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About LawrenceA

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  1. A Question of Silence (1982) Netherlands, Dir: Marleen Gorris - A female psychiatrist (Cox Habbema) is assigned by the police to interview a trio of women (Edda Barends, Nelly Frijda, and Henriette Tol) who are accused of murdering a shopkeeper. As the doctor learns the life stories of the individual women, she must confront issues in her own personal life. This feminist fable is a blend of domestic drama, political statement, courtroom procedural, and black comedy. The production values are meager. but the performances are good, and I enjoyed the score. (7/10) Yol (1982) Turkey, Dir: Serif Goren & Yilmaz Guney - Five prisoners are granted leave to visit their families, each struggling with difficulties caused by their incarceration and the political turmoil of post-coup Turkey. Guney, a noted filmmaker for many years, wrote the film while in prison, with his assistant Goren directing filming. Guney escaped and edited the film in Switzerland. The film was very controversial in Turkey, and was banned for many years. I enjoyed the varied look at Turkish culture, and the 80's-era score with electronic flourishes was a highlight. (7/10)
  2. Three Brothers (1981) Italy, Dir: Francesco Rosi - The title trio (Philippe Noiret, Michele Placido, and Vittorio Mezzogiorno), each dealing with personal and professional issues, are summoned to their hometown by their aged father (Charles Vanel) after the death of their mother. Excellent performances and some nice directorial touches make this worth seeing, but I wasn't as blown away by this as many seem to have been. (7/10) Too Early/Too Late (1981) France/Egypt, Dir: Jean-Marie Straub and Daniele Huillet - Arthouse documentary comprised of long-take shots of French and Egyptian landscapes while off-screen narrators read passages from works by Friedrich Engels and Mahmoud Hussein. It's supposed to be a meditation on the relationship between the land and the plight of the struggling people that live there. I found it to be a tedious bore. Others call it a brilliant, cerebral masterpiece. (5/10)
  3. Apocalypse Now Blade Runner Chinatown Dr. Strangelove The Exorcist Frankenstein The Godfather Halloween Ikiru Jaws Kwaidan The Lord of the Rings Monty Python and the Holy Grail Night of the Living Dead One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest The Passion of Joan of Arc Quatermass and the Pit Raging Bull Sunset Boulevard Taxi Driver Unforgiven Videodrome The Wild Bunch X2: X-Men United Yojimbo Zelig
  4. Five Million Years to Earth (1967) aka Quatermass and the Pit https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quatermass_and_the_Pit_(film) https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0062168/?ref_=nv_sr_srsg_0
  5. The Red Queen Kills Seven Times (1972) Italy/West Germany, Dir: Emilio Miraglia - A series of mysterious murders occur, connected to a 100-year curse concerning a vengeful "ghost" called the Red Queen taking revenge for her own death. Featuring Barbara Bouchet, Ugo Pagliai, Marina Malfatti, Marino Mase, Rudolf Schindler, and Sybil Danning. This very uneven thriller attempts to combine the Gothic supernatural horror films of the 60's with the emergent giallo subgenre. There are a few memorable images to be found, but the story is muddled and the direction uneven. Sybil Danning is naked a lot, naturally. There are many versions of this film floating around, with differing running times and alternate titles, including Blood Feast, Horror House, Feast of Flesh, and The Corpse Which Didn't Want to Die. The uncut, Italian-language version is on Amazon Prime at the moment. (5/10)
  6. Terror in the Haunted House (1958) aka My World Dies Screaming https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terror_in_the_Haunted_House http://www.tcm.turner.com/tcmdb/title/84432/My-World-Dies-Screaming/
  7. The Battle of Neretva (1969) Yugoslavia, Dir: Veljko Bulajic - Big, expensive (the costliest movie ever made in Yugoslavia) WWII epic. The very large international cast includes Yul Brynner, Orson Welles, Franco Nero, Hardy Kruger, Sylva Koscina, Curt Jurgens, Anthony Dawson, Milena Dravic, and Sergei Bondarchuk. The movie was released in various languages and various running times. The version I saw was mainly in German, and ran 145 minutes. I appreciated the effort, but I lost interest before it ended. (6/10) Black Belly of the Tarantula (1971) Italy, Dir: Paolo Cavara - Giallo thriller about a mysterious killer targeting beautiful women. Cop Giancarlo Gianini is on the case. Also featuring Claudine Auger, Barbara Bouchet, Barbara Bach, Rossella Falk, Silvano Tranquilli, and Stefania Sandrelli. I liked this over-heated thriller, with an unusual score courtesy of Ennio Morricone, and a lot of skin on display. (7/10)
  8. Maybe they thought Teri Hatcher's bewbs would entice the straight male crowd to see a movie that looked very chick-flicky. Full disclosure: I saw Soapdish in the theater. It was during a time when I saw virtually everything that came to my local 4 (now 6)-screen cinema.
  9. Just a clarification - Gone with the Wind was pulled from HBO Max, which is the new Warner Media streaming service. Despite the name, it's a separate entity from the traditional HBO pay channel available on cable and satellite. HBO Max is comparable to Netflix or Amazon Prime, and it offers programming from Warner Brothers, TCM, Criterion, DC Comics, HBO, and various other TV and film outlets. Gone with the Wind was pulled from their streaming offering. I don't think it was ever aired on the HBO channel, but if it did, it wasn't often. With streaming, people had to choose to watch the movie, unlike if it's aired on TCM, where someone would have to change the channel if they didn't want to see it. The current political/social climate caused the just-launched HBO Max to pull the movie, but they most likely will bring it back to their service with the aforementioned disclaimers before the movie. The corporate bosses are also very skittish about losing subscribers to their (very expensive to get running) brand new streaming service. And personally, I'm 100% against removing the film, or any film, from the market, particularly from streaming offerings, where the customer has to click on the movie to watch it, making a conscious decision to do so, rather than passively coming across it while flipping channels on cable. I also don't mind it being shown on TV, either, though. And that goes for other films like Song of the South as well. Like others have mentioned, there are more offensive depictions of people in other films than Gone with the Wind. I personally find Breakfast at Tiffany's to be much more racially offensive, but I still wouldn't want to see that movie banned, or for people to be denied access to it.
  10. I've watched a few foreign-language films recently, of varying quality: Les Idoles (1968) France, Dir: Marc'o - A rock trio named The Idols performs and pontificates about life and what it's all about, man. With Bulle Ogier, Pierre Clementi, and Jean-Pierre Kalfon. Jean Eustache was the editor. Very dated and corny, but not without some meager appeal for fans of the period. (5/10) Entranced Earth (1967) Brazil, Dir: Glauber Rocha - Revolution in a fictional South American country leads a noted poet (Jardel Filho) to question his positions. This is a highly political arthouse experiment that hued a bit too much toward the pretentious for my tastes. (6/10) Time of Indifference (1964) Italy, Dir: Francesco Maselli - An aged Countess (Paulette Goddard in her final film) suffering financial trouble allows a sleazy rich guy (Rod Steiger) to paw at her daughter (Claudia Cardinale) in exchange for monetary support. Also featuring Shelley Winters, and Tomas Milian. The Americans are all dubbed into Italian which is jarring, and the pace is lethargic. Cardinale looks amazing, as usual. (6/10) Gaav/The Cow (1969) Iran, Dir: Dariush Mehrju - In a rural village, a cow belonging to a noted citizen dies while the man is out of town. The townsfolk bury the cow and fear telling him happened (he really liked this cow). This simple, low-fi tale offers a glimpse at rural Iranian life. I would have preferred seeing a sharper, clearer print, as the one I saw was washed-out and featured nearly-illegible subtitles. The Shah's government reportedly hated the film and tried to have it suppressed, while the Ayatollah Khomeini loved it, and it's said that this film was why the religious leader allowed the film industry to continue after the revolution. (7/10) El Norte (1983) USA, Dir: Gregory Nava - A brother and sister make their way from Guatemala to the US in hopes of safety and a sustainable living, only to learn that the "promised land" of America has as many trials and tribulations as home. Nava's engrossing tale of the plight of Central Americans and the undocumented in the US is still timely, although the same territory has been covered in countless films and TV shows since, robbing this film of some impact. This must have made some impression on Oliver Stone, as several aspects of this movie would be used in his subsequent films Salvador and Platoon. (8/10)
  11. Autopsy of a Ghost (1968) Mexico, Dir: Ismael Rodriguez - Lunatic slapstick comedy with the Devil (John Carradine) tormenting a goofy scientist named Moleculo (Cameron Mitchell). With Basil Rathbone (in his final film) as a ghost. The trio of movie stars from north of the border are all dubbed in Spanish. The pace is relentless, and the comedy bizarre enough to make me wonder if I may have taken peyote beforehand. Carradine seems to be having a lot of fun. I only wish I was. (4/10)
  12. Fat Girl (2001) France, Dir: Catherine Breillat - Chunky, awkward 12-year-old Anais and her much prettier older sister Elena struggle with their burgeoning sexuality. Breillat deploys her usual deliberately provocative shock moments mixed with tedium. I liked this more than her other films that I've seen (A Real Young Girl, Romance, The Last Mistress) but not by much. (5/10)
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