Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Are Hitchcock's Films A Shared Cinematic Universe?

Alfred Hitchcock films shared cinematic universe
Alfred Hitchcock directed over fifty films in his career. From early grainy silent films to big glossy Hollywood productions. Thanks to so many of his popular, classic films and his talents behind the camera he would become known as 'The Master of Suspense'.

He would also become one of the most recognizable directors of all time, thanks to his weekly appearances on his own television show 'Alfred Hitchcock Presents'. His rotund shape, distinct profile and dry dark humor would make him a memorable figure.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Executive Action (1973) - A Review

Executive Action Kennedy assassination conspiracy movie 1973
Executive Action
Right-wing powerful conspirators are at work to kill President John F. Kennedy. They meticulously plan every detail and select an individual to take the fall - a fellow by the name of Lee Harvey Oswald.

As longtime followers of mine might know already, I don't buy any of the conspiracy stuff surrounding the JFK assassination. There was a long period I was fascinated by the story and ate up any theory that was presented, but at a certain point all that ended. I finally concluded that the most logical thing that happened was that a deranged Oswald was at the perfect place at the perfect time and all alone with a shoddy rifle changed world history.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Harry and the Hendersons (1987) - A Review

Harry and the Hendersons 1987 Bigfoot comedy children movie
Harry and the Hendersons
An ordinary camping trip becomes the discovery of a lifetime when The Hendersons accidentally hit a Bigfoot! What would you do upon finding an eight-foot tall unconscious Bigfoot - well, take him home of course!

The hairy guest begins to make himself at home with the Hendersons and they learn he's not a scary monster at all. 'Harry' soon becomes a beloved member of the family.

There are problems that come with Harry staying with them though. Along with breaking up the house and eating corsage's, Harry is pursued by a Bigfoot hunter who won't rest until he can track Harry down and kill him. The Henderson's small Seattle town becomes panicked when Harry begins to make appearances all over the place. Can the Henderson's protect Harry from becoming a giant stuffed trophy?

I find it a little hard to believe that this family comedy is the most popular Bigfoot movie that has been made. Where are the thrillers, the mysteries, the dramas about the discovery of a Bigfoot? Come on guys! Someone must be able to come up with some more stories about this mythic creature. Is the best they can think up for Bigfoot is him just watching television in a suburban home?

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

The Last of Robin Hood (2013) - A Review

The Last of Robin Hood 2013 Errol Flynn Kevin Kline Dakota Fanning
The Last of Robin Hood
Legendary swashbuckling movie hero Errol Flynn (Kevin Kline) is no longer the box office draw he once was. With his health deteriorating and the best years of his career behind him the middle-age Flynn refuses to slow down and continues to live the way he wants, which includes bedding young up and coming starlets.

However, when he meets fifteen-year-old aspiring singer/actress/dancer Beverly Aadland (Dakota Fanning) he takes more than just a casual liking to her. Supported by her ambitious mother Florence (Susan Sarandon), Errol and Beverly begin a relationship, which the outcome becomes more tragic than any of the three had hoped.

"Damn!" That's what I was thinking when I was watching The Last of Robin Hood. Damn, damn, damn!'.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Hollow Man (2000) - A Review

Hollow Man Kevin Bacon 2000 sci-fi horror invisible man movie
Kevin Bacon in Hollow Man
Brilliant scientist Sebastian Caine (Kevin Bacon) and his team of brains have discovered the secret to invisibility. That's so cool!

Unfortunately Sebastian isn't the most level-headed guy around. He decides to hold up telling his government bosses about this breakthrough until he can do the experiment on himself. Anyone of us could have told him a scientist experimenting on himself will lead to only bad things, but it's a must with scientist stories.

So he does it and what do you know - something goes wrong! For some reason the nifty serum won't bring him back to the visible spectrum again. Uh oh.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

The Endurance of the Three Stooges

The Three Stooges Moe Larry Curly Dizzy Pilots
Last week the Decades Network was running three days Three Stooges programming. The reason for this marathon of all thing Stooge was to honor the 33rd anniversary of the Stooges receiving their star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

I thought it was somewhat a weak connection to make and to stop and honor, but who cares what the excuse was - I'm always up for Three Stooges programming for whatever reason they can think up! They could do a marathon of the Stooges everytime the date contains a 'three' in it and I'd accept it and be happy.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Elvis & Nixon (2016) - A Review

Kevin Spacey Michael Shannon Elvis & Nixon 2016
Kevin Spacey and Michael Shannon in Elvis & Nixon
It's the meeting of the century. Two of the most famous men on the planet come together for a secretive meet and greet.

It's December 1970 and Elvis Presely (Michael Shannon) is troubled by the state of the country. He wants to offer his own unique help to the President of the United States Richard M. Nixon (Kevin Spacey) to fight the drug wars that are corrupting our nations youth. Plus, he wants to get a really cool Federal badge from the President too!

Monday, August 29, 2016

Go West (1925) - A Review

Go West Buster Keaton 1925 silent comedy classic
Buster Keaton in Go West
Buster Keaton heads out west and finds work on a cattle ranch. He tries his best, but he runs into a lot of mistakes on his road to being a cowboy. The rancher's daughter takes notice of him, but more importantly a cow by the name of Brown Eyes becomes his faithful sidekick.

When he's left all alone to deliver a thousand steer into the city....well things get a little bit madcap and out of control.

While watching Go West it's hard not to be reminded of the similarities between Keaton's tenderfoot and the 1991 film City Slickers. The premise of an inexperienced character or characters venturing out to the west to live the cowboy life has been told many times since 1925, so there are many of movies you can draw comparisons to Go West's story. However, City Slickers really started to ring loudly once I saw the lovable cow Brown Eyes befriend Buster and how protective they were of each other. It really made me wonder if this had an influence on Billy Crystal and Norman decades later.

Monday, August 22, 2016

The Boy Next Door (2015) - A Review

The Boy Next Door 2015 Jennifer Lopez Ryan Guzman
The Boy Next Door
This movie is too funny!

Jennifer Lopez is an English teacher and mother who's estranged from her husband. Ryan Guzman moves in next door and then against her better judgement she has a roll in the hay with the kid.

She realizes what a mistake it was, especially when he goes all Fatal Attraction on her. He harasses her at home, at work, threatens her ex, manipulates her son and gets downright violent. How is Jenny From The Block going to stop this nutty kid.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Fantastic Voyage - 50 Years Later

Fantastic Voyage 1966 anniversary
Fifty years ago movie audiences sat down in darkened theaters to witness a film that would take them to 'where no one has ever been before'.

They learned from the intriguing title card that 'No eye-witness has actually seen what you are about to see. During an era where going to the moon would soon be upon us and where the most incredible things are happening all around us, someday, perhaps tomorrow, the fantastic events you are about to see can and will take place'.

What a build up from an opening title card! Folks, we're about to take a FANTASTIC VOYAGE!

Friday, August 12, 2016

Elstree 1976 (2015) - Review

Elstree 1976 Star Wars documentary 2015
Elstree 1976
A long time ago in the summer of 1976 a bunch of working actors landed a job on a movie filming at Elstree Studios in London. It was some kind of sci-fi movie directed by a guy named George Lucas. They would be asked to play a variety of roles. They slipped on their alien masks, their space uniforms. got their makeup done, played their parts, finished up and went about looking for their next job.

But their few days working on that set would become a special moment in their lives that would reverberate for decades. The movie they all worked on was called Star Wars. It would become one of the biggest, most popular, most beloved movies in cinema history. Very soon anyone associated with it - no matter how small - would gain a fanbase and be remembered forever. This is the story of some of those working class actors who arrived at Elstree Studios to earn a paycheck and inadvertently became a part of movie history.