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Cleopatra Jones (1973)
Not a great movie but deserves to be seen
It deserves to be seen because it features the incredible Antonio Fargas, as a mob little boss, with cool clothes and hilarious jive talking. In my opinion Antonio is a great actor, each time i saw him i was stunned by his rhythmic talking and the way he moves. It deserves to be seen because it features Shelley Winters as Mommy, a lesbian red-head old mob chieftain whose angriness and sadism are really funny to see (in my European DVD, there is no scene in which she receives a feet massage!). Plot, kung-fuish fight scenes are not fantastic, Tamara Dobson who plays the leading role is a nice-looking tall woman who does not play very well and does not do really sexy stuff (she does not match with Pam Grier), but i nevertheless had a good moment seeing this movie, and i hope you will too. Cleopatra drives an awesome car, the car chase scene is good, and she wears a majestic afro haircut, and like Pam Grier in Foxy Brown she changes clothes before each scene, it's like a fashion review, it is cool.
Resident Evil (2002)
avoid this void
It is inspired by the same named video game, so much inspired that the characters really have no more depth than those from the game. The true horror in this movie is that they manage to make some video game characters from actors, who are human being, are not they ? Desesperatly under the level of a good living dead movie. No humor, no surprise in an ultra-linear plot, just like a game with a start point and a game-over screen, just a little cheap twist about memory loss (not as good as Memento), a few scary moments OK but when i watch a movie i want more than a Luna Park feeling. No heart, i did not feel any emotion for any character, nothing matching Dawn of the Dead, or Day of the Dead from Romero. A pure vacuum feeling. Some nice fx like in Matrix, a blond haired girl who run a few steps on a wall, and what ? Avoid this void, honest people, there is not even some technical flaws to laugh at.
Across 110th Street (1972)
Great film about power
CONTAIN SPOILERS Three poor little Harlem guys try to become some big men by stealing some dirty money. The three are touching : Henry J. Jackson (Antonio Fargas) is the goofy guy who can not do anything else than spending lots of bucks in a flashy way, Joe Logart (Ed Bernard) try to escape in a goofy way, Jim Harris (Paul Benjamin) struggles with epilepsy, dreams of a cool life in Jamaica with his beautiful woman, throw bullets on adults and bucks on children. Two cops are trying to find them : the old white Capt. Mattelli (Anthony Quinn) and the young black Lt. Pope (Yaphet Kotto). The old one uses violence, accepts dirty money from the Black mob, drinks alcohol, begins to be fed up with his job. The young one uses speech, refuses dirty money, does not drink alcohol, begins to think it would be better that he take the old one's chair. But two mobs are trying to find the three poor guys too : the Black mob and the Italian mob, each of them full of great villains. Wonderful photography, powerful soundtrack, awesome actors (except Anthony Franciosa who overplays a little in my opinion), a violence as strong as in Martin Scorcese's Casino, a movie that dissuade to do bad things without using common preach. Rough and tough, as Michael Mann's Thief.
Very dense and flawless
Some action yes, but a lot of poetry too : I can't forget the green lights view of LA by night, the black Camaro that pass under the heavily lighted tunnel, and is becoming white for a moment. And did somebody find such an intense suspense as the moment where Hana and his crew are peeing MacCauley and his fellows attempting to steal the platinum, especially when McCauley notice a little strange noise, did somebody find such a suspense in another movie??? I'm the kind of guy who prefers viewing 10 times the same good movie than 10 not-very-good different ones, I don't know how many times I viewed Heat but it seems to never bore me. And a thing I noticed : Mann knows how to prepare the action with some seemingly relaxed scenes, he mixes danger with love! A man and a woman looking at the city by night, from a high height, seem so little things floating in the air, we can feel the space, and the space between Hana and McCauley is sometimes decreasing, sometimes increasing, it's a fascinating way to show the work between hunter and prey, and when the prey becomes hunter the hunter feels that the enemy is really strong. It's like a chess game where each one can't come back against time, each one has to improvise the best answer, each one has to enhance his amount of information about the other, each one has an army under his command, one army is numerous but heavy to command, the other is a few but more quick.
IMO one among the most boring movies
It's like a bad documentary. Very boring: I looked several times at my watch during this movie, had the impression it was a 5 hours long piece because I annoyed myself a lot. I'm very disappointed and it's difficult for me to find something to say about this movie.