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La Weekend July 5

Ghostdog (1999)

One of those life changing movies, and continues to be my go to film from time to time, a small indie movie graced by some impressive names, just because it’s that darn good of a film. Ghostdog is a lonely character, is only friend is a French speaking ice cream seller, his passion is Bushido and his Pigeons. After being saved by a mob boss, his adapted the way of the Samurai and looks upon this man as his master and he is a retainer. The mafia uses his dedication and sends him out to do hits. One goes awry and the mob turn on Ghostdog, but they don’t’ know who they are fucking with. Forest Whittaker plays the main character and he’s perfect, RZA had a hand in it’s production and the soundtrack takes a facet from each style of black music, it almost started a movement, (black) urban samurai 9/10

Continue reading La Weekend July 5

Last Night’s Movies 24.07.2017

 

Soooo.. it was a long night, I did get started early, straight in and onto Law(n) and Order, I’m slowly working through the Boxset, no idea why I find it so thrilling lately but I do…

So after that conundrum I got back to the movies..

 

I started watching this first movie at the weekend but it go so boring I stopped and I got back to it today… and it didn’t improve…

 

*Gray Lady (2017) A seasoned police officer loses his sister and wife to the same criminal mastermind while on a respite he carries on his investigations into their murders on the island of Nantucket, going back to his origins uncovers more than he bargained for. There are hints of a deep and tangled web of treachery but it’s so lame, there were no shockers or twists as everything is lovingly sign posted and predictable is theme to this flick. being distributed by Anchor Bay I was expecting something outstanding in some way but I didn’t know they started shoveling shit.. I must admit I was hoping for a ghost story, but it turned out to be a bit of a family feud started over a tragic misunderstanding .As the details unraveled instead of the film becoming more interesting I just lost the ability to give a shit. Actor turned Director John Shea hasn’t done anything since Southie (1998) despite his cameo in this film he should stick to acting. The funniest aspect of the film for me how everyone is a look alike to someone awesome, the lead detective and all round good guy Eric Dane looks like a poor relation to William Petersen and the rough and ready rouge of the island Chris Meyer looks incredibly like a chubby Karl Urban 2/10 Continue reading Last Night’s Movies 24.07.2017

Last Nights Movies 05.07.2017

*The Belko Experiment (2016)

D: Greg McLean S: John Gallagher Jr, Tony Goldwyn, 1h 29m Thriller/Action (USA)

I remember when the trailer popped up on my Youtube feed, it (obviously) made the film look amazing, but I was highly intrigued, who wouldn’t be, the premise is en point, an office on shutdown and suddenly respectable people are thrown into an animalist situation, it has so many classic elements that could be played on, from JG Ballard’s Highrise, Cabin in the woods, Operation Endgame, Lord of the Flies, Wedlock, Running Man and a thousand more books and films that deal with tense social nightmares. It’s not BRILLIANT and it could have been so much more. The broad outline is an office block is locked down, unknown forces have taken over control and surveillance, the staff are tasked to kill X amount of people of X people will be killed, they think it’s hoax until a couple of heads explode, they soon realise that the chips inserted into the necks are bombs, eventually a hierarchy is formed and the place becomes bedlam until a fairly disappointing ending..

There are a lot of errors and some blindingly obviously facts are totally ignored and I guess the creators just assumed we would all turn a blind eye, after all it’s only a movie. The character development was a bit shoddy, relying on some really dated stereotypes to keep the film flowing, the pothead being the most noticeable. The numbers of people seemed terribly wrong, they mentioned only a few hundred at most, my office is a third of the size of theirs and we have over a 1000 staff!?!? The blood and gore look brilliant but there just isn’t enough of it.It was enjoyable enough to try and get through only to find out the mystery but I don’t think I need to go back again..

RATING 4/10

After the excitement of Belko I went back to a golden oldie…

Incubo Sulla Città contaminata/Nightmare City (1980)

D:Umberto Lenzi S: Hugo Stiglitz Laura Trotter, 1h30m Scifi/Horror (ITALY)

I feel this movie is often underrated,the beginning of the 80’s was a period when horror and sci fi was changing, and a lot films were obviously made in the 70’s and released early on in the 80’s but with a thick layer of hippy antics about them, this is one of those films. but if you looked at it as a 70’s film then suddenly it’s not so bad.. Hugo Stiglitz plays a TV news anchor who witnessed the collapse of civilization as the city becomes overrun with mindless hungry assholes. The movie feels different from the Zombie films of it’s time, the message is much more political, and the director has clearly requested that this isn’t categorised as a Zombie film, and if you follow his advice and think about it in terms of a “Radiation Sickness Movie” then it makes more sense and the message of anti-nuclear anti-war is pretty clear.

It is a pretty blood thirsty survivor film, it’s quick pace and unlimited amounts of ammo make it quite “fun” but there is a constant danger and reminder that humanity is on it’s way into hell.. I really like the how much ground this news guy covers, sadly while trying to save the people (mostly women) that he chances upon, he just can’t seem to manage, but his arsenal (left over army weapons mostly) is vast!!! it really does play out like a survivor game.

RATING 6/10

Near Dark (1987)

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Day 9 of 31

Director: Kathryn Bigelow
Starring: Adrian Pasdar, Jenny Wright, Lance Henriksen, Bill Paxton. Janette Goldstein, Joshua John Miller. USA. 1h 34m.

Famed for being one of the few vampire flicks never to mention vampires, Near Dark is more than just your average vampire flick, it’s a dusty road trip from hell with some ancient and amusing characters who just happen to drink blood. Strangely his romantic horror is never really all that scary but is serious enough to unleash some tough alternative ideas into the vampire genre, but between the hard luck story, the power struggles and the endless road there’s a hint of comedy albeit it dark and some iconic vamps emerge forever etched in our memories.

There is no doubt that this film comes from the south, everything about it drips gravy and biscuits. Caleb (Adrian Pasdar) is a young farmer’s son, who meets a beautiful drifter Mae (Jenny Wright) who changes his life after she bites him and he’s forced to join a nomadic group of vampires who are quite happy slaying their way across America. Continue reading Near Dark (1987)

Night of the Big Heat (1967) AKA Island of the Burning Damned

 

night of the big heat

Director: Terence Fisher
Writer: Night of the big heat by John Lymington
Starring: Christopher Lee, Patrick Allen, Peter Cushing, Jane Merrow. UK. 1h 34m.

You know that feeling when you buy a DVD with the title Island of the Burning Damned, get past the menus and the film (finally) starts, then you’re presented with a title of Night of the Big Heat and you suspect something is wrong.. but all the actors seem to be present.. Humm.. Why do they release films with two different titles anyway it’s confusing for us retards.

That aside this cryptic sci fi thriller has a heavy noir undertone which is quite unusual especially for a film of this time period but it works well as hot flustered temperatures play a key role in this intrepid space horror. Continue reading Night of the Big Heat (1967) AKA Island of the Burning Damned

Ninja Scroll (1993)

ninja scroll

Director/Writer: Yoshiaki Kawajiri
Based on: Makai Tensho by Futaro Yamada
Starring: Koichi Yamadera, Emi Shinohara, Daisuke Gori, Kareshi Aono. Japan. 1h 34m.

I can’t believe this is my first Manga installment on the blog, but I have to start somewhere and I would have believed it would be with Akira (1988) or something cyber as that was always my main attraction to Japanese animation and Akira literally blew my away for years I was sketching scenes, trading cards and obsessing over rebuilding Tokyo.. but eventually I got into some other genres and then left it all behind when it became tooooooo computerised and cute, and err popular.. Hipster am I yes. Continue reading Ninja Scroll (1993)

Nadja (1994)

nadja

Director: Michael Almereyda
Writer: Michael Almereyda
Starring: Elina Lowensohn, Peter Fonda, Nic Ratner, David Lynch. USA. 1h 33m.

Taking on all the style and charm of a music video from the primary band in the soundtrack Portishead this chillaxed surreal vampire film starts off in curious way but evolves into something very familiar. This delicate black and white melodic drama follows the aftermaths of the death of an aged vampire, and the coming of age and awakening of his two children, Nadja (Elina Lowensohn) and her brother Edgar (Jarred Harris) while being hunted by professor Van Helsing and his hapless assistant. Continue reading Nadja (1994)

Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984)

Nineteen_Eighty_Four 1984

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This is what I like to call a substance film, it’s got such a unique claustrophobic feel to every element of it, it’s a constant array of muted and dismal greys, a concrete totalitarian regime where the people are controlled to the point where their inner thoughts belong to the state and in the midst of this, one man dares to break the rules and fall in love.

Winston Smith (John Hurt) role in life is to re write history, in this bleak future where Big Brother (Bob Flag‘s image) is always watching and a constant voice (Phyllis Logan) can be heard informing the “people” of victory and successes in a war that no one has ever witnessed. But Winston strives for more, he can see the cracks in this fascist regime  and he dares to fall in love and rebels against the norm with revolutionist Julia (Suzanna Hamilton) but with intricate overseers including the monstrous O’Brien (Richard Burton) who have carte blanche to enforce what the party ys is right, who would dare defy the party forever.

Obviously drawing from a paranoia of where the human race was heading if hitler or stalin were to drop into power and to be honest we’ve not really paid much attention to the warnings of this amazing book/film etc, instead we’ve made a TV show called Big Brother so we CAN watch other people, new laws are passed daily to spy on people and we are slowly slipping into the Prole class. It’s hard not to get political after you’ve digested this fascinating and terrifying dystopian story.

It’s incredibly uneasy to watch, while your watching the decline of the individual, free thinking and privacy, thoughts creep into the mind that indicate that we’re heading for this dismal future.

Richard Burton (RIP), went out with a surly bang with this, his final film. He’s not on screen for very long but what you do see of him is so calm, reserved and yet extremely powerful, listening to him he sounds like a gentle friends but the torture scenes near the end make him out to be very much the opposite, John Hurt’s fragile looking character goes through a lot of thoughts and torture especially once he makes it into room 101, and attempting to drill 2+2=5 into him. It’s uncanny how many words from the newspeak that have been adopted, and most all there to describe a picking at society.

The movie shows a slice of this dismal life, from the gutter looking up to Big Brother looking down everyone. John hurt shuffles around alien English streets (now Oceana) with the guilt of his job on his shoulders and the want of being free, even while he wears his standard uniform, this is truly a reality where you are a number and not a person anymore.

The original book has influenced a series of sub cultures, new words and concepts and many poignant messages, while it shines through in this graphic and chilling movie, it’s moody melancholy atmosphere twinned with the claustrophobic prying eyes of big brother and constant announcements bring the clear message from the book onto the screen. Even without the violent ending it will get any intelligent audience thinking and honestly remarkable in many ways, although I can’t recommend the book enough, it really demands to be read.

Rating 8/10

full review and lots of post discussion stuff to come

No Country For Old Men (2007)

no country for old men

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It’s going to be hard for me to sum this up in a quick review as I so very often prattle on about this movie and I’ve watched it on so many occasions that I can recite the entire script without much help, heck I can even do the accents.

Another Coen movie that I can’t pinpoint exactly why I find it so amazing, it might just be due to… everything!?  It’s a crazy revenge/chase/psycho thrilling style of movie. The movie stars a lot of familiar faces, and unlike other movies with a cast this size, the Coens manage to not only make people act their very best, they also make them so humble, that no one is really going to pot shot and are just equally all amazing. Continue reading No Country For Old Men (2007)

Nordwand – North Face (2008)

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One of the few historical movies that still has living witnesses and existing evidence as well as many documented accounts of the events, is retold in this light hearted and dramatically tragic masterpiece.

Toni Kurz (Benno Fürmann) and Andi Hinterstoisser (Florian Lukas), a team of Bavarian Climbers, make an attempt to scale the murder wall of the Eiger, along with a few other specialists in 1936 after pressure from the (nazi) German government and in the run up to the Olympics, they are out to do their personal best to climb the imposing Ogre (Eiger) and be the first men to do so. During their attempt they are re united with an old friend who’s now working as a photographer for a newspaper covering the biggest story in European sporting history. Continue reading Nordwand – North Face (2008)