1 January 2010 | jayraskin1
Frankenheimer with Sledgehammer makes Idiot Cartoon
John Frankenheimer made two beautiful films in his 40 years as a director, "The Birdman of Alcatraz" and "The Fixer". Both of these were about terrible conditions faced by a man in prison. Both of these films glorify suffering and the individual's ability to adapt and survive. They are both well worth seeing.
It was when he stepped out of prison that Frankenheimer had trouble. He was considered an action director, but the action in his films generally matched the average action scenes in a television police show of the period. He also tended to have witless one-dimensional characters, either all good guys or all bad guys. Among his witless and tedious concoctions were "the Manchurian Candidate," (Good Americans against evil Chinese Communists) "French Connection II," (Good Americans against Evil French Drug Dealers) and "Black Sunday" (Good Americans against Evil Palestinian Terrorists).
This movie has to be ranked as the worst of all these racist artless, thriller-less Conservative Catholic diatribes. In it, we have a good American against evil Italian Communists - the Red Brigades.
Frankenheimer wants us to know that he considers the Red Brigades evil. So he has to make them do something evil or sadistic in just about every single scene. See the Red Brigades attack police at demonstrations. See the Red Brigades attack and burn cars and smash store windows. See the Red Brigades kill innocent bystanders, See the Red Brigades kidnap and kill politicians, See the Red Brigades paint graffiti on walls...
According to Wikipedia, in the 70's and 80's, about 75 people died over a ten year period due to the Red Brigades - this total probably includes members themselves who were killed by Italian police. This movie shows the Red Brigades killing about 75 people in one week. None of the serious political issues of the time period are shown.
I lost a lot of respect for Andrew McCarthy, Sharon Stone, and Valerie Galina for being in this boring and stupid cartoon.
You might enjoy this film if you have been captured by the Red Brigades and they have given you a choice of torture or watching this movie. Well, actually, they would probably would not give you a choice, but would torture you by making you watch this movie. The fiends!