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6/10
An Awkward Undercover Assignment
18 October 2019
This film essentially begins with a bomb threat being mailed to the Miss United States pageant in San Antonio by a domestic terrorist who is known only as "The Citizen". Naturally, the FBI is notified immediately and its then that the decision is made to have one of their agents named "Gracie Hart" (Sandra Bullock) go undercover as one of the beauty contestants. The problem with that, however, is that Gracie has been a tomboy all of her life and doesn't have a clue about how to act like a lady. So to remedy that a special beauty consultant by the name of "Victor Melling" (Michael Caine) is brought in to teach her the finer points of femininity. Unfortunately, this task turns out to be much more difficult than anybody ever imagined. Meanwhile, the further the pageant progresses the less likely it becomes that the FBI will be able to stop the terrorist before he can strike. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this was a nice little comedy which benefitted from a good performances by William Shatner (as the Master-of-Ceremonies "Stan Fields") along with the aforementioned Sandra Bullock and Michael Caine. Admittedly, the humor was hit-and-miss at times and the plot was rather predictable at times as well. But even so, I thought the movie was worth the time spent to watch it and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. Slightly above average.
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6/10
Life in the Suburbs
17 October 2019
"Jeff Gaffney" (Zach Galifianakis) is an employee who works in human resources at a computer chip manufacturer in Los Angeles and lives on a cul-de-sac in the suburbs with his wife "Karen Gaffney" (Isla Fisher). Life for him is both good-and rather predictable-from one day to the next. But such is life in suburbia. Then one day everything changes when an attractive couple by the names of "Tim Jones" (Jon Hamm) and "Natalie Jones" (Gal Gadot) move in across the street and become the focus of everybody in the neighborhood-especially the Gaffneys. And before they know it they are drawn into a world of high-stakes international espionage that they never thought was possible. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this was a fun film for the most part which was limited to an extent by the standard clichés and predictability of the plot. Even so, there was some decent humor here and there with good acting performances from everyone and for that reason I have rated this movie accordingly. Slightly above average.
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Cavalry (1936)
5/10
An Old Western from Back in the Day
2 October 2019
This film begins at the tail end of the Civil War with a Confederate officer by the name of "Colonel Lafe Harvey" (Earle Ross) arriving at a plantation to tell his niece "Betty Lee Harvey" (Frances Grant) that her father "General John Harvey" (William Welsh) had recently been killed in action. To make matters even worse, as she is being informed of this bad news an alarm is sounded that a guerilla militia is approaching with the intention of destroying everything in their path. Although both Betty Lee and Colonel Lafe Harvey manage to escape in the nick of time, the plantation is burned and looted leaving them with little recourse than to pack what few possessions they can find and head out west to make a new start. As luck would have it, a week or so later a Union officer by the name of "Captain Ted Thorne" (Bob Steele) arrives at the old plantation and with him is none other than General John Harvey who has been temporarily blinded in combat. Recognizing that his companion is in no shape to travel any further, Captain Thorne leaves General Harvey there to be taken care of and heads back to Washington D. C. as ordered. It's then that he is given an order by President Lincoln to head out west to prevent a telegraph line from being destroyed by Rebel sympathizers who are intent on recreating the Confederacy and using the current Indian territories as a buffer between them and the Union. What Captain Thorne doesn't realize, however, is that the guerillas who burned and looted the Harvy plantation are the same people intent on destroying the telegraph line and to that end they have joined the same wagon train transporting Colonel Lafe Harvey and Betty Lee. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this is a low-budget production made only a few years after sound was introduced in American filmography and as such the overall picture quality leaves much to be desired. Additionally, the script and the acting are somewhat lacking in that regard as well. It does, however, have a unique quality about it and if given some latitude might be of some interest to viewers who enjoy old films from this particular era. That said, while it definitely has it faults, I found it to be worth the time spent to watch it and for that reason I have cut it some slack and rated it accordingly. Average.
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5/10
Jason Takes a Cruise
1 October 2019
This film essentially begins where the its predecessor left off with "Jason Voorhees" (played by Kane Hodder) having been killed and sent to the bottom of Camp Crystal Lake. Not long after that a boat with a young couple comes along and after dropping the anchor they decide to become intimate. Unfortunately, the anchor just happens to snag an underwater power cable which then releases thousands of volts of electricity through Jason's corpse with the result that he is-once again-brought back to life. Not long after that he sneaks aboard a cruise ship which is hosting some high school graduates and the killing continues after that. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this film was much like its predecessor in that it featured a predictable plot due to its standard formula and far too many shallow characters. Nothing too surprising there. Even so, it had enough imagination and gore to keep things somewhat entertaining and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. Average.
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6/10
A Woman in Search of Her Husband
30 September 2019
This film begins in San Francisco with a man named "Frank Johnson" (Ross Elliott) walking his dog and unexpectedly becoming a witness to a murder. Being a good citizen he immediately has the police called and then gives his testimony to them. However, when they inform him that the man who was murdered was under police protection and that he has now endangered himself by being a witness--rather than allowing the same thing to happen to him--he runs away at the first opportunity. That being the case, the police then decide to keep close tabs on his wife, "Eleanor Johnson" (Ann Sheridan) hoping that she will eventually lead them to him. But they aren't the only ones with an interest in her and the killer also wants to find Frank at all costs as well. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that, even though this movie was produced almost 70 years ago and was filmed in black and white, it still manages to entertain pretty well with good performances by both Dennis O'Keefe (as the journalist named "Dan Legget") and the aforementioned Ann Sheridan. On that note, those who enjoy film noirs might find this particular picture entertaining and I have rated it accordingly. Slightly above average.
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7/10
The Perils of Deep Sea Fishing
29 September 2019
This film begins in the Fall of 1991 with two fishing boats motoring in to the harbor of Gloucester, Massachusetts. One of these boats is loaded with swordfish while the other is sadly lacking in that department. Although the captain of the second boat, "Billy Tyne" (George Clooney) is a skilled and seasoned fisherman, even he admits that he has been on a cold streak as of late and this, quite naturally, has the owner of the boat by the name of "Bob Brown" (Michael Ironside) extremely upset. That being said, realizing that there are others dependent upon him, Billy becomes determined to to set out again. And after much thought most of the members of his crew agree even though they understand that the weather may not be conducive for another attempt. And to make matters even worse, when they get to their first fishing spot the catch is woefully inadequate and rather than turning back almost empty-handed Billy decides to venture out even further to a lucrative-but exceedingly dangerous-area known as the Flemish Cap. What he doesn't realize is that a hurricane has formed near Bermuda and is heading directly for them. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this was an exciting adventure film which combines solid acting and good character development. I especially liked the performances of Diane Lane (as "Christina Cotter") and the aforementioned George Clooney who played their roles esceedingly well. That being said, I recommend this film to those who might be interested in a movie of this sort and I have rated it accordingly. Above average.
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Line Walker (2016)
6/10
Drugs and Intrigue in Hong Kong
28 September 2019
This film is a bit difficult for me to critique due in large part to the fact that it is has such an intricate plot with several twists which complicate things even more. That being said, this film essentially takes place in Hong Kong where a drug lord by the name of "Tung Pak-ho" (Li Guangjie) is trying to ascertain the identity of a mole within his organization. Unfortunately, the Criminal Investigation Bureau (CIB) is unable to establish contact with this mole because the data base containing his name has been deliberately erased which seriously impacts their ability to ascertain the true facts of the situation. In the meantime, an internal power strugges between some of the more powerful members of this international drug cartel erupts into violence leaving the police unable to distinguish the mole from the criminals. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this was a decent action film which had plenty of top-notch stunts to enhance the overall entertainment value. Again though, it was a bit hard to follow at times but even so it kept my attention from start-to-finish and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. Slightly above average.
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3/10
Crude, Boring and Overrated
27 September 2019
This movie begins with a married man by the name of "Jim Levenstein" (Jason Biggs) and his wife of 5 years "Michelle" (Alyson Hannigan) essentially encountering a lull in their marriage due in large part to a baby which has taken a toll on their sex life. But Jim's life is about to get a bit more exciting when he not only agrees to rejoin some of his buddies at their 13th high school reunion but he also meets a young 18-year old girl by the name of "Cara" (Ali Cobrin) who he used to babysit many years earlier. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this film is basically one of many in the American Pie franchise which incorporates most of the same characters and adolescent humor. Admittedly, there are a couple of decent comedy scenes here and there along with some attractive women like Tara Reid (as "Vicky"), Katrina Bowden ("Mia"), Jennifer Coolidge ("Stiffler's Mom") and the aforementioned Ali Cobrin to enhance the scenery but other than that I found most of this film to be just crude and rather boring. That being said, I have rated it accordingly. Below average.
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Draft Day (I) (2014)
8/10
An Exciting Film which Keeps the Tension Going from Start to Finish
26 September 2019
This film begins with the general manager for the Cleveland Browns by the name of "Sonny Weaver Jr." (Kevin Costner) being told by his girlfriend "Ali" (Jennifer Garner) that she is pregnant. It is then learned that the Cleveland Browns have the seventh draft pick and that Sonny's secret plan is to select a linebacker by the name "Volante Mack" (Chadwick Boseman) at that time. However, the owner of the Cleveland Browns, "Anthony Miller" (Frank Langella) essentially tells Sonny that he expects him to excel in this year's draft which subsequently puts pressure on Sonny to do something dramatic-or else. As a result, Sonny accepts an offer from the Seattle Seahawks to acquire the number 1 pick overall for Cleveland's first three draft choices next year. This infuriates a number of people in his front office who believe that he has traded away the Cleveland Brown's future for a quarterback that they didn't necessarily need. To make matters even worse, Sonny secretly believes this as well and becomes determined to fix the problem one way or another. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that those viewers who are unfamiliar with the intricacies and pressure of an NFL draft may not quite appreciate the high stakes tension that goes into this particular situation. Fortunately, Kevin Costner puts in an excellent performance and maintains the tension start-to-finish. In addition to that, there is an interesting twist at the end which ties many of the loose ends together quite well. In any case, I really enjoyed this film and because of that I have rated it accordingly.
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5/10
Corporate Greed in the Dust Bowl
25 September 2019
This film takes place during a time in American history when dust storms rained havoc upon several states located in the Great Plains and created extreme problems for those ranchers simply trying to make ends meet. So when a privately owned firm by the name of "The Great Western Water & Power Company" comes in and builds a dam that cuts off the only source of water for them, the ranchers--quite naturally--become extremely upset. Unfortunately, rather than listening to their pleas for help, their local congressman "William P. Scully" (Dick Elliott) only pretends to care as he has been in league with the water company from the very start. So with their anger reaching a boiling point the local citizens turn their attention to a young man by the name of "Roy Rogers" (played by himself) who just happens to be the son of their former congressman several years earlier. Needless to say, the thought of losing so much money and power infuriates the owner of the water company named "John Fairbanks" (Guy Usher) who then plots to stop Roy Rogers at every step along the way. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this low-budget, singing-cowboy western turned out to be a little better than I expected. Admittedly, the picture quality wasn't that great and the movie itself was rather short (approximately 65 minutes) but that is to be expected from this particular era. Be that as it may, the film had a decent storyline and a couple of catchy tunes along the way which I believe makes up for it to a certain degree and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. Average.
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5/10
Mind Over Matter
24 September 2019
In the previous film "Jason Voorhees" (played by Kane Hodder) was sent to the bottom of Camp Crystal Lake with a chain attached to a boulder weighing him down. The scene then essentially shifts to a young woman named "Tina Shepard" (Lar Park-Lincoln) being driven to Camp Crystal Lake by her mother for therapy there with a psychologist by the name of "Dr. Crews" (Terry Kiser). It is then revealed that Tina has certain psychic abilities which she feels contributed to the death of her father many years earlier at that same lake. However, upon experimenting with her abilities she accidentally frees Jason from his watery grave-and the killing begins at that point. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that, while this film may have been a bit more imaginative than its predecssors in some respects, it also suffered in other respects by having too many shallow and short-lived characters put in place for only one purpose. That being said, although I don't consider this film to be nearly as good as the first two or three films in the series, it wasn't terribly bad either and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. Average.
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Inconceivable (2016)
5/10
Decent Acting in a Familiar Story
23 September 2019
This film essentially begins with a married man by the name of "Gary Emerson" (Jason Gerhardt) flying from Los Angeles to Kansas City to attend his 20th high school reunion. While there he meets his former girlfriend who dated back then for a year and a half named "Valerie Stinnell" (Natasha Henstridge). After a few drinks he tells her that his marrage is currently experiencing some tough times and after embrassing each other they kiss. However, when she suggests that they go to her hotel room to continue he politely turns her down and subsequently flies back to Los Angeles the next morning. Not long afterward he gets a request on Facebook to renew their friendship and-thinking nothing of it-he accepts her offer. But what he doesn't know is that Valerie wants more than just friendship and that she will stop at nothing to break up his marriage so that she can have Gary all to herself. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that what separates this familiar storyline from others of its kind is the strong performance of both Marguerite Moreau (as Gary's wife "Jess Emerson") and the aforementioned Natasha Henstridge who played their parts quite convincingly. Admittedly, some of the scenes were a bit unrealistic and much too obvious, but it was still worth the time spent and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. Average.
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6/10
A Good Fantasy Film
22 September 2019
This film begins in a kingdom known as Baristan where a beautiful woman named "Princess Jana" (Heidi Bruhl) is anxiously awaiting the return of "Captain Sindbad" (Guy Williams) from a long voyage upon the sea. However, an evil tyrant by the name of "El-Karim" (Pedro Armendariz) has recently seized power and wants Princess Jana all for himself. To that extent, he has his magician "Galgo" (Abraham Sofaer) cast a magic spell which unleashes monstrous birds upon Sindbad's galley resulting in its sinking. Fortunately, Sindbad survives and after discovering what has happened in Baristan resolves to go to the palace there and kill El-Karim in order to end his cruel reign. But what he doesn't know is that El-Karim is much more formidable that he could possibly realize. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that what follows is an entertaining story which features excellent costumes and sets along with a couple of splendid dance routines mixed in as well. That being said, I found this to be a decent fantasy film for the most part and have rated it accordingly. Slightly above average.
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6/10
Another Perspective on an Extremely Horrible War
21 September 2019
This film begins with two Viet Cong soldiers by the names of "Nam Sau" (Minh Dang and "Nguyen V. Chau" (Nguyen Phuc) hiding in a swamp while an American Cobra helicopter circles overhead. However, since their primary mission takes precedence, rather than engage the enemy they decide to hold their fire and subsequently proceed on their way once the helicopter flies off. Not long afterward they arrive at a small village where other Viet Cong guerillas have gathered to defend against an American and South Vietnamese attack. It's at this point that things take a sharp turn for the worse and Nam Sau's wife "Linh Sau" (Thuy Lien) and another woman named "Be Ba" (Thuy An Nguyen) feature more prominately in the battle against the greedy and decadent South Vietnamese troops in the area who are led by their corrupt commander "Captain Long" (Hueynh Ly). Now rather than reveal any more I would like to start out by saying that, although they had regular North Vietnamese soldiers within their ranks, the Viet Cong were not considered to be "professional soldiers" in the military sense of the word. As such they had little regard or compassion for anyone who opposed them. And whether the South Vietnamese or American armies also committed atrocities doesn't excuse them for their cruel and inhuman behavior toward prisoners of war or other innocent men, women and children. That being said, this propaganda film deliberately glosses over these important details and concentrates instead on showcasing the human side of the Viet Cong. And to that extent I believe that this film accomplishes that objective fairly well. Admittedly, some of the scenes-especially those involving Captain Long-were much too flagrant and one-sided to be ignored and could have used a little more finesse. Likewise, the depiction of the Viet Cong always being showcased in every scene as compassionate and heroic was a bit too obvious as well. But despite some of these flaws and the heavy-handed use of propaganda, this film deserves to be seen if for no other reason than that it gives another perspective on an extremely horrible war.
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Beach Fever (1987)
1/10
Quite Possibly the Worst "Beach Movie" of All Time
20 September 2019
When his wealthy father offers him $100,000 to come up with a fool-proof method for attracting young women, a Japanese man by the name of "Sake" (Rodney Ueno) hits the beaches of California to try his luck. Although he fails miserably in his task, he happens to meet a beach bum named "Chat Frederick IV" (Kato Kaelin) who agrees to help him out. Not long after that they meet a young scientist by the name of "Ernie" (Jeffrey Asch) who has invented a "magic potion" which makes men irresistible to women and they begin to think that their worries all over. Unfortunately, a local pimp named "Fat Daddy" (Aaron Biston) finds out about this new development and becomes determined to get his hands on it at all costs. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this is was an awful film that suffered from a terrible script and extremely bad acting. Admittedly, I thought that Judea Brittain (as "Sandy") and Lisa Carroway ("Lisa") were easy on the eyes and I liked the scenes where three young women would come out of nowhere and begin singing. But even so neither of these features could salvage what is quite possibly the worst "beach movie" of all time and for that reason I have rated this film accordingly.
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6/10
A Conspiracy Theory Within a Conspiracy Theory
19 September 2019
This film essentially begins with a man by the name of "Jacques Saunière" (Jean-Pierre Marielle) being fatally shot in the Louvre by an assassin known simply as "Silas" (Paul Bettany). As it so happens, Jacques is not only the curator of the Louvre but also the grand master of a secret fraternal organization known as the Priory of Sion. And it's because of his association with the Priory of Sion that Jacques is killed. However, before he is shot, Silas extracts a key bit of information before leaving him alone on the floor to bleed to death. Not long afterward, a professor of religious symbols by the name of "Robert Langdon" (Tom Hanks) is summoned to the Louvre by the French investigator named "Captain Bezu Fache" (Jean Reno) to ostensibly help solve the case. What Robert Langdon doesn't realize, however, is that Captain Fache has another reason for requesting his presence and if not for the timely intervention of an attractive woman named "Sophie Neveu" (Audrey Tautou) he would have been arrested shortly afterward. It's then that both Robert and Sophie begin on a desperate quest for the Holy Grail and their lives will never be the same from that point on. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this was an entertaining mystery film which took a number of twists and turns along the way. On the other hand, however, I must also mention that much of the film was based on a number of half-baked conspiracy theories which should cause anybody with a rudimentary grasp of history to shake their heads in disbelief. Again, it was entertaining-but it was also quite nonsensical as well. That being said, I can fully appreciate any apprehension a viewer might have with regard to their rating. That being the case, had it not contained so many obvious and blatant historical inaccuracies, I would have rated it higher.
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5/10
Slow and Plodding
18 September 2019
This film begins with a Englishman named "John Morgan" (Richard Harris) having come to America five years earlier to gather a sense of purpose by exploring the western frontier. Unfortunately, while on a hunting expedition his colleagues are attacked and killed by a small party of Sioux and he is taken captive. It's then that he is then forcefully dragged back to their main camp at which time he is beaten and humiliated by everyone there. Afterward, rather than killing him, he is then forced to become a slave and subsequently treated like an animal. This harsh treatment continues for several months until one day he catches sight of two Shoshone scouts near the camp and after killing both of them is then elevated to the status of a warrior as a token of respect. From that point on he decides to not only become one of them but to also strive to become the leader of the tribe as well. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this film definitely had a great deal of potential but the plot was too slow and plodding at times to really keep my interest. That being said, while this wasn't necessarily a bad western film by any means, I don't consider it to be all that great either and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. Average.
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6/10
Digging Up the Past
17 September 2019
"Tommy Jarvis" (Thom Mathews) is back and this time he is intent on making sure that "Jason Vorhees" (played by C. J. Graham) is not only dead and buried but that he will never return to kill and terrorize innocent people again. So one dark and stormy night he and his friend "Allen Hawes" (Ron Palillo) escape from their mental hospital and drive to the cemetary where Jason is buried with the intent on exhuming the body and then burning it to ashes. Unfortunately, Tommy gets a bit carried away upon seeing the body and after driving a metal rod through Jason's chest causes a bolt of lightening to strike it-returning Jason back to life! Although Tommy manages to escape his friend is not so lucky and from that point on Jason has only one thought in mind-to return to what was formerly called "Camp Crystal Lake" to continue his reign of death and destruction to a new group of counselors who had long thought that he was dead. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that I thought that this film was slightly better than its predecessor due in large part to the plentiful action scenes and some traces of humor here and there. Admittedly, I had hoped for a bit more suspense but all things considered I was reasonably satisfied with the film and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. Slightly above average.
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5/10
A Marriage on the Rocks
16 September 2019
This film begins with a wealthy British man by the name of "Arthur Anderson" (Michael Craig) driving to his house and discovering his wife face down in the swimming pool. So after taking the body upstairs to the bedroom he and his maid "Felicity Downing" (Miranda Campa) dry off the body, change her clothes and then call the police. A couple of days later, Arthur is charged with murder due primarily to the fact that this was the third wife he has had in three years and all of them had died leaving him as the beneficiary of their insurance policies. However, with only the fact that drugs had been found in her system and no proof as to whether he had anything to do with it, he is subsequently acquitted. Not long afterward he hears a noise in his yard and upon going to check it out sees a stunning blonde woman by the name of "Julie Spencer" (Carrol Baker) swimming in the same pool his wife had drown in not too long before. After a brief conversation she leaves but soon after that they begin to spend more time together which eventually leads to marriage. Unfortunately, there is much more to Julie than meets the eye and soon the two of them become deathly suspicious of one another. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this film starts off exceedingly slow and maintains that pace for quite awhile afterward. Fortunately, the mystery and intrigue pick up about two-thirds of the way through and partially redeems what otherwise could have been a rather boring movie. All things considered then, while this wasn't a great mystery-thriller by any means, I suppose it was okay for a rainy day and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. Average.
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Casablanca (1942)
10/10
One of the Best Films Ever Made
15 September 2019
With the Nazis having already occupied France and conquered much of Eastern Europe, a stream of refugees desperately attempt to get to America by embarking on a tortuous path which includes getting to the small city of Casablanca in French Morocco and from there to Lisbon. However, as difficult as it is for these refugees to actually get to Casablanca, their travel is further complicated by the fact that nobody is allowed to take the daily flight from there to Lisbon without the written permission of the corrupt Vichy French police commander by the name of "Captain Louis Renault" (Claude Rains). So quite often these refugees have to wait for quite a long time and this-in and of itself-creates even more of a financial and logistical hardship upon them. So in an effort to find a solution to their problem or temporarily forget about their troubles, many of them flock to the most popular nightclub there known as "Rick's Café Americain" which is owned by a tough and worldly American expatriot named "Rick Blaine" (Humphrey Bogart). Yet, even though he is quite successful in Casablanca, he finds it hard to find any great happiness due to a previous romance which devastated him a year and a half earlier. However, things take a sudden turn for the worse when a famous anti-German activist named "Victor Laszlo" (Paul Henreid) walks into his nightclub-and with him is the woman who broke his heart that bleak and rainy day in Paris. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this is not only my favorite movie of all time but is also considered to be one of the best films ever made with a number of movie stars possibly turning in the best performances of their careers. I especially liked the chemistry between Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman (as "Ilsa Lund") along with the performance of Dooley Wilson as Rick's loyal companion "Sam". Be that as it may, I believe that this is one of the very few films that each and every viewer ought to see at least once and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. A classic in every sense of the word.
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4/10
Two Assassins and a CIA Agent Caught in the Middle of a Gang War
14 September 2019
This film begins with an agent for the CIA by the name of "Betty Lee" (Sibelle Hu) investigating a counterfeit operation in the United States and discovering that it originates somewhere in the Philippines. The scene then shifts to Japan where an attractive woman named "Amy" (Yoko Miyamoto) is in the process of seducing a high-ranking mob boss and then assassinates him while he is sleeping in bed. Around the same time, another beautiful assassin by the name of "Ilene" (Maria Jo) is equally busy killing a number of mobsters who are in the process of conducting a business meeting in Hong Kong. What essentially follows is that, unknown to each other, both assassins have been hired to kill a man by the name of "Charles Wong" (Chung Lam) who controls both the drug trade and the same counterfeiting ring that Betty Lee is currently investigating. But what neither Amy nor her unknown fellow assassin Ilene realize is that once their target has been eliminated their orders will be to kill one another so that there will be nobody left to identify the person who ordered the hit on Charles Wong. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this was a confusing low-budget action film which featured plenty of shooting and acrobatics but was rather weak in both character development and dialogue. To be sure both Yoko Miyamoto and Maria Jo were pleasing to the eye but the constant action became rather tedious at times. That being said, while this wasn't necessarily a bad film for the most part, it could have used a certain amount of fine-tuning here and there and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. Slightly below average.
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Pretty Cool (2006)
4/10
Somewhat Crude and Cliched
13 September 2019
"Howard Duckell" (Will Burke) is an ordinary high school student who dreams of being irresitable to women. But on one particular day this becomes a problem when he wakes up late and realizes that he is about to miss his high school graduation. So upon hurrying out of the house he literally runs into a pretty girl by the name of "Tiffany Granger" (Alexis Thorpe) and knocks her over. Apologizing profusely he then barely makes it to his ceremony only to realize that his grades weren't quite good enough to graduate and in order to obtain his high school diploma he will have to attend summer school. Naturally, this conflicts with his plans to get to know Tiffany better so he decides to break into the high school principals office to change his grades on the computer. However, upon doing so he accidently hacks into a top secret Eastern European computer program which transfers psychic powers into his brain which gives him the power to read people's minds and control their every word and deed. Needless to say, he is initially delighted to have such abilities but he begins to have second thoughts when things get totally out of control. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that I thought this film had promise but quickly became a bit too crude and clichéd for my tastes. That is not to say, however, that there weren't so humorous moments here and there but overall I didn't think it quite fulfilled its potential and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. Slightly below average.
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Coyote Ugly (2000)
5/10
Coyote Average
12 September 2019
This movie begins with a young woman named "Violet Sanford" (Piper Perado) having made the decision to quit her job at a local pizzeria and leave her home in New Jersey to try her luck being a songwriter in New York City. Yet even though she has thought about this move for years things don't go nearly as well as she had planned-and then things get much worse. It's at this point that she meets a grill cook by the name of "Kevin O'Donnell" (Adam Garcia) who does his best to help her out even though he has few connections in the music industry. Unfortunately, that being the case, she gets tentatively accepted for a job dancing and bartending at a raucous bar known as Coyote Ugly which causes her life to change drastically from then. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this was an uneven comedy-drama which had both good points and rather weak ones as well. To that extent, both the acting and the comedy were mediocre but the plot was interesting and it kept my attention for the most part so I suppose I shouldn't be too critical about it overall. That being the case, I have rated it accordingly. Average.
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Branded (1950)
6/10
A Successful Deception
11 September 2019
This film begins with a gunslinger by the name of "Choya" (Alan Ladd) escaping from some men who intend to lynch him for killing a friend of theirs in a gunfight. Although he manages to escape two bystanders by the names of "T. Jefferson Leffingwell" (Robert Keith) and "Tattoo" (John Berkes) find him camping in a cave and offer him a certain proposition. Essentially, they tell him of a young boy who was kidnapped from a wealthy family 30 years ago and since he fits the general description they ask him to ride to this ranch owner and claim to be his missing son. To help with the impersonation he is given a tattoo on his right arm which resembles a birthmark that the young child had. However, what he doesn't expect is the outpouring of love given to him by this family when he successfully deceives them-and this begins to gnaw on his conscience from that point on. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that, although it started off rather slow, it developed rather nicely after that and kept my attention all the way until the end. Admittedly, there were some parts toward the end which could have been condensed a little but it was still a pretty good western all the same and I have rated it accordingly. Slightly above average.
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5/10
An Entertaining Film in a Grade-B Sort of Way
10 September 2019
This film essentially begins with a young woman by the name of "Sally Reynolds" (June Kenney) inquiring about an ad in the paper advertising a job for a receptionist at a small doll manufacturing company in Los Angeles. From what she is told by the dollmaker, "Mr. Franz" (John Hoyt) the previous secretary had left rather abruptly and even though her instincts warn her against accepting the job, she becomes convinced by his entreaties and does so anyway. Not long after that she meets a traveling salesman by the name of "Bob Westley" (John Agar) and they soon become romantically involved. However, upon accepting his proposal of marriage and agreeing to quit her job and move to St. Louis with him in a few days, they discover that Mr. Franz does not like the idea at all and things begin to happen that neither her nor Bob could ever quite imagine. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this was a movie which turned out to be quite different than what I was expecting. To that effect, while it might qualify as a SciFi-Horror film in the technical sense, there really wasn't much horror to be found here at all. Likewise, there wasn't very much suspense either. Even so, this was still an entertaining film in a grade-B sort of way and for that reason I have rated it accordingly. Average.
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