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Christmas in Vienna

A mediocre screwball comedy set in Christmas in Vienna
Works for me as a run of the mill 1930s mode omantic screwball comedy but little else. Misses the elements of the heroine of a successful Hallmark Romance, the "echtes Wiener Blut" spirit of Vienna and the true meaning of Christmas. Rarely do the high standards lo Hallmark allow rhis calibre of product to be shown as premiere.

One Royal Holiday

the guy this time is needier than the girl
A girl not needy or wanting helps a guy who is. Nice plot twist but the photography, dialogue and pacing don't work for a Hallmark movie .Better presented as a romantic comedy than a Hallmark Christmas romance.

Beauty & the Briefcase

charming Hillary Duff romance
The chemistry between Michael MacMillan and Hillary Duff keeps this romance worth watching. The storyboard is familiar yet the editing and dialogue are worth watching. Hillary goes undercover in an investememt banking firm at first insecure the saving both the firm and her soulmate CEO. Too much been there done that from other Hallmark romances to be within the top honors group

Flying High

early busby berkeley musical
The choreographer's production numbers are as talented and done wit areh aplomb as in any Busby Berkeley musical. Charlotte Greenwood and Bert Lahr are at the top of their game in screwball comedy. What keeps this film out of the top or perfect 10 range is the screwball nature lacking the depth and understanding of perhaps two years later Busby Berkeley's amasterpiece "42nd Street/

Easter Parade

Brillaint scenes do not make a brilliant movie
This lavish forties musical certainly has a few highlights of the forties genre among them Ann Miller's TAKING AWAY THE BLUES, Peter Lawford's socially upsscale dialogue. Jules Munshin's twp scenes and the duets of Fred Astaire and Judy Garland- The Midnight Train and COUPLE OF SWELLS. The picture itself has miscasting among them Astaire a last minute replacement for a role built o an injured Gene Kelly . Whether or mot the wait for the dazzle isn't dimmed by mostly mediocrity is the viewer's choice


a much disliked protagonist who repents at the end
EMMA is an early nineteenth century Jane Austen novel abouit a twenty one year old meddling busybody incorrectly assuming she understands and assists her neighbors. The plot is the reverse of most Austen plots centered pm a charming worthy if not noticed heroine finds general commuity acceptance at the end . Her EMMA plot has the heroine called to task near the end to finally repent and in doing so find community respect and happiness. Most two hour screenings of Austen plots have some better features and others not as good as the lot . I thinkk the characters not well portrayed in this version ad Knightly, John, and Isabella. Mrs. Bates. Mr. Elton, Mr. Woodhouse, Mr. and Mrs .Cole Harriet,. Mr. Martin and Jane Farfax seem the closest to Austen's intentions.

The Road Home for Christmas

One of the finer Hallmark Christmas Romance Movies
The perhaps not truly original premise is extremely well photographed and edited and ticks off every button viewers expect of a Hallmark Christmas Romance. After merely an interesting and somewhat enticing opening scene the rest of the film is pure dynamite


A few good points in an otherwise not enjoyable film
The good points are a closer truth to how the upper classes of Germany and Austria treated their servants than in other films of the SISSI biography gender. The movie is however for a general audience too brutal in its graphic little child abue and war scenes. The storyline is rarely historic and the fiming other than good close up principal character interaction is not among the better in the genre.

White Zombie

superb limited thirties technology Bella Lugosi horror
As fine a thirties limited single camera black and white technology horror with Bela Lugose at his finest. I do not think it wiil interes those neither groupies of pre code single camera black and white films of or of classic horror filmes the only reason I would give this outstandiing example below ten. It clicks every genre button. Eerie fantasy locale.Lugosi at is best. Men and women not in street clothes. Ridiculous looking zombies. The worthy triumph. Momenst of genuine fright. Campy to the modenr viewer used to modern technology, editijg, casting and filming.


an excellent war movie making historic fiction of a true story
This 2004 motion picture extravaganxa has some of the finest battle scenes ever recorded on film and as among the first to make half a billion dollars in international profit. It sets scenes from Homer's ILIAD and the opening section of his ODESSY. A few historic facts about the first envy of European monarchs of the middle east with three quarters of the world's natural resources and native population are mentioned in the magnificent war film having minimal historic truth about the bronze age of history. A few name stars including Brad Pitt, Orlando Bloom, Brendan Gleeson and Sean Bean round a huge cast of actors not that well known today. The idea in the bronx age Troy controlled the world distribution of bronze outside the silk road th reason Agamemnon of Sparts hoped to conquer it and failed to benefit from this after he burned it is not even mentioned in the film which is why I give this fantastic war extravaganza film a 7.


its fictious storyline mimics my own life in this era
The story takes place in the aftermath of the world war forcing couples who dreamed of one life to settle for another and refugees hoping to recreate what they enjoyed before the war trying to set it up again in their new location. The name stars include Elizabeth Taylor, Cuddles Szakall, Spring Byington, George Murphy and Mary Astor. My own childhood in this era was so much like that of the ficttiious title character. My relations and contacts in this ficititious story were so like theirs the movie seems realistic of the post war shock of the era. As such it is nostalgia for those who lived it and a peek into a forgotten past for the curious.

Hollywood Canteen

Nostalgia for thpse who rember
And a learning opportunity for those not alive during the secomd worIld war. Those of us with no one left to share our memories revel in this memory so aptly filmed. Millenium women and men no longer think, act, feel and look they way they did during the second world war. We se most of the Warner brother stars as they are in real life not the way they were filmed at the time. Reminiscing and inspiring

Move Over, Darling

funny but not better than the original film
This film is a precise storyboard remake of MY FAVORITE WIFE. a successful black and white comedy screened two decades earlier. Its familiar cast personalities include Doris Day, Thelma Ritter. Polly Bergen. James Garner, Fred Clark. Don Knotts and Elliot Ried. Well done but not very inventive and too copycat for a top rating.

Small Town Girl

Busby Berkeleys final experiment
Berkeley was famous for major production numbers ending a musical capping the film's excitement. His 1933 42ND STREET remains today among the most still timely and nationally honored Hollywood films. 20 years later his lineup of nine top stars still dazzles - Jane Powell, Farley Granger, Billie Burke, Bobby Van, Nat King Cole, Fay Wray, Chill Wills, Ann Miller and Cuddles Szakall. He has remade a small town American film of the thirties about a city boy falling in love in a country village with a country girl. By not focusing his production numbers close to the final credits and using a less today familiar theme to a general audience than backstage in theater as he often did this is an enticing and entertaining film not necessarily the cup of tea of all current American audiences the reason for a 9.

The Mad Miss Manton

Problem with viability of its photography, editing and direction
Fonda and Stanwyck are two of the most honored screen performers of their era. Fonda was always sensational when cast in comedy and rocks this movie. Stanwyck to my taste is so controlling of what she chooses for comedy the photography, direction, editing and even the manner in which she moves and speaks for comedy are not to my taste. I could never wach in one sitting all of CHRISTMAS IN CONNECTICUT and have trouble even not turning off my DVR recording of this film every six pr seven minutes/

Come Live with Me

Perfect chemistry of Hedy Lamarr and James Stewart
The plot is a ridiculous romantic fantasy starting out in the rain in a big city ending up in magnificent weather on a country farm. Stewart and Lamarr open in trouble lost in the city and gradually move out to magnificent country weather where a ridiculous story twist impels the obvious ending. Hedy plays the same character type as in Algiers this time in comedy not melodrama. The grandma in the final scenes is priceless certainly their equal in making the low budget black and white screen come to life. Donald Meek and Veree Teasdale give superb performance in supporting roles.v

The Mummy Returns

One of the best of its genre
Hits all the buttons of a great action adventure movie.Brendan Fraser and Rachel Weisz shine as the lead couple as does the silent no lines Dwane Johnson as a recently incarnated defeated ancient warrior. Humor,. technical effects, reference to a popular legend. interesting set of scenarios from thirties London to ancient Egypt - works on every level.

The Remains of the Day

fascinating tale of those late in life regretting their choices
EThis film is set many years after the Lord of the Manor for whom the former butler and housekeeper worked was degraded in social standing and his goods and properties placed on public sale. An American businessman who stayed as a guest between the world wars keeps on its butler who tries to win back to work the former hou. Hughsekeeper now married and living in a seaside resort. His cross country trip to find out what she is up to is punctuated here and there by realistic tales of what upstairs and downstairs was once really like in a grand manor hours pulling no punches. A lar group of top stars not limited to Steeve Reeves, Ben Chaplain, Emma Thompson, Anthony Hopkins, Peter Cellier and Hugh Grant do wonders with the material which stands out as a paen to English Lords suckered into helping the Nazi cause between the world wars. It is also a paean to those who made the stay vs leave choices once things go sour to later each regret not revel in what seems obviously best for them at the time.

The Mummy

Brilliant remake of a 1930's classic
The first Hollywood hit had Boris Karloff under the bandages primarily acting with his piercing eyes. Arnold Vosloo rocks the role in this of any remakes. The major motion picture personalities of Rachel Weisz and Brendan Frazer have style , stage presence and extrardinary chemistry. The landscape photpgraphy of a simulated ancient Egypt could not be grander or more panoramically filmed Hits all the action/adventure, tales of old myth and horror buttons as a truer classic than the famous original.

Lovely to Look At

A transition 1950's musical make of ROBERTA
Fifties transitional big budget movies focus on a directorial mode and visual craft which today seem stilted. When remasteredt o DVD as superbly crafted with major personalities today remembered they nevertheless seem of less interest to millenium musical buffs than would be the surivors of even the thirties, forties and sixties musical. Traditonal and original formats from the fifties do DO survive and I have collected many remastered DVDs of them. Transitional ones try to meld contemporary ballet with stilted visual actor speech and song which suggests to millenium buffs stale, unsatisfying yet physically glorious. The soundtrack of this DVD is for some reason not remastered which to me lowers its rating. Thirteen years later Ann Margret, Edie Adams, Louis Jordan, Chad Everett and others rocked a quirkier remake about a sales manager in a New York Salon sent to Paris as the buyer for this salon not the half owner of one in Paris yet it works on every level and today survives as DYNAMITE.

The Thrill of It All

Perfectly presented and balanced sixties romantic comedy
Arlene Frances, Doris Day, James Garner and Elliot Ried in the four most prominent roles rock with comic charm and superb chemistry in as perfectly presented and balanced sixties mimic of a thirties screwball comedy as has been preserved for future DVD posterity. Its heart, message, editing, photography, plot and superbly drawn character portrayals highlight this "mimic of the great American depression screwball comedy" revival for the American civil rights and the suburban exodus era. Superb

A Cinderella Story

charming quirky and heartwarming
Hillary Duff Shires with Chad Michael Murray and Regina King playing the character types they often plan. Jennifer Coolidge shines as the evil stempther. A different take on the CINDERELLA STORY which stands on its own right as a masterpiece. There is heart as well as brilliant photography as well as a message worthy of a Sunday pulpit,

A Christmas in Royal Fashion

familiar plot, sound track better than visual
The plot has been done before. Someone's assistant is at the last minute askedto substitute for his or her employer ending up the love interest of his or her client. This movie has a decent sound track which is its most promising feature but not an interesting single camera visual which is its drawback.

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Brillaint visual marred by an unpleasant sound track
Those of us who remember the 1950's in downtown Manhattan and as well the Borscht Belt summervacation circuit in the Catskills marvel at the authenticity of the visual. Those not in the know can picture how we lived in these times. The problem to me is the sound track so annoying I cannot watch a segment without turning it off. Take your picka and choose accordingly

Merry Kissmas

Doris Roberts shines in a copycat holiday romance done more than once
Doris Roberts is the bright spot in this remake of A CHRISTMAS KISS. This remake is four years after the original on another cable channel. The formula has been used in multiple holiday romances. This one is watchable once to the end but definitely not a keeper. The panning shots are not the finest in the genre nor is the mishmash plot.

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