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A few reviews
Truth - 2015 - 6/10

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Well acted, over earnest retelling of TV news story gone awry.
Back when Bush vs Kerry was ongoing, CBS aired a report about Bush’s guard duty.
For those blissfully unaware, Kerry served in Vietnam, Bush enlisted in National Guard.
Before fully vetting the facts, the story goes out.
Redford plays reporter Dan Rather, though the film is about the producer, played by Cate Blanchett.
Underlying theme is of business commercializing news.
Everyone tries hard in overlong, deadly serious fare.
Broccoli film of fading era.  News?  Most no longer trust it, and their prime source is Facebook.
The Ides Of March - 2011 - 4/10

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Absurd political thriller set amidst the US primary season.
Five or ten minutes in, the main character (Gosling - the smartest guy on the team) takes a phone call and begins a series of stupid, moronic decisions.
He does things your high school student council rep would have shunned.
Intelligent actors, good sets, excellent concept, completely undermined by contrived, muddled script.
Others around me voiced, "No!"  "Stop!"  or  "You idiot!"  before every ludicrous act.
Then again, maybe this is symbolic of politicians in general?
No, this is “Staff” and staff is always expendable.
Secret Agent - 2016 - 6/10

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Three part drama of anarchist activity in Victorian London.
Verloc has infiltrated a Russian terror cell.  He is in thrall to his paymasters, the Russian embassy, and he is also in the pocket of a British copper.
Fear of exposure and betrayal leave him in constant dread.  Business affairs are complicated, family likewise.
Factions push him into bombing as political statement.
Rather dour adaptation of little known Joseph Conrad novel.
Toby Jones excellent as the shifty, blame-everyone-else Verloc.
Ian Hart dominates, though, as the fanatical bomb-maker, the Professor.

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Midnight In Paris - 2011 - 8/10

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Quietly dazzling film, where banality glides into fantasy.
Owen Wilson plays man out of step with his time, and of no value to his future in-laws.
When his fiancee’s old flame surfaces, Wilson prowls a bygone lane.
And finds himself stumbling into an inventive slip stream.
Literary in-jokes abound. and the MacGuffin conveyance is a wonderful touch.
Allen has done this before, notably The Purple Rose Of Cairo.
Slightly less accessible, perhaps, if you are weak on literary references.
More accessible, however, if 30s homages from The Purple Rose Of Cairo perplex you.
Photography of Paris is ravishing.
(09-01-2016, 04:38 PM)Vultural Wrote: Midnight In Paris - 2011 - 8/10

I rather enjoyed this one, and I'm not an Allen fan.
Looker - 1998 - 5/10

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Two men and a woman share a three-way in a grungy alley.
Soon as the strokin’ and gropin’ climax, she finishes them with a straight razor.
The detective assigned the case tells his partner this happened twenty years earlier.
His father was the investigator, and he was murdered.
Is it the same killer?  Is she still alive? Hunting?
Bipolar flick.  Hardcore porn sequences, yet the police narrative is full Noir.
Groaning and foaming to crappy synth score.  Noir parts have sharp shadows, bluesy score, black n white flashbacks.
Perhaps inspired by the Neo Noir surge of the 90s.  More likely a rip of Basic Instinct.
Looker still better (and wetter) than most B-grade “erotic thrillers" of the 90s.
Sandy Denny: Under Review - 2006 - 5/10

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An underrated, and sadly increasingly forgotten, singer from the 60s and 70s.
Denny sang on several acclaimed albums for Fairport Convention, later Fotheringay.
This was a career documentary film, not a personal one.
Denny's demons, insecurities and substance problems were barely addressed.
To those who are still scratching their heads, Denny was the only artist ever to guest on a Led Zeppelin album.
"Battle Of Evermore."
In 78, she fell down a staircase, struck her head, and died within a month.
Documentary more for knowledgeable fans.
(09-02-2016, 03:11 PM)Vultural Wrote: Looker - 1998 - 5/10

When I saw the movie title, I for a moment hoped you were reviewing this classic....

Big Grin
"... let's go exploring!" -- CALVIN.
Jerichow - 2008 - 5/10

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German love triangle drama with three characters old-enough-to-know-better, making poor decisions.
Turkish owner of a string of snack stands hires a discharged vet to drive.
The boss has drinking problems, and a young, trophy wife, built like a snake (ie: not a gram of fat on her).
Classic rule - Don't bang the boss's wife. Secretary and daughter are bad enough, but the wife ...
Course then we would not have predictable movies like Jerichow.
"Making of" documentary tried to explain hidden motivations and underlying character issues.
Zzzzzzzz ....
Love & Friendship - 2016 - 6/10

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Flawed, yet enjoyable adaptation of obscure Jane Austen novella.
The movie is based on Lady Susan, written when Austen was 18, and not Love and Freindship (misspelling correct) which was penned four years earlier.
Lady Susan, an unscrupulous widow sets out to find rich, easy to control husbands for herself and her daughter.
She flirts, conducts affairs, oppresses her daughter, imposes on her relations.
A right piece of work.
Costumes, set design, photography are all excellent.  Acting, top rate.
The pacing if off, however.  Too modern.  The story rushes at top speed throughout.
Numerous characters introduced, yet several are underutilized.  Stephen Fry = 2 brief scenes.
More air, a longer cut would help immeasurably.
Amusing entertainment, nevertheless, and Austen fans will find this irresistible.

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