LawrenceA

From the Last 18 Years

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Royal Deceit - A tremendous cast headlines this re-telling of the Danish legend that inspired Shakespeare's Hamlet. Christian Bale stars as prince Amled of Jutland, whose father was killed. Amled feigns madness to try and discover who was truly behind the murder. Co-starring Helen Mirren, Gabriel Byrne, Kate Beckinsale, Brian Cox, Tom Wilkinson, Freddie Jones, Brian Glover, Ewen Bremner, Steven Waddington, and Andy Serkis. Originally titled Prince of Jutland.

 

 

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The Shadow - Big-budget version of the venerable radio, comic book, and film serial hero. Alec Baldwin stars as Lamont Cranston, who fights crime as the mysterious figure known as The Shadow. Also featuring John Lone, Penelope Ann Miller, Peter Boyle, Ian McKellan, Tim Curry, John Kapelos, Max Wright, Andre Gregory, Ethan Phillips, and Jonathan Winters.

 

 

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Somebody to Love - Indie film starring Rosie Perez as a taxi dancer with hopes of a bigger career. Co-starring Harvey Keitel, Michael DeLorenzo, Anthony Quinn, Steve Buscemi, Victor Argo, Stanley Tucci, Sam Rockwell, Quentin Tarantino, and Sam Fuller.

 

 

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Tropical Tease - Low-budget sleaze comedy about a group of misfits who work on the beach and pine for the bikini-clad ladies they see every day.

 

 

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The Vernon Johns Story - TV movie about the civil rights pioneer Vernon Johns, a black preacher in late 1940's Montgomery, Alabama that called for racial and economic equity. Starring James Earl Jones, Mary Alice, Joe Seneca, and Clifton James.

 

 

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Wild Reeds - French coming-of-age film about 4 teens at the end of the Algerian War. One of the 1001 Movies to See Before You Die.

 

 

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On TV I enjoyed Silk Stalkings on USA.  Several years back got the DVD for season one and watch an episode occasionally.  Unfortunately, the rest of the ones with the original cast are no longer available.

Wasn't a great show, but different.  Had a very cheap budget.  In first episode, the police officers don't even have patches on their uniforms.  Lt. blue shirts and navy pants.

Supposed to be in Palm Beach, FL, but actually filmed in San Diego.  First episode, cars even had CA license plates.

 

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Saturday Night Live: The Best of Phil Hartman - Compilation of sketches featuring Hartman, who was a cast member from 1986-1994. Reoccurring characters include the Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer, Frank Sinatra, and Bill Clinton.

 

 

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Space Ghost: Coast to Coast - Volume One - What if 1960's cartoon SF superhero Space Ghost decided to have a late-night talk show? Find out in this pioneering Adult Swim cartoon/live-action hybrid.

 

 

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Vice  (2015) -  Highly derivative science fiction action movie starring Thomas Jane as a cliche burn-out cop who won't play by the rules. He dislikes the most popular attraction in town, a place called Vice, where wealthy customers pay high prices to indulge in whatever deviant desires they wish with the facility's humanoid robot denizens. These robots look human, feel human, and even believe they are human, all the better to elicit the proper responses when they are debased by the human clientele. One such robot (Ambyr Childers) fails to have her memory properly erased after an encounter, and she goes on the run, escaping into the real world, where detective Jane tries to track her down before the evil head of Vice (Bruce Willis) can destroy her.

 

This lifts bits from every previous robot amusement story, such as WestworldBlade Runner, and others. None of the characters are very interesting, and the action scenes are bland. This is the kind of movie where the camera constantly moves to the left or the right for no discernible reason other than to try and trick the viewer into thinking something is happening. Also with Johnathan Schaech, Ryan O'Nan, Colin Egglesfield, and Don Harvey.

 

4/10

 

 

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Starting my stack of 1995 movies with:

 

 

Alien Terminator - Low-budget SF/horror thriller about scientists trapped in an experimental underground laboratory complex. They are being hunted by a genetically-engineered creature with a taste for human flesh. Starring Maria Ford.

 

 

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Attack of the 60-Foot Centerfold - Exploitation SF comedy about a nude model who gets turned into a 60 foot giant thanks to a science experiment gone wrong. Starring J.J. North, Michelle Bauer, Jay Richardson, and "Special Guest Stars" Russ Tamblyn and Tommy Kirk. From schlock-meister Fred Olen Ray.

 

 

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Attack of the 60-Foot Centerfold - Exploitation SF comedy about a nude who model who gets turned into a 60 foot giant thanks to a science experiment gone wrong. Starring J.J. North, Michelle Bauer, Jay Richardson, and "Special Guest Stars" Russ Tamblyn and Tommy Kirk. From schlock-meister Fred Olen Ray.

 

 

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She doesn't quite look 60 feet tall in this photograph.  Datable!

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Batman Forever - Tim Burton declined Warner Bros. invitation to return for a third Batman film, so they made the regrettable decision to turn the reins of the series over to Joel Schumacher, a successful director who seemed to have no clue what to do with this property.

 

Batman, now played by Val Kilmer, must battle two foes: Two-Face (a terribly hammy Tommy Lee Jones) and the Riddler (an obnoxiously unrestrained Jim Carrey). Nicole Kidman plays the love interest, with Michael Gough as Alfred the butler and Pat Hingle as Police Commissioner Gordon returning from the Burton films. Also with Drew Barrymore, Debi Mazar, Rene Auberjonois, Joe Grifasi, Michael Paul Chan, Jon Favreau, Ed Begley Jr., Chris O'Donnell as Robin, and Senator Patrick Leahy as himself. I remember at the time of release thinking that at least they couldn't get worse. If only I had known what was coming next...

 

 

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Attack of the 60-Foot Centerfold - Exploitation SF comedy about a nude model who gets turned into a 60 foot giant thanks to a science experiment gone wrong. Starring J.J. North, Michelle Bauer, Jay Richardson, and "Special Guest Stars" Russ Tamblyn and Tommy Kirk. From schlock-meister Fred Olen Ray.

 

 

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Remade by Roger Corman in 2012 as Attack of the 50 Foot Cheerleader.  Premiered on the Epix channel and has been a staple ever since.

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The Brady Bunch Movie - Surprisingly clever comedy that sees the family from the popular 1970's show interacting with the then-modern (mid 1990's) world, with an emphasis on the cultural changes. The winning cast includes Gary Cole and Shelley Long as the Brady parents, Christine Taylor as Marcia Brady, David Graf, Megan Ward, Michael McKean, Jean Smart, Jack Noseworthy, and RuPaul. Many of the show's original cast members appear in cameos. Directed by Betty Thomas.

 

 

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Death Machine - This is a personal guilty pleasure of mine. In a cyberpunk near-future, a giant conglomerate is working on developing various weapons of war, including cybernetic super-soldiers. One particularly deranged scientist (a gonzo Brad Dourif) has created a berserk robot that goes on a bloody murder spree within the locked confines of the corporation's giant skyscraper headquarters. A board member with a conscience (Ely Pouget) tries to survive and expose the company's malfeasance. Also with William Hootkins, Richard Brake, and a young Rachel Weisz. This was written and directed by Stephen Norrington, who went on to helm Blade and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen before giving up the director's chair, seemingly for good.

 

 

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Dillinger and Capone - Roger Corman produced this goofy what-if scenario. The story imagines that John Dillinger (Martin Sheen) was not actually killed in 1934 (it was his lookalike brother), and that he went legit, moved to the country, married and had a child. When Al Capone (F. Murray Abraham) is released from prison in 1939, he comes up with a plan to force Dillinger to help him retake his criminal empire. Also with Catherine Hicks, Jeffrey Combs, Bert Remsen, Maria Ford, Clint Howard, Sasha Jenson, Don Stroud, Joe Estevez, and Jeffrey Dean Morgan.

 

 

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Don't Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice In the Hood - Airplane- style parody of "Urban" message films from the late 1980's to the mid 1990's, notably Menace II Society, South Central, Juice, and Boyz N the Hood. Starring Shawn Wayans and Marlon Wayans, with Keenan Ivory Wayans, Kim Wayans, Vivica A. Fox, Omar Epps, Antonio Fargas, Guy Torry, Faizon Love, and Bernie Mac.

 

 

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Dracula: Dead and Loving It - Mel Brooks takes on the Dracula story, with much lesser results than his Frankenstein outing. I remember disliking this the first time I watched it, so I'll see if time has been kinder to it. Starring Leslie Nielsen as the Count, with Peter MacNicol, Steven Weber, Amy Yasbeck, Lysette Anthony, Harvey Korman, Anne Bancroft, Chuck McCann, Mark Blankfield, Clive Revill, and Mel Brooks as Van Helsing.

 

 

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Ed McBain's 87th Precinct: Lightning - Cable TV movie adaptation of the book by McBain. Randy Quaid and Alex McArthur star as detectives on the hunt for a serial killer with an odd M.O.: he leaves his victims with nooses around their necks and drawings of lightning bolts pinned to the body. Also with Ving Rhames.

 

 

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Empire Records - Multi-character look at the lives and loves of a group of Gen-X hipsters who work at an independent music store. Can they raise the money they need to stop the big corporate chain store from buying them out? Starring Anthony LaPaglia, Rory Cochrane, Liv Tyler, Renee Zellweger, Robin Tunney, Ethan Embry, Johnny Whitworth, Debi Mazar, and Maxwell Caulfield.

 

 

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