I just love satellite/cable stations like Turner Classic Movies, Fox Movie Channel and Independent Film Channel since they enable me to see movies that I saw years ago and haven’t seen since thereby helping me cut down on rental fees. Or I can watch movies that somehow slipped by me during their original run. For instance, I recently saw “F.I.S.T” on FMC, a movie starring Sylvester Stallone where he played the head of a truckers union (the movie’s based very loosely on Jimmy Hoffa’s life and for a better movie on the subject watch the Danny DeVito directed “Hoffa”) and it was a highly entertaining... Read More
Paramount Pictures/Dreamworks Pictures
Directed and Written by Oren Peli
Produced by Steven Schneider and Jason Blum
Two annoying characters who spend most of their time arguing while living in a strange house that makes noises is not a horror movie. It’s called marriage. Which can be pretty horrifying itself. But I digress. PARANORMAL ACTIVITY presents itself as a horror movie but it’s the least horrifying movie I’ve ever seen. With perhaps the exception of “Open Water” but let’s not go there.
Once upon a time a... Read More
It’s long been said in Hollywood that if a studio doesn’t screen a movie in advance for critics to review that usually means the studio has no faith in the movie and they expect the critics to tear it to bloody little bits. I’m not so sure about that. I think that sometimes a studio recognizes that critics just won’t get some films. Some films are as uncomplicated as a mayonnaise sandwich and those are the films that audiences will get right away. Such a film is ARMORED which shouldn’t even be called a ‘film.’ The term ‘film’ is too pretentious for this piece of work. It’s a movie,... Read More
One of the things that made “Serenity” so memorable was the performance of Chiwetel Ejiofor as The Operative, the movie’s main bad guy. Even though he was the antagonist and performed a number of truly horrific deeds during the course of the movie, there was no denying that Chiwetel Ejiofor’s acting ability blew everybody away and made The Operative a character that maybe I couldn’t root for or like but I came away from the movie feeling as if I fully understood his motivations. This cat was cruel but full of heart. Emotionless but radiating nothing but feeling. Cold as a February night in... Read More
Back in the 1970’s there was a television and motion picture director who became a legend in his own time. Known as “The Master of Disaster” Irwin Allen is the name that was most associated then and now with the disaster movie. The formula of a disaster movie is very simple: hire an all star cast of actors. Half of them should be one-time Hollywood A-listers who can’t find work anywhere else and the other half should be unknowns or rising stars. Stick them into a disaster such as an earthquake, a mile high skyscraper on fire or an overturned ocean liner far out on the ocean. Stir in multiple... Read More
I strongly suspect that THE SEVENTH SEAL is one of those movies that a lot of people say they’ve seen but they never have. You know what I mean. When you say that you’ve seen THE SEVENTH SEAL it seems to automatically cloak you in a shimmering, gauzy aura of intellectual film respectability. Hey, anybody can say they’ve seen PORKY’S or VIVA LAS VEGAS. But say that you’ve seen one of the true and honest masterpieces of world cinema, directed by the great Ingmar Bergman whose movies take us to existential levels that had never been imagined before he came along, people kinda take a step back... Read More
One the questions I get asked quite frequently by email, Skype, telephone and notes rubberbanded around thrown stones is: “What have you got against horror movies? You’re always knocking horror movies and saying they’re stupid and make no sense.”
That’s actually not true. I’ve said that a whole lot of horror movies make no sense. Even more not only make no sense, they’re stupid. Most horror movies depend on The Idiot Plot: a plot that depends completely and solely on everybody in the movie acting like an idiot to keep the story going. But there are a whole bunch of horror movies... Read More
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