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Everything posted by LawrenceA

  1. The Spider's Stratagem (1970) Italy/Dir: Bernardo Bertolucci - A young man (Giulio Brogi) returns to the small town where his antifascist father was assassinated many years earlier. He's now considered a local hero, with memorial statues in his honor, but his son believes that there's more to the story of his father's death, and so sets out to investigate the details. With Alida Valli. The cinematography is impeccable, but I found Brogi too bland of a leading man, and a distinct lack of surprise or suspense in the story. (6/10)
  2. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest (2009) Sweden/Dir: Daniel Alfredson - Third entry in Millennium trilogy based on Stieg Larsson's book series. The events pick up immediately after those of the previous film, The Girl Who Played with Fire, and deal with the far-reaching ramifications of fugitive hacker Lisabeth Salander's (Noomi Rapace) actions in that story. She's to be put on trial, but her friend Mikael Blomkvist (Michael Nyqvist), editor of Millennium magazine, works diligently to clear her name. I found this installment to be about on par with the previous one - worth a watch bu
  3. Koko-di Koko-da (2019) Sweden/Dir: Johannes Nyholm - A grieving couple decide to go on a camping trip to try and patch up their failing marriage and come to terms with their feelings of loss. They are menaced by an odd trio - a grinning carnival barker, a pig-tailed and gun-wielding woman with a vicious dog, and a mute simpleton giant carrying a dead dog. The couple's horror increases as they are forced to relive their encounter with the strangers over and over again, Groundhog Day style. This was certainly an unusual film, but I found it tiresome. It's supposedly all allegorical, dealing
  4. Alice (1988) Czechoslovakia/Dir: Jan Svankmajer - Bizarre, hallucinatory mix of live action and stop-motion animation in this adaptation of Lewis Carroll's works. Director Svankmajer wanted to make a version of the oft-filmed tale that was more dreamlike than fairy tale, and he succeeds, although it's more nightmarish than dreamy. The film has a unique (at the time, any way) visual aesthetic that became highly influential over the next decade, a mixture of children's iconography and distressed, decayed art direction. Recommended. (8/10)
  5. "To know death, you have to **** life in the gall bladder!" - Flesh for Frankenstein (1973) I tend to say this when ordering things from the bakery.
  6. There was the live-action Mr. Clean movies with Clint Walker, the two Ty-D-Bol Man movies with George Maharis, and the animated Scrubbing Bubbles movie. They all led up to the team-up film Water Closet: Endgame. It was all part of the BCU, Bathroom Cinematic Universe. Huge hits in Europe, I believe.
  7. But...but...what about Updyke?!?
  8. I'm still using UNIVAC. If it ain't broke...
  9. Der Todesking/The Death King (1990) West Germany/Dir: Jorg Buttgereit - Bizarre, unsettling drama/thriller (?) that features a series of short vignettes of various people committing acts of violence upon themselves and others, interlaced with time-lapse footage of a corpse decaying. Not for everyone, to put it mildly, but it has an undeniable power taken as a whole. (6/10) Three Colors: Blue (1993) France/Poland/Dir: Krzysztof Kieslowski - Powerful, understated drama about a woman (Juliette Binoche) struggling to move on after the sudden death of her famous composer husban
  10. I've watched several foreign language films over the last couple of months: Black God, White Devil (1965) Brazil/Dir: Glauber Rocha - A peasant (Geraldo Del Rey) and his wife (Yona Magalhaes) join various revolutionaries in a quest to find a more just and equitable life. Director Rocha attempts to blend neo-realism with experimentalism and heavy-handed allegory, with the results not much to my taste. It felt pretentious and amateurish, although the use of Brazilian folk tunes was a good touch. (5/10) Your Vice Is a Locked Room and Only I Have the Key (1972) Italy/Di
  11. For me it was a mixed bag. The opening is very good - mood, setting, performances and the underground "shrine" are all excellent. But after the prologue, when Dale shows up and the action moves to the US, it quickly becomes what appears to be another substandard urban-legend/boogeyman slog. It picks up a bit later on (particularly at the abandoned campground), and the final 10 minutes or so are intriguing, Overall, I thought it was a mess, overlong (137 minutes), and at times irritating, but worth a watch for the opening, and for some of the ideas. The reaction on social media seems to b
  12. Top 10 Favorite Films of 2020 (121 titles seen) The Father Promising Young Woman Palm Springs The Trial of the Chicago 7 Minari Nomadland Soul One Night in Miami... Ma Rainey's Black Bottom Never Rarely Sometimes Always Honorable Mentions: The Old Guard, Another Round, Host, Little Fish, His House Top 10 Favorite Documentaries My Octopus Teacher The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart Zappa David Byrne's American Utopia Crip Camp Showbiz Kids Have a Good Trip Dick Jo
  13. Thought of a few more: The Magnificent Seven The Great Escape Spartacus The Wolf Man The Texas Chainsaw Massacre From Russia With Love Goldfinger The Kentucky Fried Movie Brazil This Is Spinal Tap Pee-Wee's Big Adventure Prince of Darkness The Road Warrior Conan the Barbarian Raiders of the Lost Ark Caddyshack
  14. I don't have any exact numbers like Bogie56 does, but I've seen all of these at least 5 times, some many more: Dracula (1931) Frankenstein (1931) Dr. Strangelove The Shining Goodfellas Taxi Driver Apocalypse Now Halloween (1978) Dawn of the Dead (1978) Evil Dead 2 Robocop (1987) Predator The Terminator Star Wars Big Trouble in Little China The Thing (1982) Airplane! Monty Python and the Holy Grail Raising Arizona Blade Runner Alien Aliens Videodrome Fo
  15. Horror of Dracula The Vikings One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest The Butcher Boy Winchester '73 Laura Now, Voyager The Seventh Victim Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter? The Day the Earth Stood Still
  16. Zelig The Haunted Palace House of Wax A Shot in the Dark Fight Club Pickup on South Street I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang Awakenings Horse Feathers The Horse's Mouth
  17. The Dirty Dozen House on Haunted Hill The Hitch-Hiker The Long Riders All Quiet on the Western Front The Graduate Election All Through the Night Anchors Aweigh Invasion of the Body Snatchers
  18. Kiss of Death Miracle on 34th Street Marty David and Lisa Goldfinger Wild Strawberries Ed Wood Nashville Lust for Life The Wild Bunch
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