Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Cool Hand Luke (1967)

Road Prison 36:
Yeah, well. Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand.

Paul Newman was nominated for an Oscar and George Kennedy received one for his work in this allegorical prison drama. Luke Jackson (Paul Newman) is sentenced to a stretch on a southern chain gang after he's arrested for drunkenly decapitating parking meters. While the avowed ambition of the captain (Strother Martin) is for each prisoner to "get their mind right," it soon becomes obvious that Luke is not about to kowtow to anybody. When challenged to a fistfight by fellow inmate Dragline (George Kennedy), Luke simply refuses to give up, even though he's brutally beaten. Luke knows how to win at poker, even with bad cards, by using his smarts and playing it cool. Luke also figures out a way for the men to get their work done in half the usual time, giving them the afternoon off. Finally, when Luke finds out his mother has died, he plots his escape; when he's caught, he simply escapes again. Soon, Luke becomes a symbol of hope and resilience to the other men in the prison camp -- and a symbol of rebelliousness that must be stamped out to the guards and the captain. Along with stellar performances by Newman, Kennedy, and Martin, Cool Hand Luke features a superb supporting cast, including Ralph Waite, Harry Dean Stanton, Dennis Hopper, Wayne Rogers, and Joe Don Baker as members of the chain gang. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 126 mins
Cool Hand Luke (1967)

What we've got here is (a) failure to communicate From Wikipedia

What we have here is basically a narcissistic little brat that was only concerned about himself. It was a movie about "I". One of the aspects that came out was how alone Luke was. Even when he destroyed public property he had no one to share with, and when he was on the run he again left his only friend. When he had competition to prove his worth, it was in boxing and eating eggs. The only team competition that he engaged in was the street scene but again it was more of an emphasis on the two team leaders and not the cooperative aspects of the teams.

While the Liberals may look up to such a man, he was a selfish little man that instead of being with his mother as she passed away, he felt destruction of public property that served no purpose-I can see. What good was it to cut the heads off parking meters? Was he against the government dictating payments? The film clearly leaves more questions than it answers as to WHY?

After rejecting friends and family, society finally had enough and he was just quietly disposed of. Basically a case of Into the Wild (2007) without the wilderness destroying the man. Both were of men seeking suicide through acceptable means.

Noting brave or especially noble about the character of Luke. Even the phrase, "What we've got here is (a) failure to communicate", is really not that interesting.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Mirror (1997)

The story is rather thin, but the neat twists make this Iranian drama, of a feisty little girl trying to find her way home, interesting. The girl's journey begins when she exits school and discovers that her mother is not outside awaiting her. Worried, the child, garbed in traditional clothes and sporting a cast, calls home, but no one answers. Though she doesn't know her own address, she is pretty sure she can find her way and so boards what looks like the correct bus. During the journey she watches the people around her. When they finally arrive at the terminus, she realizes that she has gone the wrong way. A friendly driver puts matters to rights, but by this time the child has become petulant and it is at this time that the course of the film surprisingly transcends itself to become a film about making a film. ~ Sandra Brennan, All Movie Guide
The Mirror (1997)
The film at that time loses much of its refinement in editing as the little girl basically walks off the set and continues her "journey" home including dropping off the microphone to the gentleman that had hired her and at which time the sound then is lost and there is some back and forth at her house where we only get the sound from the outside of the house.

Interesting film and the young girl made the film enjoyable. Back-dropped against the repressive regime of Iran, I have to wonder what will happen to this girl as she becomes an adult. This also is another perspective of the lives of women in Iran as compared to the other fine films to come out of Iran lately.

Barsaat (1949)

Raj Kapoor directs this meditation on love. Pran (Kapoor), a wealthy lad with a poetic soul, is passionately in love with impoverished country lass Reshma (Nargis). When she attempts to run away with Pran -- over the objections of her traditionalist father -- she slips and falls into a river, and apparently drowns. As Pran and his womanizing buddy Gopal (Premnath), who just cruelly dumped another girl, Neela (Nimmi), are driving through the country, they are more than a little surprised to see Reshma about to be married to a fisherman (K.N. Singh). Pran runs off the road and wrecks his car, halting the wedding, and eventually marries Reshma. Gopal is crushed and penitent when he learns that Neela committed suicide. ~ Jonathan Crow, All Movie Guide
Barsaat (1949)
Yes, in the very Indian tradition of tragic love stories. Neela death was nearly gratuitous since most of the problems faced by the heroes had been overcome and that only this one last loose end was not tied to join the last couple together even as the potential groom was willing to give up everything for her. But it was expected at least one death had to occur and I so expected that it was going to end as Romeo and Juliet when one person had died or appeared to be dead and the remaining one was overcome by grief.

This one has the typical villains with the man that while saves Reshma he decides to make her his bride and holds her captive as a slave for his personal pleasures. The father also plays the part of the bad father that is willing to kill his daughter rather than let her marry the man of her choice.

Not sure why the rating at Blockbuster was so low at 2 stars but I think it deserved 3.5 stars.

Choker Bali

Chokher Bali (literally translated to "sand in the eye", figuratively to "constant irritant") (Bengali: চোখের বালি) is a Bengali film based on the novel Chokher Bali by Rabindranath Tagore. It was directed by Rituparno Ghosh in 2003 and stars Prasenjit as Mahendra, Aishwarya Rai as Binodini and Raima Sen as Ashalata. Ashalata and Binodini refer to each other as Chokher Bali. The other major characters are played by Lily Chakravarty (as Rajlakshmi, Mahendra's mother) and Tota Roy Chowdhury (as Behari, Rajlakshmi's adopted son). The film was later dubbed into Hindi and was released internationally under that language.

Chokher Bali (film) From Wikipedia
Some of the songs were still in Begali we presume since my wife could not understand the language of them. It does mention the language Bengali when the petition is stated in English under the time of British rule.

The strange thing for me was the character of Binodini which is played by Aishwarya Rai. She has played in numerous roles and is an overall good actor but in this part she hysterically laughs at times which seems inappropriate at best and tasteless in the social settings she was in. I am sure it was written like that but made her character look so narcissistic and petty which is not in the least her normal role. Other times she played the part of the contrite widow. Which the film also did not let us forget including bringing up the funeral pyre of widows and their second class status in society. Close to the end she gets some jewelry and tries to seduce the brother but he rejects her. I do not notice how the film rectified that she claimed she was penniless widow and then have the jewelry near the end of the movie.

For the above reasons I only gave this a rating of 2.5/5
But no one died as both me and my wife assumed would happen...
Choker Bali

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Very much in the genre of young superhero action figures with almost cartoonish stereotype heroes. There is one death which for Indian films is expected even if just for younger audiences. The strongest of the young guests is chiseled as much as Bruce Lee with many of the same moves used.
When the young guest of honor is kidnapped from a birthday party, five courageous kids risk everything to rescue their friend. Along the way, they learn that the kidnapper, Balbir Gupta, is an old partner of the abducted child's father, recently released from prison and looking to settle a score. Directed by S.V. Rajendra Singh, this action adventure stars Amrish Puri, Sundar Krishna Urs, M.B. Shetty, Jayanthi and Manjula.
Starring: Jayanthi, Manjula
Director: S.V. Rajendra Singh
Genre: Foreign
Format: Full Screen ...
Language: Hindi
Subtitles: English

Aaj Ke Sholey (1985)
It ends on a near comical fight out with the evil Gupta and his many henchmen and some film actors along with the young children.

Overall an enjoyable film even if slightly juvenile.

No information at Blockbuser: Aaj-Ke-Sholey.

Salaam Namaste (2005)

A couple navigates the ups and downs of romance and imminent parenthood while setting up house in a new land in this Bollywood romantic comedy. Nikhil Arora (Saif Ali Khan), known to most of his friends as Nick, is a successful chef who has become something of a celebrity, with a following in Australia. Nick agrees to appear on a radio show hosted by Ambar Malhotra (Preity Zinta), an attractive woman who is finishing up her college degree, but working out the arrangements proves difficult, and by the time they meet face to face, Nick and Ambar have already exchanged a number of harsh words. When the two actually walk into the studio together, they feel a strong mutual attraction, but given their history, neither is sure if they should trust their feelings. After several dates, Nick makes a proposal -- he is going to Melbourne for a year, and if Ambar wants to join him, they can see if they could get along living under the same roof. Ambar agrees, but before long she has some surprising news for Nick -- she's pregnant with his baby, a prospect that does not make him happy. As the two face the reality of their situation as parents-to-be, Nick wonders if he's ready to give up the bachelor's life he's long enjoyed, and Ambar struggles to adjust to life down under. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Salaam Namaste (2005)
Definitely a nice romantic comedy worth watching. There is quite a community of Indians in Melbourne as the film shows including one character that has a white woman as his girlfriend. The funny thing about his character is that he speaks Hindi with an Australian accent.

Nick also has issues with his Indian name and thus partially his heritage at least according to Ambar. Ambar's pregnancy also brings up the abortion issue as Nick wants an abortion immediately while Ambar is not willing to compromise her morality. Again well worth watching it.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Leaves from Satan's Book (1919)

A well directed and wrote silent film trying to show the atrocities caused by Satan but have to wonder about the inclusion of the French Revolution. I know that this "Glorious Revolution" caused many deaths and is still held in high regards from the Left, but I do wonder about their inclusion in this film.

It was also unusual that Satan had bouts of remorse and that it was God that directed him to go out and create evil. Especially the scene where Satan feels guilty for his part in killing the Son of God. But God just sends him out to cause more pain to humans. He is even given an incentive with 1000 years less of torture for every man he helps and 100 years more for every man he destroys.
The Danish Leaves From Satan's Book (Blad af Satans Bog) was the "breakthrough" picture for filmmaker Carl Thedor Dreyer, who was elevated from a local talent to a director of international renown. The content of the film is implicit in the title: we are witness to the power of Evil through the ages, linked together by images of turning pages. In its multi-storied construction, the film is obviously beholden to D.W. Griffith's Intolerance (1916). Some of the vignettes, especially the Spanish Inquisition scenes, are both beautiful and repulsive; we marvel at Dreyer's brilliant visual sense, even as we have the impulse to avert our eyes. Though a worldwide success, Leaves From Satan's Book cost too much to suit the tastes of the parsimonious Danish film industry, compelling Dreyer to work in other countries throughout most of the silent era. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 121 mins
Leaves from Satan's Book (1919)

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Aag Aur Shola

Another long Indian movie with lots of songs and dancing with over 227 minutes of running time according to my DVD clock. Lots of beautiful saris including a gold and purple that are colors of my Middle School. LOL.
Aag Aur Shola (1986)NetflixLivid when his sister Usha chooses impoverished Raju as her suitor, Bombay thug Nagesh tracks down her beau, thrashes him and leaves him for dead in this potent yarn about sweet revenge. Surviving the vicious attack and undeterred by it, Raju seeks help from the reclusive Vishal, hatching a scheme that will even the score and put Usha back in Raju's arms. The film's cast includes Jeetendra, Mandakini and Shakti Kapoor.
Yes, the comical versions of fight scenes reminiscent of the 1970s in the USA.
Aag Aur Shola From Wikipedia
Whenever Inspector Ram, incharge of police station in Bombay, try to arrest some criminal a gangster named Nagesh help these arrested criminals. Nagesh has political influence. Nagesh's sister Usha is in love with Raju. When Nagesh learn this, he beats up Raju. Raju survives. He and his mother approach Vishal for help.
A side story involves Vishal and his love with him promising to protect lovers as his lover dies in his hands. Ultimately he sacrfices his life for the friendship of Usha and Raju.

No special features except Songs listed. This film like a couple of others have like a dozen lead in previews and advertisements even when choosing the subtitles it goes back through the previews again. Quite Distracting...
"Put vermilion on the bride's head."

Aag Aur Shola{Blockbuster}

Aag Aur Shola

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Baazigar (1993)

In addition to the following entry, Wiki gives complete details about the plot of the movie:
Baazigar (Hindi (Devanagari): बाज़ीगर, Urdu/Farsi (Nastaliq): بازیگر, English: Gambler) is a 1993 Indian Hindi film directed by Abbas-Mustan. It is a contemporary thriller about a young man who stops at nothing to get revenge. The film shocked its Indian audience with an unexpected violation of the standard Bollywood formula: The hero murders the innocent heroine. However, this film with an ambiguous hero did well at the box office. This was Shahrukh Khan's first movie as the sole lead and also Shilpa Shetty's debut film. Although Akshay Kumar was initially offered the lead role of Baazigar, he turned it down because of its negative shades.
This film is loosely based on the Hollywood film A Kiss Before Dying (1991).
Yes definitely a more vicious villain than most Indian films. We do not get to know the reasons for the murder of innocent lives until later in the movie as flashbacks fill in the background information slowly. Still we can see his hatred for wanting to take revenge over the past sins of others leads to the killing of innocent lives. Even if your sister and mother deaths was caused by another gives no right to extract that same punishment on other innocent lives.

Vicky then goes on to kill two more innocent lives to cover up his first killing. Thus he becomes a sociopathic killer of the worst kind. But overall has some of the same tragic life stories of many Indian films but just more cruelty in how the punishments are handed out. I gave it a rating of 3.5/5 which was below Blockbuster customer ratings of 4/5.

Baazigar (1993)

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Corporation (2003)

The usual left-wing talking points. It does provide some voices to explain the "corporations" point of view but of course we have the usual suspects. That is Noam Chomsky (Chumsky), Howard Zenn, Naomi Klein and The Fatso-Michael Moore. They have no soul because they want to personify inanimate objects and in this case a concept of business organization.

It also must be noted clearly that the first corporations were state sanctioned monopolies. And I am sure that no Lib-tard {including Thom Hartmann} is going to tell me that they would like to go back to the monopoly corporations.

It was nearly hilarious that somehow they used DDT as proof that corporations are bad by showing that they were spraying people to prevent diseases caused by ticks and lice. There has never been anyone died from DDT and thus the millions that lived because of those techniques are much better off. DDT is no longer patented and as such many good uses are not being used because of scare mongers like these LIBTARDS. Anyone for DDT? is a good place to get some information on DDT.

Another funny part is their descriptions of memes in society and they label that process as roach bait. Just like corporations are "branding" and creating images with words this film is doing the exact same thing. Product placement is no longer in movies but is labeling {as they described}. I use to wear a lot of Camel T-shirts that they use to give away and a coworker asked me why I wore something that was against what I preached. In subtle ways I use to complain about smokers. I asked do you see how dirty they get as I worked in a machine shop. Hell if someone wants to pay me to be a living billboard then fine with me as long as it is enough...
In the mid-1800s, corporations began to be recognized as individuals by U.S. courts, granting them unprecedented rights. The Corporation, a documentary by filmmakers Mark Achbar and Jennifer Abbott and author Joel Bakan, delves into that legal standard, essentially asking: if corporations were people, what kind of people would they be? Applying psychiatric principles and FBI forensic techniques, and through a series of case studies, the film determines that this entity, the corporation, which has an increasing power over the day-to-day existence of nearly every living creature on earth, would be a psychopath. The case studies include a story about how two reporters were fired from Fox News for refusing to soft-pedal a story about the dangers of a Monsanto product given to dairy cows, and another about Bolivian workers who banded together to defend their rights to their own water supply. The pervasiveness of corporate influence on our lives is explored through an examination of efforts to influence behavior, including that of children. The filmmakers interview leftist figures like Michael Moore, Howard Zinn, Naomi Klein, and Noam Chomsky, and give representatives from companies Burson Marsteller, Disney, Pfizer, and Initiative Media a chance to relay their own points-of-view. The Corporation won the Best Documentary World Cinema Audience Award at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival. ~ Josh Ralske, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 145 mins
The Corporation (2003)
Michael Moore close to end of movie talks in terms of the Communist Meme that capitalism will sell the rope to hang itself. He claims that this is a gaping hole that capitalism will let voices be heard and will even promote it that is contrary to its basis. Well this contradicts what Pacifica and much of the Libtarded left that claims that corporation control the news and no other voices get aired. Of course no Libtard will note or acknowledge this cognitive dissonance including the Dweeb MM...

There was some special features like the making of the movie that is arranged as an question and answer session.

The Real Threat Posed by Bill Ayers

Hum Aapke Hain Koun (1994)

A beautiful directed film with plenty of good Bollywood dancing and singing. Over half of the film was over before the happiness had to be interrupted. I was thinking at the time that most Indian films have to have a moral dilemma for the main actors as well as some tragedy that spans this problem. And sure enough someone has to die to create this dilemma. We also get the problems presented for widowers and the lives of "bhabhi{s}". That is sister in laws on the brother's sides, the family that is the receiver of the bride in the marriage.

A huge hit when released in India in 1994, director Sooraj Barjatiya's affecting family drama started a notable trend towards more family friendly fare in a time when violence was the predominant attraction of Bollywood films. As Prem's (Salman Khan) brother prepares for his marriage to Nisha's (Madhuri Dixit) sister, the single siblings slowly fall in love with one another. Following the death of Nisha's sister Pooja, Nisha is obligated to marry Prem's brother Rajesh since Rajesh's child is familiar with Nisha. As Nisha and Rajesh prepare for their wedding, Rajesh finds a note that Nisha has written to Prem and insists that she follow her heart and marry her true love. ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 205 mins
Hum Aapke Hain Koun (1994)
Most movie reviews only give details of the first half of film but the one above is basically telling the whole story.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Parinda (1988)

It had more of a feel of "Americanized" film than others including the bloody and violent deaths of Karan and Paru for Indian standards with the machine gun killing of the lovers in bed. I also seem to remember that one of the dance scenes was scripted like an American dance scene than Indian but as the movie progressed the usual Indian dance moves and rhythms came back. Also when Karen willingly joins the gang to get back at the killers, was similar to many cops and robbers movies of the 70s and onward in the USA.
Two brothers take different paths in life, which leads both of them into danger in this drama from India. Kishan (Jackie Shroff) and Karan (Anil Kapoor) are two brothers who move to Bombay to find their fortunes. Kishan falls in with Anna (Nana Patekar), a drug dealer; Karan becomes friends with a policeman (Anupam Kher), falls in love with schoolteacher Paru (Madhuri Dixit), and decides to go to America to further his education. As Kishan sinks deeper into the criminal underworld, Anna discovers the policeman Karan used to know has been assigned to bring him to justice. Anna intends to kill the cop rather than lose control of his criminal empire, and Kishan learns of Anna's deadly plan just as Karan is about to return home. Kishan is determined to keep his brother away from himself and the policeman to protect his safety, but Karan isn't so sure he wants to be sent away to Delhi, since he hopes to renew his relationship with Paru. Like many "Bollywood" dramas, Parinda also features several songs. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 145 mins
Parinda (1988)

Not One Less (1999)

A charming little story about a young lady that perseveres over obstacles and ultimately does not lose any of her students, although you have to wonder why such drive for only 10 extra yen. She spends much more and a lot more hassle than the extra 10 yens as well as the salary of 50 yens.

I did have a soft spot in my heart for the young people that desired to learn {for the most part} and quite a bit of attention was paid to the amount of chalk used on a daily basis. But ultimately it was a propaganda piece about socialism. And while Justin Lin shows the problems with wrong incentive structures, the young heroine {Gao} does show some desire to accomplish her tasks in the best way possible.

In a village in China mired in poverty, Gao (Gao Enman) is the lone teacher in a school so threadbare he must ration chalk to make sure he has enough for the day. The destitution of the village is not limited to the school; some of the children sleep in the schoolhouse because they have nowhere else to go, and many students have already dropped out to go to work to help feed their families. Gao is forced to leave town for a month, and no one in the village is able to take over for him except a 13-year-old girl, Wei Minzhi (Wei Minzhi), who possesses only the most rudimentary education herself. What she lacks in educational credential, she makes up for in determination -- she needs money, and teaching is an honest job that pays, and since she'll get a 10 yuan bonus if all 28 students are still attending when Gao gets back, she is determined that no one will drop out on her watch. So when one student turns up missing, and word has it he's been sent to the city by his mother to work, she travels to the city to look for him. In a place where thousands of children are working in the underground labor force or begging on the street, one boy hardly stands out from the crowd, and she has little luck. However, she's able to persuade a sympathetic TV station manager to let her make an announcement in hopes someone knows where he has gone. Despite its serious and often grim theme, Yi Ge Dou Bu Neng Shao is often light in tone and draws on the strength and humor of its characters; the film won the Golden Lion at the 1999 Venice Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 106 mins
Not One Less (1999)

Monday, October 13, 2008

Do I Love You? (2003)

A disappointment to me in that the dialogue at times seemed more like prepubescent girls exploring their sexuality than mature women understanding their Lesbianism. They were completely fickle and Lisa even tries some "experiments" with men but chickens out after getting in bed with at least one of them.

British writer/director/actress Lisa Gornick makes her feature debut with the microbudget romantic comedy Do I Love You? Shot with digital video, the film involves struggling writer Marina (Gornick) riding her bike around London while her voice-over narration ponders all matters of life and love. She thinks that having kids will solve her problems with girlfriend Romy (Raquel Cassidy). Meanwhile, straight girl Louise (Sarah Patterson) writes a magazine article about the hip quotient of being a lesbian. Do I Love You? was shown at the 2003 San Francisco Lesbian & Gay Film Festival. ~ Andrea LeVasseur, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 73 mins
Do I Love You? (2003)

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Lumumba (2000)

You know the Bantu proverb: "The hand that gives, rules."
And your hand has been a bit heavy lately. Excuse me.

Which Lumumba states to the US representative in the hallway outside of the Presidencies office.

A highly slanted version of the events including that somehow the CIA was an important enough force that it had to be included in this film. But other than abstaining any decision about what to do with Lumumba and meeting briefly in front of the Presidents office they played little role in the vast amount of violence in Congo. While it shows the vast overreaching colonialism of Belgians into Congo life, I doubt that many Libs would take away from it that. As that is compared to so called US colonies.

Still, I did not have time to fully explore Lumumba's life before watching the film so I am sure there are parts I missed that further education would help fill in the various actors and the parts they played.
Patrice Lumumba was a passionate advocate for freedom in colonial Africa, and when the Belgian Congo was granted independent (and was later renamed Zaire), Lumumba was the new nation's first prime minister. However, Lumumba's dream of freedom and dignity for the people of the Congo made him a controversial and dangerous figure, and this biographical drama explores his short, tumultuous life. We first encounter Lumumba (Eriq Ebouaney) in the late 1950's, when his National Congo Movement is gaining widespread public support, despite opposition from the nation's political leaders. Hoping to avoid a violent overthrow, the Belgian government begins negotiations with the NCM to turn rule of the Congo over to the citizens, and Lumumba and his political party are swept into power during the nation's first independent election. However, Lumumba's desire to bring a peaceful and orderly transfer of power soon earns him enemies of all political stripes. Militant advocates for freedom demand that white Belgian officers of the nation's military be replaced with African soldiers at once, while Belgian colonists are met with violence, sparking a revolt by the white settlers that leads to a bloody civil war. Lumumba was directed and co-written by Raoul Peck, who previously directed the acclaimed documentary Lumumba: Death of a Prophet. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide
Lumumba (2000)

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Second Generation (2003)

Although from a casual observer they may overlook at the conflicts between the Hindu and Muslim traditions and how that played out. Ultimately Heere decides to move back to India with her Father to take care of and forsake London with her Muslim friend. So if there is a message in the film, I am not sure if it was to say that India is mother country beyond even differences in religion. I did do a search and this commentary did show up:
British TV brings NRIs home RASHMEE Z AHMED

LONDON: The UK's first, mainstream, British-Indian television drama arrives on thousands of screens across the country this weekend, but the real headline is its extraordinarily in-your-face message: Immigration is no longer a one-way street heading West and it's okay for the punk-haired second generation of British Indians to "immigrate" to the Motherland.

The drama posits an unexpected, deeply-poignant, 21st-century passage to India at the height of Britain's ongoing, passionate and commercially-productive love-affair with all things Indian. The bold television drama, baldly titled Second Generation, ends with three of its lead characters returning to India. Two of them -- a Bengali Hindu-Muslim pairing -- are beer-swilling, bhangra-rapping, British-born-and-bred. To top it all, they speak Bengali with a pronounced accent.

But, for the first time ever on British TV, the British-Indian second generation is shown to reject the bright lights of London for the alien-but-dimly-remembered chaos and camaraderie of Kolkata.

It's something director Jon Sen believes to be a "positive statement about India as an alternative place to live for British Asians".

The third "reverse immigrant" character, played by Om Puri, arrived in Britain half-a-century ago and sacrificed everything including his "(Indian) moral framework" to make good in an alien land. Eventually, he returns to India to lay his "demons to rest" and find peace, Sen told The Times of India.

In his first pre-release interview to an Indian publication, Sen, an Anglo-Indian, said the drama was a "benchmark production because it took the British Asian narrative on, even as it started from a position of Indian pride, wealth and success".

The drama, baldly titled Second Generation, is executed as an expertly-crafted Hollywood-Bollywood mish-mash of saris-sex-swearwords and suicide. It stars Puri, Anumpan Kher, Roshan Seth and Parminder Nagra, heroine of the hit film Bend it Like Bechkam. And it's already being described as an important, British Indian "think" piece on immigration, taking the Asian story onwards from the seminal Buddha of Suburbia.

But it comes at a sensitive time, when the right-wing British National Party has won several local election victories despite banging the drum on the issue of "forced repatriation" of coloured immigrants.

Sen denies Second Generation is about "being repatriated but about choice and reversing the traditional view of immigration from the sub-continent to Britain".

Britain has a several-million strong, largely prosperous, Indian community. But Sen believes Second Generation underlines the huge sacrifices Om Puri's generation had to make to become the wealthy, successful, stereotype British Indian of today.

But the second generation, he says, can now see -- and show on British TV -- that "Britain isn't always the ideal place for us to make our lives� that India is an alternative choice, it can offer British Asians as good a standard of living, it has revolutionised itself".

The drama, commissioned and screened by Channel 4, is written by Neil Biswas, the son of Bengali immigrants who lived in London's East End.

Sen, the director, has a Bengali father and English mother and admits to "romanticising India" at least partly because he feels "the pull of history there, at least half my history is in India".
Yes a good description of some of the underlying stories of the movie. I also would like to point out that while this film was not a commercial success it did provide a vehicle for the career of Parminder Nagra to take off in Hollywood and getting a contract with the show "ER" for one year and to continue on.

Some of the special features and flashbacks were confusing and campy but overall the film was good and worth a DVD rental.
Second Generation

Second Generation stars Parminder Nagra as the free-thinking daughter in a traditional Indian family who has torn herself away from the restrictive traditions of her parents. A family emergency brings her back into the fold, where the entire family must contend with how their world sometimes is at odds with the modern London world they inhabit. In addition to the struggles with her family, the daughter is caught in a love triangle involving her British fiancé and her old flame. ~ Perry Seibert, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 136 mins
Second Generation (2003)

Sunday, October 5, 2008

The Mystic Masseur (2001)

Ismail Merchant, best known as the producing half of the successful Merchant-Ivory team, once again steps behind the camera as director for this story of life among Indian expatriates in the 1950s. Ganesh (Aasif Mandvi) is a young man who was born to a community of Indian exiles living in Trinidad. Always bright, Ganesh hopes to hake a career for himself as a writer, but he lacks the money to pursue writing full-time, and his ideas about education clash with those of his employers after he gets a job as a teacher, leaving him with few prospects. Returning to Trinidad after the death of his father, Ganesh is pressured into marrying a local woman named Leela (Ayesha Dharker), whose father, Ramlogan (Om Puri), is a successful merchant. Ganesh and Leela move to a modest home in the hills, where he begins work on a book, but Leela chafes at the Spartan lifestyle dictated by Ganesh's finances, and for a time leaves their home to stay with her parents. In time, Ganesh completes his first book -- a book for lay people on the Hindu faith -- but sales are sluggish until Ganesh and Leela come up with a plan to boost interest in Ganesh's work. Ganesh is promoted as a "Mystic Masseur" with special powers to heal the infirm; Ganesh's routine quickly makes his work very popular with spiritual seekers, and his book becomes a top-seller. However, Ganesh becomes disillusioned with his newfound fame and power, especially after he attempts to take advantage of his celebrity by entering the political arena. The Mystic Masseur was based on a novel by V.S. Naipaul, who won an Nobel prize in the year of this film's release. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 118 mins
The Mystic Masseur (2001)
Seems funny that a washed up masseur turns to being a con artist {mystic healer} then decides to peddle books and then after getting notoriety decides to enter politics and ends up being just a mantle piece instead of actually do good. You have to wonder if he took a hard long contemplated look at his life.

But the scenes were nice.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Andaaz (2003)

Directed by Raj Kanwar, Andaaz follows the friendship between Raj (Akshay Kumar), a handicapped college student, and Kajal (Lara Dutta), a hot-tempered young woman who shares the same love of model airplanes that he does. With her help, Raj miraculously overcomes his disability. Though he finds himself deeply in love with Kajal, she marries another man while he is fighting in the Indian army. Several years later, the disillusioned Raj is going through intensive special training in South Africa, where he meets a beautiful but mysterious woman named Jiya (Priyanka Chopra). ~ Tracie Cooper, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 152 mins
Andaaz (2003)
Another fun film from India that has plenty of back and forth romance with our hero taking the extremely long time to express his feelings for his first love. "First love" when people are in 3rd grade is something that the USA never really got into but in India there must be a dozen I have seen so far.

There is the dilemma of sister in laws {Bhabhis} that comes up briefly also when Kajal becomes a widow. Although not allowed, it might have been interesting to have a three way marriage...

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Shadow Kill (2001)

Set in a village in the Indian state of Kerala on the eve of Gandhi’s freedom movement, Shadow Kill tells the story of Kaliyappan, a guilt-ridden hangman haunted by the memory of the men he has executed. He lives in constant fear of being called by the British authorities to perform his next execution, and his fellow villagers, because of his proximity to death, believe him to possess the powers of the goddess Kali. When he is summoned to perform one more hanging, he fears that his most dreaded premonition may be about to come true. ~ Tom Vick, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 91 mins
Shadow Kill (2001)
Lots of nice scenes of India and overall it had a good quality picture. But it was way too slow at getting to the story and spent way too much time just looking at scenes like the pond with the lily pads. Then the action scenes and dramatic moments seemed to just pass in a blink without too much explanation of what had actually happened. Of course some of that is just censorship by not allowing the violence to come out as well as the sexuality.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Sketches of Frank Gehry (2005)

Acclaimed film director Sydney Pollack took a five-year break from the realms of fiction to assemble a lovingly crafted tribute to longtime friend and acclaimed architect Frank Gehry in this documentary born from the sketches of its talented subject. A notoriously shy craftsman whose impressive body of work includes the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles and the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Ghery is shown working in his studio unobstructed as Pollack attempts to capture the very essence of the artist's bold works through use of film and digital video. Driven by an intimate but informal series of discussions between Ghery and Pollack, Sketches of Frank Gehry uses the subject of architecture as a launching point to discuss the creative process, and paints a fascinating portrait of how one humble man was able to create some of the world's most awe-inspiring structures. ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 84 mins
Sketches of Frank Gehry (2005)
Yes informal to the point of casual videotaping. My wife liked it as a look at the life and art of Frank Gehry. Only certain people can get away with having such low skills in a technical manner and still achieve so much. Interesting film about the architecture but unlikely that it would appeal to a broad audience...

The Terrorist (1998)

Do you know the tale of the two seeds?
One was the optimistic seed.
The other, the pessimistic one.
The optimistic seed spoke of its dream.
"When I am sown, I'll grow tall and big.
My roots will go deep into the earth in search of water.
My leaves will dance with the wind.
Dewdrops will rain on me.
I will be content and will salute the earth."

The pessimistic seed disagreed.
"I don't want my roots to go deep within the dark, suffocating earth to look for water.
If I become a plant, I may be pulled out by the roots.
If I blossom into a flower, I may adorn someone's hair.
I refuse to grow unless my safety is guaranteed."

The optimistic seed grew up to become a big tree.
The pessimistic seed bided its time.
An alert hen ate the pessimistic seed.

The basic melodramatic Indian Movie is what I would call the "The Terrorist". Acting was fine and the scenes were nice and crisp. They spent an inordinate amount of time of closeups of the heroin and she was pleasant enough to look at.
Veteran cinematographer Santosh Sivan made his directorial debut with this fact-based Indian drama, a winner of "Best Film" and editing awards in India. Teen terrorist Malli (Ayesha Dharkar) dwells on the death of her family members who have died for the cause. A veteran of killings during 30 covert operations with a resistance group, the 19-year-old is chosen to be a "thinking bomb," assassinating a dignitary with plastic explosives strapped to her stomach. Beginning her journey to the city where the explosion is scheduled to happen, Malli moves through the jungle and arrives at the farm of friendly landowner Vasuderan, aka Mad Vasu. On the farm, she poses as an agricultural student, but the waking coma of Vasu's wife in the adjacent room is disturbing. Memories and flashbacks also intrude, as Malli contemplates her forthcoming task. Shown at the 1998 Toronto Film Festival. ~ Bhob Stewart, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 95 mins
The Terrorist (1998)
This is loosely based on true events but obviously the real life ends in a tragedy otherwise it would have not meant much. Only successful terrorist attacks are newsworthy and widely dispersed.

This film was not in the usual Hindi language for Indian films, but it was of good quality production. Ayesha Dharker appears mostly in English films it appears. The film credits did even show Star Wars II.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Tycoon: A New Russian (2002)

Political intrigue and total corruption within the so-called democratic Russia are brought to the forefront in Pavel Lungin's Tycoon. Beginning as an investigation into the assassination of one of the richest men in Russia, the story flashes back to late-'80s Russia, just after Perestroika has broken up the Soviet Union. Five intelligent Russian students -- including one Platon Makovski (Vladimir Mashkov) -- abandon their academic careers in exchange for diving into the newly developing private business sector. As the rules for business in Russia are barely in place, the five new businessmen find a number of ways to profit from a wide array of nearly illegal dealings. Platon, in particular, has developed a knack for ingenious new ways of making money and very quickly becomes one of the wealthiest and most powerful men in Russia. Along the way, he also manages to alienate and/or infuriate most of his friends as well as a few government officials. Tycoon premiered to positive reviews at the 2002 Locarno International Film Festival. ~ Ryan Shriver, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 128 mins
Tycoon: A New Russian (2002)
A nice suspense film but I was not into as much as I could have been. Basically the genre has gotten a little stale from my own experiences of the 1970s. But at least on one level, it is good that Russia deals with these issues on film just as the USA dealt with some crime issues also in the same way.

Special features has a 25 minute interview with the director as he stutters a lot.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

The Red Balloon (1956)

A short film {34 minute} with just a balloon that appears to have its own mind. Not really that inspiring for myself so not much to say about this film. This is the type of film that should really be added as a collection of a few short films into one DVD. Thus I rated it low at 1 1/2.

Most of French director Albert Lamorisse's films celebrate the miracle of flight, but few were as landmark as his 1956 short subject The Red Balloon. The story, told without dialogue, concerns a little boy (played by the director's son Pascal) who comes across a helium-filled balloon. As he plays with his new acquisition, the boy discovers that the balloon seemingly has a mind of its own. The little red orb follows its new "master" all through the streets of Paris, then dogs the boy's trail into the schoolroom, which drives the teacher to comic distraction. Towards the end, it seems as though boy and balloon will be parted forever....but director Lamorisse has a delightful surprise in store for us. In an unusual move, The Red Balloon in its American TV premiere was introduced by Ronald Reagan as an episode of the CBS anthology G.E. Theater on April 2, 1961. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 34 mins
The Red Balloon (1956)

East Is East (1998)

Om Puri plays a most backward and downright chauvinist man including even authoritarian streaks. Which begs the question as to why the two even married and then why the mother did not leave his sorry ass for good. I even forgot that I watched this when me and my wife first met. Was not real memorable in that case.
East is East, a fast-moving comedy drama of mixed-race manners, is set in Salford, England in 1970. It centers on the Anglo-Pakistani alliance of the Khan family that is both claustrophobically cohesive and hopelessly dysfunctional. In their over-crowded terrace house, anarchy erupts daily with farcical energy. The Khan children, caught between the traditional dogmatism of their Pakistani father (Om Puri) and laissez-faire attitude of their British mother (Linda Bassett), have a lot of difficulties to follow their dreams of becoming citizens of the modern world. Based on the award-winning stage play by Ayub Khan-Din, East is East had great success in the theatres of London before it was made into a film. ~ Gönül Dönmez-Colin, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 96 mins
East Is East (1998)

Manda Bala (2007)

Quite an interesting film about the crime problems in Brazil and political corruption, although the kidnapping aspects take up most of the screen time. It almost looked like Ford put on the defensive driving course for bullet proof vehicles. That was also a very interesting segment that including how even the bullet proof windows can not survive multiple shots at close range.
Brazil is a nation where political and economic corruption and violent crime are a way of life for many, and filmmaker Jason Kohn examines some of the more unusual ways they manifest themselves in this documentary. In Manda Bala (Send a Bullet), Kohn's subjects include a plastic surgeon whose practice is dominated by the victims of kidnappers who lost their ears to their captors; a political figure who uses his frog ranch as a cover for illegal business operations which have made him a multi-millionaire; and an auto customizer whose specialty is bullet-proofing luxury cars. Manda Bala (Send A Bullet) won the Grand Jury Prize for Documentary at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 85 mins
Manda Bala (2007)
It was amazing how the doctors was able to fix a young woman's ears. They looked nearly perfect maybe even too good. She only complained that the earlobe was stiff since it was built upon the same cartilage that was taken from her chest.

In the USA, I constantly hear about how it is so bad for chipping individuals, but in this film the one man with the bullet proof car wants not one chip implanted but wanted two from two different companies and then he said he would feel safe. Yes being kidnapped and not being sure if you would survive would drive people to do anything, and I can see chipping as a valuable tool for catching criminals.
Special features:
7 Additional Scenes
Commentary with Director and Producers.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Who Killed the Electric Car? (2006)

It is refreshing to watch a film that just explains the situation instead of paranoid logic being used. It also appears to be honest by mentioning that yes Sulfur Dioxide (Nitrogen Oxides) would increase under EV (Electric Vehicle) cars. Although one of the deleted scenes was an excerpt of the tearing out of electric streetcars by GM.

One of the deleted scenes was a delightful interview with two African American women {Colette and J. Karen}. They describe how the younger one volunteered to be arrested in trying to block the transport vehicles taking away the EVs. If I was as desperate as they were, I think I would have refused to bring it back, just claim it was stolen and hide it out somewhere. She also gives a funny anecdote of how people now plug in their phones before taking them around with them each day. And yes that is a flimsy excuse for not buying an EV to be bothered with plugging it in. Alhtough working at Radio Shack, I have seen enough times that batteries do not last as long as they are suppose or give a short use time.
Filmmaker Chris Payne explores the many factors that played into the ultimate failure of the electric car to catch on with consumers, even as gas prices began to skyrocket, in a thoughtful meditation on the increasingly important role that renewable energy plays in modern society. Introduced as a means of providing an alternative to increasing oil consumption and reducing pollution in 1996, the electric car was all but a forgotten memory only a decade later -- but why? Though interviews with consumer advocacy experts, automotive industry experts, and oil industry heavyweights, Payne paints a though-provoking picture of a culture whose aversion to change and reliance on dwindling resources may be rooted in the financial concerns of a wealthy few, and may also be leading consumers down a troubling path. ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 93 mins
Who Killed the Electric Car? (2006)

Special Features:
Deleted scenes as some are mentioned above.
Jump starting the future, which gives a positive message about the future and that steps are being made even if not the grand schemes as before {i.e. hybrids}.
Meeky Rosie video with some scene shots from the movie.
And a quite a few previews of other movies.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The Weather Underground (2003)

The best aspect of this film was the comments track of Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn. To me this was nearly the point of scary in their way of excusing their terrorist acts and even when the armed robbery went wrong and David Gilbert was caught and sentenced for life, they glorified his actions and said he should not have been in prison. What can I say???

This tells me that no matter how Barrack Hussein Obama says that he was only 8 years old when Bill Ayers started his bombing is just an excuse since he still has the views that he did nothing wrong and glorifies "revolutionary" killers/terrorists. They also make the excuse that they did not target people so it was not terrorism. But terrorism acts on how people perceive the dangers. And even if random buildings the three Underground terrorists that killed themselves in the faulty explosion is enough to terrorize anyone.

Sam Green and Bill Siegel's documentary about a radical group whose stated goal was the violent overthrow of the U.S. government details a valuable chapter in the history of the '60s protest movement and leftism in America. The Weathermen were a faction of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), one of the driving forces behind the period's mass protests against social injustice and the Vietnam War. Frustrated by SDS's adherence to non-violent dissent, the Weathermen broke off and adopted a more combative approach. As the student protests ebbed in the 1970s, the group went underground and shifted tactics, embarking on a terrorist campaign against the U.S. government. For years, the Weather Underground evaded the authorities' grasp, even as it pulled off high-profile bombings against government targets. Their momentum petered out in the 1980s, as one by one the organization's members surrendered after years on the run. The Weather Underground uses extensive archival footage and revealing interviews with the surviving members to trace the group's evolution and place their actions in the context of the period's tumultuous events. ~ Elbert Ventura, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 92 mins
The Weather Underground (2003)

Weather Underground Splits Up Over Plan to Come Into the Open
Dissidents Publish Charges Top Leadership Is Adopting 'White, Male Supremacist' Tactics
By John Kifner
The radical Weather Underground movement struggling to maintain momentum in the post-Vietnam era, has split apart over a plan to come into the open.

The schism appears to reflect heightened and sometimes bitter feminist perception among female radicals, along with the groping of the revolutionary movement for support at a time when once-seething campuses are quiet and even much of the militance of the black movement seems to have died down.
In these papers the word b"crime" rather than "error," is frequently used to describe the politics o[sic] the leadership group, indicating the bitterness of the division.

No documents or other statements have been issued by the Central Committee members under attack, Jeff Jones, Bill Ayers and two others know by pseudonyms, Joe Reed and Celia Sojurn.

The Motorcycle Diaries

The Motorcycle Diaries (2003) was a nice little film about Ernesto ''Che'' Guevara and if I had not read and watched him in action then I would have taken away from this film that he was a mild compassionate individual that wanted to help the people out. But basically this film was an attempt to white-wash his life based on some writings he did as he traveled around South America.

As just a story about a couple of people on an adventure this is a quite an enjoyable film to watch. It does show that again he is willing to take that which does not belong to him if he thinks it is "fair" by his standards.
Brazilian director Walter Salles Jr. follows up the Golden Globe-nominated Behind the Sun with this filmed adaptation of Argentinian-born Cuban revolutionary Ernesto "Che" Guevara's journals of the same name. The Motorcycle Diaries stars Gael García Bernal (Y Tu Mamá También, Amores Perros) as a young, pre-revolution Guevara, a 23-year-old medical student in 1952 traveling across South America on a motorcycle with his friend Alberto Granado (Rodrigo de la Serna), who co-wrote the source material. As they embark on their journey, both young men come of age and find their individual world views broadened farther than they ever expected. The Motorcycle Diaries premiered at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival. ~ Matthew Tobey, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 127 mins

A couple of videos that the film also contains as extras:
Alberto Granado recuerda a Fuser (Ernesto ''Che'' Guevara)


Monday, September 8, 2008

Baabul (2005)

IMO a classic sister in law problem {Bhabhi} where this then intersects with the issues of widows. Although it is obvious the practice of widow funeral pyres is barbaric other alternatives were also not very compatible for a society based on liberal democracy and equality in opportunity for everyone. So while in the West would consider some of these issues as minor we can see that these issues are played out in great detail and thought.
A woman is uncertain of what path to take when she loses the love of her life in this romantic drama from India. Avi (Salman Khan) is a bright and ambitious young man who, after completing his education in the United States, comes home to take his place in the successful business run by his father, Balraaj Kapoor (Amitabh Bachchan). Avi meets a beautiful young artist named Millie (Rani Mukherjee) and the two fall in love. They wed, give birth to a son, and are enjoying their lives with their new family when Avi is suddenly killed in an auto accident. Millie is emotionally shattered by Avi's death and she is uncertain about what to do next. Balraaj believes his daughter-in-law needs to remarry and start life over again; he knows that Millie's friend Rajat (John Abraham), a musician, has long had feelings for her, and he tries to bring the two of two of them together. But Millie must decide if she's ready for a new love while her life with Avi is still fresh in her mind. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Baabul (2005)

Bandini (1963 film)

Unfortunately a lot of Indian films are not that good of quality picture. This one also has a distracting fade to the next scene as it changes to a washed out picture and then the next scene is transitioned. After transition it goes drastically back from the faded out scene to the regular B/W scene.

Like Mother India it follows the overwhelming burden of Indian Women in society. The very classic film about a young girl that gets involved in helping a freedom fighter and falls in love, man spoils the young woman's reputation and offers to marry her, father refuses, rebel leaves, marries another woman, young woman becomes a hand maid servant to a bitchy woman that turns out to be the rebels wife that was arranged, young woman goes stark mad and poisons rebels wife, young woman goes to jail (8 yr sentence), meets doctor that falls in love with her, for her guilt she offers to help a TB patient, Doctor can't handle not having her and leaves, warden reads diary of young girl and gives her release early and sends her to the Doctor's home, young lady meets rebel again as he has TB and coughing, then as the train that she was to depart in and the boat he is departing in she changes her mind and jumps on the boat, and they live happily ever after...

See classic story!
Bandini (1963 film)
Bandini (Hindi: बन्दिनी, Urdu: بندِنی, translation: imprisoned) is a film directed and produced by Bimal Roy, the man who directed such classic as Do Bigha Zameen and Devdas, Bandini explores the human conflicts of love and hate intertwined in the mind of Kalyani (Nutan). The movie tells the story of Kalyani, the all suffering, selfless, sacrificing, and strong yet weak Indian woman. She must make a choice between two very different men.
Director Bimalda captures her emotions with light and darkness falling on her face due to a welder's torch and the thumping of Iron in the background.

Back from the flashback in the jail Deven (Dharmendra) the jail doctor falls in love with her. Kalyani is not ready for it and starts to stay away from him. They are always shown with a partition in between after Deven proposes her. Another symbolism used in the movie is the occasional shouting of "All is well" by the prison guard when nothing in the movie is.

Missed the "All is well" statements but did see the door as a symbol of blocking off people, including the rebel woman she helps did it. Of course the using of veils to put up walls is a classic Indian tradition.
Blockbuster has no information on Bandini.

"It is not correct to do 'Raslila' here."

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Samurai Rebellion (1967)

"But you can't reason with a crying child nor with your lord, as they say.
Actually quite funny to compare a child and lord in the same sentence and I am sure many times they are nearly identical.
A father and son prepare to die for their beliefs in this historical drama set in 18th century Japan. While Isaburo Sasahara (Toshiro Mifune) has been loyal to Japan's feudal system all his life, his beliefs begin to change when the local rulers demand that his son Yogoro (Go Kato) give up his bride, who has bore a child that will come to power upon the death of the current ruler. Yogoro dearly loves his wife, and Isaburo respects his daughter-in-law and does not want to be separated from his grandson. When Yogoro refuses to part with his wife and child, he and Isaburo are ordered to kill themselves. They refuse and instead challenge the forces of the feudal leaders to a fight to the death. Director Masaki Kobayashi's work on this film earned him the FIPRESCI Award at the 1967 Venice Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 121 mins
Samurai Rebellion (1967)
One of my liberal friends recommended this one, but by the time it arrived, I forgot what he thought was so interesting and revealing about human nature in it. In a way it was similar to Bandini that I watched recently in that the Heroine goes berserk at the lover of the person they love and in Bandini kill the competition and in this film get into a cat fight.

Ultimately in the end the best Samurai was defeated by guns although he did take out quite a few in the reeds. A basic love story about a families love but then again strife in the family between the matriarchal and patriarchal figures with their marriage being without love. All the more reason for him to defend the honor of his son and willingly die for the love of his son and his daughter in law. The reason for the escalation of tensions was that at first the family did not want the reject from the royal family to be forced on their son that was planning n marrying someone else. Then when the royal family went through heir questions then they wanted the young woman sent back after she gave birth to a girl.

There was the usual sword-fighting as most Samurai movies have but this was near the end with the no special effects.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

4 (2004)

The lies shared by three Russian strangers take on a life of their own in director Ilya Khrzhanovsky's dreamlike journey into the strange heart of modern-day Russia. After entering a local watering hole and relaying a series of elaborate but entirely fabricated tales, a prostitute posing as an advertising executive, a piano tuner claiming to be a genetic engineer, and a butcher posing as a Kremlin insider all go their separate ways. In the hours following their strange conversation, all three will experience a surreal and richly symbolic voyage into a land where the specter of even the most elaborate of lies can somehow fade into reality for one tantalizing instant. ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 125 mins
4 (2004)
I found no "tantalizing instant". I was only left with the vague idea that maybe there is genetic engineering happening in Russia. But just a bunch of weird people acting strange is about all this movie was. Nothing really became suspenseful for myself.

Lots of drinking Vodka and general partying. Not sure what the dogs were suppose to signify as they appear in nearly all scenes.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Koyla (1997)

In this thriller from India, Shankar (Shah Rukh Khan) is a mute servant of Rajasaab (Amrish Puri). Shankar is a loyal follower, however, he falls in love with his master's wife, Gauri (Madhuri Dixit). When Shankar and Gauri run off, Shankar is thrown from a cliff and left for dead, and Gauri is sold to a bordello. Shankar is found by a native and is slowly nursed back to health. Having also regained his ability to speak, Shankar returns to Rajasaab to rescue Gauri and get revenge. Koyla is based on the 1990 Tony Scott film Revenge, which itself is an adaptation of a novella by Jim Harrison.
~ Jonathan E. Laxamana, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 167 mins
Koyla (1997)
Shah Rukh Khan who also played Ram Jaane! did a good job in this film and while most of the film he is mute, his friend and coworker plays a joke on others as he projects his voice as Shakar "talks" and then also sings and dances in some other scenes.

To get enough tragedy and to extend the film to the 2 hours and 50 minutes it has a subplot with the brother of Gauri that is away working and comes back to find that his parents had basically sold her off through trickery of pretending that she would marry Shakar. On the wedding the master's face had a veil over it so she did not know it was the wrong man until she saw Shakar serving the guests and it was too late as the Master dragged her around the "marriage fire".

Also there was some good {albeit campy} Rambo scenes as Shakar kills some of the people out to capture him and his bride. Which includes a scene where he kills the man shooting from a helicopter.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Suno Sasurjee (2003)

"The parrot had bitten on the chili."
The phrase above is quoted on several occasions but not even sure even what that phrase means.

Kader Khan stars in the rollicking Bollywood farce Suno Sasurjee as the most unscrupulous of characters, a shifty and shady young banker who employs a number of outrageous schemes to wheedle money out of the elderly. He hits a bit of a snag, however, when one victim's grandson (Aftab) learns of his latest ploy - the successful theft of his grandfather's inheritance - and grows understandably irate. Complicating matters further is the fact that the grandson soon meets the banker's lovely daughter (Amisha) and develops a heavy and intense crush on her. He soon finds himself faced with two seemingly insurmountable challenges: how to retrieve the money and win the heart of the young woman. ~ Nathan Southern, All Movie Guide
Suno Sasurjee (2003)
Yes a comical farce where the side kick of the young banker is a near comic book character. But plenty of laughs and an enjoyable romantic comedy where again the man falls in love at first site but takes a little longer for the woman in question to see his charms...

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Secuestro (1995)

In this taut action thriller from Mexico, a group of radical extremists have decided to take their actions against the state to the next level. In a bid to raise both money and public attention for their cause, the four revolutionaries kidnap twentysomething Marcia, whose father is a wealthy and powerful business magnate. As the radicals hold Marcia for ransom, the young woman is thrown from her sheltered life into a world of danger, but as she struggles to find a way to free herself, she finds herself becoming infatuated with one of her abductors. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 90 mins
Secuestro (1995)
No English subtitles??? Well that seems like a waste of my time...

Thursday, August 14, 2008

The Sorrow and the Pity (1971)|Part 1:The Collapse|Part 2:The Choice

Part 1:The Collapse
Soon afterwards, a new slogan became popular, "Collaboration is: Give me your watch, I'll give you the time."

Quite an interesting documentary film. There was so much material although not much stuck out from what I already had an idea about. But it showed not a very good picture of the French authorities as well as the French Citizens. They do have some criticism of the British Fleet sinking the French Fleet but considering that everything left behind in France became the property of the Nazis, then I can see the reasoning.

Made for French television, Marcel Ophüls' four-hour-plus documentary explores the average French citizen's memories of the Nazi occupation. Just how large and effective was the fabled resistance movement? Is cooperation the same thing as collaboration? And how did one's up-close-and-personal experiences with the occupation troops impact one's postwar life? These questions are probingly posed (but not all are answered) by Ophüls, who also acts as offscreen interviewer. The first half of the film is a mosaic of sights and sounds from the years 1940-1944: Maurice Chevalier singing for the German troops, clips of propagandistic newsreels, appalling vignettes from the scurrilous anti-Semitic film drama Jew Suss (1940), and the like. Ophüls' interpretation of history as the "process of recollection, in things like choice, selective memory, rationalization" is fully illustrated in the film's long second half, which is devoted almost entirely to interviews, in which the subjects display emotions ranging from mild embarrassment to abrupt rage. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 251 mins
The Sorrow and the Pity (1971)

"I hate the lies that have harmed us so much." Veteran of the French division of the Waffen SS

Mers-el-Kebir|[url=]Attack on Mers-el-Kébir[/url]

"Le Juif Suss" or "Jew Suss"
If ever a Jew commits a sin of the flesh with a Christian woman, he shall be hung without further ado, as punishment, and as an example for all others.

"Mr. Heydrich is president of the International Criminal Police, a commission to which France has always belonged."

Part 2:The Choice
Rafle du Vel' d'Hiv

Monday, August 11, 2008

Blind Spot: Hitler's Secretary (2002)

Blind Spot: Hitler's Secretary is a feature-length interview with 81-year-old Austrian Traudl Junge, who served as Hitler's personal secretary from 1942 to 1945, when she was in her early twenties. She saw Hitler in his everyday life, right up until his final days, and she witnessed, firsthand, the collapse of the Nazi regime. After the war, Junge was "de-Nazified" by Allied forces as part of a program of amnesty for young people. She remained silent about her experiences for nearly 60 years, until she agreed to be interviewed by artist Andre Heller, whose own Jewish father escaped Austria as the Nazis came to power. Heller and documentarian Othmar Schmiderer edited ten hours of interview footage into the 90-minute film, which uses no archival footage, photos, or background music. It's just Junge describing her experiences on camera and occasionally watching the video playback of herself as she describes those experiences. Junge denies any real knowledge or understanding of what the Nazis were doing while she worked for them. She discusses how she was taken in by Hitler, who seemed fatherly and kind. She describes his personality. She goes into harrowing detail about the last days in the bunker. At times, she seems overwhelmed by her sense of shame at her own ignorance and naïveté. Presumably unburdened after decades of guilt, Junge passed away just hours after Blind Spot was shown at the 2002 Berlin Film Festival, where it won the Panorama Audience Prize. The film was also shown at the 2002 Toronto Film Festival, and the 2002 New York Film Festival. ~ Josh Ralske, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 87 mins
Blind Spot: Hitler's Secretary (2002)
For me a griping tale since although it is just a person answering questions, we can see the anguish and despair at being part of Hitler's war machine. I know many can not and will not accept her version of events, but I think after this long of time, she would want to tell the truth. I think she did her best to reconcile in herself what events did happen and how she got caught up into the machine of Fascism/Socialism. The film reminds me a lot of S21-Khmer Rouge, although it passes on the places and staged events like S21. But the fact of being there and experiencing a part of what she went through in the last days of the Nazi Party.

She goes into detail about her family life and how without spelling out made her acceptable to being manipulated by others-especially Hitler himself. This could definitely make a good film in how she escaped from the bunker and events leading up to that as well as her being captured by the US and her ordeal there.

Other than wanting more of her talk not being edited out, I can not think of anything I would have wanted differently. Although the parts of her watching herself seems strange, in the third person.

Junoon (1979)

During one of the many violent uprisings against the English colonial overlords in India, a church filled with people is massacred. The only people to survive are three generations of women in one family, hidden by a friendly Indian. They are then kidnapped by a Muslim (Sashi Kapoor), who wants to keep the youngest woman as his second wife, despite the objections of his first wife who despises the women for their Englishness. Also, the girl he is enamored of finds him frightening. He goes off to join the fighting and eventually comes back to a much-changed situation. ~ Clarke Fountain, All Movie Guide
Junoon (1979)
A different perspective comes through with mostly a Islamic flavour of the film instead of mostly Hindu or mixed. Supposedly based on a true story but I am sure with much storytelling involved. It reminded me a lot of the films from Afghanistan with such displays of violence than most Indian Films that have more of a feel of Victim-hood with of course my favourite being Mother India.

Blue State (2007)

A disillusioned leftist pulls up stakes for the Great White North in this independent comedy-drama. It's 2004, and John Logue (Breckin Meyer) is a political activist working for the Democratic presidential campaign in Ohio. After a few drinks too many, John is interviewed on camera by a local broadcast journalist, and he announces that if George W. Bush is re-elected, he'll leave the country and move to Canada. A few days later, Bush narrowly defeats John Kerry, and John falls into a deep depression. After returning home to San Francisco, John ponders his alcohol-fueled pledge, and learns that a handful of leftists north of the border have formed a group called "Marry A Canadian," which provides contact with sympathetic singles willing to wed American expatriates hoping to escape the Bush regime and gain Canadian citizenship. John decides to give "Marry A Canadian" a try, and places a classified to find someone willing to split gas and keep him company as he heads for Vancouver. An attractive young woman named Chloe (Anna Paquin) contacts John and agrees to travel with him, but once they're on the road, he learns that politics are not Chloe's primary reason for leaving the States. Blue State received its world premiere at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 92 mins
Blue State (2007)
In the end both Chloe and John learn about themselves along the way including finding another draft dodger that is holed up in a small cabin. Chloe even has to face the consequences of her decisions.

Chloe's politics never really come out but I kept expecting her to confess that she was conservative eventually. So even though it was a Leftist Dogma film there was some redeeming qualities. I say that since John's father was a raving wacko Republican. Obviously a cartoon character with one note.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Secuestro Express (2004)

The current wave of kidnappings in Latin America inspired this tense suspense drama. Martin (Jean Paul Leroux) and Carla (Mía Maestro) are a wealthy young couple who, after a night of club hopping, head back to their car to go home. However, three kidnappers -- Bubu (Pedro Perez), Niga (Carlos Madera), and Trece (Carlos Julio Molina) -- are waiting for them; seeing how free they are with their money, the men figure that Martin and Carla should fetch a decent ransom for their release. The kidnappers demand 20,000 dollars to set Martin and Carla free, and Carla's father (Rubén Blades) struggles to raise the cash, with the criminals insisting upon payment in a mere two hours. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 87 mins
Secuestro Express (2004)
The film ends with the following dialogue:
Half the world is dying of starvation, while the other half is dying of obesity.
There are two options.
Fight the monster, or invite him to dinner,
But the thing is; is that the punks and hoodlums had money and they even said it at one time. Poverty is just an excuse for this lifestyle or drugs and crime. This does not mean that we should not address poverty or the huge disparity of income but when a film like this tries to even hint at that there is an excuse for this is completely ridiculous. The film closes with the above quote as one of the main actors drives away in a non-discrete compact car instead of the SUV in the beginning....

I too would have given up on being pushed around by the punks. Although it did not work out for Martin, I would have done the same thing. I wonder, if he was friends with one of the distribution drug dealers he would not have known the others or the cab driver and would have been smarter than to get into the broken down cab after fleeing from the gang. I almost thought that one of the parents would have taken a hit out on the gang instead of paying ransom. And it really did no good for the money that the father of Carla gave without any guarantee than some gangsters word.

Mía Maestro did an excellent job on this part and played a whole range of emotions and even a little sexy at times. I look forward to seeing more of her.

Special features consisted of a couple of deleted short scenes and a short documentary of making of the film with the actors talking in English and also a longer Spanish version with English subtitles. It also includes a music video.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Marigold (2007)

A demanding American actress (Ali Larter) heads to India in order to shoot a low-budget Hollywood film, only to find herself stranded in Bombay with no luggage and attitude to spare. Despite the unfortunate start to her Bombay adventure, the once-jaded actress is soon swept up in the glitz and glamour of the local filmmaking scene and cast in a lavish Bollywood musical. Once on the set, she meets a handsome prince and falls hopelessly in love. ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 107 mins
Marigold (2007)
An overlap of Indian and American cultures is shown through on this romantic comedy. The one special feature was the making of the film where the US director tells about how he visited India and had watched Chori Chori (2003) and from that decided to make a "Bollywood" film. He then watched 150 Bollywood films. I see more and more collaborations between Indian and American film industry including a lot of Bollywood actors making films strictly for the US market {they appear to be} like this one.

Ecstasy (1933)

Ekstase is the opening credit of this film and reminded me of Bo Derek in her film "Bolero".
Czechoslovakian director Gutav Machaty's experimental romantic idyll, replete with soggy symbolism, was a cause celebre upon its release in 1932 due to a lyrical -- and nude-- midnight swim by a young Hedy Lamarr. Lamarr plays Eva, a child bride whose husband shows a singular lack of interest in physical intimacy on their wedding night. Frustrated and searching for a quick roll in the hay to alleviate her sexual tension, Eva offers herself to a roadway engineer. Taking off her clothes, she engages in a leisurely swim. But when a horse bolts with her duds, she gives chase, running smack into the engineer, who calmly hands her clothes to her. The two plan to run away together, but when her husband commits suicide in despair, she decides not to leave. Some time afterward, Eva is seen with a happy and contented look upon her face, the result of her secret liaison being the little baby in her arms. ~ Paul Brenner, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 89 mins
Ecstasy (1933)
Although it was excruciatingly long in some scenes with repeats over and over of the same small clip, it was short enough to be enjoyable. Basically it gives the whole movie away including the ending in this commentary. The dialogue was not even more than a silent movie, which makes me wonder if the script was written for a silent movie. Not sure why the lovers could not have ended up together since the husband had already committed suicide.

I do disagree with the film critic {Paul} in that Eva was looking for a roll in the hay, but honestly fell in love when even her husband had admitted that the marriage was a mistake and that they had nothing in common. Which makes me wonder if he committed suicide for other reasons than being jilted by a lover. Pride and conceit seems more likely.

Hedy Lamarr was very much on the thin side but it was funny to see all the nude scenes of her running around {at a distance}. But I would not call the lake scene midnight, since the surveyor and his crew were still working.

Overall an excellent film, although I am sure some of the scenic as well as montage scenes would have been a lot nicer if done in color. The film quality was fair but had quite a few scratches and specks.


It starts out with a Om symbol and a prayer starting with Ohm.Taal
Like a lot of Indian films it is about love at first site. The hero also makes it clear that everyone will help in his quest for his love once they fall apart because of family differences that arise because of an unplanned visit by the less rich family. At first the visiting family has to wait on a bench next to a cage with a few dogs. I almost wondered if it was a phobia about dogs (Islamic considerations) more than disrespect of being in the heat.

The unscrupulous producer said the following monologue as he opens a big book installed on the wall in his office (he had one monologue towards the end that we missed part of it because of the disk but it was over 4 minutes long!):
Principles of the 20th century.
Sacrifice is supreme.
"Do good and forget about it. Do your duty, don't expect rewards."
After completing B.A., I worked on these ideals for 5 years.
What was the outcome? I starved, had no food to eat.
I use to play this rattle.
And Banerjee would take photographs.
Then our life took a new turn.
We met a man called Jaidev uncle.
He gave us these 7 tenets of the 21st century.7 Commandments!
He said Kapu, change these old tenets.
Change into a modern man.
1. The first rule is love remains healthy with give and take.
"Give and take, give and take."{Shaking rattle}
2. First do good to yourself.
"Me first, me first." {Shaking rattle}
3. All efforts are useless unless backed with expectation of reward.
"What is the profit" What is desire? What's the result?" {Shaking rattle}
4. Shop dressing is more important than honesty.
"Business." {Shaking rattle}
5. Envy is essential to win in any competition.
"Jealousy." {Shaking rattle}
6. Greed is necessary to become rich.
{Lick lips, yummy sounds}
7. Cut others down to size in order to be one up.
"Cut it. Cut into size." {Shaking rattle in slow movements side to side}
He makes this speech in front of the lower caste family and naturally he gets some strange looks but continue to do business with him.

The dancing was great and most of the outfits were excellent except one of the mens was really a stupid idea of having black squares on white background with just a repeating pattern. I am not sure if it violated the no kiss policy but the man's lips kiss the woman's closer to the camera side so we do not see her lips as they touch but this must be the closest to a full lip kiss we have seen. I almost think that since there is censorship of kissing on film then films become even more obsessed with this simple act than any other thing. Including this film has a nearly subplot of sharing a Coke Bottle {yes Coke was thanked in the opening credits} so that they would be sharing germs. You know boy and girl germs mixing up.

Taal (film)
Most of the film was of good quality and only a couple of short cuts the color was off and not visually clear.


Ram Jaane (Devanagari: राम जाने, Nastaliq: رام جانے, translation: "Ram Knows" or "God Knows") is a 1995 Indian Bollywood movie directed by Rajiv Mehra about an unnamed kid (portrayed by Shahrukh Khan) who grows up to become a gangster. He uses the name Ram Jaane after meeting with a priest who in response to the kid asking about his name said "Ram Jaane" (God knows).

Ram Jaane is arrested by a security guard after stealing cargo from a train with his best friend. He is shortly released and becomes one of the biggest hustlers in the city. After a deadly shootout, he is arrested by a corrupt police department and sent to jail again. After a few years of serving jail time, he goes back to the streets and to his friend's place. There he decides to help him raise the local kids in the area so they won't be corrupted by the streets. He quickly falls in love with a childhood girlfriend Bela (Juhi Chawla), but also goes back to his old ways.
Ram Jaane
It was not spelled out in the film about what his name meant but my wife quickly told me the meaning of Ram Jaane. The film almost glorifies the name with nearly constant repetition. I might even be able to say it to others and have them understand my accent. Ram Jaane does after pleading from his friend to influence his impressionable followers to reject his lifestyle. I tend to not watch films for the kung fu aspects but this film had plenty of really bad action scenes with obvious fake punches. I would recommend this film to all my friends.


Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Yes Men (2003)

The usual suspects have to speak of matters that they have no knowledge of like Michael Moore {later Greg Palast} making some comments about the WTO in the first 4 minutes of the film...
I have seen various stuff from the Yes Men on the web and while quite cute in their antics they seem to be nothing more than assholes. Taking the identity of someone else or the organization in any particular manner like they are doing just seems wrong on so many levels, especially the WTO. They really do nothing except a governing body to facilitate trade, which much of the developing world wants and needs. The Yes Men have a jaundiced view of the world that does not reflect the reality that they cavalierly mock. Including the fact that WTO is not and is never in the business of telling people what to do and what technology to use only the rules of the game to facilitate trade. What Dweebs..."This represents the World Trade Organization, this is the World Trade Organization" as they point out the ridiculous phallic suit printed in the paper. I guess maybe in their world that is what the WTO does but not in reality.
The title of Mr. Unruh's presentation is the "Future of Textiles
The Future of a Lifetime
and The Lifetime of the Future"

Interesting that they used scenes of The Birth of a Nation to depict the us Civil War.
The Yes Men created "" as a parody website that looks identical to the real WTO website.

In spring 2001, the site received an email requesting the WTO to speak at a conference in Finland entitled: "Textiles of the Future".

Hank Hardy Unruh was born.

Filmmakers Chris Smith and Sarah Price (the production team behind American Movie) direct the bizarre documentary The Yes Men. The film follows Andy and Mike, two regular guys who pretended to be corporate bigwigs in order to expose powerful corporate evil doing and have a bit of fun in the process. In 1999, they created a parody of the World Trade Organization website that mocked the harshest ideas about globalization. However humorous its intent, the website earned them invitations to important business trade meetings around the world. Companies and organizations actually thought they were the real WTO. Andy and Mike played along, impersonating despicable executives in order to publicly humiliate them. The guys refer to their pranks as "identity correction." The Yes Men premiered at the 2003 Toronto International Film Festival and was shown as part of a special screening at the2004 Sundance Film Festival. ~ Andrea LeVasseur, All Movie Guide

Warning: This product is intended for mature audiences only. It may contain violence, sexual content, drug abuse and/or strong language. You must be 17 or older to purchase it. By ordering this item you are certifying that you are at least 17 years of age. {Brief nudity of male genitalia.}

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 82 mins
The Yes Men (2003)
{Identity Correction-but whose interpretation of that identity?}

World Development Movement
Barry Coates???

The scene of lecturing to the college students after giving them McDonalds' products was quite funny. They had videos of how they envision a process of taking waste out of toilets and piping it to some Muslim country to sell as recycled burgers. Yes disgusting, especially considering that value menus 1,2,3, etc are based on the times recycled. They say that only 20% of the nutrients are retained and thus 80% is discarded. At least their idea for reducing the waste in the system is a novel approach.

I wonder why so much attention is given that they have no money to buy decent pair of shoes (plug for Salvation Army) but have enough to fly all over the world. And looking at their lectures they have like what appears to be 3 cameras and thus three camera crews. They seem to have money for that but not for a $30 pair of shoes??? Is that to show how we are so poor and fighting the Goliath "International Corporations"? Probably...

Australian Film Center
Strangely, we never do get to know the people that are interviewed and to what organization they belong. Seems a bit cynical that you present people that could just as easily have been plants in the fake conference.
In September 2003, the World Trade Organization had its Filth Ministerial meeting in Cancun Mexico. The talks collapsed when rich countries refused to stop pushing unfair and inappropriate free trade rules on poor countries. Rich countries have yet to adequately respond to increasingly urgent demands for reform.
That pretty much sums up their vacuous stance on the WTO. They don't want it to exist but then criticize when no progress is being made. Like the usual Libtard logic of damn if you do and damn if you don't. The latest rounds also collapsed and in some small way, I want to thank them for their obstructionist views. And of course just making shit up about an organization that they seem to know nothing about besides from talking points.

Special Features:
1. Deleted Scenes (Stupid shit mostly-like mannequin to drive in the carpool lane)
2. Other MGM movies
3. Commentary by the two actors and the 3 directors???

Derail Doha, Save the Climate Walden Bello | July 28, 2008

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The End of Suburbia: Oil Depletion and the Collapse of the American Dream (2004)

"If a path to the better there be, it begins with a full look at the worst."
Thomas Hardy, 1887

"The End of Suburbia" starts out with exerts of the Redbook video that was included in the specials. But not much more than talking heads {so called experts} that pontificate on Litarded Talking Points...
Even bringing in people like the evil "so called" neocons.

Since the end of World War II, American families have steadily moved away from large cities into suburban areas, with little thought to the ecological costs of suburban life. Creating neighborhoods with large single-family homes that require significant amounts of energy to heat and are located an inconvenient distance from schools, shopping centers, and employment districts that demand the daily use of automobiles, suburbs are remarkably inefficient communities built around the notion that fossil fuels will always be inexpensive and readily available. However, many experts have speculated that the Earth's supply of oil and natural gas is rapidly dwindling, and that the amount available may throw the world into a global, political, and economic crisis in the foreseeable future. The End of Suburbia: Oil Depletion and the Collapse of the American Dream is a documentary which examines the rise of the suburban lifestyle, the costs to the Earth and the economy of our current living habits, where we may be headed, and how this situation can be remedied. Canadian journalist Barrie Zwicker serves as narrator. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

The End of Suburbia: Oil Depletion and the Collapse of the American Dream (2004)

The film also had some classical short reels put out by corporations/industries to promote good feelings about society and their brand. I found both worth the time to watch. Redbook was longer and thus allowed lots of stock footage of just family life to be presented. At first I was not even sure if they were going to get to the selling portions of the film but in the end they presented how Redbook was important in society and how it helped all those young families getting started "In the "Suburbs" (1957). The cartoon "Destination Earth" (1956) was produced for the American Petroleum Institute. Although I understand the reasoning for promoting an understanding of how oil and oil products make our lives vastly improved over all other generations, I wonder to the wisdom of so much "free market theories" presented in this context. The hero space explorer (just ignore the fact that most jet fuel is also Petroleum based) brings back two books called: The Story of Oil and Competition: More for All Maybe they were still feeling the pains of various regimes that nationalized their assets. The End
Presented by the Oil Industry Information Committee
of the
American Petroleum Institute

James Howard Kuntsler author of:
The Geography of Nowhere: the Rise and Decline of Americas' Man-Made Landscape.

Peter Calthrope author of:
The Next American Metropolis:
Ecology, Community, and the American Dream.

Matthew Simmons as advisor:
Vice-President Cheney's 2001 Energy Task Force

Michael Ruppert as author:
"Crossing the Rubicon: The Decline of the American Empire at the End of the Age of Oil"

Richard Heinberg as author:
" The Party's Over:
Oil, War, and the Fate of Industrial Societies"

Stages of development:
City Life for workers in factories.
Rich/Affluent Suburbia {Parklike settings}.
Street Car Suburbia.
Automobile Suburbia.
War Veterans/Post War Suburbia {Baby boomers formation}
Cul de sac Suburbia.

On-Line YouTube full length video at: YouTube - The End of Suburbia - 52 minute documentary on peak oil