Monday, January 30, 2006

A Man Escaped

The visual style is so spare there isn't even room for austere. Bonus: by the middle of the movie you will know how to make a rope out of anything.


Sanjuro is no Yojimbo. It's a bit cardboard and obvious, but it's done well. Everyhting is exactly as it seems. It's an honest and naive movie, which is a relief.

Major Dundee

(Not the extended, restored version which may not be completely awful.) What a stinker! So many people want this to not suck and I am here to tell you: it does. A few random scenes, a couple of moments that are interesting are all trapped in purest p√Ęte de train-wreck. As soon as Senta Berger shows up on screen, you may as well stop watching because it is strictly silly from there on in. Warren Oates has a big scene in the midst of the "love" "story" but you will still be agape at the completely ridiculous scenes between Senta and Charlton and unable to appreciate Oates's scenery chewing. Preposterous!
The score by Daniele Amfitheatrof is not good. Dogmatically by the numbers, the result is completely out of touch with the mish mash on the screen.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Exo Force Villain Is Cute As a Bug

Lookit! It's a wee little robot! He's like a little bronze wallaby.

According to the back story, this delightful little gnome of a robot has taken up arms against humanity, but he's so-o-o-o-o cute! Who's a grumpy wumpy soulless assassin?

And here's his little death machine. Also pretty darn cute with its workaday color scheme and shiny black shoes. Makes you want to give it a nickel to go get something at the malt shop.

Sin City

Looks great, feels bad. Between this and Crumb, I start to wonder if India ink can make artists angry.

Bush Administration = New Bionicle Villains

Greg Farshtey, author, discussing his in-progress Bionicle novel, posted a snippet on BZP, "There were plenty of opportunities to increase one's personal wealth while engaging in random acts of destruction. Of course, it wouldn't do to overlook the fun of exploiting lesser species, sparking environmental disasters, and ending the existence of the occasional Toa, all in the name of profit."

Replace 'Toa' with 'enemy combatant' or 'Constitution of the United States' and it could just as well be a memo from Cheney to Bush.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Battle of Algiers

Pepe le Moko meets City of God. As I watched, appalled, I could not help but be reminded in every important, damning particular of the war in Iraq. So when I read in the supplemental materials that it had been screened in the Pentagon in 2003, my blood ran cold. I am numb with fury.

I have somehow managed to be ignorant of this movie, except perhaps for its reputation, a fact which is deeply embarrassing for me. And I didn't know that Ennio Morricone provided the music. I feel that I am an ignoramus.


Check out the green smears spreading up the side of the hotel.

Originally uploaded by kyle_beatty.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

City of God

The documentary included as a special feature is worth the rental by itself. The interview with the chief of police was a seminar in realpolitik that you could never get at a university.


So much weirder, sweeter than I could have imagined. Terry Zwigoff also responsible for Bad Santa. Whadya know! R. Crumb mentions Goodfellas. Good thing I have been catching up on my movies so i knew what he was talking about. Someday I will graduate to the movies of the late nineties.

American Splendor

Almost as recursive as Millennium Actress

Friday, January 20, 2006

Kill Bill vol. 2

What a hoot! More talk and less gravitas than the first volume, I was thoroughly amused many times. I was not moved, however.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Millennium Actress

Casually recursive - what's not to love?

The Two Jakes

An unworthy successor to Chinatown - almost disrespectful. A muddled, inconsequential plot fails to support an inane theme. It's just as well that the movie was not scored by Jerry Goldsmith because that would have been a silk dress on a pig.

Friday, January 13, 2006


All through the movie I want the one guy to be whacked already and eventually he is and I feel a little bad about that and then the other guy the one that I don't so much want to be whacked I think now is a louse and maybe it would have been better if he had been whacked a long time ago and he should shut up about himself already.

Thursday, January 12, 2006


Until the DVD started, it had not occurred to me that I had never really seen Chinatown except on broadcst TV which meant pan & scan and commercials. What a dope I have been. What a great movie!

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

The Machinist

Having already seen Batman Begins, I know that Christian Bale recovered from the state that he put himself into for this movie. The director made the most of it, turning this pat schizo-thriller into a genuine, no-kidding freak show. The queasy, artificial palette plays like the fluorescent light from Joe vs. the Volcano, except that it doesn't stop for the entire movie.

Ghost Dog

Moody. Forced. Could have reduced cast to Forest Whitaker and Henry Silva and saved some payroll. (Nothing wrong with the other characters or performances, but they are not strictly necessary.) Paced like Solaris.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Pulp Fiction

What do you know, it's really good! I knew that already but I managed to know that without having seen the movie, only hearing its reputation. Weirdly enough, a co-worker asked me who played Captain Koons in Pulp Fiction. I had no idea. As it turned out, Pulp Fiction was in my mailbox. If it had arrived as expected yesterday, I woulf have known the answer to the question. O fate, your ways are mysterious.

Enigmatic Image from Cheapo Digital Camera

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Saturday, January 07, 2006

Kaminsky Reader

a friend's blog: Kaminsky Reader

Piraka is Olda

Piraka is Olda
The first Toa (known in some circles as 'olda' - back-formed from 'nuva') and the Piraka share some design similarities.

Bend It Like Beckham

Bubbly. Too many music montages by a long order. I lost track of how many such interludes there may have been. The use of 'Nessun Dorma' is only a little less forgivable than it's utterly inappropriate use in Sum of All Fears.

res ipsa loquitur

a blog: res ipsa loquitur

Jenerator's Grad School Rant

A blog: Jenerator's Grad School Rant


A blog: malynsmusing

OK, my yard is a mess.


"V" has offered to do yard work. I find this handwritten note written on a leaf from a reporter's notebook very interesting. Posted by Picasa

No new DVDs for the weekend

Aiee! I am addicted to Netflix! I want more DVDs! More!

Card in the Mail

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Friday, January 06, 2006

Kung Fu Hustle

Kung Fu Hustle was better than I expected and less wacky. Great score by Vincent Wong.

Yo yo yo, Yorick!

Toa Maiden Does Graveyard Scene Voya Nui Style
Originally uploaded by kyle_beatty.
"A Piraka of 100% jest!"

Team America: World Police

It's no South Park: The Movie. It is the most ambitious marionette movie ever, and I say that not because I have a marionette in the corner (I do) but because it's just so obvious. If there were an approximately similarly ambitious marionette movie previously, it would have had some effect on my existence. Some shadow of a rumor! But no such shadow, rumor or effect has there been. Therefore, this is the most ambitious marionette movie ever.
The greatest achievement is in the hilarious sculpting of the characters. The overall joke does wear thinnish, though.

Grave of the Fireflies

I was warned, but I wanted to see for myself. This movie is indeed devastating. There is almost no plot to speak of, but the tale is very minutely rendered.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

A Beautiful Mind

This is the movie all the hullaballoo was about? I am underwhelmed in every regard. Everything was perfectly acceptable but that means it was just a TV Movie of the Week, a really good Movie of the Week. John Nash's Nobel info is much more interesting.
The unsensational treatment of schizophrenia was welcome but I'm not convinced it was intentional. The relative lack of explosions and gunfire was also welcome, but it does not add up to anything like a great film.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Thanks, Ben!

My mind has been freed from the background processing of trying to remember 'prognathous.' Thanks, Ben!

Bourne Identity

Matt Damon has convinced me that he is capable of portraying a character that has no personality with the utmost degree of fidelity. A stroke of casting genius on a par with casting John Malkovich as John Malkovich in Being John Malkovich.

Sunday, January 01, 2006


This movie does not make me sad even though it does not have a happy ending. I think.

12 Monkeys

This movie makes me sad even though I think it may have a happy ending.

March of the Penguins

How does this sort of system evolve? On the other hand, what kind of perverse God puts the Cutest Things on Earth at the bottom?

The narration was chock full of scientific and logical groaners. And a fair amount of gratuitous anthropormorphisms.

Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (extended)

I really like these movies but is it so infeasible to digitally replace Sean Astin? I'm just not buying him as a hobbit, much less the particular hobbit, Sam. He works well enough but something about him is as distracting as the not-quite-right lighting of Gollum's eyes.

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