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

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


Within the first 7 minutes of this long film has the mother die. Made me express that maybe Dillagi is like Mother India.
which like Bollywood tradition was around 3 hours and 20 minutes. Blockbuster had no information on the film at all which made it a little scary to order, but it was well worth it. While the dance scenes were wonderful and cinematography was excellent, it was quite distracting that the color renditions are really poorly done and the scenes go from vibrant colors to some washed out dull looking cut of the film and this is happening on a too frequent basis. This film like many others intermingle Hindi, English and other native languages of India, but this time not only did they not translate the songs in the film but a lot of chit-chat dialogue was not included in the translation.

Rajvir (Bobby Deol) and Ranvir (Sunny Deol) are devoted brothers. They along with their parents leave their village in Punjab to move to Mumbai. When their mother passes away, Ranvir takes on the responsibility of looking after his younger brother. After some hardship Ranvir manages to turn everything around and he becomes really wealthy. Rajvir on the other hand lives recklessly and without a care in the world.

Both brothers find love with Urmila Matondkar. Happy for Rajvir, he arranges the marriage. Unfortunately he later finds out that he has arranged Rajvir's marriage with the person he (Ranvir) loves. Rajvir must decide what is more important, the brother who has cared for him and given him everything all these years or his love.

Since Blockbuster did not provide much information let me include a short list of some of the actors.
Zohra Sehgal as Biji the brothers grandmother.
Urmila Matondkar as Shalini.
Bobby Deol as Rajvir.
Sunny Deol as Ranvir and also directed the film.
Dara Singh as Vir Singh.
Dharmendra is the producer.
Preity Zinta as Rani in a Guest appearance.
The only special feature was a 20 minute film of the making of the film with interviews of some of the above actors (where I got the initial list). The disappointing aspect was that this was not translated also with only Urmila talking in English.

Maybe overly generous since it needs some attention to this film at Blockbuster/Rating 4.5(/5).

Monday, July 28, 2008

Forbidden Planet (1956)

MGM's first big-budget science fiction film, Forbidden Planet, combined state-of-the-art special effects with a storyline based on Shakespeare's The Tempest. In the 23rd century, Cmdr. J.J. Adams (Leslie Nielsen) guides United Planets cruiser C-57-D on a rescue mission to faraway planet Altair-4. Twenty years earlier, Earth ship Bellerophon disappeared while en route to Altair-4. Only the ship's philologist, Dr. Morbius (Walter Pidgeon), survived; in the intervening decades, Morbius has created an Edenlike world of his own, for the benefit of himself and his nubile young daughter, Altaira (Anne Francis). His private paradise is zealously guarded by Robby the Robot, a piece of technology far in advance of anything on Earth. When Adams and his crew land on Altair-4, Morbius announces that he has no intention of being rescued and returned to Earth. When Adams attempts to contact home base, he finds that his radio equipment has been smashed by some unseen force. Holding Morbius responsible, Adams confronts the scientist, who decides to tell all. At one time, according to Morbius, Altair-4 was populated by the Krel, a wise, intellectually superior race. Using leftover Krel technology, Morbius has doubled his intellect and gained the ability to shape a new world to his own specifications. Forbidden Planet was a big influence on future sci-fi outer-space efforts, especially Star Trek. The letterboxed video version is the closest to the original. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 99 mins
Forbidden Planet (1956)
A nice campy movie that I enjoyed immensely. Much of the feel and ideas of the film, were ripped off (used) in later films/TV series like Star Trek was really close to the same feeling as this film and some of the same Sci-Fi technology was the same. Normally I do not do US films unless they are groundbreaking enough to make a statement, and this did that level of requirement.

The evil and good inside one person and the collapse of very advanced civilizations was taken from Star Trek also.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

The Taste of Others (2000)

Agnes Jaoui co-writes and directs this romantic comedy of manners set in France's rustic Provence. Unpolished and ultra-pragmatic industrialist Jean-Jacques Castella (co-scripter Jean-Pierre Bacri) reluctantly attends Racine's tragedy "Berenice" in order to see his niece play a bit part. He is taken with the play's strangely familiar-looking leading lady Clara Devaux (Anne Alvaro). During the course of the show, Castella soon remembers that he once hired and then promptly fired the actress as an English language tutor. He immediately goes out and signs up for language lessons. Thinking that he is nothing but an ill-tempered philistine with bad taste, Clara rejects him until Castella charms her off her feet. ~ Jonathan Crow, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 112 mins
The Taste of Others (2000)
With such a sexy cover for the DVD and the enticing description, I thought this might be a funny film, but to no avail. I even thought it could have got funnier as the film went on and again nothing of interest in this film. I do not even remember a funny scene now.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Ghosts of Cité Soleil (2006)

During the embattled final months of Jean-Bertrand Aristide's second term as president of Haiti, Aristide's allies recruited street gangs from the nation's poorest cities to act as strong-arm men, helping to shut down resistance to Aristide and quiet those who opposed him. Called chimères (or "ghosts"), these gang-bangers became a powerful part of Aristide's forces until the president was removed from office by a coup d'etat in 2004. Dutch filmmaker Asger Leth combines mockumentary reenactments with footage shot in the ghettos of Cité Soleil during Aristide's final days in this powerful drama that follows two brothers and chimères, Billy (James Petit Frere) and 2Pac (Winson Jean). Billy dreams of someday leaving behind the gang life and becoming part of Aristide's political machine, while 2Pac has become disillusioned with politics and wants to become a rap star in the manner of his hero and namesake, Tupac Shakur. In a place where political allegiances shift every day and brutal violence is commonplace, Billy and 2Pac's relationship is already a tense one, but matters become even more difficult between them when they both fall in love with the same woman -- Lele (Eleonore Senlis), a French social worker who understands the power these men hold better than they do themselves. Ghosts of Cité Soleil features a musical score by Wyclef Jean of the Fugees, who also appears in the film in a scene in which he discusses music and politics with 2Pac. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 85 mins
Ghosts of Cité Soleil (2006)
This definitely opened my eyes to some things that I heard about Haiti but only in passing notes. The "Agronomist" also noted some dissatisfaction with Aristide. Definitely this film is an inside view of Cité Soleil and the gang problems (Chimères).
Rebels Against Aristide:

Buteur Metayer {Rebel Leader}
Cannibal Army was an offshoot of Aristide's Party (Fanmi Lavalas), before arming against Lavalas.
The Cannibal Army
By John Maxwell

Then Aristide disbanded the army. I am still curious as to why he did that. I know he accused them of human rights abuses, but first you disarm them with loyal troops and then disband the ones that are implicated. Start with a well trained group and then work out and not arm thugs and call that good.
He made us Lavalas kill Macoute and now that the opposition is back, thy're going to kill Lavalas.
2Pac make it out of Haiti, July 2004.
When his brother was released from prison 2Pac decided to go back and be with his.
2PAC was shot by Labanye on the 30th of September 2004.
He died in Cite Soleil.
Lele is now living in Paris, France.
Billy has diasappeared and is presumed dead.
The Chimeres are still thriving in Cite Soleil.

Misc. Links:
Wyclef Jean
Cité Soleil
Andy Apaid {Political Opposition} {Chief of Police Cité Soleil-Christine ????}
Charles Baker {Political Opposition} {Aristide's gangs attacks on universities and hospitals.}
Louis Jodel Chamblain {Rebel Commander-in exile 10 years)
Guy Philippe {Police Chief?}
Leon Charles {Chief of Police Haiti} {Talks about Labaney, Maral, Dred Wilmer, 2pac, Bily.}

Sunday, July 20, 2008

A Passage to India (1984)

A Passage to India, director David Lean's final film (for which he also received editing credit), breaks no new ground cinematically, but remains an exquisitely assembled harkback to such earlier Lean epics as Doctor Zhivago and Ryan's Daughter. Based on the novel by E. M. Forster, the film is set in colonial India in 1924. Adela Quested (Judy Davis), a sheltered, well-educated British woman, arrives in the town of Chandrapore, where she hopes to experience "the real India". Here she meets and befriends Dr. Aziz (Victor Banerjee), who, despite longstanding racial and social taboos, moves with relative ease and freedom amongst highborn British circles. Feeling comfortable with Adela, Aziz invites her to accompany him on a visit to the Marabar caves. Adela has previously exhibited bizarre, almost mystical behavior during other ventures into the Indian wilderness: this time, she emerges from the caves showing signs of injury and ill usage. To Aziz' horror, he is accused by Adela of raping her. Typically, the British ruling class rallies to Adela's defense, virtually convicting Aziz before the trial ever begins. Though he is eventually acquitted due to lack of evidence (in fact, director Lean never shows us what really happened), Aziz is ruined in the eyes of both the British and his own people-as is Adela. Woven into these proceedings is a subplot involving Adela's elderly travelling companion Mrs. Moore (Peggy Ashcroft), who through a series of plot twists too complex to describe here becomes a heroine of the Indian Independence movement. A Passage to India was nominated for several Academy Awards, scoring wins in the categories of Best Supporting Actress (Peggy Ashcroft) and Best Original Score (Maurice Jarre). A theatrical version of A Passage to India, written by Santha Rama Rau, was previously adapted for television by the BBC in the mid-1970s. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 164 mins
A Passage to India (1984)
E. M. Forster present a fairly strict British interpretation of the fictional events. Although Aziz is poor by the standards of his friends he goes all out to provide the adventure. He so wants to join their "caste" but in the end the British reject him on every occasion.

I also note that very little attention is given to the fact of various religions of the various characters are just grouped together with little regard to the differences. For example Alec Guinness as Godbole is a funny character that basically is basically nihilistic in his approach to life. That action and inactions will result in the same outcomes so no need to help Aziz or not. He was Hindu and Aziz was Muslim, although not sure if that was not included for a reason. Of course seeing Guinness in a role different that Obi-Wan Kenobi was a little surprising since he does not appear to be anything other than English/Irish heritage.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

El Che: Investigating a Legend (1998)

This video is a profile of Latin American guerilla leader Ernesto Guevara, revered by his supporters around the globe as "El Che." Born in 1928 in Argentina, Che Guevara believed that revolution was necessary to free Latin American people from oppression. An ally of Fidel Castro, he served in the Cuban government from 1961 to 1965. He left Cuba to join the cause of revolution in Bolivia, where he was killed by the Bolivian army in 1967. El Che's story is told with archival films and photographs, as well as commentary by historians. ~ Rose of Sharon Winter, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 150 mins
El Che: Investigating a Legend (1998)
Definitely a pro (propaganda) film about Che with even Castro having a part in the film glorifying Che. On the positive side, it has a lot of stock film of the revolution and footage of Che talking as well as the usual collection of pictures. One that seemed surprising was the attack on the armored trains although it still could have been filmed afterward for propaganda. Just like "Soy Cuba" did.

Che claimed he was not an economist but a communist when he became president of the central bank. He signed (scribbled) his name on Cuban notes as "Che".

Mario Monje Molina (Bolivian Communist Party-Secretary General)
You'll find no written commitment from the Communist Party or from any of its leaders to work with Che's guerrilla,
Not one.
He had to leave Africa and find a way out.
He told himself: "I couldn't go back to Cuba. It was out of the question. I already bid it a solemn farewell." So he had to choose a new place for a come-back and Bolivia seemed to fit the bill, not the least because we were already getting ready and they knew it.
So he said to me: I can't give you the leadership of the revolution: "I can't do it."

Other Links:
The Life & Legacy of Latin American Revolutionary Ernesto “Che” Guevara: Forty Years After His Death{Democracy Now}

Che Guevara
Daughter: Hidita
Judas: Regis Debray & Ciro Bustos
Fuese Che (Furious)
"I Confess, I Live", Book found with Che.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

In Bruges (2008)

Having just carried out a particularly difficult hit in London, two hitmen seek shelter in Bruges, Belgium, only to find their views on life and death permanently altered by their interactions with the locals, the tourists, and a film crew. Colin Farrell, Brendan Gleeson, and Ralph Fiennes star in an action comedy from director Martin McDonagh. ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 107 mins
In Bruges (2008)
Basically a Greek Trajedy with no matter what the characters try to do nothing seems to change the destiny that their boss has set out for them. Even jumping off the top of the Church tower to a horrible death does not alter the course of events. Although the down beat ending and justice is only served when another innocent person dies, I did like the special features especially the boat trip through Bruges. Looks like a great place to visit.

Even though the boss was basically evil (leaving out that he was a father and all), he did have some good lines when another hood got himself shot in the face with his own gun by Farrell.

Bombay (1995)

Hindu Friend : You're a Hindu, don't forget.

Shekhar: No I'm not a Hindu!
Muslim Friend {Rafiq}: Your Children are half Muslim.

Shekhar: My kids and I are not Muslims either!
We don't belong to either community!
We're only Indians!

Does the Quran advocate the slaying of Hindus? Tell me!
Or does the Gita tell you to kill Muslims?
What is this all for?

I thought this passage was the heart of the movie's message and that there may be a need beyond individual religions to join a nation together. And as noted by Wiki:
But at the end of the movie, it picturises that the riots come to an end and both Hindus/Muslims join hands together as one nation. Moreover, Shekhar and Shaila get their children back.
Bombay (film)

It definitely had a strong message and carried on a little with the death and destruction in the end, but the point was taken. And since they maintained the flow of the movie, I felt it did not drag on even if it was over a 2 hour movie. Also the singing in the dance sequences were nice although the dancers were not some of the best I have seen. Some of them even seemed to rip off some elements of Jackson's Thriller tour and George Michael outfits.
This powerfully provocative political-religious melodrama is a blockbuster hit in India where it was made. The message in the film was considered so potent by the government that it took two months for censors, police, and politicians to review it prior to the film's release. It is on the surface, a love story between a good Hindu man and a devout Muslim woman who leave their village to marry and live in tumultuous Bombay. There they have twin sons and raise each one to understand and accept the disparate religious traditions of their parents. Within the great city, there is much religious unrest and when the Muslims hear that Hindu radicals have attacked an ancient Mosque, riots explode everywhere. At one point rioters capture the twins and demand they claim their religion; when they cannot, they are doused with gasoline and are almost immolated. Meanwhile, their father, a journalist, attempts to report on the fighting and finds himself faced with blind hatred on either side. To protect their grandchildren, their two grandfathers, traditionally bitter enemies, move to Bombay, and when they too suffer religious persecution, they unite to end the violence. ~ Sandra Brennan, 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.

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 130 mins
Bombay (1995)

Monday, July 14, 2008

Time Machine: The True Story of Che Guevara (2007)

Yes his name lives on in all the glorious revolutions of the world still. Not!
Ni'lin takes up the leadership of non-violent resistance to oppression and occupation.'
Che's words that solidarity is "not a matter of wishing success to the victim of aggression, but of sharing his fate; one must accompany him to his death or to victory".

From his famous motorcycle trips to his historic role in the Cuban Revolution, Argentinean revolutionary Che Guevara is profiled in a documentary produced to explore the life of the man whose visage has become an iconic symbol of hard left politics. ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 91 mins
Time Machine: The True Story of Che Guevara (2007)
Chancho as pig (dirty person) in Spanish was used to describe Che when young and notable as having a "week shirt" which seems obvious what that means. Ernesto was also nicknamed "Chancho" (pig) by his schoolmates, because he rarely bathed, and proudly wore a "weekly shirt".

Other than some coloring of this individual the made for History Channel movie was not worth it for really dwelling into his life as much as I wanted. Maybe there really is not much tape of him talking and just a few pictures spread around, which adds to the mystery of this man that was a ruthless as any other petty dictator.

I am glad that Che did not get the reigns of power in Cuba and that Castro put him in his place.
Anonymous said...

I am sad that you've fallen into the usual right-wing nonsense of dismissing a man based on what you've been told by biased sources that he's done.
It's like dismissing the Bible because you can't be bothered to read it and because someone said it was nonsense.
Have you read anything by Ché ?
Maybe you should.
It's bad to be ignorant.
July 22, 2008 4:56 AM
Hey, what can I say. Seems that Boudu has seen fit to comment. But this is only the beginning, I got more Che written movie reviews to come...
Anyway I think I can get an idea of his thinking without reading another boring tome by some nut case.

Next time Boudu, leave your name since it makes conversing so much better.

Well, well, well Boudu left another post and I missed it:
Pierre said...

You're a very connedfused person, Ron.
On one hand, you sneer and postulate about subjects you haven't made the slightest effort to research and understand, then you get all snarky when this is pointed out ?

As well, you jeer that you won't even MAKE the effort to diminish your ignorance, instead you'll just continue to trot along to your propaganda programming. Odd.
Boudu, I only have to be only slightly less confused than you. Certainly did read Fuser's own words as in: Our America and Theirs
Kennedy and the Alliance for Progress —
The Debate at Punta del Este

And yes did get to see some more of Che's life in:
The Motorcycle Diaries (2003)
El Che: Investigating a Legend (1998)

Yes as always you are odd that I told you about Fuser and his willingness to kill millions out of his blind hatred of the USA and you seem to be under the same ideology, but I am sure you have not watched the movies or even explored these aspects...

Carry on...

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Stop-Loss (2008)

After serving his tour of duty in Iraq, a young American soldier who is ordered to return to the front lines as part of the military's controversial stop-loss policy opts instead to go AWOL in a thought-provoking military drama directed by Kimberly Peirce. Sgt. Brandon King (Ryan Philippe) is a decorated Iraq War veteran who once served his country with pride. After his tour of duty comes to an end, King returns to his Texas hometown and attempts to pick up where he once left off with a little help from his family, as well as long-time best friend and war buddy Steve Shriver (Channing Tatum). But just as Brandon, Steve, and the rest of their war buddies begin to settle back into civilian life, Uncle Sam comes calling on them once again. Suddenly ordered back into active duty, the disillusioned war veteran begins to question not just his ties to family and his longtime friendships, but his capacity for love and his sense of honor as well. ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 111 mins
Stop-Loss (2008)
Not really thought-provoking to me. Just more Lib trash. Written in the manner that all bad things happen to good people. Like the black family that was supposedly on the run for years and the fact that someone stole King's personal possessions in Abbie Cornish car. King then gets in a major fight where he takes down 3 thugs and takes away their gun before Michele talks him out of executing them. He does fire off a couple of rounds to scare them-rightfully.

Across the Universe (2007)

I also received the bonus disk even before the movie-that sucks. Not much of interest except extended videos of the songs in the movie.
Set against the anti-war protests, rock & roll revolution, and mind-expanding psychedelia of the 1960s, Julie Taymor's hallucinogenic musical follows the arduous journey of star-crossed lovers Jude (Jim Sturgess) and Lucy (Evan Rachel Wood) as they and a small group of musicians are swept up in the raging waters of the volatile counterculture movement. Guided through their journey by a pair known only as Dr. Robert (Bono) and Mr. Kite (Eddie Izzard), Jude and Lucy are eventually forced to find their way back to one another after being split apart by powerful forces beyond their control. The music in the film consists exclusively of songs made popular by the Beatles during the time period depicted in the movie. ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 133 mins
Across the Universe (2007)
Basically a nice love story with a pleasant ending. They use the backdrop of VietNam to convey their contempt for it but overall the special effects and the music made it enjoyable. The Mr. Kite video and scenes they thought were so good they included them in the special features twice. But honestly the soldiers in their underwear carrying a giant Statue of Liberty was a great scene.

Evan Rachel Wood was pleasant on the eyes and had a nice part. I imagined the whole time she would turn out to be a fluzzy and luckily not.

Even willing to give it a rating of 4(/5).

Friday, July 11, 2008

Sex and Death 101 (2007)

Upon receiving an e-mail containing the names of every woman he has ever slept with and every women he will ever sleep with, a man set to be married in just one week eschews his wedding plans in favor of seeking out the truth behind the perplexing message in a black comedy written and directed by Heathers screenwriter Daniel Waters. Roderick Blank (Simon Baker) was prepared for a future of predictable, domesticated bliss -- but fate has a funny way of shaking things up when we least expect it. When a mysterious message appears in his inbox and he sets out to discover the origins of the strange communication, he soon finds himself falling for a dangerous black widow named Death Nell (Winona Ryder), who isn't on the list. ~ Jason Buchanan, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 117 mins
Sex and Death 101 (2007)
Quite a funny film, so included it in the collection here. I had to watch it since it had Winona Ryder, but not a very big part for her. It dealt with a lot of mature subject matters in a light whimsical way, and of course dealing with death and life (sexual mostly).

Death Nell is on the list in her real name and is last on the list and which is why when he has like 20 names left he starts to freak out. I really hate it when reviewers can not even get the plot right.

The bus scene reminded me of one scene in the "Babysitters".

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The Thief of Baghdad (1924)

Douglas Fairbanks is at his most graceful and charismatic in one of the classic silent films of the 1920s. As the thief of Baghdad, his movements are dance-like -- nothing like the athletics he performed in most of his other films. In this Arabian take, the thief ignores the holy teachings and sneaks into the palace of the Caliph (Brandon Hurst). All thoughts of robbery slip away, however, when he sees the beautiful princess (Julanne Johnston). Princes have come from many faraway lands to win the princess' hand (and it's amusing to watch her face growing ever more alarmed at their arrival, because each one is uglier than the last). The thief disguises himself as a prince and the princess falls in love with him. After having a pang of conscience, the thief confesses all to the Holy Man (Charles Belcher), who sends him to find a magic chest. He braves many obstacles to get it, and when he returns he discovers that the Mongol Prince (Sojin) has taken over the city. Using the chest, the reformed thief creates armies of men out of nothingness and recaptures the city. He then uses the cloak of invisibility to spirit the princess away on a magic carpet. Fairbanks stole some of the special effects for his film from Fritz Lang's Der Müde Tod, which he had purchased for American distribution. The Thief of Baghdad, with its look of unrealistic beauty (courtesy of art director William Cameron Menzies), was not fully appreciated in its day. Because of its huge cost (two million dollars -- a real fortune in those days), it made little money. After that, Fairbanks stuck closer to the swashbuckling persona he felt his audience wanted. Available now on DVD, the remastered film features a new score by Carl Davis. ~ Janiss Garza, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time:
139 mins The Thief of Baghdad (1924)
I believe this is the first film I have seen of Douglas Fairbanks even though I know the name. He was truly in good shape and I do not know of anyone quite that good of shape physically until people like Arnold came in the 70s. Quite an entertaining film even if a silent film. The thief manages to outwit everyone like stealing a purse in the opening scene and then palm the money in it so that when the police ask the rightful owner what is in it, the victim is wrong about contents. Part mythical and part real life concerning a love story as noted above. The thief steals a climbing rope that gets him into the castle, though some of the guards are completely worthless.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

The Southerner (1945)

The Southerner was Jean Renoir's favorite of his American films. Shot on location, the film stars Zachary Scott as a sharecropper who yearns for a place of his own. On a tiny, scraggly patch of land, Scott tries to make a go of things, along with his wife Betty Field, his grandmother Beulah Bondi, and his children Jean Vanderwilt (aka Bunny Sunshine) and Jay Gilpin. Though a proud, independent man, Scott is forced by circumstance to seek help from neighboring farmer J. Carroll Naish, whose life experience have left him bitter and vituperative. The two men become enemies, but are reunited by their mutual love of fishing. Scott suffers a setback when a rainstorm destroys his cotton crop. He is about to go wearily back to working for others (specifically, factory owner Charles Kemper, who also narrates the film) when he is convinced by his never-say-die family to persevere on his own. Director Jean Renoir also wrote the script for The Southerner--in fluent English rather than French, as mental exercise. Told at a leisurely, unhurried pace, the film is the one American Renoir effort that comes closest to his "slice of life" dramas of the 1930s. The Southerner was not a box office hit, but did win the effusive praise of critics, not to mention the Venice Film Festival "best picture" award. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Theatrical Feature Running Time: 91 mins
The Southerner (1945)
The neighbor was actually criminal in his actions toward the crops and letting the cattle into the garden. The house was a complete waste that was not even suitable for humans so not even sure how any family could have survived the winter months. The summer would have been fine since the parents even slept on the porch. Naturally this is just a romantic view of farmers tilling the land. Zachary has a friend that often asks if he wants a stable steady job so the family would be fed and not get "spring sickness" that the son gets and almost dies. The neighbor would rather feed his pigs than give a pint to help the son overcome his sickness. Yes a truly evil person. The daughter tries to give Zachary a pint but the son also throws that on the ground.

But they overcome their problems...

Thursday, July 3, 2008


The story follows the lives of three children, Anjali, a young English Literature major, her brother, Mihir, a medical student, and Priti, a young mother as they all come home during the time of Diwali, the Indian festival and celebration of lights. As each child arrives home, they bring with them various
secrets in their lives that they hide from one another. All these issues are answered and brought together as the true meaning of family and friendship collide in this film.
Very little to do with Diwali other than a few small scenes without much explanation as to the meaning. So many films in India seem to like the one word non descriptive titles that at times have no relevance to the film. A story of a family overcoming their problems and in the process shedding their lies to each other, including a son that did not want to tell his parents that he dropped out of medical school and wanted instead to be a chef. Nearly a forgettable film.