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Blade Runner 2049 (2017)
In The Land Of Prequels & Sequels, BLADE RUNNER 2049 is King.
What can I say? Did I expect the film to be this good? The previews seemed promising but the film turned out to be a flat out masterpiece, plain and simple. This sequel is to Blade Runner what James Cameron's ALIENS was to the first Alien film, an expansion and possible improvement upon the universe and story of the first film.
I won't give much away but Ryan Gosling's performance is perhaps his best ever captured so far on screen. Jared Leto displays an edgy menace which keeps one uncomfortable in their seat every time his character appears on screen. Plus the film has one of the all time evil (synthetic) characters ever put on celluloid in the form of a pretty business-like lady. You'll just have to see the film to see what I am talking about.
Be sure to watch the film short entitled Blade Runner 2036 before you tackle the film. It is a perfect lead up to the story and helps one to understand the film better. Plus another short entitled 2048: NOWHERE TO RUN. Enjoy!
Miles Ahead (2015)
Fun Hallucinatory Biopic
Don Cheadle Directs Himself as Miles Davis, Nice Job on what If I remember correctly is his directorial debut. The film ping-pongs back and forth from the early 80's, right before Miles comes back from a 5 year or so hiatus to the 50's/60's era when he was married to dancer Frances Taylor.
The film has a madcap side to it with Ewan Mcgregor in a fun turn as a Rolling Stone reporter out to interview Miles and almost doubling as Miles' sidekick in a romp through the city (New York?) in the early 80's.
I don't want to give much away but I recommend the film, it is pretty amusing and jazz + biopic fans will find much to enjoy!
Rogue One (2016)
Hands Down, The best Star Wars film since The Empire Strikes Back
What can I say?... AMAZING. THE (in capital and neon letters) Star Wars film that upholds that standard of greatness that is associated with the original trilogy, mind you, I Liked the prequels, but yes, they were CGI overload, which frankly did not help their cause but they DID create a rich mythology from which sprang the Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels series and continues on to this day. It was fantastic to see the characters of Bail Organa and Mon Mothma return as played by the same actors whom played them in Lucas' prequel Trilogy. Another wow factor goes to the uncanny portrayal of General Tarkin by Guy Martin. Many high points here and I won't get into anymore. If you are a Star Wars fan, this will restore your faith in the series. The Force Awakens was good, this is GREAT. The perfect lead-in to Star Wars Episode Four.
Scientism Exposed (2016)
Excellent documentary, well researched and captures your attention.
Filmmaker Robbie Davidson is on the forefront, with another select few, on exposing the lies of modern science and by extension, 'space' administration NASA, whom have been deceiving the public for about 60 years and running more or less.
It's incredible how modern science has become a fragile tower of Scientism, supported by dubious and unproven theories, giving creed to speculation, theories as facts and passing off flights of fancy and CGI images as real. One can truly say that in these weird times, were are living in a matrix of lies, one that can be shattered by those who seek truth, avoid media lies and programming, and pray for discernment from our creator.
Darth Maul: Apprentice (2016)
An Excellently Executed Short Film
The 15+ minutes that are contained in this fantastic short film are action packed to the core and contain some fabulous lightsaber action. The Darth Maul character is given a little more depth here and we get to learn a little more about him in between the non-stop saberplay.
This is I must say, hands down the best fan made films in the sci-fi universe that I have seen besides the excellent STAR TREK CONTINUES episodes. Directed, written and produced by Shawn Bu, Shawn, whomever you are, I really look forward to whatever you are putting out next. Hopefully another Star Wars related feature. Thank you for this film! Highly Recommended!!!
Gods of Egypt (2016)
A Feast For The Eyes. The Best God & Sidekick Film Ever?
Just viewed this yesterday. An excellent underrated film by Alex Proyas, director of DARK CITY. The film is a visual feast for the eyes, but the acting is top notch as well, this is not a bimboheaded Marvel or Superhero film. Even though the actors are portrayed as being mostly Caucasian, I do not see that as a detraction as there were different dynasties in Egypt and there have even been found mummies portrayed with blue eyes, so no, Egyptian royalty was never exclusively black, those were the Nubians who were south of Egypt. Anyhow, don't let 'HIStory' get in the way of a great entertaining film. One extra star for the depiction of the flat earth (the probable TRUE NATURE of our world).
Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens (2015)
I was prepared to hate this film but I enjoyed it. Emotional Experience.
I came it with mixed feelings for this film not knowing what to expect. The intro was pretty good, introducing the character of Kylo Ren and Oscar Isaac's Pilot for the resistance character. All in all, the intro was handled well, as was the introduction to the female lead Rey. It hit me that this was going to be a good film when Rey and Finn get in the Millennium Falcon and do their thing to get away from a couple of First Order baddies, I got emotional and from then on it was an emotional roller coaster.
There are many good things about the film, comparing it to the prequel is unfair, I am one of few who really enjoyed the prequels, and if I have any qualms about this new film is how the lightsaber duels are inferior in quality to the prequels' saber action. A slight bother was how Finn and Rey handle their duels well while basically being novices and never being trained in the Jedi Arts. There is nothing here remotely good as the Phantom Menace's end of film duel or Yoda VS. Count Dooku or anything from Revenge Of The Sith, so to knock the prequels is unfair when you compare to just that one point but I don't want to ramble any longer. It will be interesting to see how the series develops and I am looking forward to Rey's Jedi training and possibly Finn's? And seeing Luke in action as well.
Cool Early 80's Cop VS. Euro-Terrorist Thriller.
Going to watch this again tonight for the second day in a row, this time with the wife who hasn't seen it. Who could not like an early 80's pre-MTV thriller with a fresh off of EMPIRE STRIKES BACK Billy Dee Williams and a young cool looking Stallone? Plus throw in Rutger Haeur as a deranged (yet handsome) Euro-Villain terrorist and you've got yourself a winner! There's a great scene where they aforementioned duo are looking for Hauer in a NYC nightclub while the Rolling Stones' "Brown Sugar" is blasting, ultra cool! This film is never a bore and it's before Stallone fully sold out so do yourself a favor and watch it ASAP if you haven't seen it yet!
Oliver's Story (1978)
Effective Late 70's Drama/Romance With Handsome Leads.
Very good little film, picked it a VHS copy at nearby thrift store for a dollar or less. I had never seen LOVE STORY so I can't compared it to that, rather I'm reviewing this as a stand alone film. The relationship between Ryan O'Neal and Candice Bergen was realistic and loaded with clever dialogue. They way they meet and court was unique as well. This film was made while Ryan was still at his youthful peak and he is fun to watch. There is even a shower scene where you can see him nude from the backside which is a hoot. All in all, not an unpleasant way to spend an hour and a half or so. Another film to add to the excellent reservoir of 70's cinema.
A Brooklyn State of Mind (1998)
For fans of The Sopranos and other New York Mafia films
I popped this into the VHS player this morning not expecting much, what I got was a solid drama filmed in my hometown of Brooklyn that paid off on a smaller scale. Danny Aiello plays an Italian Mafia man and does a great job turning in a performance as a real son-of-a b-tch that deserves what is coming to him. We also get a nice lead turn by Brooklyn native and handsome actor Vincent Spano not to mention the very easy on the eyes Italian Beauty (from the old country) Maria Grazia Cucinotta. Tony Danza has a good supporting role. Not a great all time classic but the film delivers and is well worth the view. Fans of Scorcese, the Godfather films and the Sopranos would not be disappointed.
Tropic Thunder (2008)
Starts well then painfully stutters along to the finish line
I was anxious to see this film after it did well at the box office. I am a big Ben Stiller fan and Jack Black is fun as well. The film starts out well enough, Tom Cruise had me fooled until someone pointed out to me that it was him. His character is funny for about 2 minutes then it just grates on and on.............. It's brave to see someone doing a parody of a powerful Jewish Hollywood mogul but the character just becomes annoying after awhile just like Robert Downey's portrayal of his character. Again, funny for about the first half hour of the film then unfunny. The film comes apart for me during and after the POW camp scenes. Save your money on this one.
Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2008)
Amazing animation! True to the series. Thank you Mr. Lucas!
This one might seem for the kiddies but I suspect that many adults who grew up with the 6 films of the series took much delight in taking this film in at the theatre. It starts off pretty strong and in the heat of the battle. The intro and subsequent fighting is pretty intense and effective. The new characters are fun to watch as well such as Anakin's little female Padawan and Zero the Hutt was a riot. Zero is sort of a homosexual hipster take on the gangster image that is not often shown in the cinema. The film seems to slow down towards the end but has a satisfactory ending that left me and others in the cinema clapping. The film was a good idea for fans and for those who have become fans through the excellent Episode 3 which is still fresh on our minds. Excellent!
Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith (2005)
Star Wars comes Full Circle. Lucas is Vindicated. May the Force be with you.
What can I say? I had not been to the cinema to see a film more than once in about a decade. I experienced this film first on my own and then the following week I took my wife and my 1 year old daughter. This film was a powerful emotional experience for me. The scenes with Anakin and Padme before he turns to the Dark side are beautiful and I was almost moved to tears on more than one occasion. Who says that Lucas is incapable of providing us with deep emotional connections? That is total rubbish. Never once during the entire LORD OF THE RING TRILOGY did I feel such deep emotions linger within me. By the third Lord of the Ring film I was bored to tears. Not so here, Revenge of the Sith is the best of the latest Star Wars series. That's not to say the previous ones were incompetent. Episode I was another great experience when I saw that in the theater about 6 years ago. It is a highly underrated film and I don't think it is a 'kids film'. The fight between Obi-Won/Qui-Jon & Darth Maul ranks among the greatest duels in cinema history in my opinion. Come on, you know I'm right!! And now, in terms of lightsaber action, Revenge of the Sith has topped all the previous films. In this great film we even feel more sympathy than we ever have for the character known as Darth Vader and it is a touch of genius the manner in which Lucas accomplishes it.
There is plenty of action AND beauty and sadness in this film. Thank you GEORGE LUCAS for these wonderful films and the time that you have dedicated in making them for us. It has been a sacrifice of your time and energy but believe me I am grateful. You are one of the cinema's heroes in my opinion. Don't listen to the critics (which I'm sure you don't do anyway). Keep your light shining.
Great film on what could of been/relationships
I have just viewed this film twice in the same day and I think it is incredible. It is required viewing for the married thinking man (or single for that matter). See it with your wife as I did. Phil Jounau is a freakin' genius. It is too bad that he is not 'up there' with the Spielbergs, etc of this screwed up world. Anyway, this film has had a profound impact on me. It really makes you thinks. I really could relate to the central character (Stephen Dorff). The ensemble cast is really fun to watch. This film has Bono in it! I am from Brooklyn, NY originally and I enjoyed watching the scenes filmed around Brooklyn-Manhattan. Streets that I myself have walked. I once saw Mila Jovonich in a record store near the streets were Dorff walks in the beginning of the film. We had eye contact and yes she is beautiful! Anyway, rent this film if any of the previous things that I have mentioned makes any sense to you.
A film to be missed despite the talent
I just rented and viewed this film a couple of days ago and.... I WANT MY MONEY BACK!!!! I am sorry but this film is just a waste of.... film, you know? I am a big Eduardo Noriega fan but he just wasted his time going over the border to France to star in this pretentious film, and I love French films! This is an arty film without arty actually applying to any facets of the film in a positive sense, that is. An attractive female lead is wasted as well despite some interesting shots of her pubic hair. Anyway, do not waste your time with this film. There are a number of nude scenes that include both leads that are un-erotic. An the beautiful young Spanish actress Paz Vega is totally wasted as is Eric Caravaca in a supportive role. Next!!!
Le petit poucet (2001)
Another well done French film.
This is a 'children's film that I highly recommend. It is a dark film but mature children will understand it and yes, enjoy it as well. It is very well done at I can confidently compare it to films such as Ridley Scott's Legend (Le Petit is a better film) and the cinema of Tim Burton. It is a very well created dream/fairy land that is presented in the film with realistic touches though. The ogre scenes are pretty frightening and realistic. The actress who plays the ogre's wife was memorable and pretty in a dark way. She is an attractive woman and why she would want to marry an ogre is beside me (maybe she was forced into the situation). Anyway, If you are a fan of fantasy/Tim Burton cinema go out and rent/buy this film. It is not for all children (kind of on the level of Edward Scissorhands). I rented this film and I look forward to purchasing within the near future.
A King in New York (1957)
The Genius of Chaplin.
A great film that was neglected by the good old US of A when it was released in the late 50's. It was brandished as being to critical of the political atmosphere of the United States at the time. It's funny that Chaplin could manage to offend both Adolf Hitler (The Great Dictator) and the fascist-like/inspired 'anti-communist' movement of the 50's/early 60's U.S.A. There is actually a common link in those two movements (Naziism and the 50-60's 'anti-communist movement in the USA but I won't get into that here). Anyway, it is sad that this film is overlooked as it is one of Chaplin's best and should be looked as one in a career overview of this great filmmaker. Besides him, in the film there really is not any awe-inspiring actor/actress but Chaplin brings out the best in everyone and elevates them from eternal anonymity to something of recognition. His son Michael Chaplin for example is used quite wonderfully in this film. I later bought Michael Chaplin's late teenage memoir 'I Couldn't Smoke the Grass on my Father's Lawn' based on seeing him in this film and him impressing me so. It's too bad he could not develop more as an actor or recording star (he released a single in Britain in the mid-60's). I heartily recommend this film. See it and be open minded. Take a look at the way your country was run 50 years ago and ask yourself have things really changed this day in age when the 'communists' have know been replaced by the 'terrorists'.
Parlor, Bedroom and Bath (1931)
Boring and a letdown. The downfall of Keaton.
Coming off of some pretty good comedic films such as the Cameraman this ones a big letdown. It's too bad Buster was given such weak material to start his career in 'talkies'. In films like this Buster just looked like an idiot instead of an innovator. A pity. Charlie Chaplin excelled at this point while poor Buster languished. The real genius now deservedly stood in the spotlight. Einstein would attend the premiere of a film like City Lights but can you imagine him seeing this garbage. This is like a Marx Brothers film made by someone who has just come off fresh from a lobotomy. Skip it. Save your money and time. Harold Lloyd looks like a genius next to crap like this.
Fun Japanese wacko cinema.
This is a fun action venture with a definite sense of humour. This film is Japanese and they way the handle the action comedy balance is quite excellent. This film has elements in it of other films but it does not distract in this context. The male lead is appealing as is the female lead who has amusing cartoon like features when it comes to her facial expressions. The film does a good job in creating a distant future that seems realistic to us as these humans struggle for survival in their future world being devastated by an alien race (element of Terminator here, but Terminator didn´t have cool Japanese actors). I do endorse this film and look forward to more Japanese releases in a similar vein.
The Passion of the Christ (2004)
This film is about love, not hate. Historically sound. Accept it.
In my opinion Mel Gibson's The Passion of Christ is one of the bravest films made in the history of cinema. The films subject matter is handled in a beatiful manner and as a whole it is an honest probe into historical fact. It is a probe into the search for truth. This is something the character of Pontius Pilate asks himself and his wife in the film in relation to the situation of this man Jesus of Nazareth.
The people who cry 'anti-Semitic' are hipocrates and crybabies who probably have not even seen the film. To me they reflect one of the characters of the film, Simon of Cyrene, who is ordered to assist Jesus in carrying the torture stake. At first Simon looks at Jesus and wants nothing to do with him, in Simon's probable view, his fellow Jews have already accused this man of being a lawbreaker and is someone who is already condemmed to die. His religious leaders have mislead him into hating instead of loving. No questions asked. But in helping Jesus, by coming in contact with the man (bruised and battered as he is), he sees something, he feels something is not right here. Just why was he made to die? By helping in carrying the torture stake, by sharing in the experience, he comes out a changed man. What was once opposition, has become more of an understanding. More love, less hate perhaps.
This films message revolves aroung love. The greatest act of love that many feel was ever put into motion in this universe. That is what the film is about. It is historically sound. It is not completely accurate, but nevertheless very accurate. It is the most accurate film on the subject yet. The folks who cry 'anti-Semitic' would probably prefer the film not to come out. It reminds me of the mass book burnings by the Nazi's. It is the same kind of spirit.
Mel Gibson is a brave filmmaker and a great one. He is one of my favorite along with Steven Spielberg (see, I'm not 'anti-Semitic'). Three cheers for Mel Gibson. We need more brave (in the true sense) men like him in cinema today.
An unfortunate dissapointment
The long delayed sequel to James Camerons Aliens turned out to be a mediocore affair. I remember going to the local movie theater in my teens to see this film with my brother and I was so dissapointed. It just seemed like an inferiour rehash of the first film. No characters to feel a true sympathy for (though Charles Dance's character gets more depth in the new special edition release). Watching the documentary that comes along with the new re-releae you can plainly see the rough time the producers and writers, etc. had in coming up with a story for the third film. In the end what we got was a brave effort but a failure in comparison with the first two films. The fourth one in the series was a better return to form for me anyway.
2010: The Year We Make Contact (1984)
Beautiful Science Fiction
This has to be in my book one of the very best sequels in cinematic history. Less cerebral and more emotional in context than the first film. The acting is top notch (Helen Mirren, John Lithgow, Roy Scheider, Bob Balaban). Peter Hyams is no Stanley Kubrick but in this film he comes very close. Hyams was at his peak here. Three cheers!!! Anyway, I highly recommend this film as it is optimistic and I even suspect that the message at the end even tugged at the heartstring of the politicians of the day (mid-80's).
Barry Lyndon (1975)
Poetry/Art in Motion
This just might be my favorite film by Mr. Kubrick. While not his most 'universal' it is his most delicately beatiful film. I can see when watching this film how influential it is towards films such as 'Amadeus' and numerous French costume dramas I have seen throughout the years. Abundant scenes of beauty take you to the period the film depicts. Bravo Mr. Kubrick!!!
La fuente amarilla (1999)
Gritty and Halluciogenic
This is one of the more interesting Spanish films of the last few years and it is a debut film for the director!! Eduardo Noriega turns in one of his best post Abre Los Ojos roles. And the female lead is interesting as well. Cool and tense gritty and halluciogenic this film is worth the time spent watching it. I very much look forward to future efforts by the director.
Capricorn One (1977)
Classic Conspiarcy Flick. Exciting and entertaining.
In my view this is an exciting and tense film that involves a classic conspiracy topic Did We Really Go To The Moon (in the film it is Mars). The director must have had a field day making this film. It is a film that makes you think about what the government feeds the public mind but it is quite optimistic in the end (something that 'real life' scenarios hav'nt really provided us with often). To answer critics who think that the film displays scenarios that are unbelievable, in my opinion I see more realism in this film that what I see in the Matrix films for example that ask us to accept a radical alternative 'world'. The casting is first rate. Elliot Gould is excellent as an investigative reporter (he looks the part so well). Brolin, Waterson, and Simpson are well cast in their parts (Simpson does'nt have much to say so don't worry). The film I think will be seen in a different light in the near future as we discover more of the truths associated with the 'Moon Landings'. I give it a nine out of ten. It is excellent and maybe in Spielberg's hands something like this would have been a ten, I don't know. It is pretty entertaining as it is. It parallels so many things that have happened in real life and that is what I found most entertaining in it. By the way the helicopter chase scene at the end stands as one the classic movie chase scenes of all time in my opinion. Awesome!!!