Damfino1895

IMDb member since January 2002
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    IMDb Member
    18 years

Reviews

The Accidental Husband
(2008)

Utter codswallop
I absolutely love Jeffrey Dean Morgan, I have a huge soft spot for Colin Firth (there is no other Mr Darcy) and I adore a good Rom-Com, sadly this is not, under any description, a good or even passable Rom-Com, it is complete and unwatchable claptrap. I will even enjoy a no brainer movie if it is entertaining, this is the former, but, not the latter. There are so many plot holes it could be used as a fishing net, for someone who is a Doctor (in other words she must have a Degree of some kind) Emma is incredibly thick. Surely she could question the validity immediately, who witnessed the nuptials for starters, get them in and verify the marriage didn't take place as well as the person who supposedly wed them. As I said, utter tosh.

After the contrived and predictable script the worst thing is Uma Thurman, she proved in The Producers that she cannot do comedy and this can be broadly described as comedy, so we can broadly describe her as a ham (no, she actually is hammy) Colin Firth is, well, Colin Firth the uptight Englishman, but, at least he is watchable and not annoying. The only saving grace in this film (in other words, the only reason I continued watching after 20 minutes, even though it was torture) was the delectable Mr Morgan, but, even he struggled with making it work.

I found the predictability of the bar room scene pretty nauseating, but, the book party was just too much, I thought 'do not let Isabella Rosselini's character turn up' lo and behold, she does. Then she wants to have dinner with Emma and Patrick (who she thinks is Richard) and guess what! Patrick just turns up at that moment at the party and then we are expected to believe in the comedy of errors of her introducing Richard as her 'brother'....yawn, yawn, yawn. You just wanted to say 'Come clean you lying moo' and tell both men to run a mile as she is nuts, but, that would have ended the movie, would that have been a bad thing?

The cake shop scene was truly dreadful and cringeworthy, I felt embarrassed just watching it, although I would love to Ring Ding with JDM (Ring Dinga Ding!)

I shall now go and purge the memory of this movie from my poor abused memory by watching a good Rom Com, oh for the days of Norah Ephron, Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan (or Billy Crystal for that matter) One last thing, Uma Thurman needs to find a new make up artist, her make up in The Producers was unflattering, but, I thought it was the lighting (especially on the all white office set) but, in this film it was equally harsh and ageing.

Oh, one final thing, I had a Root Canal Treatment this morning (yes, really) and I'd rather sit through that again rather than this movie

P.S. I Love You
(2007)

Nice
I tend not to watch these kind of movies as they never seem to really tell what it is like to be widowed at a young age. The only one that does spring to mind is Sleepless in Seattle which pretty much mirrored what it is like moving on after losing a partner who you have expected to spend many, many more years with while more recent ones are just romantic bilge. I can identify with these movies as I was widowed very young over a decade ago and although every in my position has different experiences these are some things that the movies sugarcoat. One recent exception, which surprised me was Ghost Town, but, we are not talking about that movie here.

For this reason I avoided PS I love You for a long time, but, I have a thing for Jeffrey Dean Morgan (and Gerry Butler is jolly darn hot too) So I thought I would give it a whirl. I was pleasantly surprised as it was a very nice well acted movie. The chemistry between the leads Swank and Butler was good and I liked the fact Holly didn't go barrelling into a relationship with Daniel straight away. I liked the relationship with the friends as I relied heavily on my best friend after my loss and that felt real. Holly's mother tantrum about being abandoned by Holly's father and feeling her loss was just as great, if not greater was actually similar to what happened with me and my mother and I felt the character was given too much sympathy, but, that is a personal view and don't criticise me for it.

As for JDM, he wasn't in it too much, but, I saw plenty of him too keep me happy *wink wink* However, please never let him do an Irish accent again! Holly falling into bed with William seemed to fit,but, not knowing their personal relationship with Gerry was stretching it too say the least, after all how many Holly Kennedy's with an American accent would be in a little Galway village, Holly might not have realised William's relationship to Gerry, but, William would have known who Holly was unless he was incredibly, incredibly thick.

All in all a nice way to spend an afternoon and shed a few tears. The performances were good and the cast worked very well together, even Harry Connick, who I normally find annoying was good. A sweet little chick flick.

Tropic Thunder
(2008)

I still can't bear Ben Stiller
When will Ben Stiller realise he is not all that talented. I'm sure he's a nice guy, but, apart from 'Something About Mary' I find him incredibly annoying.

However, I liked the look of the trailer and finally sat down to watch this last night, having put it of because of my dislike of Stiller. It's a really good film, great characterisations and the opening sequence is inspired (I want to see 'Satan's Alley' lol) All the performances are great, standout is Robert Downey Jr and Tom Cruise is a hoot as Les Grossman. There are things in it that could be considered disrespectful, Simple Jack comes to mind, but, look at them in context and you can see that they are not meant to offend, but, to illustrate how certain roles win Oscars. The use of the word 'retard' in one scene actually illustrates the ignorance of the characters rather than aiming to offend us, in my opinion at least.

There is one gross out scene near the start that I felt was carried a little too far and I could have done without regarding Damian Cockburn, but, aside from that I enjoyed this movie for what it was, no brainer fun that was at the end of the day, a parody.

It would have got more points if Ben Stiller hadn't been his usual annoying self.

The Princess and the Frog
(2009)

Disappointing
When I found out I was going to be in Walt Disney World when this was released I was thrilled as I was looking forward to seeing this. Being at WDW in the run up meant I was bombarded with the movie constantly with merchandising and watching the parade that went through Liberty Square and onto the Riverboat, which I might say was lovely.

So I went into the second screening on opening day at Downtown Disney really looking forward to seeing it. Sadly I was not so enamoured by the time I came out, it simply did not do it for me. I might add I am a Disney nut, but, it had no magic to it, which was a shame. I felt that there was a laziness about it relying on the fact it was the first Black 'Princess' to sell it rather than a well told story. There was a sequence with a bunch of rednecks in a boat, it really added nothing to the story except to act as a filler to pad out the movie's time. Ray has to be one of the most irritating character Disney has ever produced and his demise at the end did not move me slightly, that may not mean a lot, but, everyone who knows me knows I blub at the silliest of things, I bawl when everyone bows down to Mulan or when the Beast turns into the Prince again and Up set me off every time I see it.

John Lasseter is a very talented man, but, I feel he is a bit of a big head, Cars was a vanity project and he was banging on about Prep and Landing being a Christmas Classic before it was even broadcast. He forced out one of Disneys best talents in Chris Sanders and rehashed Sanders' American Dog as Bolt. He produced this film and let me tell you, it ain't no classic. If they insist on going back to traditional 2D, which I adore, then look back at the classics and then do start the work. I'll stick to Sleeping Beauty, Lion King and Lilo and Stitch thank you.

Cloverfield
(2008)

It's like Marmite
In that you either love it or hate it, or so I was told by my teenage daughter who incidentally hasn't yet seen it. Well, I love Marmite and I loved this movie.

Let's get the Blair Witch comparisons out of the way. I haven't actually seen Blair Witch, I got annoyed with all the hype claiming it was a genuine piece of film when it obviously wasn't. This has never and obviously can't claim to be genuine, that it is happening for real. For me it was a good old fashioned monster flick with a modern twist.

I actually had no expectations when I sat down to watch it and for the first 15 minutes it was entertaining enough in an odd sort of soap opera way (relationships being discussed and so on) but, when the action hits it's one great big roller-coaster ride with lots of OMG moments. It never drags from that point on until the very end.

Great performances from unknown actors and extremely convincing. Very clever and highly recommended.

Leatherheads
(2008)

Good try, but, a little bit lazy.
Now straight off I will say I love 1930's screwball comedies and I adore George Clooney, so I had high hopes for this one as I think Mr Clooney definitely has a comedic talent in him as proved in "O Brother Where Art Thou" This movie is a nice way to spend 90 or so minutes, however, it struck me a a very lazy production, lots of obvious goofs and poor editing spoilt it for me.

In general the cast were very good, particularly the supporting cast. George Clooney was excellent really getting into the spirit of his part, Jonathan Pryce was also very good as the slimy 'agent'. My two beefs are with Renee Zellwegger and John Krasinski, who normally are terrific. In this movie I felt Ms Zellwegger was trying to do an impersonation of Rosalind Russell in 'His Girl Friday', this may be Mr Clooney's fault as director, particularly as he professed to watching many screwball comedies before making this film, but, trying this was a big mistake as Rosalind Russell is in a class of her own and Ms Zellwegger is about four classes below when doing this type of material. John Krasinski simply wasn't used well enough, there was a lot of potential in his character which wasn't exploited, he ended up coming across as rather insipid.

Going back on Mr Clooney's record as both director and actor proves he is great at both jobs, even when doing both at the same time, but, I feel he tried to do something light hearted and fun and didn't feel the need to put too much effort in as he does in his more serious projects. Comedy doesn't come easy, even the best comedy requires a bit of hard graft and this is where the problem lies. All I can say if you want to see a genuinely brilliant screwball comedy then watch 'His Girl Friday', 'It Happened One Night' or my personal favourite 'Midnight' or indeed one of the many made during it's hey day of the 1930's, they may be in black and white, but, don't let that deter you as they are real class.

Under the Yum Yum Tree
(1963)

Mysoginistic claptrap
I really like Jack Lemmon, he has appeared in so many great movies during his career, but, what the heck induced him to do this total stinker of a movie.

I watched this movie in growing disbelief at what is a teenage boy's fantasy of being a rich man doing nothing worthwhile with his life owning a apartment block full of gorgeous young women wearing next to nothing and having free rein to do what he likes because he is their landlord.

What possessed Jack Lemmon to take on the role of a disgusting lecherous, moral free man who is planning to seduce (rape more like) a young virgin who lives in his apartment block. The story is so full of plot holes, why didn't anyone one report him to the police? Beats me! Anyway, I failed to make it to the end as when I heard Irene's speech about the man and the woman's role in a marriage I nearly choked on my cup of tea, only a man with a superiority complex over women could have written that baloney.

Completely humour free and a waste of two hours of my life. I think I'd better watch Some Like It Hot or The Odd Couple again to erase Lemmmon's Hogan out of my conscience.

Just Like Heaven
(2005)

Dreadful
I like a good rom-com and this isn't one. Where do I start? Within the first 10 minutes I truly dislike perfect Elizabeth. Then there's the estate agent showing David the apartments, basically the movie is full of annoying characters which with all it's plot holes lack of chemistry between the two leads and the unnecessary sub plot of the downstairs neighbour makes this 91 minutes of pure garbage. As for the plot holes, so many so little time to list them all. However the most ludicrous part is how Elizabeth recovers so quickly from her coma and why doesn't Jack fill her in on David's part in it all. I think Reece Witherspoon is suffering from Oscar winner curse with this one (think Halle Berry and Cuba Gooding Jr for example)

Avoid avoid!!

Tell It to the Marines
(1926)

One of the best movies ever!
Let me tell you a story. I started college recently and one of my lecturers asked us to introduce ourselves and tell her something about ourselves to help her remember us. As a mature student I thought I'd mention my love of classic movies. "Oh, black and white" she says, as if all older movies are in B/W. "Older" I say "I love silents". Her face lit up "Oh, Charlie Chaplin!" She says triumphantly as if she's incredibly clever. I admit that I replied snottily that silent movies are much, much more than Charlie Chaplin and this movie is an example of that. This is one of the best movies I have ever seen, it has everything from great humour through to great drama and all the performances are faultless. Stand out though is Lon Chaney as Sgt O'Hara, this has to be my favourite of all his performances, words fail me when I come to describe it, I would want this to be the performance he is remembered for instead of Erik or Quasimodo, but, hopefully anyone who loved those performances will watch this movie and he doesn't have any make up on. William Haines was excellent as Skeet, he plays the cocky know it all who cannot keep out of trouble with so much charm that you can't help liking him even though you want to give him a smack to knock some sense into him and Eleanor Boardman as Norma, wonderful as always. Everything is spot on and the scenes involving the mock battle, Chaney looks like he's been a marine all his life. I cannot recommend this film highly enough, especially if you are from a Naval or Marine background as I am. 10/10

El perro
(2004)

Among the trash sits this little gem.
I don't know what made me want to record this movie as I'd never heard of it, but, after finally watching it several weeks after initially recording it I'm glad I did. I'm laid up with a painful ear infection and can't bear too much noise, so a sub titled movie would be ideal. It was a real tonic, taking my mind off the pain, bringing a smile to my face and being so happy I'm not one of those narrow minded people who never watched sub titled movies. Every performance was a delight, Juan Villegas, in particular, deserves praise, his performance was charming and spot on for the character he played. And best of all was the ending, no tragic ending, just a heartwarming ending that brought a smile to my face. Highly recommended

The Daily Buzz
(2002)

Wish there was something like this in the UK
When I went out to Florida last year I did something I never do in the UK and that is to turn on the TV in the morning. It was mainly to see what the weather was for the day. On the second day in I flicked on The Daily Buzz and I was hooked. What a great way to start the day, lots of news humour and fun, plus Clayton Morris who is extremely easy on the eye of a morning. They all work so well together, Mitch English is great fun and personable without being over the top. So I was really disappointed to have to come home and the TV doesn't get switched on in the morning as our morning shows are not in The Daily Buzz's league. But, all is not lost! Instead of having to wait until my next trip at the end of the year I can pick up a 10 minute pod cast every day, thank you thank you thank you!!!! It's only 10 minutes, but, it's better than nothing. Britons, think Big Breakfast, but, not as irritating. And Clayton Morris can do it by numbers anytime for me. It's a shame that John Brown is no longer there either, but, nothing's perfect.

Bush Tucker Man
(1987)

Fair dinkum Cobber
One of the best nature series I have ever watched Introduced by Major Les Hiddens, who looks less like an army major than you would imagine. He travels the length and breadth of Australia explaining about the aboriginal bush tucker, showing us such things as honey ants, witchery grubs and so on. Les is a natural on television, interesting and enthusiastic and great fun to watch. If it turns up on your local station give it a whirl, the title isn't very inspiring, but, the programme is. About 10 years ago, Les introduced a series on great survival stories of Australia, but, sadly, nothing since. Couldn't Australian TV commission another series introduced by this terrific bloke? About time for a repeat on Discovery I think.

X-Men: The Last Stand
(2006)

They've done it again!
I cannot believe that they have managed to produce a movie that is third in it's franchise that is as good as, if not, marginally better than it's predecessors, but, the simple fact is that they have. This kept me enthralled from start to finish and, it seemed, the rest of the audience too as there was hardly a peep from anyone else. Anyone who knows me knows that my biggest pet hate in the world is the idiots who go to the movies and think it's okay to ya-ck and ya-ck as if they were at home. It's the reason I only go to the cinema when I'm desperate to see a movie. Anyway, back to the movie. If anyone can complain about this movie all I can say is that they are not comic book movie fans and shouldn't have bothered in the first place or they are just natural born whiners. This is a great movie, full of heart and emotion, you'll laugh, you'll cry (I did at several points) The casting is, as usual, spot on, Hugh Jackman, as always in any movie he does, completely brilliant and charismatic, Ian MacKellen, awesome as always as is the rest of the cast. Special mention to newbies Kelsey Grammar, totally perfect as Beast, no one else could have pulled it off so brilliantly and also Vinnie Jones as Juggernaut, excellent stuff. The storyline was so good, yes, it's the same good guys versus bad guys, but, thought has been put into it and there are some very shocking moments. I can't wait to see this again. I'd have given it a 10 but, my only crib was that it was far too short, they could have added another 30 minutes very easily and it would still not have been enough, but, it's better than sitting through an over long film wondering when the hell it would finish.

Sonic X
(2003)

not the best
I'm an avid sonic fan and I've grown up with the games since I was 3 years old, (now 15), so when they annouced that sonic x would be an adaption of the dreamcast/gamecube games, I was overjoyed, but after watching it...I'm extremely disappointed.

The whole point of Sonic X is that it is meant to be true to the games but I find little to no reference to the game in the first series, it's only when they start reliving the moments of Sonic Adventure did I find the series had justified itself.

One downside-and many shall agree-is that Chris was added...I feel that only Eggman should have been the only human character. Why add some whiny kid who steals half the episodes, and destroys original character lines. In one episode, Chris comforts Shadow and tells him to help Sonic instead of Amy...why?! The animation quality is excellent, which saves it and the voice dubs are okay to a degree...But still, it doesn't live up to SatAM, SU and AoSTH! Sonic X, please try harder 2/10

Bewitched
(2005)

Just right
When this movie originally came out I didn't want to see it as I usually completely dislike Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell has never done it for me either. However on a flight to Florida last November this was one of the movie choices and as I have liked many of Nora Ephron's previous movies I thought I'd give it a whirl. Was I glad I did as it was a nice way to while away an hour and a half. It's a nice little rom-com and unlike most other film adaption of hit movies it didn't try to rehash the same old, much loved characters. I found the story line was a nice twist. All the performances were great, although I would have liked to have seen more of Steve Carrell. One I'll definitely watch again when feeling down as it's a terrific feel good movie with many chuckles rather that belly laughs and that isn't a bad thing.

E/R
(1984)

Liked this a lot
I remember this show being shown very late night on UK television, on ITV, if I recall correctly as it was 20 years ago and I loved it. Funnily enough I had a crush on George Clooney then and followed him through Roseanne and onto the ER we all know and love. Anyway, I recall that it was really set in the ER itself and never ventured out out of that setting much, if at all. I always stayed up for it, even though it was on well after 10.30 pm, which showed how much I liked it as this was in the days before I owned a VCR. What I wouldn't give to see it again, just to see if it were as good as I remember. Has it ever been re-shown on US TV?

Zeus and Roxanne
(1997)

Very sweet movie, definitely a feel good one
I first saw this on a bus returning from the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida. Unfortunately, by the time the guide got it going we only saw about 45 minutes of it before we got back to Orlando. I had enjoyed it immensely and wanted to see how it turned out. Fortunately over 12 months later Sky got around to showing it and I was delighted that it was as sweet as I remembered. I'm usually a bit of a cynic with "family" movies, but, this had such a nice feel about it and on a miserable British winter day it was a great tonic. I had often wondered what had happened to Steve Guttenburg and he turned in a nice performance as did Kathleen Quinlan. The kids were good too, not sickly sweet and nauseating as some movie kids are. As for the comment about the kid with the Goth look, you have no clue about teenagers, she came across as a typical one. The animals were good too and all in all it was a nice easy to watch movie and I'd rather watch it 10 times than have to sit through "Big Momma's House 2" and it's ilk just the once. 7 out of 10.

The Producers
(2005)

Should we listen to film critics?
After much anticipation I finally got to see this movie yesterday on it's opening day. I had to make a 5 hour round trip to be able to see it and right until I and my 15 year old daughter sat down with our popcorn and coke I was wondering if it were going to be a wasted trip, especially after reading what the newspaper critics had to say about it. Well, from the start we realised that the critics were 100% wrong, it turned out to be the best cinema experience I have had in a very very long time. Why was this? Well, for a start I, my daughter and the 20 or so others in this afternoon screening didn't stop laughing the whole time and for the first time in many years I have been able to sit and watch a film without anyone else having a conversation somewhere else in the cinema, that's how enthralled we all were with it. Nathan Lane, well, what can we say. He was superb, he should walk away with the Golden Globe and while he won't win the Oscar as comic roles never do, he should at least get a nomination. I know it's sacrilege to say so, but, I prefer him to Zero Mostel as Bialystock, why? Well, Mostel's Bialy had a meanness about him, whereas Lane's Bialy is a lying, cheating no good ageing gigolo, but, he has more charm and you can understand how he manages to fleece these little old ladies. Matthew Broderick, let me tell you, is not as bad as the critics would have you believe, Leo Bloom is actually quite a difficult character to play with all his neurosis es and such like and Gene Wilder did a great job, but, so did Broderick, especially in the musical numbers. "I want to be a Producer" is fabulous, the choreography is outstanding and Broderick is awesome and best of all he looks like he's having a real fun time, his expression throughout that number is just a joy, completely genuine. I could watch it over and over again. Will Ferrel is a revelation, he is superb as Leibkind and again deserves his Golden Globe nomination, but, I think Roger Bart and Gary Beach were equally deserving of a nomination as they were brilliant too, especially Roger Bart. The only weak link was Uma Thurman, she was not terrible, but, she didn't pull off the musical numbers the way the others did. "That Face" was the only musical number I didn't ooh or ah over, but, it was still good. As for the style of the movie, well, I loved it as I am a huge fan of 1950's musicals and I almost felt I was watching it on stage, which for me, was a complete pleasure. Sure, Susan Strohman won't win any awards for her direction she did stage it beautifully and her talents truly shone in the musical numbers. Having watched the mess that was "Moulin Rouge" this was, in my personal view, entertainment at it's best, not pretentious or big and clever but an excellent transferring of Lane/Broderick/Beach and Bart's stage performances. It's not for everyone, as the newspaper's reviews proved, but, everyone left the cinema very happy yesterday and if my local flea pit deign to show it I will be first in line with my daughter, who adored it too and she's not a fan of musicals and she has already called all her friends to tell them to go see it if they can. In summary this is a movie you can enjoy that never tries to do anything but entertain you and succeeds, heck, there are far worse things you can waste £13 and 2 hours on. 10/10

Poldark
(1975)

Probably the greatest ever TV drama series
I first saw this in the '70's when I was about to enter my teens, it made such an impact on me that every time it was re-screened I was glued and made sure I got it on DVD when it was released. Set in 18th Century Cornwall it tells the story of the trials and tribulations of people who you deeply care about, which is part of it's real success. I lived in that part of the world for 14 years and the beauty of the area is shown perfectly and the atmosphere of the times is spot on, it is not glamourised at all. All the performances are excellent without exception and it is a complete joy to watch again and again. A must see. I quite simply love it.

Whispering Smith Speaks
(1935)

Terrific little film
I sat down to watch this film not really knowing what to expect and what a lovely surprise it was, the only thing wrong was the quality of the DVD, there were clearly some small bits missing, possibly from the end of the reels, but it was not so bad as to mar the viewing of this great little film. Gordon Harrington is the son of a railroad magnate who is given little to do in his fathers business beyond rubber stamping letters. Disatisfied he decided to head out west and become the line walker for a small railroad line who's general manager is a woman who unwittingly owns a lucrative piece of land which she thinks is worthless, she has been offered $15000 for it which she is eager to take. Gordon, who is known as John Smith realises that there is more to this than meets the eye and realises he needs to help the girl and her mother. Anyway, George O'Brien gives a wonderfully light hearted performance, showing a lovely flair for humour with a very personable screen presence, he was wasted in so many of the B westerns he made. Irene Ware is also very good as the first girl who could make a big mistake, all the cast were excellent with the exception of the actress who played the mother, she was extremely amateurish, but, she is not in the movie enough for it to make a difference. Cal and Bill, the two engineers who run the train on the small line were great fun as a double act and in the scene where the engine is racing to Denver (not Detroit as stated in the plot synopsis)you can see O'Brien and the actor playing Bill were having a whale of a time. Not a big budget blockbuster, but, very entertaining all the same, see it if you get the chance. And, no, for once O'Brien doesn't get his shirt off.

Mystery Ranch
(1932)

Great ending and the rest is pretty good too.
I'm a fan of George O'Brien and have seen many of his silents and two of his later movies with John Wayne, but, until I saw this movie I hadn't seen any of his movies from the 1930's. This is not the formulaic B Western even though it has been lumped into the genre by history, but, a terrific Gothic Western (if indeed there is such a thing) Charles Middleton is suitably creepy as the classical music loving and talented pianist, but, horribly nasty bad guy. George O'Brien was solid as usual as the good guy and Cecilia Parker was very good too, not an annoying whiny girl as many of the females in this type of movie are, basically all the characters were enjoyable and plausible. It goes along at a good pace and there is a stunt by George O'Brien that makes you go "Wow". And the ending is very good too, no cop out in that one. All in all a really good way to spend an hour, the only bad thing was the quality of the print, it would have been nice if it had been better, but, even with that quality it was possible to see the great lighting and camera-work of this movie. I have to say I disagree with some of the other reviewers. The acting was not "stiff". George O'Brien's scenes with Cecilia Parker were not forced and for my money, he didn't have his shirt off enough ;)

Fig Leaves
(1926)

Very sweet and imaginative
This is not one of the more well known silents, or indeed one of Howard Hawks' more famous movies, but, that doesn't mean it is not a very good and entertaining movie. Set in two different ages, stone age at the start and the end and at the present time (the 1920's)in between, which is the major part of it, it deals with the battle of the sexes, in this case a married couple, Adam and Eve. The start is very very funny and very imaginative. The inter titles and the headlines in the newspapers had me laughing out loud, which believe me, is not something I do often. Then it dissolves into the modern day very nicely with Adam now a plumber and Eve, a discontented stay at home wife, the snake in the modern day being trouble making neighbour Alice. Out in the city Eve is knocked over by a car who's passenger's is hoity toity dress designer, Andre. This part of the story is the only sticking point as it seems to come across as a showcase for designer Adrian's gowns and slows the story down somewhat. That aside this is a terrific little film with super performances all around. A favourite, and slightly odd moment, is muscular he-man George O'Brien mincing as a woman ( not in drag, mind you), but, he always came across as an actor with no vanity and is all the more endearing for that. Heinie Conklin also shines as his sidekick and the female lead, Olive Borden does a great job as Eve. This is a neatly observed comedy that for the most part is excellent. If you have the chance I suggest that you see it and I wonder if you will be reminded, by the early sequences of a 1960's cartoon starring Fred and Wilma.

3 Bad Men
(1926)

An early John Ford gem
I like George O'Brien and when I saw the opportunity to own an early silent he made I took it and it was worth it, although, while he is the named star, he has a relatively small role in it and the movie really belongs to Tom Santschi who plays Bull, he is exceptional in his role. I'm not a huge fan of westerns, but, I enjoy all of John Ford's as he approaches his movies with a love of the West as it was being settled rather than the "Cowboys 'n' Injuns" take on things. This is the story of a girl who loses her father and is taken under the wing of the three bad men in the title, not that they are really all bad, just a bit naughty really. The real bad guy is the Sheriff who is really creepy. I don't like to give long detailed synopsises of movies, if I think a movie is good I just like to let people know that it is worth seeing and this one is. The Land rush sequence is particularly impressive and there is some very good humour, the inter titling is very well thought out. The acting is very good by all. The only downer is the quality of the available print, mine was a video from the Killiam collection and could do with a little TLC to restore it to it's former glory. This movie has absolutely everything and I cannot recommend it highly enough. It's about time more money was put into the restoration and cleaning up of the silents that were not lost or destroyed, it's a crying shame when you see movies like this and many others that end up forgotten and unloved through neglect.

Noah's Ark
(1928)

Take out the moralising and this is a goodie.
I have wanted to see this movie for ages having seen a clip many years ago in a movie documentary. It was worth it as this is a good film with some nice performances and it is, as stated by other reviewers, a bit of a curio. However, the one thing that does let it down is the moralising, sadly DFZ shouldn't have dipped his toe into screen writing. Although Dolores Costello is the star, she is one of the weaker elements, her voice is clipped and quite English (even though she was American) and didn't convey at all the fact that she was meant to be a German Frauleins, it was obvious that she had taken speaking lessons and they really hadn't paid off. The two main male leads however are a different matter, George O'Brien starts off rather stilted, but as he goes on his speaking role improves, Noah Beery is pretty much the same and both are good to listen to as well as being pretty good actors. The flood sequence is highly impressive as is the train wreck, I loved the burning book sequence a la Moses, very cutely done. But, the moralising became tedious. the sequence where the preacher admonishes the mother for smacking her child was particularly nauseating and all this did almost spoil the film, Ben Hur handled it much better. But, this was something that happened a lot in that era of movie making and you can forgive it. The saddest part came right at the end when they spoke of no more wars, how naive.

Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans
(1927)

Silent is golden
When you start getting an interest in silent movies there are a few films that are classed as essential viewing and this is one of them. From the opening sequence showing people going on their vacation to the closing moment this movie holds your attention as it is essentially a simple story, but, it's telling elevates it to the sublime. Couple, man disenchanted with his marriage, wife oblivious to this, vamp from city offering man excitement missing in marriage, they plot wife's demise, but, from then on, well, do yourself a favour and see it yourself. The two leads give exceptional performances, although I've noticed that George O'Brien tends to be overlooked in most reviews who heap justified praise on Janet Gaynor, when you consider what other work he did in movies, mainly cowboy movies in the 1930's, he gives an excellent performance. Despite what others have said in previous reviews, this did not go down well with all critics, there is a fantastic review of the time in Photoplay magazine that slates it as "art" and not to meant in the nice way. Oddly enough another masterpiece, Buster Keaton's "The General" is another movie that received harsh criticism at it's release, perhaps two movies that were years ahead of their time. To finish, all I will say is that personally I love this movie.

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