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My favorite from Aldo Lado, who may be the most under appreciated giallo director around.
Night Train Murders ('75) is pretty nasty but also very good.



When I was a kid we had an 8mm projector, and this was one of the three movies we owned. It was like 10 minutes long and silent. So although I've never actually watched the film, there's at least a couple of scenes I have memorized.



I sort of watched this the other night. But it wasn't ten minutes or silent. It did have a guy who I could have sworn was Jon Lovitz in a prosthetic bald cap and pointy ears. It turned out to be Lou Cutell, the proctologist whose personalized license plate ASSMAN, Kramer ended up with on Seinfeld. James Karen from Return of the Living Dead was also in it. And Bruce Glover, who was in Hard Times and Diamonds Are Forever. In a bit of a mindblower I found out he's Crispin Glover's dad. It's plainly obvious once you notice the resemblance but since I had never put the two together .... mind ... blown.



Dune (2021)


Potentially a masterpiece if part 2 manages to be as good as part 1.

This is the best science fiction movie in a very long time, I think: I found it is better than The Matrix which I re-watched a couple months ago, which I thought was the best science fiction movie from the last 25 years. So, among Hollywood science fiction movies, only Blade Runner, the original Star Wars, and 2001 are on the same level as Dune.



Night Train Murders ('75) is pretty nasty but also very good.
Indeed. I prefer it to Last House on the Left. Ladoís penchant for adding social commentary about Italyís omnipresent classism/authoritarianism makes his genre pics feel more akin Petri than Fulci. Iím also a fan of Short Night of Glass Dolls.





The Vault (2017)

Nice little movie about a bank robbery gone really bad. Not to be confused with the other The Vault movie, from 2021.
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It's a good movie for Halloween tonight, really unsettling - The Mothman Prophecies. It's not just a movie script, but back in 1966 some of this stuff actually happened. I recall it in the news of the time, people in a small W Virginia town, Point Pleasant, repeatedly saw a winged creature, human sized with large wings and blazing red eyes. People received strange phone messages from a person calling himself Indrid Cold. The sightings continued until December 1967, when the bridge across the Ohio river at the edge of town, collapsed suddenly, into the river. Dozens were killed in the US's worst bridge disaster. The sightings and calls stopped. This part is not a movie.

The movie condenses all this into a few characters who are deeply disturbed by what's happening. In the end, the bridge collapses. The movie is slow, somber and haunting, had good performances by Richard Gere, Laura Linney, Alan Bates and Will Patton. It's really pretty good for a slow burn creepy movie, one of those spooky stories that gets under your skin, especially if you read up on the actual events.

This is one of my favorite slow burn paranormal themed flicks. Jacob's Ladder is another one that never fails to creep me out no matter how many times I've seen it. And I especially like how there don't appear to be any superfluous characters cluttering up the story. The four stars you listed each have an integral part to play. The grieving, big city skeptic. The level headed public servant/love interest. The reclusive authority. I think Patton has the best role and he does a really good job as the overwhelmed and sympathetic everyman.



If you share my soft spot for this genre, the "sequel" Force 10 from Navarone might be worth a watch. It's based on another Alistair Maclean novel featuring the characters played here by Peck and Niven, only they're played by Robert Shaw and Edward Fox in that movie. Not nearly as tightly directed, but has a fun cast and enough of the pleasures this kind of movie offers that I had a good time.
I liked it as well. A very eclectic cast with Harrison Ford and Carl Weathers. Richard Kiel and Barbara Bach.



Think you used enough dynamite there, Butch?




The Sicilian Clan aka Le clan des siciliens (1969)
+++ A popcorn-chompin Blockbuster Action Heist film with an A-List cast; Monsieur Cool, Alain Delon is a rising gangster bringing in a jewel heist to MyMan! Jean Gabin's Silician crew. Doggedly on their trails is Lino Ventura. A Commissaire who has been trying REALLY hard to give up smoking. . .
Oh, and with an Ennio Morricone Soundtrack, may I add.

I would imagine, and for solid reasons, the movie trailers would rave that it was High Octane Action! With Dazzlingly Narrow Escapes! etc. and so forth. It pretty much sports it all. Intrigue, danger, sex, violence, clever gadgets and cons, betrayal. . . a well-served, delicious, French cuisine. Even the writing stays solid when the scenarios escalate to Drive-In proportions. And it does. Very.
And, oh my GOD to have hung out at a Drive-In seeing this would have been all kinds of very [email protected] cool!!
I will not go into any details, leaving the fun ride open for any wishing to venture in.

I was instantly pulled in, enamored in, not only how smooth all three men were, but so was this stylish film's full experience for me. I continually chuckled, smirked, with numerous Impressed Moments on how things twisted, turned, or played out. Including the very ending itself which was very satisfying.

This was some VERY cool, pretty [email protected] awesome, Popcorn-Munching Entertainment!!
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Well, that's interesting.
I agree with you wholeheartedly about the ending. I love it in the book, I love it in this film, and I love it in Branagh's film.
I can't remember which detail was excised that's troubling you, though I remember that something was.
In the book (MAJOR MAJOR SPOILERS)
WARNING: spoilers below
the characters explain what they did, and they explain that they did it that way so that none of them would have to bear the guilt of knowing that they were the one who struck the killing blow. I always found that kind of moving, because it gets to the heart of the idea that these people are basically good people coping with a horribly traumatic event, and yet they do want their revenge. It really captures, also, the "all for one" mentality that they had. I think it's a shame to lose that comment.



Hatchet (2006)


I made a mistake picking this randomly out a selection of scary movies to watch on Halloween. Amazon Prime can be so deceiving in recommendations....an even lower budget Hills Have Eyes type of movie. Not bad if you are looking for a comical way to spend 80 minutes in a horror movie.





Le Sabotier du Val de Loire, 1956

In this short film we follow a week in the life of a clog maker and his wife. In between sequences of the man making a pair of wooden clogs, he meditates on the imminent death of one of his oldest friends.

I thought that this was a really lovely film. Movies about people who are older and facing the challenge of having to think about their end of life can either skew way too bleak or can be almost annoyingly lighthearted. For me, this film walked just the right line.

The scenes with the clog-maker and his friends, or with his wife were sweet and simple. The dynamics of their relationships are easily grasped with just a few exchanges. And I'm a real sucker for getting to watch craftspeople create things, so the scenes of him making the clogs were really neat to watch.

This film, short though it was, was a really lovely look at the way that life is a series of transitions. Without any malice, the clog-maker observes that their adult son will soon want to move on more completely to his own life. Despite money being tight, he realizes that his wife is getting too old to keep using their old wheelbarrow and so one day in town he buys her a new one. The death of his friend gives him pause, and leads him to reflect that he's entered a period of his life where his friends will begin to dwindle in numbers. That all might sound bleak, but I thought it has just the right mix of empathy and emotional distance. This isn't misery porn---it's a clear-eyed, slightly sentimental slice of life that doesn't shy away from the struggles of its central characters.

Very enjoyable.




This is one of my favorite slow burn paranormal themed flicks. Jacob's Ladder is another one that never fails to creep me out no matter how many times I've seen it. And I especially like how there don't appear to be any superfluous characters cluttering up the story. The four stars you listed each have an integral part to play. The grieving, big city skeptic. The level headed public servant/love interest. The reclusive authority. I think Patton has the best role and he does a really good job as the overwhelmed and sympathetic everyman.
I think I recall seeing that way back when. I see that it's streaming on Pluto now, will need to check back.




Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=15673705

Fog of War - (2003)

Robert S. McNamara had to ask himself more moral questions of massive importance than any other American in the 20th Century. He was involved with the bombing campaign against Japan in the Second World War, where hundreds of thousands of civilians were killed, and he was of course involved in the war in Vietnam. The documentary Fog of War takes us through these moral questions as it interviews McNamara against a backdrop of films depicting war and is a great record of the thoughts of the people who shaped the United States through the Second World War and the Cold War. It's important, illuminating and very interesting.

8/10


By Impawards, Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=18788013

Dig! - (2003)

I love this documentary. I love what it says about the music industry, artistic endeavour, integrity and success. It charts the history of two bands, and especially their frontmen. On one side we have Courtney Taylor and the Dandy Warhols, on the other we have Anton Newcombe and The Brian Jonestown Massacre. From their early days, Taylor and Newcombe were great friends and starting out in the same place - just doing gigs, trying to be noticed and wanting to record their songs. Newcombe is a musical genius, but his behaviour is erratic and drug use out of control - and he holds a very dim view of the money-making side of music and the executives at record studios. When the Dandy Warhols manage to strike a deal, releasing a single and putting together a video Newcombe sees this as Taylor selling out and becomes hostile - at one stage stalking the band and writing spiteful music about them. The Dandy Warhols slowly rise to success, excited and happy playing in front of packed stadiums. The Brian Jonestown Massacre goes through convulsions and eventually breaks up. The way this is captured, and what it says about the industry in this fly-on-the-wall doco makes this one of the best and is very highly recommended.

9/10


By The poster art can or could be obtained from 20th Century FoxScott Free., Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1688166

Kingdom of Heaven - (2005)

I strapped myself in for the full 189 minute version of this last night, and I think I made the right choice when reading up on it later. An epic film in the tradition of older epics, with eye-catching scene after eye-catching scene, the only problem I had with it was Orlando Bloom. He's too slight - and would be more suited to playing minstrel than a warrior. Russel Crowe would have been better - and perhaps Ridley Scott even approached him, but maybe not after having been there once already with Gladiator. Edward Norton's King Baldwin is terrific and Jeremy Irons, David Thewlis and Liam Neeson all look like they really believe in what they're doing here. I don't think it's meant to be too historically accurate - instead it's a parable about the times, with religious fervor and violence on the rise. Thumbs up from me.

7/10
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"Kingdom of Heaven - (2005)

I strapped myself in for the full 189 minute version of this last night, and I think I made the right choice when reading up on it later. An epic film in the tradition of older epics, with eye-catching scene after eye-catching scene, the only problem I had with it was Orlando Bloom. He's too slight - and would be more suited to playing minstrel than a warrior."

I saw that too, but an interesting sideline to this - Here in Baltimore, in the Walters Art Museum, there's a big collection of period armor. When you look at it, a 6 foot guy like me is eyeball-to-eyeball with the eye slot in the armor, but if you look down, the armor is situated on a platform. Those guys were more like 5 feet 5. With the armor constraining their bulk, they were also fairly svelte. I'm expecting to see Jason Momoa and I get Ben Stiller. Bloom actually seems to have the stature about right.



26th Hall of Fame

Tower (2016) -

...
If you haven't seen it, you might enjoy Targets (1968). Directed by Peter Bogdanovich, a significant part of the film is patterned after that University of Texas tower shooter.

I really liked the picture. It was also Boris Karloff's last film (he didn't play a monster).

It was Bogdanovich's first real movie, and led to him getting The Last Picture Show, What's Up, Doc?, and Paper Moon. Not too shabby!



I watched Paw Patrol The Movie. Paw Patrol is a riveting and complex political thriller that shines a light on the depravity of man. Laced with erotic undertones and pulsating with dark energy, Paw Patrol The Movie is a controversial masterpiece that challenges traditional ideas of what cinema can accomplish. Paw Patrol masterfully builds to a simmering boil and then explodes in a shocking climax of puppy cuteness. A stirring and unforgettable experience that must be seen to be believed. My rating is a



If you haven't seen it, you might enjoy Targets (1968). Directed by Peter Bogdanovich, a significant part of the film is patterned after that University of Texas tower shooter.

I really liked the picture. It was also Boris Karloff's last film (he didn't play a monster).

It was Bogdanovich's first real movie, and led to him getting The Last Picture Show, What's Up, Doc?, and Paper Moon. Not too shabby!
I'll keep an eye out for it. Thanks for the recommendation!