Tuesday, November 28, 2006

The Crimson Pirate

Silly and unpretentious. I expect that today's kids would have no patience for it. There is lots of cinematic piratical goings-on, though and that is always a good thing.

Hell in the Pacific

Less cogent than I remembered. Alternate ending is far superior.

Underworld

Dull. Dumb. Lots of rubber body suits and outfits with many, many buckles. Kate Beckinsale looks like she is constantly being woken from a nap. Supporting actors are consistently stiff. Design of the movie is attractive.

Children of Heaven

Charming and timeless. Assumes fairy-tale like character as movie progresses. Recommended.

Resident Evil: Apocalypse

Lots of action. No second act slump. Keeps things moving. The moving things are utterly pointless and loud, but it goes, goes, goes.

A Wing and a Prayer

Unabashed propaganda has solid, too, too solid performances from everyone. Not bad but very much a journeyman product.

Twilight Samurai

Simple-seeming tale reveals layers very deliberately. Finale is choreographed beautifully and realistically. Recommended.

The Razor's Edge (1946)

A different focus than the Bill Murray version, which I now think compares well to the Tyrone Power effort. A generally stiff tone runs throughout. Clifton Webb totally steals all his scenes.

V for Vendetta

Holy cats, is John Hurt a creepy Big Brother! Lots of improbable swordplay. Hugo Weaving carries the whole thing on his diction, though. Could have been utterly farcical.

Storm Over Mont Blanc

Leni Reifenstal portrays an overly-romantic university student who complicates the monk-like calm of a weatherman stationed at the top of Mont Blanc. Amazing aerial photography. There is apparently a genre of mountain movies from between the wars in which Leni is the focus apart from the mountains.

Only Angels Have Wings

Almost my new favorite movie. Howard Hawks' fantasy of manly men flying aerocraft over the Andes and their womanly women making things complicated. More personal redemption per reel than is strictly necessary.

l'Age d'Or

Yeah, yeah, surreal. Wacky, grown-up, fun, pointed.
And it's on YouTube

The Forgotten

Rented as an antidote to Flightplan, this was better than I expected. It has not stayed with me however, much like an M. Night Shyamalan movie. Also owes a lot to X-Files.

You Only Live Twice

Baby-faced Henry Fonda becomes ur-fugitive. Proto-noir.

The Fighting Kentuckian

John Wayne blunders into devious plot and undoes complex social balance. Coonskin cohort provide muscle, laughs, realpolitik. Based on Bizarro-worls Napoleonic / American history.

The Kentuckian

Burt Lancaster escapes from tribal troubles in his homeland Kentucky to his brother who has established himself in the merchant class among strangers. Burt's rustic ways disturb the civilised status quo but he proves himself to the bourgeois when a pair of coonskin terminators arrive with long rifles blazing. Walter Mattau outstanding as money-crazed coward. Mustache-twirling, although expected, never happened and was not missed.
Also there were minstrels.

Apple(b)logue archive