13 July 2018
For some reason, a cartoon about a robber wannabe with an annoying voice who runs into a real outlaw isn't very appealing. Boring, predictable, and unfunny. All the wannabe wants to do is play robber and not having to take baths. Just didn't find the story captivating.

Grade D---
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6/10
Decent acted French version of the poet's story.
12 July 2018
Saw this in high school, remembered that it was not as entertaining as the black and 1959 black and white version. But, it was still a nice adaptation of the novel, about the charismatic swordsman-poet, who helps another guy woo the woman he loves.

It's has humor, drama, and tearful moments where appropriate and is decent acted.

Grade C+
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