T-850's Reviews

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Cyberdine Systems Model 101
Just like others have their own film review threads, I thought of creating one myself. Let me start off by saying that I’m a busy man myself like many of you are. I work 11 hours a day in the weekdays and when there is anything to do, I work 6 hours a day in the weekends. I spend little time here at home but I cherish it. I used my free time to view at least one or two films a week and then write down a review for that film. So I hope you guys and girls appreciate what I’m about to post.
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Last 5 films I’ve seen

An American In Paris ****/*****
Once Upon A Time In China *****/*****
Father of the Bride ****/*****
Spartacus *****/*****
The Hidden Fortress ****/*****

You can view my review for each of those films at T-850's Reviews



Cyberdine Systems Model 101
The Vikings *****/*****




Director: Richard Fleischer
Writer: Edison Marshall
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Tony Curtis, Ernest Borgnine, Janet Leigh, James Donald, and Alexander Knox
Genre: Action/Adventure
Length: 114 minutes
Cinema: 1958
Rating: Not Rated

I first saw this film when I was in my early teen years. I remember being in love with the beautiful Janet Leigh [Who‘s surprisingly mother of another fine actress, Jamie Lee Curtis]. My first viewing in about 18 years came this past Tuesday. How I missed this movie. People who love historical drama will have a fondness for director Richard Fleischer's 1958 production of The Vikings. Kirk Douglas, Tony Curtis, Earnest Borgnine, and Janet Leigh lead a large cast competently through a pedestrian plot highlighted by some memorable scenes, excellent cinematography, historical accuracy, and extensive production values. The recent DVD release features a featurette with the director, explaining the pains they took to record an accurate portrayal of the 9th century Vikings that terrorized Europe. A year in pre-production, they consulted with Viking historians from the University of Oslo to re-create the culture, obtained blueprints of Viking ships from the Viking Museum to create authentic replicas, and scouted the fjords of Norway to find a suitable filming location.


The film does capture some of the rowdy lifestyle of the Vikings, though it's not nearly as bloody as it would have been had it been filmed post-Peckinpaw. Viking king Ragnar (Borgnine) pillages northern England, killing the king and impregnating the queen (off screen, of course). This potential heir to the English throne must be secreted away to Italy, only to be identified with a stone that will later show up on the chest of Eric (Curtis), who has ironically been captured as a slave from another of Ragnar's raids.

Twenty years later we see Princess Morgana [Janet Leigh] signing papers so she can become wife of King Aella in the first day of spring. In that ceremony, King Aella mentions to everyone that there’s a traitor. Lord Egbert [James Donald] is accused as the traitor of the English. And so he is a traitor because he’s later sentenced to jail but escapes and goes out to sea to find the Vikings! He joins the Vikings by helping them. King Ragnar accepts Egbert as a mapmaker. Later on we see Einer [Douglas] heir to the title of Head Viking, showing Lord Egbert one of his hunting hawks. He sees a duck flying in the air and tells his hawk “Kill!” The hawk flies into the air but doesn’t do what his master told him. Einer calls his hawk back in a disappointed way. Egbert sees an unfamiliar hawk come out of nowhere and kill the duck! Einer wonders who’s hawk it is. He follows the unfamiliar hawk and sees that Eric, is the owner of the hawk. Einer asks Eric where he got the hawk from and the slave responded by saying that he found him. Einer doesn’t believe him and later feels insulted because of the disrespect he’s getting from the slave. Eric couldn’t take anymore of Einer’s accusations so he tells his hawk to, “Kill!” Einer suffers badly because his left eye is badly scratched. He bleeds painfully. Lord Egbert commands one of the Vikings to kill Eric but Einer insists by saying that he wants him alive!

This very scene causes tension throughout the rest of the film and forming the basis for moving the plot forward. Meanwhile, Ragnar plots to kidnap the Welsh princess Morgana and ransom her to King Aella. He takes his son Einer with him where we see him covering his left eye with a cloak. And so they accomplish to capture the beautiful princess. Her beauty inflames the desire of Einer and does the same for Eric when he sees her.

One of the film’s memorable moments ... this could be considered a spoiler,
WARNING: "The Vikings" spoilers below
is when Ragnar is captured by the English and leaps into a wolf pit gleefully clutching his sword.
Every Viking has to die with a sword in their hands, which is part of their religion. Odin is mentioned allot, as it is the Vikings God.

Fans of Douglas will adore his performance here, complete with scarred face and that creepy milk-white eyeball. Borgnine is all chubby bluster as Ragnar, the friendliest Head Viking you’d ever imagine, while Leigh is adorable and a little sassy as the beautiful damsel. If there’s one real weak link in the cast, it’s Curtis as the purportedly heroic Eric. Although he is a fondly remembered movie star, this role is a bit of a stretch for Curtis, who often sounds whiny and occasionally lapses into something resembling a Brooklyn accent. Plus he just doesn’t offer that ‘action hero’ vibe.

Director Richard Fleischer does an A+ job. Him and Douglas show us how hard they worked to make this late 1950’s film. If The Vikings is remembered for offering a lot of ‘campy’ moments full of boisterous overacting and overripe dialogue, I’d say that’s a fairly accurate reputation. But the finest components of this movie easily overpower the sillier bits, and the lion’s share of praise is due to director Fleischer. Working on location in Norway (among other gorgeous and chilly spots), Fleischer adroitly balances his massive cast, a few overwhelming set pieces and props, and a screenplay that approaches camp a few times but effectively slips back into melodrama quite nicely. Plus, the visual scope of the Vikings is nothing short of astonishing. If I were to have a Top 100 List like LordSlaytan, The Vikings would be there. If you’re looking for a good, old-fashioned period epic that offers solid movie stars and a stunning visual scope, I’m betting you’ll have a good time with The Vikings.



My life isn't written very well.
Nice review. I haven't seen the film, but your review has evoked an interest in me. Thanks, and keep writing 'em--that is, when you have the time.
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r66-The member who always asks WHY?



Good review. I might not rate this flick as high as you do, still, it is a fun movie to watch.
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Let us go, Through certain half-deserted streets,
The muttering retreats
Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels
And sawdust restaurants with oyster shells


From The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T.S.Eliot



Cyberdine Systems Model 101
Yojimbo ****/*****



Director: Akira Kurosawa
Writer: Ryuzo Kikushima, Akira Kurosawa
Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Eijirô Tono, Kamatari Fujiwara, Takashi Shimura, Seizaburô Kawazu, Isuzu Yamada, Hiroshi Tachikawa, Kyu Sazanka, and Tatsuya Nakadai
Genre: Drama/Action/Crime/Thriller
Length: 110 minutes
Cinema: 1961
Rating: Not Rated

I bought the Akira Kurosawa Four Samurai Classics box set, which came with Seven Samurai, The Hidden Fortress, Yojimbo, and Sanjuro. I started off by viewing Yojimbo first since I’ve heard from many people that the movie is a must see. And so I saw it and by the end of the film I had my thoughts on the film. Since I did buy the box set on dvd I thought the films were going to be in plain English. Well... I was wrong! All four films are English subtitled. If you’re a person like me who doesn’t like subtitles because you need to pay attention to both the words and the screen at the same time, then you know it’s something annoying. But what am I to do about it? I wasn’t disappointed at all in the film. Akira Kurosawa became an interesting director to me when I viewed, Yojimbo. A very talented director who had the brains to make a good film. Once I had finished viewing Yojimbo, I wanted to see another Kurosawa film right away!
Set in 1860, Yojimbo opens with a lone fighter quietly walking down the town’s windswept main street. Sanjuro [Toshirô Mifune] is the unemployed samurai warrior. He has no sense of direction until he throws a branch in the air and starts walking in the direction it’s pointing. That’s what leads him to the town. He later sees a man demanding his son to stay away from gambling but he refuses and runs away from home. This shows that people would rather receive dirty money instead of earning it the right away. Sanjuro than asks the man if he can have some water and the man takes him to his house where Sanjuro sees the townspeople cower behind closed doors and boarded up windows. This unemployed samurai decides to stay in town with the self-appointed task of cleaning up what’s an extremely dirty town.

The town has been taken over by two gangs, each positioning itself for a takeover. The gang leaders’ self-destructive unwillingness to cooperate with each other is born out of their desire to control the limited resources of the village. Instead of working together to increase the village’s overall wealth, they squabble over it, resulting in its destruction. Sanjuro isn’t a perfect looking, perfect-behaving good-guy. He’s a grimy, toothpick chewing, constantly scratching, unemployed samurai warrior. But he is far brighter than the gang leaders and he’s the best sword fighter in town.

Kurosawa sets the tone early on by having Sanjuro see a dog running by with a human hand in its mouth as he enters the village. Each gang leaders’ have their own territory. They see Sanjuro walk down their street, they warn him not to step in their territory. They go on by saying that dogs can’t even walk thru. Sanjuro doesn’t like their rules at all. He later comes back after having to go to the other side of town which is controlled by a different gang. The gang leaders’ run outside and surround Sanjuro. Each gang member is equipped with his own sword. Sanjuro shows three of the gang members how strong he is by killing them! The rest of the gang is impressed. The gang leader asks Sanjuro if he would like to be his bodyguard. The other gang is watching all of this too. Meaning that both gangs have seen just how strong this samurai really is.

Yojimbo is at once a dark comedy and a morality play. Sanjuro might at first seem shiftless and unprincipled, but before long, he proves to be quite the opposite. Although the bad guys don’t figure it out until it’s almost too late, he’s a friend of the downtrodden non-combatants. Along the way, he exposes the stupidity, arrogance and corruption of the schemers and thugs.

Akira Kurosawa has created a gripping and highly entertaining film that makes brilliant use of the wide cinema screen. Mifune is outstanding as Sanjuro, the unkempt but wise and cool samurai. If you have seen this film before you know that Mifune’s character is unforgettable. We get to see him again in the beautifully composed, Sanjuro. Yojimbo is not a film that you may want to see over and over again but its a must see.



Cyberdine Systems Model 101
Originally Posted by r3port3r66
Nice review. I haven't seen the film, but your review has evoked an interest in me. Thanks, and keep writing 'em--that is, when you have the time.
If you enjoyed viewing Kirk Douglas in, Spartacus, then I'm sure you'll like this film too.



Mother! Oh, God! Mother! Blood!
Time permitting, I hope you continue writing reviews! You did a great job on both!

Even though I haven't seen either film, they are on my "to see" list. It's nice to see another reviewer writing comments on the classics. Great choices. Keep it up!

BTW, if you've seen my "Quick Review" on Spartacus, you'll know I love period epics, and enjoyed Kirk Douglas very much, so I have confidence that your favorable review of The Vikings is right on the mark.
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NEW (as of 1/24/05): Quick Reviews #10



Cyberdine Systems Model 101
Thank you Mark and everyone else for the kind words. I'm glad to see that people are reading my reviews.

BTW, if you've seen my "Quick Review" on Spartacus, you'll know I love period epics, and enjoyed Kirk Douglas very much, so I have confidence that your favorable review of The Vikings is right on the mark.
I checked your Spartacus review and it's great. I also had the time to view your whole website. You seem to put allot of effort and it's paying off because it looks dazzling. Keep up the good work!



Cyberdine Systems Model 101
Terminator 2 Judgment Day *****/*****



Director: James Cameron
Writer: James Cameron, William Wisher
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Robert Patrick, Edward Furlong, Earl Boen, and Joe Morton
Genre: Action, Science Fiction
Length: 136 minutes
Cinema: 1991
Rating: R

Let me start by saying that this movie is one of my favorite films of all time. I remember seeing this movie when I was 17. I was amazed to see such a good movie that delivers pure entertainment. I don’t know a single person that disagrees by saying that the movie lacked in not giving us two hours of entertaining action.

James Cameron's "Terminator 2: Judgment Day" is a lustrous machine, all gleaming steel and burnished gunmetal, with state-of-the-art nuts and bolts. You relate to it the way you might relate to any overpowering machine, a little dispassionately but with a respect bordering on awe.
Terminator


It's a tank of a movie, big, powerful and hard to resist. But it's a tank with lightning treads and jaguar agility. The stunning special effects show something that's rare these days -- technical stunts that evoke a true sense of wonder; it's real jaw-to-the-floor stuff.

As a sequel, "Terminator 2" is more imposing than its predecessor, and it lacks the B- movie modesty of the original. The original "Terminator" was science fiction with an element of shaggy poetry; this "Terminator" strives more for the mythic. It's heroic pulp. The circumstances of the two are similar.

Once again, we see two warriors that have beamed from the future back to our time and once again, one warrior must protect the subject that the other was sent to destroy. The target is a ten year old boy, who’s the young son of Sarah Connor [Linda Hamilton] He’s to become the great leader of the human resistance after the world has been blown to bits in a nuclear conflagration. The villain is a more sophisticated version from the T-800 Terminator. The T-1000 [Robert Patrick] which is made from a kind of liquid metal-- a “mimetic polyalloy,” it’s called-- that allows it to change shape at will and renders it virtually indestructible. The T-1000 is a sleeker, faster version of the earlier Terminator. This time the T-800 Terminator [Schwarzenegger] like the cyborg that combined machine and living tissue that was sent to kill John’s mother ten years ago, is the boy’s protector.

Through out the film we see these two Titans battle and it doesn’t disappoint. The confrontations between these two unstoppable forces are thrilling death bouts between equally matched gladiators. As they hammer each other, the outcome of the fight seems genuinely uncertain. The movie has a mixture of action and drama. It takes its time, meaning the film doesn’t seem rushed. There are scenes that are simply spectacular. Such as the canal chase where we see the unstoppable T-1000
terminator

driving a truck and the 10 year-old driving a dirt bike, which is his only source to survival until the T-800 arrives and saves the day. Let’s not forget, if the T-1000 succeeds its mission the human population is doomed!

The movie is unforgettable. From the Biker Bar scene to the One More Chip scene, you’ll be amazed to see such an epic movie.

Most of the actors make strong statements, including Hamilton, who's Nautilused herself into the form of a modern-day Diana, and Furlong, who gives one of the loosest performances for a child actor ever filmed. As the brain behind SkyNet, the computer that goes out of control and causes the nuclear nightmare, Joe Morton also makes the most of a few minutes on screen. Schwarzenegger is of course the star of the show. He shows us that he was born to play the Terminator role. Arnold has been and always will be one of my favorite actors of all time.

No one in the movies today can match Cameron's talent for this kind of hyperbolic, big-screen action. Cameron, who directed the first "Terminator" and "Aliens," doesn't just slam us over the head with the action. In staging the movie's gigantic set pieces, he has an eye for both grandeur and beauty; he possesses that rare director's gift for transforming the objects he shoots so that we see, for example, the lyrical muscularity of an 18-wheel truck. Because of Cameron, the movie is the opposite of its Terminator character; it's a machine with a human heart.



Registered User
i knew this review would be coming from u sooner or later

IMO i think T2 is a masterful work, way ahead of its time in the graphics department. the plot, acting everything was done so well.

NICE review!



Kaiser "The Devil" Soze
Originally Posted by poeman
i knew this review would be coming from u sooner or later

IMO i think T2 is a masterful work, way ahead of its time in the graphics department. the plot, acting everything was done so well.

NICE review!
yeah what Poeman said.....T2 is a movie that revloutionized the film industry.
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And like that .... he's gone



Do you know my poetry?
Excellent, excellent reviews T-850. I have not yet seen The Vikings, but your review has made me grown interest in the film. I have however seen Yojimbo and Terminator 2: Judgment Day and I think you wrote very fine reviews on both those film. I agree with you totally on your T2 review, that's just a fantastic film.


Originally Posted by T-850
If you have seen this film before you know that Mifune’s character is unforgettable.
Totally agree with you there. I believe every Mifune character is unforgettable. Have you seen Akira Kurosawa's Throne of Blood? I believe that's Mifune's best performance ever and Kurosawa's best film.



Cyberdine Systems Model 101
Originally Posted by Ezikiel
Totally agree with you there. I believe every Mifune character is unforgettable. Have you seen Akira Kurosawa's Throne of Blood? I believe that's Mifune's best performance ever and Kurosawa's best film.

To be honest with you, I barely started watching Kurosawa films. Since I bought the Akira Kurosawa Four Samurai Classics dvd box set, I got hooked into seeing more and more of Mifune's excellent work. The box set does not include Throne of Blood, but I would like to check the movie out since you say its Mifune's best performance and Kurosawa's best film. Thank you for the nice comments by the way

I'm currently writing a review for another Kurosawa classic, The Hidden Fortress. It may be up tomorrow night.



Mother! Oh, God! Mother! Blood!
Originally Posted by T-850
I'm currently writing a review for another Kurosawa classic, The Hidden Fortress. It may be up tomorrow night.
Hurray!!! You know this was one of our Movie Reviews 4 Fun films, don't you?



Cyberdine Systems Model 101
Originally Posted by Mark
Hurray!!! You know this was one of our Movie Reviews 4 Fun films, don't you?
Your review may be similar to mine since I will mention Star Wars the way you did. But we all know that George Lucas was inspired by The Hidden Fortress.

If you don't mind Mark, I'd like to post a link to your Hidden Fortress review so this excellent audience can view what a good job you did.

Mark's, The Hidden Fortress review



Great reviews T-850! (that name doesn't really role off the tounge to well, does it?)

I'm really impressed. I'm sorry to say that I had assumed that your movie favorites would all be, well...ohhh I don't know...kiddish?...crappy?... Sorry about that, show's you what assuming is all about.

I have a request. Have you seen Dark City? I'd really like to see your thoughts on that sci-fi gem.

You've got some real talent here, I like your style. I hope your reviews become a regular staple around here. Any hope of you writing for Mark's site as well???
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"Today, war is too important to be left to politicians. They have neither the time, the training, nor the inclination for strategic thought. I can no longer sit back and allow Communist infiltration, Communist indoctrination, Communist subversion and the international Communist conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids."



Mother! Oh, God! Mother! Blood!
Originally Posted by LordSlaytan
You've got some real talent here, I like your style. I hope your reviews become a regular staple around here. Any hope of you writing for Mark's site as well???
I'll take the liberty to put words in T-850's mouth.

Yes, there is a lot of hope. T-850's review for The Hidden Fortress should be posted at Movie Reviews 4 Fun by Sunday. He'll link to it from this thread.

Next, he plans to join us for our current film, Father of the Bride (1950 - starring Spencer Tracy and Elizabeth Taylor). RIGHT, T-850?! Then we'll have four regular reviewers of the same classic films!



A system of cells interlinked
Cyborg skillz!!!

What a solid review, impressively written! Keep it up...

These revs get rep!
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"There’s absolutely no doubt you can be slightly better tomorrow than you are today." - JBP



Fabulous. I'm especially impressed by your Terminator 2 review.



Cyberdine Systems Model 101
Originally Posted by LordSlaytan
I have a request. Have you seen Dark City? I'd really like to see your thoughts on that sci-fi gem.
I've never seen it but I am interested in checking it out. Once I've seen the film I'll write a review for it. Are you a fan of Dark City?

Originally Posted by Mark
RIGHT, T-850?!
That's absolutely right. Like I've said before, I'm glad that I'm about to contribute to your website and that I'll soon be part of the team

Originally Posted by Sedai
What a solid review, impressively written! Keep it up...
Thanks, Sedai

Fabulous. I'm especially impressed by your Terminator 2 review.
I'm glad to see that you enjoyed it. I just had to make a review for T2. I've seen that film so many times that I didn't have to see that film in order to write a review for it.