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A masterpiece
4 June 2007
It is hard for many people to accept that a little family film about a boy's relationship to a horse could be one of the greatest films ever made. But you must remember that not so long after The Black Stallion was released another film was made that was about a boy's relationship with a creature from another planet. That film is widely considered a masterpiece and its director has gone to become the most successful director in film history. I think it is worth noting that both films were written by the same person. Melissa Mathison, who wrote both E.T. and The Black Stallion, has penned two great films about a boys love friendship with a non human creature. And after several viewings of both I'm beginning to think that Stallion may be the better of the two. I doubt that I have ever seen a more atmospheric and emotional movie that holds up so well after repeat viewings. And I must say the sparse dialog is probably my favorite thing about it. Little is said but much is felt and isn't the feeling what is most important? This film has a beautiful look to it, which may have something to do with the director, Carol Ballard's, experience as a cinematographer. The wonderful images and rich detail draw you into the film and say more than words ever could. Great performances by everyone in the cast also boost this movie to the next level. Is The Black Stallion better than E.T.? I cannot say but it certainly feels that way. If you want to see a movie that is pure feeling than you should see this one.
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Not bad, not great, but not bad
30 August 2006
This is certainly a flawed movie that definitely has some cheesy acting and dialog, but despite these flaws it is still enjoyable. It is not as good as it's predecessor but I think it deserves a positive rating. The NeverEnding Story 2 still has the imagination of the original and some wonderful visuals that make up for it's lack of good writing or acting. I know that that may sound like an odd thing to say because writing and acting are important parts in a movie, but sometimes those things can be made up for with cinematography and set design. Movies are a visual medium and if a movie has strong enough visuals then everything else seems unimportant. This is a movie with fantastical, dream like visuals that give it an other worldly atmosphere which I think, in a strange way, is aided by the weird dialog. Everything in this movie is weird and so the dialog and acting fit and make it seem even more like a dream. I particularly like the way clouds and foaming waterfalls look in this movie. They're kind of an off color that I guess makes them look mysterious, I don't know what else to call it. If you enjoy being transported to other worlds that are so offbeat they are like nothing you've ever imagined then you'll like this movie. If you prefer going to a fantasy world that's more conventional then this may be a weird experience for you. This not the Wizard Of Oz. This is Fantasia and it looks so beautiful that nothing else matters.
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Underrated Classic
31 August 2005
The parting of the red sea! The confrontation at Mount Sinai! This movie is full of spectacular scenes and images! De Mille truly was a great filmmaker. His powerful imagination is evident in the Ten Commandments. This is his masterpiece. It carries you along on an epic adventure that is as big as the old testament. It captures the ancient, epic feel of the original Bible story. It has several stunning performances that could have easily been cheesy and fake, but are convincing and fascinating. Some say that the dialog is campy. I don't think so. I've seen this movie many times and have never thought so. It's nothing like the terrible dialog in Plan 9 From Outer Space from the same decade. The romance may be a cliché now, but it was quite original when it first came out and is still interesting. I personally don't like romance, so the fact that I wasn't bothered by this one is really saying something. This marvelous story is wonderfully told by De Mille and I would strongly recommend it.
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A touching film for kids and adults
30 August 2005
Few films have ever entertained me, exited me and brought me so close to tears as E.T. It has humor and thrills and a whole lot of heart. Actually, I don't know if I've ever seen a film with more heart than this one. Who ever thought that a rather ugly alien could be such a lovable character? I have loved this movie since childhood and will love it for the rest my life. Like all great movies for kids, E.T. appeals to people both young and old. The performances are so convincing and the emotions are so real that you can't help being caught up in the thrilling adventure of a boy and his friend from outer space. This movie is Steven Spielberg's masterpiece. Schindler's List was excellent, but most of it's power came from the scenes of innocent Jews being randomly shot. It's main emotinons are that of fear and sorrow, but E.T. focuses on love and that is the most powerful and most important feeling of them all. If you haven't seen it and you're thinking that this film is cheesy or sappy, it's not. It's very real and very entertaining. It's the perfect film for anyone who has ever felt lonely or rejected and wished that they had a friend.
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