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Slutty Summer

Dreadful waste of a Netflix choice...
Ugh. Ouch. Craptastic.

This is such a bad film it boggles the mind. I feel guilty that the postage for my netflix mailing was spent on this horrific piece of garbage. Stereotypical vapid garbage that is criminal in the way it took precious funding away from other potential film projects. Some of the actors are nice to look at but most of the time you wish there was a MUTE button on it.

I have to say one of the irritating things throughout the film was its inability to have good sound direction. I kept hearing the hum of outside traffic and the outside scenes were even worse. The friends/coworkers in the restaurant were such awful irritating characters that I wouldn't spend a few minutes with than a movie-length.

Silent Running

Great movie beyond the dated aspects
I've caught this movie a number of times over the years. Usually on TV when its been on.

Ned Beatty I should say a few things first. I've always considered Ned Beatty a very odd actor. I don't get exactly how he had a career beyond the last 1960s biker-hippy movies he was in (although he is fantastic as the old kook -- a role he was born to play -- on HBO's "Big Love"). I wouldn't normally be attracted to a movie with him in the lead role. And certainly not in a movie where he plays the sole role for most of the film (a'la Tom Hanks in Castaway). I DON'T KNOW WHY BUT I ALWAYS FIND MYSELF DRAWN TO THIS FILM!!! I sort of sit there and watch it all the way through.

The Message As a few others have commented the ecological message can be a little heavy handed at times, but I still find the film strangely compelling. I don't consider it a Sci-Fi film. The effects aren't that great (even for its time) and the robotics are laughable. But it still has a haunting quality to it. It's a dystopic view of a possible future when humanity flushes its natural resources down the tubes. One man makes a radical choice to save the last forests. It's crazy at times, yes. But still its a character study.

The Music/Baez As for people who hate the film, I think this film would've been improved A THOUSAND FOLD if they released it with a new soundtrack. The Joan Baez soundtrack of AWFUL! Treacly message heavy crap. Seriously, this film could use a redub. I'm not sure what would soundtrack would be better but Baez's songs make this little more than a "Billy Jack" movie with a better known warbling folk songstress. I think if you subtracted the Baez songs all the people who hated this film would find it a hell of a lot more palatable.

I have to agree with commentators who've mentioned the charming way that the three robots "emote" (there's no better word for it) so well. They really are expressive even though they're such simple objects. You find yourself sympathizing with them in a strange way. Part of this is Beatty's relating to them. Sort of hysterically silly at times but still effective in taking them as real characters.

The ending is odd and perhaps implausible but this movie still holds up for the questions it brings up for the viewer. We are still dealing with many of these concepts so the film is visionary and ahead of its time in many ways. Its look at a heavily corporatized future (which is really there for people who notice it and not an explicit statement) it pretty visionary too. We're living in that reality.

Watch it. You'll enjoy it.


A bit staged but great dialogue
This really plays much like a filming of a play. The direction is almost minimal. That's probably for the good given that what remains is a great bit of showmanship.

Alan Bates is stunningly good as the lead Butley. He's a brilliant professor and writer at the end of his career. There is some amazing scheming between his character and younger more promising acolytes that he is jealous of.

The only reason to watch this is for the dialogue which is sharp and literate -- one wonders what became of this. The version I saw was a film version of the play. Not much of production value but the playwright's craft is still preserved. Even mentioning all of this, it's amazing how well this holds up almost 40 years later. That's probably due to Bates' bravura performance.


Excellent Film About an Important Chapter in American History
I saw this film at a screening in Washington, DC a few days before it aired on HBO. This film is just a stunning piece of historical re-enactment. It tells the story of the student walkouts in Los Angeles in 1968. It is a chapter in the history for equal education and civil rights that deserves to be better known. Fortunately Walkout does a great job of telling this true and heartfelt story about young people standing up for their dignity and for their future. The cast is quite good and believable. I felt moved to experience what life was like in the late 1960s for Latinos. I know this is try because I heard the stories from my older brother and peers. They lived through many of these indignities and it was great to have Walkout tell the story to many who don't know it. See this movie if you want to know how we have come to be a bit more equal and to see the power of people standing for what is right...Justice.

Flash Gordon

Beyond the Stench -- It's a guilty pleasure
This movie is so bad it's really camp. Almost every role is played over the top by each actor. The actors range from the absurdly horrible (Timothy Dalton, Sam Jones & Melody Anderson) and the capable but hysterically overacting (Von Sydow and Topol).

The costumes are really over the top and garish. The music still holds up, basically due to its rise to iconic status. Some of the characters are so bad you hope Ming will get one of them. Frankly Max Von Sydow plays Ming so over the top that you find yourself hoping he'll prevail. I see the set decorators wisely steered away from using wallpaper. The stars overact so much it would all be burned off.

Having said all of this, I still love this movie. Its such enjoyable fun. I think mostly because Von Sydow and Peter Wyngarde are having such a good time -- its sad when Wyngarde's character dies. He's so tasty a character.

The Americanization of Emily

One of the Best *yet overlooked* films around
I loved this movie so much that it left me upset that it took so long to hear about it. I watched it in 2005 and was frankly stunned with some of the dialogue and the plot. It's an amazing movie and daring for its time. Heck! For a major movie it would be daring today.

Its commentary on war and patriotism is still sharp and certainly not dated. The cast is first rate. Julie Andrews does a great job as the thoughtful British soldier girl and James Garner is electric during his soliloquies. Those are just stunning to listen to. I wish I could find them online. It's debatable whether this qualifies as an anti-war film or not. It does some double taking but still includes some of the most incisive dialogue about truth and "real courage." Rent this immediately.


A pleaser
This isn't a perfect movie. But it sure is a crowd pleaser. Whenever it's on TV I can't help but watch it. The cast is really stunning. This movie is not exactly star-studded as much as stars-to-be-studded. Look for future stars throughout the film. Gabriel Byrne appears in one of his first film roles. Liam Neeson's role as Gawain is one of his first movie roles. Look out for future TV and Film superstar Patrick Stewart in the role of Leondegrance. Helen Mirren chews up the scenery as Morgana. She's one of the real pleasures in this film. That being said, even the minor parts are played with such great force and clarity -- no one goes subtly. John Boorman is to be applauded for making a great film telling an age old story.


Silly Fun
This film deals with two flies in a bar. The animation is done in claymation style. The execution and animation are quite good and effective. The jokes themselves are silly and at times border on gross-out humor.

The characters, voiced by Andy Seymour and Todd Tellford, are well defined as two "regular joes." They are basically hanging out in a bar and getting drunk from the beer-puddles. The funniest scenes involve a bug zapping machine. Its funny seeing what they come up with.

This is an Australian short film. I saw it as part of Spike & Mike's DVDs. It can be found on their "Contagious" volume which came out in 2005. If you see it on this collection, be sure to check out the short titled "Flyboy." It deals with the same subject matter in a completely different way.


Worth it just to see...
Worth it just to see Blythe Danner shoot herself. Or does she?!? Am I the only one who thinks Blythe Danner is HEAVILY OVERRATED?? I'm sure she's a perfectly nice person in real life. But in Futureworld she really destroys what little good there is in this movie. Seeing as there's very little good in this movie, its not much work for Blythe. The one joy is seeing the actors shoot each other. I took a little bit of guilty pleasure thinking that their dopplegangers were basically meting out some critical judgment by way of electro-laser-gun. I actually enjoyed Peter Fonda in Easy Rider. But I always wondered what destroyed his acting career (before his comeback a few years ago in Ulee's Gold). After watching Futureworld this mystery has been solved.

Getting to Know You

Well filmed short film on lesbian romance
Nicely acted and well produced, this short film deals with modern lesbian romance. Keener plays a hip young cartoonist. I think it's loosely based on "Dykes to Watch Out For" Alison Bechdel. There's a very funny phone sex scene.

Dana Delany is a real downer in this film. I'm not sure why Delany wanted to take such a humorless part. She looks sleepy through most of her parts.

Fortunately Keener is an up and an asset to the whole project. There's a great scene that illustrates the perils of online dating -- when someone isn't who they appeared to be.

There are some cute animated sequences in between the action.

Rock Hudson

Huge Gaps Weaken this Movie
First of all this movie was made for television. Plot-wise it has a cheap movie of the week feel. The acting isn't bad. In fact the leads are all quite good and in some cases stellar. Any weaknesses in performances have more to do with really bad makeup. The ageing is horribly done and not very convincing.

At one point "Rock" says, "some poor woman is missing her makeup kit" and it led me to wonder if the "poor woman" was in fact the film's makeup director. Dreadful stuff.

A few others have commented on the accuracy of the characterizations -- I believe they're alluding to whether Rock Hudson gave Mark Christian AIDS without telling him he had it -- perhaps the most damning (and criminal) thing in the film. I'm not sure anyone knows other than the principles. George Nader is missing from the entire film.

There are some serious gaps in this film. Massive gaps actually. The film presents the picture that Hudson's career was over by the mid 1960s and he retired from acting. Nothing could be further from the truth. The film omits the SEVEN seasons Rock Hudson played the lead in McMillan & Wife -- the popular detective series of the 1970s. For many of us it was our first introduction to Hudson.

The other gap is the unbelievable prudishness in presenting Hudson's relationships. No kisses and very little tenderness. It is deceptive and a lie to present his relationships this way.

There's a better film out there demanding to be made.


A beautiful story, a lovely film
This is really an amazing small film. The acting is stunning and the story is unlike what we've seen here in the United States. It's refreshing to see different kinds of gay people and different understandings of family. There were so many scenes that I absolutely loved and thought to myself, "that would *never* be allowed in an American film. This movie is daring in a compassionate way and it was a total pleasure to see.

I won't give too much away but I left this film thinking I'd seen a wonderful real world and I also felt a longing for this quality of storytelling in American cinema. Humane and warm and real.

Sweet Charity

Crazy fun - a time capsule
Okay, the music in this piece is just great.| But the real wonder is the set pieces, the costumes (by Edith Head), and the pictures of New York circa the early 70s. Its a time capsule really.

The plot is silly really, but besides the point.

The dancing is truly stunning and frankly I'm trying to figure out what movie has this kind of visual stimulation -- equal parts psychedelic freak-out and Italian haute couture craziness.

The acting is mixed. Not one of Ms. McClain's best efforts. Ricardo Montalban is funny to watch as he chews through the scenery and Sammy Davis, Jr. is an incandescent delight.

The Sunday Morning Stripper

Silly Little Fun
This short film was cute. Not really much to it really but well executed. It basically deals with a small church that is losing money. They're about to close and the electrical system needs to be completely redone.

One Sunday one of the parishioners is singing a solo with the choir. All of a sudden she starts taking off her clothes. All the men start salivating and the women are really offended. It becomes the talk of the small town. Suddenly more people start coming to the church.

The movie has a pleasant, if totally unbelievable wrap-up.

The music isn't bad. Sort of cheesy contempo-gospel.

Run Ronnie Run

Excellent Fun
I only caught a few episodes of Mr. Show, so my comments aren't from a fan. This movie works in a crazy way. Its not a series of sketches but a sustained meditation on fame and southern culture. It's not the greatest film ever made but there are a few things that make it rise above the mediocrity that's out there.

I can only imagine what this could've been if the studio hadn't ticked off Cross and Odenkirk. They pushed it straight to DVD. But its still a funny movie.

I was enjoying this movie and then I got to the cameo performance by Mandy Patinkin and was agog and just doubled over with laughter. Not only is the conceit funny as hell, its just so perfectly executed. You have to know Mandy Patinkin's work to realize how exceptionally well-crafted that bit is. Its really a stunning piece of comedy. And its not even central to the movie. *THAT'S* the level of comedy we're talking about here.

Just hysterical. There are a few other bits to enjoy. A fictional music video is pretty entertaining as is an opening cartoon homage that everyone will recognize.

Do yourself a favor and watch this movie.

You'll find plenty to enjoy.

Edison, the Man

beautifully executed, but historically inaccurate
Edison in this version comes across as a kindly soul, sort of "Santa the inventor" -- kind to one and all.

Don't look for historical accuracy of any kind in this film. Although the acting is nicely done. Spencer Tracy is a constant delight. He even gets to play the organ in one scene! Tracy and Co.'s contributions rate it a six, but it certainly doesn't deserve anything more.

I especially loved the one-handed Morse-code tapping Edison. One doesn't need to know much about Edison to realize pretty quickly that this is sheer hagiography.

There is even a court room scene between gas and electrical lighting. Pretty fun.

Stargate SG-1: Enemy Mine
Episode 7, Season 7

derivative in so many ways
This episode is so derivative in many ways that it staggers the imagination. What is amazing is that the producers are honest enough to name it "Enemy Mine" and thus credit one of their sources for material -- the Lou Gossett movie of the early 1990s.

Second, the name Chaka for one of the alien characters is disappointing too. Disappointing as it reminds us of the horrible 1970's kiddie Saturday morning show, "Land of the Lost." The character in question is about as interesting as that first Chaka.

This is certainly not filler. SG1 has too many psychobabble character study episodes that are ALL worse than this episode.

Nick Fury: Agent of Shield

The only thing you need to know....
I'm not spoiling anything by telling you the most important thing about this movie ( I *HAVE* to use that word?!?)...that one thing would be...


Oh. Seems I have to include at least ten lines of text. Well, lets see then... the key ingredients to this train wreck are:


Wow. I just tried typing a list of David Hasselhoff's name for each and every reason this is a dreadful waste of time. But I'll be danged that this IMDb software is so clever it can tell that I'm trying to pack the review. What can I say? Nick Fury: Agent of Shield is not really worthy of ten lines of original text. I mean the movie itself doesn't contain 10 lines of original text. Horrid.

A horrid piece of garbage.

The Fury

Dreadful piece of schlock
Really dreadful piece of schlock. I can only imagine that the author of the book it was based on was disappointed (or was handsomely paid) for the rights.

I can't complain about the acting, such as it is. It features a good cast but there's not much they can do with what they're given.

I have never been impressed with Brian De Palma. I find his work highly overrated and over the top. What he does to poor poor Cassevetes in this is just awful.

The worst part is the very end and in a way reveals the De Palma's worst instincts. The Amy Irving character basically makes him explode. This is gory enough. But it gives De Palma an opportunity to show the body exploding (and it being special effects circa 1978 its not anything realistic) from five or six angles. I mean you see the body explode over and over again as if the Amy Irving character used her blue eyed powers to explode and stitch together again and explode the body again and again. Just ridiculous stuff. If Mystery Science Theater was still around and lasted for another 15 years, I have no doubt they would've gotten around to screening "The Fury."

A waste of talent all around.

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