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May (2002)
Wonderful
14 August 2003
I'm so glad people are re-discovering horror as a serious genre because the endless SCREAM rip-offs were getting more tiresome than even the previous decade's endless HALLOWEEN rip-offs. MAY not only operates as a great horror film, it also is a wonderful character study of social dysfunction. Angela Bettis is wonderfully painful to watch in her attempts at love. She's an actress to keep your eyes on in the future. The ending gets a little more standard but is just creepy enough to keep you on the edge of your seat.
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Hannibal (2001)
1/10
Worthless
6 June 2003
A worthless film. A useless film. No, I'm not talking about Vincent Gallo's recent comments at cannes about THE BROWN BUNNY, I'm talking about this piece of puke that I made the mistake of renting a couple weeks ago. I guess curiousity killed the cat. "How bad could it be?" I thought. I don't shy away from violence, and I'll say it for the record that HANNIBAL is actually less graphic than people have made it out to be. But the depths of stupidity and complete waste of cast and director is unforgivable. Why Anthony Hopkins would ever choose to do this film is beyond me. Didn't he say he was going to quit acting a few years ago because everything he's made thus far was a "piece of sh#@." Well, he can add one more to the top of that list. Jody, baby, you made the right decision in avoiding this trash.
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I Stand Alone (1998)
9/10
sadistically artistic
6 June 2003
Wow, I need to take a shower. This is the kind of film Godard would have made if he'd grown up with THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE instead of THE MALTESE FALCON. Based on this and Noe's new film IRREVERSIBLE I'd say Gasper's got a few issues he's hammering out and he's taking us down into the depths with him. It's a very well made film. He uses one repetitious devise that just about gave me a heart attack the first time it was used. I won't tell you what it is, but I wouldn't recommend this film to anyone who suffers from a hyperactive nervous system. If you have a strong stomach and love great filmmaking, though, I'd definately recommend this artistic, sadistic shocker.
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Man Bites Dog (1992)
Good overall
6 June 2003
Leave it to the French to put out some of the most disturbing films of the last 10 years. This is one of the first in a now long line of artsploitation from our fallen continental allie. The premise of this film is great and predates a lot of the lesser mockumentaries that are being churned out by the scores at the moment. Poelvoorde is perfect as the frightening, funny serial killer who invites the documentary team to follow his exploits. The film loses some focus about midway through, as if it's already said everything it wants to and then we are subjected to a lengthy downfall of the character. That said, MAN BITES DOG still has more teeth than a hundred HANIBAL's.
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Stalker (1979)
10/10
Not Sci-Fi?
5 June 2003
Some have claimed that "Stalker" is not a science fiction film. I'd say it's more of a science fiction film than most of what Hollywood passes off as part of the genre, most of which are simply action films with a sci-fi bent. Stalker is science fiction in the vein of the genres greatest writers like Phillip K. Dick and Stanislaw Lem. It's pure science fiction, based on science, metaphysics and speculation, not some action fantasy or space opera that fits into the genre on the technicality that it takes place "in the future" or "a long, long time ago". The film is slow...very slow but it has to be to put you into the mindset of the film. After the opening 30 minutes the pacing actually draws you into the film in a more personal way more than any Cyborg-post-apocalyptic-hell crap Hollywood could spew out. This film is truly sci-fi, and truly great sci-fi.
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