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ADMISSION

Unabashedly, if it weren’t for Sarah Palin I might not have known of Tina Fey, until her recent film career; spending most of my waking hours in darkened theatres, leaves skimpy, and extremely precious moments for television; admittedly, almost shamefully, I confess to never having seen “Saturday Night Live” or “30 Rock”; at this stage it is difficult to see ... Read More »

OZ: THE GREAT AND POWERFUL

1939 still resonates as one of the most iconic year’s in film history; films that to this day are watched and relished consistently: “Gunga Din”, “Goodbye Mr. Chips”, “Stagecoach”, “Dark Victory”, “Wuthering Heights”, and my two favorites, “Gone with the Wind” and “The Wizard of Oz”. So it was with massive trepidation that I went to see “Oz: The Great ... Read More »

THE CALL

Ingenious topic!  Imposing, compelling scenario, married with Halle Berry’s consummate characterization; director Brad Anderson and writer Richard D’ Ovidio open the windows to the innermost bowels, mechanisms of the 911 Emergency “hive” in Los Angeles. The sophistication of the tracking devices;  frenetic cacophony, seconds culminating in success or failure; never having spent a modicum of mental muscle wondering about the ... Read More »

EMPEROR

It is tragic when a film has the genesis of greatness but somehow fizzles in the creation process; such is the case with “Emperor”. A fascinating slice of history, focusing on the demise of Japan’s Emperor Hirohito; immersed in the carnage of Hiroshima (August 6th, 1945) and Nagasaki ( August 9th, 1945); a landscape screaming for redemption, purification after the ... Read More »

STOKER

It is March first and to this point “Stoker” reigns as the worst film of 2013! How and why do beautiful, gifted actors prostitute their talents for detritus; meaningless, nonsensical scenarios? South Korean director Park Chan-Wook (“Oldboy”) fills a luscious, enchanting landscape with nothingness. Commencing at “Richard Stoker’s (luckily, a miniscule role for Dermot Mulroney) funeral, attended by his indolent, ... Read More »

SIDE EFFECTS

Steven Soderbergh gifts audiences exactly what they paid for: terrific acting, compelling script, enough twists, spins to cement one’s attention; thrilling, solid, earnest entertainment. “Side Effects” references the healthy/debilitating effects of prescription medication; medication to ward off the black void of depression, derailment of normalcy; viewers, beyond the age of reason, recognize that we inhabit a pill-popping society; stroll the ... Read More »

BULLET TO THE HEAD

Which might have been a viable alternative to director Walter Hill’s tale of cops gone rogue; shenanigans of corrupt, New Orleans officials, subculture of drugs, tattooed miscreants and at its centrifugal core, gun-for hire “Jimmy Bobo” played robotically by Sylvester Stallone; a sexagenarian, frog-voiced, terrifyingly –muscled, (possible tips from Lance Armstrong); gone are the empathetic years of “Rocky Balboa”, we ... Read More »

PARKER

Never having read the Richard Stark novels (pseudonym of Donald E. Westlake); a neophyte, totally ignorant of the protagonist and his exploits, it was stunningly shocking that “Parker” (stoically handsome Jason Statham) was an untoward character, a criminal with ethics, a pugnacious, tenacious, terrifying personage when doubled-crossed; hence, the fast-paced, pungently gory scenario, revolving around Parker’s revenge and his unique ... Read More »

QUARTET

Dustin Hoffman directs a film that vacillates between the vicissitudes, decrepitude of once- gifted musicians and their resistance or acceptance of their octogenarian state and faded fame; flirting with poignancy but never quite grasping it; the characters become comical “caricatures” of  diminished vitality, spouting maudlin repartee. Michael Cambon was  particularly annoying as the grousing director. The fine moments revolve around ... Read More »

BROKEN CITY

Russell Crowe, sporting the banged “Nero” look, plays the slimy, mendacious, feckless Mayor of New York City, running for re-election; it will take years to erase Crowe’s insipid performance in  “Les Miserables” ; gone is the grit of “John Nash” in “A Beautiful Mind”, poignancy of “James Braddock” in “Cinderella Man” or the  mettle, dignity of “The Gladiator”. Disguising his ... Read More »

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