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Quite a gritty neo-noir mystery. A man goes missing in New York and Donald Sutherland is hired to track him down. First half of the film is excellent, but it trails off in the last 30 or so. Jane Fonda is as good as Iíve seen her here as an aloof high class call girl.
Seen it a million times. Love it.
Iím here only on Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays. Thatís why Iím here now.

The Song Remains The Same (1976)

You gotta love this movie. An artful music video and concert in one, there isn't any story in here. Each band member has his own cinematic short film, opening with Bonham's mob scene.... without music. The other three put their scenes on top of the concert footage, so, you see where I'm going with this...

If you listen to the studio albums theres some unheard treats on here you'll be surprised and pleasured. The second half man they really start poppin' and so it's a 2 hour 15 minute concert. They sound good through the first half but believe me they lock in at the halfway mark almost exactly. If you want to hear how extremely brutal John Bonham was this was the concert you didn't see.

Seen it a million times. Love it.

Excellent movie. Sweet & very sad. Never seen a Gaelic movie before.

@ScarletLion, I think you would like this.

(2020, LacŰte)

"From now on, you're Roman, the prince without a kingdom. When the red moon comes out tonight or tomorrow, you'll tell us stories."

Set in MACA, a remote prison in Cote d'Ivoire, Night of the Kings follows a young thief and gang member (Bakary Konť) who finds himself reluctantly appointed as "Roman", or storyteller, by Blackbeard (Steve Tientcheu), a fellow prisoner who serves as "king" from within. Since his health is failing, Blackbeard is pressured to surrender his position and commit suicide, according to their beliefs. But in an effort to delay the inevitable, he tasks Roman to tell stories to the inmate population.

This is a film I hadn't heard of until a couple of months ago, but I've always said it's really interesting to experience films from other countries and cultures. Night of the Kings goes a bit further, not only in how it highlights some specific cultural aspects of Cote d'Ivoire, but also a specific belief system from within this prison. I'm not sure how much of this system is based in real life, but I still find it mesmerizing.


Full review on my Movie Loot
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'The Elephant Man' (1980)

Watched the Italian 4K disc. Beautiful presentation. Never realised that Mel Brooks produced this but left his name off the credits so audiences didn't go in thinking it was a satire. He hired David Lynch to direct after watching Eraserhead. Lynch was working as a roofer at the time to fund his next film. Though rumours are that Terrence Malick was Brooks' first choice. Lynch also was responsible for the sound design for the film which is piercingly brilliant.

John Hurt is outstanding as John Merrick and he spent 5 hours in make up each day before takes.. Apparently the industry outcry at the film not being given awards for best make up / costume design directly resulted in the formation of a new award for that specific category in a certain major awarding body.

Though not a direct true to life adaptation of John Merrick's real life story (despite claiming to be that) it's a beautiful film with a heart-wrenching ending.


I think this movie was amazing. I rated it


Kind of a mixed bag, this one. Still not bad, though. An adaptation of "The Captain's Log" from Bram Stoker's original Dracula - making this virtually a prequel to the classic story - this movie really brings back the nasty, bestial and predatory tradition of vampirism, which has long been languishing in the shadow of the troubled, sensitive, post-Anne Rice, post-Twilight, faux-goth trend. (Not that I'm necessarily knocking all of that, mind you...) The Dracula which is stowed away aboard the merchant ship of the title is perhaps a throwback to the more feral Nosferatu or Salem's Lot type of vampire with the brute aggression of the From Dusk Till Dawn vamps, with even a little bit of Alien thrown in. As a matter of fact, this movie could even be described as a seafaring Alien, with the crew of the ship getting picked off one by one, with the survivors desperately attempting to hatch a plan to defeat the monster. (I am also reminded of Tobe Hooper's 1985 sci-fi thriller Lifeforce, which tended to be unfairly dismissed as an Alien knockoff on its initial release, but whose spacefaring energy vampires definitely owe something to Stoker. So, in terms of storytelling tradition, there's not as tenuous a connection between the two genres as some would imagine, I'd say!)

On the positive side... The acting is really quite excellent, in particular Corey Hawkins in the lead role of Clemens and Liam Cunningham as the ship's Captain Elliot. The movie also really delivers in terms of mortal dread and tragedy. Without giving spoilers, it is also very emotional at times, in particular because of the involvement of a young child, the captain's grandson Toby, well-played by Woody Norman. The movie perhaps wears its thematic significance on its sleeve a little, with its characters pondering the meaning of life and attempting to reconcile its horror with its beauty. But I'm very forgiving of this kind of excess, preferring that screenwriters err on the side of intelligence and thoughtfulness. We also get a fair amount of jump scares, which can be grating sometimes, but here they're executed with an expert sense of timing, landing always just shy of when you expect them. Yeah, it's kind of a dead giveaway when the soundtrack gets perhaps a little too quiet in preparation, but somehow you end up getting jolted anyway!

On the downside... As is far too often the case these days, there's too much CGI, and consequently the character of Dracula doesn't seem as horrific and menacing as he should be. This movie certainly doesn't skimp on the gore, and the sheer nastiness of the bloodletting sort of balances things out a bit. But I would have preferred, shall we say, a more "organic" Dracula over a digital one. Also, while Aisling Franciosi is very good in the role of Anna, a young Bulgarian woman who serves as a kind of "sacrifice" to Dracula, having been packed away in another crate as someone for the vampire to feed on, her character is played perhaps a little too strong. By which I mean, here is a character who is in essence a traumatized rape victim, but while Franciosi does give off a fair amount of nervous energy, once her character is treated back to functioning, reasonable health (health being in this case relative) she becomes too much of an action heroine, being (of course) a deft hand with a shotgun. I'm not saying she should have been cowering in a corner and babbling like Judith O'Dea in the original 1968 Night of the Living Dead, but a better balance should have been attempted with her character. I guess it's this newfangled syndrome of not wanting to risk female characters being seen as too weak.

Recommended? With some reservations, but ultimately... yes.

Green Room (2015)

Cabin in the woods, escape the trap type non-paranormal realistic horror movie. Bloody cuts and bullets, graphic. I don't consider this a ''music movie'' per se and wouldn't bunch it together with all these other movies I've watched this month. Probably won't see it again but it was something to see and could be a TV movie if they wanted it to be. Tragic and bloody.

Don't throw your life away for a narrative.

I forgot the opening line.

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Looking for Alibrandi - (2000)

Looking for Alibrandi is a coming of age story based on a popular 1992 novel - one that has the distinction of being the most stolen book from Australian high school libraries. Stealing it became a thing, which means that most kids who really wanted to read it had to buy a copy, for they'd hardly have a chance to borrow it. I hear that the International market hasn't had much exposure to this, and I pretty much know for sure that people haven't seen much of Pia Miranda, because her career never took off here, never mind world-wide. It gives audiences some insight into what it's like to grow up in an Italian family in Australia, and is the kind of movie that shows you scenes from inside the head of it's protagonist in a quirky way - Alibrandi is an intelligent girl with Amťlie levels of reverie and a deep embarrassment regarding her family. She goes through more than the average teen has to deal with though. The Italian-Australian experience is unique, and in case you were wondering what it was like it's worth seeing this - a lot of people love it, and I feel like recommending it just based on other people's reviews. It wasn't for me - I found myself a little bored and restless, not being at a level to relate to this teen girl, but it did move me at times or else make me smile. I'm still glad that I've finally seen it. If it sounds like your kind of thing though, go for it.


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Avengers : Age of Ultron - (2015)

Watched this again hoping it'd go down easier the second time around. I really like Ultron, and a half-billion dollar movie is always going to dazzle, but it's my least favourite of the series still. My thoughts about it didn't change much, but that's not to say it isn't worth it for all the moments where it's delivering on it's promise. The Avengers just happen to have ridiculously high standards.

Remember - everything has an ending except hope, and sausages - they have two.
Please come back Takoma

Latest Review : Le Circle Rouge (1970)

Sweet and Lowdown (1999)

A faithful biographical drama about Emmet Ray, the "second best" guitarist of his time, in the 1930's. Good movie, something you should see if you're into this historical period. I will definitely watch this movie again.


Eye of the Tiger -

In case you didn't know, the song of the same name was not written for this movie. It came out a few years later and you get to hear the song in it four times. Believe it or not, that is the least strange thing about this silly, derivative yet never dull Gary Busey action vehicle. Back on the streets (couldn't help myself) of his hometown after serving time, Busey's Vietnam vet Buck Matthews runs afoul of a drug-dealing motorcycle gang who has seen The Road Warrior one too many times and who have taken over the place in his absence. After the gang make it personal, Buck decides to take them on himself, but his old friend J.B. (Kotto) thinks they should attack from the sky as well as the ground.

As my Road Warrior reference implies, this is essentially a patchwork quilt of other movies' ideas from Walking Tall to Rolling Thunder. What it lacks in originality, though, it makes up for in craziness. Every one of their confrontations has a moment bound to make you ask, "did you just see that" and the craziness escalates in the best way. Highlights include a scene with a tripwire and one with dynamite and petroleum jelly you may think twice about. Luckily, the insanity peaks at the finale, which features a pickup truck that could end wars in some countries and Yaphet Kotto doing his best Red Baron impression. Having Busey and Kotto as the heroes makes it all the more fun as do familiar supporting players like Seymour Cassel's corrupt and perpetually angry sheriff and William Smith's main bad guy, who terrifies despire his very strange haircut.

Despite all its jawdropping moments, it doesn't improve upon anything it cribs from. Also, the Kotto character from his own, non-"Eye of the Tiger" theme song to an odd moment during the ending seems like he'd be just as offensively dated in 1986 as he does now. Even so, if you are in the mood for some macho '80s cheese and/or a movie made to be played on the TVs at veterans or country/western bars, you could do much worse. Another word of warning, though: you'll never look at dynamite the same way again.

SF = Z

Pfft, I loved it. Nice addition and end to the series if this is the last one.

[Snooze Factor Ratings]:
Z = didn't nod off at all
Zz = nearly nodded off but managed to stay alert
Zzz = nodded off and missed some of the film but went back to watch what I missed
Zzzz = nodded off and missed some of the film but went back to watch what I missed but nodded off again at the same point and therefore needed to go back a number of times before I got through it...
Zzzzz = nodded off and missed some or the rest of the film but was not interested enough to go back over it

Killers from Space - 1954 sci-fi directed by W. Lee Wilder (Billy Wilder's brother) and written by his son Myles.
The Alien looks like he is being played by Marty Feldman.

I forgot the opening line.

By The poster art can or could be obtained from the distributor., Fair use,

St. Vincent - (2014)

How lucky are you when you're a young filmmaker and you have Bill Murray really buying into your film and sinking his teeth into it? Well, we're the lucky ones with St. Vincent - with added support from Melissa McCarthy and Naomi Watts (who play straight) Bill Murray features as Vincent MacKenna, a hard-drinking, smoking, gambling wreck, perpetually in a bad mood and at war with the world. Tunneling into his life is young Oliver (Jaeden Martell), a young boy who wins over Vincent's hard-to-please cat - and somebody ready and eager to be molded into Vincent's tough-guy image. With Oliver's mother, Maggie (McCarthy) often at work, Vincent earns gambling money babysitting him with Russian sex worker Daka (Watts). Even underneath all of the layers, Vincent is still a deeply irresponsible grouch with a mean streak - but he also has heart as well as suffered loss - something which St. Vincent explores in a funny and moving way. This is all about Bill Murray being Bill Murray though - with a performance that's a real highlight of this stage of his career.


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Ghost Rider - (2007)

A heavy metal superhero in a pretty bad movie - Ghost Rider doesn't take itself too seriously, but it still suffers from a Mark Steven Johnson screenplay devoid of clever originality - the writer/director coming off the transgression that was Daredevil. That's not to say I didn't have fun watching this, because no matter which direction was taken, a screaming skeleton covered in flames riding a Harley-Davidson will always be a sight to see - even if it's coming to us via cartoon-level CGI. A guilty pleasure, because who better than Nicolas Cage to play Johnny Blaze? Check out the Rebel Wilson cameo, and behold her untapped comedic potential which is sometimes underutilized. Silly film which had a lot more potential, but I can't say that I didn't enjoy a lot of it in spite of itself in a "good bad" kind of way.


Silver Bullet - People can either take this as a rather tame and dated horror offering or that it's right up your alley. It's got gore but it never gets to the point where it would make people uncomfortable. I think it's an ideal experience for someone who normally shies away from horror movies. I do find it a bit corny in parts especially when it comes to the dialogue. You don't have to be intimately familiar with Stephen King to sense his part in the screenplay since he wrote Cycle of the Werewolf, the novella it's based on. Anyone who has read his earlier work will place it immediately in that it leans heavily on his usual blue collar slob characters. But if you're not too desensitized to horror and can work your way past that it does provide genuine moments of disquietude.

The small town of Tarker's Mills finds itself plagued by a string of gruesome murders. Young and disabled Marty Coslaw (Corey Haim), along with his resentful older sister Jane (Megan Follows), find themselves caught up in the hunt for the killer. Gary Busey plays their black sheep Uncle Red and he's actually quite good in the role. Maybe even the highlight of the movie. There's an underlying message in the film having to do with forgiveness and family which might make this the most wholesome werewolf-eviscerates-numerous-people movie out there. I've always had a soft spot for it.