Bored_Dragon

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Reviews

Manhattan
(1979)

"At this point in my life, if this is the best I can do, they shouldn't give me money to make movies."
A forty-year-old twice-divorced man leaves his seventeen-year-old girlfriend for the mistress of his married best friend, while his ex-wife, who left him for another woman, writes a book that reveals all the details of their (sexual) life, marriage, and parting.

Allen wouldn't be Allen if he didn't go to extremes, but although this sounds like a plot for a comedy, he used it for a very good study of romance and close relationships in general. In an hour and a half of this drama, imbued with his characteristic eccentric humor, which often causes discomfort rather than laughter, Allen portrayed realistic characters who, in an unsuccessful search for their own identity and fulfillment, run away from themselves through relationships. Of course, for the characters to be convincing, it is not enough just to be well written, but the performances of Allen himself in the lead role, Diane Keaton, Michael Murphy, Mariel Hemingway, and Meryl Streep do not lag behind. Add that to the beautiful black-and-white photography and music of George Gershwin performed by the New York Philharmonic led by Zubin Mehta, and we get a timeless classic. If you don't like this movie, ask yourself whether it might be because it led you to reexamine your own life which, consciously or subconsciously, you are not fulfilled with.

8/10

Idle Hands
(1999)

"The touching story of a boy and his right hand"
The teenager wakes up on Halloween and discovers that his right hand is possessed and murderous. After unsuccessful efforts to control it, he decides to cut it off, but the hand continues its killing spree on its own. A premise that is irresistibly reminiscent of "The Evil Dead" and the hand is the same one used for "The Addams Family". The film was shot in the area we remember from "Halloween", and the gym where the school dance is held is the one from "Buffy the Vampire Slayer". Everything in this film is obviously "secondhand", but it works great. It is classified as a horror-comedy, but I would rather call it a silly horror that is both a homage and a parody of B horrors and teenage comedies from the end of the last century. Plenty of violence, gore, and disgusting scenes, dull stoned teenagers, a few zombies, a bit of nudity, good music and, like icing on the cake, seventeen-year-old Jessica Alba. The film is somewhat in the style of the series "Ash vs. Evil Dead", but it mostly reminded me of "Todd and the Book of Pure Evil". I really enjoyed it.

7/10

The Manchurian Candidate
(1962)

"I've been having this nightmare..."
This political thriller has great characterization thanks both to the screenwriter and the excellent cast, among which stand out in the first place Angela Lansbury, who was nominated for an Oscar, and then the always welcome Frank Sinatra, Laurence Harvey and, although in a small role, John McGiver. The purpose of Janet Leigh's role is not quite clear to me. The film is about a group of American soldiers who were captured during the Korean War, and then, after thorough brainwashing and reprogramming with hypnotic techniques developed at the Pavlov Institute, returned to America as a secret weapon. Until the collapse of the USSR, the film was banned in most countries behind the Iron Curtain. Visually, it left no impression on me, and the tempo in the first half of the film makes it seem like a year. If it didn't have such a good reputation, I might have given up. Only in the middle does the film take off, the main characters and their complicated and dramatic relationships begin to reveal, there is a real plot and the atmosphere is tenser, all the way to a great, although quite predictable final twist. I think it's a bit overrated, but it's definitely worth a look.

7,5/10

300
(2006)

"This is Sparta!"
Zack Snyder's epic spectacle about the Battle of Thermopylae in the fifth century BC, when the Spartan king Leonidas tried to stop the Persian army with three hundred soldiers, does not pretend to historical credibility, but is an adaptation of the comic book of the same name by Frank Miller. The film mimics the comic-book visuals, with an interesting use of colors and contrasts, spectacularly directed fight scenes, and the amount of "monsters", violence and gore that surpasses most of the slasher horrors I've seen. The criteria by which films receive R rating are quite puritanical and conservative, and in most cases, the reasons for this rating are ridiculous to me, but with the explicitness of violence and to some extent sex, "300" definitely deserves it. But although it has an epic atmosphere and is visually breathtaking, overall it is not particularly strong or impressive. I saw it about a decade ago, and now while watching it again I remembered almost nothing. The story and dialogues occasionally step in unconvincing and even a comic exaggeration, and I think it is too morbid for a story it tells. As a fan of horror and all kinds of twisted movies, it was somewhat suitable for me, but I don't recommend it to a faint-hearted audience and by no means for children.

7,5/10

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
(2007)

"At last! My arm is complete again."
Tim Barton's "Sweeney Todd" is a horror musical set in Victorian London, the story of a barber who returns home after years of exile to take revenge on a man who broke up his family and ruined his life. Although extremely dark and foul, the film is visually beautifully done. It possesses typically Barton's mesmerizing atmosphere and a phenomenal cast, also typically Barton's. Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Alan Rickman, Timothy Spall, Sacha Baron Cohen, Ed Sanders, all fit perfectly into their roles and perform their own music tracks. The film is an adaptation of the famous Broadway musical by Stephen Sondheim, and the only adaptation of any of his works that this composer has approved and supported. However, for me, music is the only reason why I will not give this film the highest rate. Although the lyrics of the songs perfectly guide us through this story and the mental states of its characters, the compositions themselves do not fit into this film in any way. The music was too intrusive and not dark enough and all the time it was diluting otherwise magical atmosphere.

8/10

The Lost Weekend
(1945)

"One's too many an' a hundred's not enough"
"The Lost Weekend" is an adaptation of the eponymous autobiographical novel by Charles R. Jackson from 1944, known for its realistic depiction of a man destroyed by alcohol. This drama strikingly conveys all the horror, despair, and pathetic of alcoholism in a way that could easily disgust the very thought of drinking. The film picked up numerous awards. Ray Milland was so convincing in the role of a ruined man that he won first prize in the Cannes Film Festival, Best Actor in a Leading Role Oscar and a Golden Globe. The movie itself also won all three awards, and Billy Wilder is the first person to win Oscars for screenwriting and directing for the same film. Subjectively, I think the film is quite strenuous, but worth the effort.

8/10

Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa
(2008)

"Someone's been knotty"
The sequel to "Madagascar" (2005) is by no means inferior to the original, and maybe even surpasses it. The reason probably lies in the fact that the same team made both films. Alex, Marty, Melman, and Gloria, accompanied by the inevitable penguins, cross from Madagascar to Africa and join their species with a lot of vicissitudes and healthy humor. "Escape 2 Africa" is full of witty remarks, puns, and references to cult movies and pop culture in general. It relies largely on "The Lion King," but I've also noticed allusions to "West Side Story," "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly," "Planet of the Apes," "Airplane," Indiana Jones, "Twilight Zone" and many others. Beautiful and entertaining for all ages.

8/10

Leave Her to Heaven
(1945)

Colour Noir
The obsessively possessive psycho-woman leads the chosen man into marriage after only a few days of knowing, and then does her best to have him all to herself. She wants his attention twenty-four hours a day and, in order to separate him from all other people, she is ready and capable of anything, even the unthinkable.

This film is considered a color noir and that paradox aroused my curiosity. I could hardly wait to see how they pulled it off and I have to admit that I was quite disappointed when I realized I was watching a classic melodrama of its time. Morbid, yes, and with a touch of thriller, but still only a melodrama. Cornel Wilde seemed stiff to me, Gene Tierney has amazing eyes, and Vincent Price is Vincent Price, I like him too much to be objective. Its story is unusual and interesting, and it deservedly won the Oscar for color cinematography, and yet, possibly because I had different expectations, the general impression that the film left on me was rather weak.

7/10

Paranoid
(2000)

Monodrama
I came across this short film while digging for screen adaptations of Stephen King's work. This is not a classic adaptation, but a seven-minute monodrama in which Tonya Ivey recites and acts King's poem of the same name. The reviews I came across were mostly extremely positive, but, honestly, to me, this was pretty much pointless.

5/10

Laggies
(2014)

"You can't keep putting aside what you want for some imaginary future."
A woman who is approaching her thirties and still doesn't know what she wants from life (like most of us, I would say), accidentally meets a teenager and uses her to escape responsibility, at least for a short time. A romantic comedy elevated from mediocrity by a rather realistic depiction of the mental state that most of us go through at some point in our lives. Some go through it maturely and responsibly, even painlessly, but many bring themselves into tragicomic situations as the heroine of this film. Partly because I found myself in this story to some extent, and partly because of Keira Knightley and Chloë Grace Moretz, I have to rate it at least a little higher than it objectively deserves.

7/10

Novogodisnja Miks Bajka Za Odraslu Decu
(2000)

"But this is not that fairy tale, this is another fairy tale."
New Year's parody of Little Red Riding Hood and The Three Little Pigs performed by Belgrade band "Kuguars". The Wolf is played by Dragan Jovanovic, Little Red Riding Hood by Dejan Matic, and Rade Markovic is responsible for the script, directing, and all other roles. Spoof of slang and primitivism of the nineties in Belgrade, with an animated background and cheap effects, which was hilarious to me twenty years ago, but now has only nostalgic value, and if it lasted more than half an hour I probably wouldn't have the nerve to rewatch it in its entirety.

7/10

Little Caesar
(1931)

"Mother of Mercy! Is this the end of Rico?"
"Little Caesar" is considered the founding father of gangster films. Its success at the time when it came out and the influence on the development and popularity of the genre are indisputable, but "how little kid imagines the rise and fall of the mafia boss" story seemed so silly to me that I can't take this film seriously. With all due respect

6/10

Big Momma's House 2
(2006)

Even funnier
Martin Lawrence reprises the role from the first film, but this time he is the babysitter in the house of the suspect in order to gather evidence. This one has significantly lower ratings on the net, but it was a lot more fun for me than the first one, plus there is Chloë Grace Moretz in it.

7/10

Big Momma's House
(2000)

Simple fun
Martin Lawrence plays an FBI agent, a master of disguise. In order to ambush the runaway convict, he disguises himself as a local old lady and moves into her house across the street from the convict's ex-girlfriend and, of course, falls in love with her. The film does not have any special qualities, but it is quite a decent pastime, if you want to relax and laugh a bit.

6/10

Laura
(1944)

"Murder is my favorite crime."
"Murder is my favorite crime."

A police inspector investigates the mysterious murder of a young woman and, as he snoops around her apartment and talks to people from her environment, the better he gets to know her, the more he falls in love with her. This unusual premise sounds very interesting, and Dana Andrews is very good in the role of an obsessed detective. Through the questioning of people close to the victim, this morbidly romantic film noir shows the decadence of the high society of that time and works quite well as a study of eccentric and pathetic characters. Among them, especially stand out the characters played by Clifton Webb and Vincent Price, who considered this film his best. The film deservedly won an Oscar for Best Cinematography, Black-and-White, and it also has a pretty good soundtrack. But the story itself did not leave quite an impression on me. The "Whodunit" mystery is characterized by a multitude of unexpected twists, as well as seemingly confusing but intelligent and effective ways in which the investigator more or less subtly leads the killer to reveal himself. "Laura" of course also contains these elements, but I was neither intrigued by the way the inspector handles the case, nor were I surprised by the twists. Moreover, for the most part, they were predictable and even naive. When you watch a crime mystery, top cinematography, interesting characters, and good acting are in vain, if you know from the very beginning who the killer is ...

7/10

Witch Hunt
(1994)

"If God doesn't strike down Hollywood, then he owes Sodom and Gomorrah an apology!"
In a world where magic is a part of everyday life, a private detective who refuses to use magic tries to solve a murder, while a corrupt senator organizes a witch hunt, including public burnings.

An unusual fantasy-noir, with a dose of humor that seriously flirts with comedy, comes from the pen of Joseph Dougherty, as a sequel to "Cast a Deadly Spell" (1991), but apart from the basic premise, two films have nothing in common and, although the author is the same, the story is much weaker, and the whole film is worse in every aspect. Dennis Hopper replaces Fred Ward in the lead role, but although I appreciate him as an actor, he did not suit me as a detective Harry Phillip Lovecraft. Penelope Ann Miller is just a pale shadow of Julianne Moore, and the only actor who made some impression in this movie is Julian Sands, although it's not one of his better ones either.

Still, the interesting use of magic and acceptable effects, pleasant music, and a light relaxed atmosphere (which should not fit with mystery, noir, and thriller as genre determinants) make "Witch Hunt" a decent pastime for one viewing.

6/10

Heart of the Beholder
(2005)

Freedom of speech and watching movies
In the 1980s, a chain of video clubs opened in St. Louis. But when the legendary Scorsese's "The Last Temptation of Christ" appears on the shelves, all hell breaks loose on the owner and his family. A group of religious fanatics is trying in every way to force him to withdraw the film from distribution or to kick him out of business, but he decides to fight for freedom of speech and choice at all costs. Years later, he decides to tell his story through this film, which he wrote and directed himself. As this is his first and only film, it is not particularly good in any aspect, but because of the story it tells and the message it sends, it is worth watching.

6/10

The Rage: Carrie 2
(1999)

"We're missing another killer party"
The sequel to the cult film "Carrie" from 1976 is more of recycling or reboot. It tells the essentially same story, placing it in a somewhat different environment, and the way it connects with the original is totally unimaginative. Flashback scenes taken from De Palma's film, as well as excursions in black and white, are completely unnecessary and even irritating, and the ending is pathetic. On the other hand, Emily Bergl in the leading role is very cute and she handled her movie debut quite well, and the film is a "horror" version of a classic high school romantic drama-comedies or a series like "Beverly Hills", so if you like that style you will probably enjoy it. It was a decent pastime for me to relax after a hard day's work.

6/10

The Amityville Horror
(2005)

"Houses don't kill people. People kill people."
"Houses don't kill people. People kill people."

The film debut of the then eight-year-old Chloë Grace Moretz is a remake of the 1979 film of the same name. This is an average "haunted house" horror, based on true events. Decently done and moderately entertaining, it stands out only with the performance of little Chloë, and especially the scene on the roof, which is the only thing that remains etched in my memory even after five years.

6/10

Kiss Me Deadly
(1955)

"I'd rather have the blues than what I've got"
A phenomenal song and the only thing in this film that left a stronger impression on me. I must also praise Ralph Meeker's performance in the lead role, as well as the strong anti-nuclear message that the film sends. I am aware of the objective qualities of this film and the impact it has had on many films and directors to this day, and I can roughly imagine what effect it had on the audience at the time, but it just doesn't work for me. From the beginning to the end, it didn't really hold my attention for a moment and, apart from the aforementioned Nat 'King' Cole song, it left me completely indifferent.

6/10

Fun fact - Albert Dekker and Jack Lambert both play in "The Killers," the last noir I watched just a few days ago, and play very similar roles to these in "Kiss Me Deadly."

Terminator: Dark Fate
(2019)

"I won't be back." - Hope not...
"Dark Fate" is a direct sequel to Cameron's original "Terminators" and ignores movies and series that have come out in the meantime, treating them as alternate timelines. I count that as a plus because the films in question are a desecration of Cameron's legacy. Also, I was glad to see Linda Hamilton and Schwarzenegger again in this franchise. But to be fair, this is no sequel, but a rather pathetic recycling of the first two films bordering on a remake. It is effective in arousing nostalgia among fans, but if we ignore that, the film is completely redundant and its only goal is to milk a few more dollars on account of the old glory.

5/10

Today You Die
(2005)

"You betrayed me, and now I'm coming after you!"
Just another in a row of watchable, but completely redundant and worthless Seagal's nonsenses.

4/10

The Killers
(1946)

"If there's one thing in this world I hate, it's a double-crossing dame"
"If there's one thing in this world I hate, it's a double-crossing dame"

Burt Lancaster's debut film is considered one of the best noir films, was nominated for four Academy Awards, and has 100% at Rotten Tomatoes. At the time, the film was so popular that cinemas worked 0-24 to meet demand. It is based on a short story by Ernest Hemingway, who was extremely pleased with the film after the private screening. A classic story of robbery, murder and double-crossing, told in an unusual way. It starts with the murder of the main character, and then, through a series of flashbacks, it nonlinearly unravels the story. Ava Gardner did not leave a special impression on me in the role of femme fatale, and Edmond O'Brien in the role of the investigator is a pale copy of Bogart. Although I can't say that their performances are bad, none of the entire cast left a memorable impression on me, and the story itself is a noir cliché, so I can't go over

7/10

Pretty Woman
(1990)

"I want the fairy tale"
"I want the fairy tale"

The story is a classic "lived happily ever after" romantic cliché, I don't like either Gere or Julia, and by all objective criteria, the film should be just another one in a sea of similar ones. But it's not. "Pretty Woman" is a cult classic of the genre that marked the nineties and one of those unforgettable movies that you can't help but love. Julia earned an Oscar nomination, she and Gere have incredible chemistry and charisma, and the great atmosphere of the film is further enhanced by music that includes Red Hot Chili Peppers, Bowie, Robert Palmer, Natalie Cole, Vivaldi's "The Four Seasons", Roxette, and Roy Orbison's legendary song "Pretty Woman " after which the film was named.

7/10

Room 6
(2006)

For Chloë fans only
"Room 6" is a film that tries to be a mindfak horror, but fails in almost all fields. The idea is interesting, but so confusingly elaborated that instead of keeping you on the edge of a chair, it will keep you on the edge of boredom. The acting is not good enough to connect us with the characters, the dialogues are poorly written, and the overall atmosphere leaves the impression of an amateur film. Only the scenes with Chloë Grace Moretz have some strength, but no matter how good she is and how much I like her, she can't save a failed movie on her own with just a supporting role. I don't regret spending my time, but I advise you to skip it unless you're a big fan.

4/10

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