The Thin Blue Line

This Errol Morris documentary is considered a classic documentary, but my impressions are that the Phillip Glass soundtrack, as well as the cheesy reenactments are over the top and sully the journalistic nature of what a documentary is supposed to achieve. The closeups of various items – a newspaper article, a clock, and the too-loud…

Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter … and Spring

This film is a Buddhist fable writ large upon the silver screen. It is beautiful, poignant, and also a little perplexing to me – there’s a scene where the master monk beats his student, albeit after a suicide attempt, and there’s some child endangerment issues. These are moot, though, as this film is meant, I…

Jimi Plays Monterey / Shake! Otis at Monterey

Another one of my Criterion Collections’ 50% off purchases was “Jimi Plays Monterey / Shake! Otis at Monterey” which documents each artists’ performance at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967. This is directed by D.A. Pennebaker – for the most part, straight concert footage is used, a credit to Pennebaker’s taste. One point where this…

Cronos

“Cronos,” Guillermo Del Toro’s first feature, is a tale of alchemy combined with vampiric elements. Positive elements include Guillermo’s fondness of children, the elderly and their interactions. After listening to Del Toro’s commentary, my thoughts coalesce: his alchemical symbols were lost on me, and probably most of his audience. The story revolves around a clock-like,…

Wilderness

Based on my friend, KennKong’s urging, I did what I vowed I wasn’t going to do – put a movie at the top of my queue considering I’ve recently spent too much money on the Criterion Collection’s 50% off sale. However, Ken being a good sport with my reviews, entertaining discussions, etc., I felt I…

The Social Network

“The Social Network,” directed by David Fincher and starring Jesse Eisenberg as Mark Zuckerberg starts with an incredible scene of dialogue. Fincher notes in the commentary that it was very brave for Aaron Sorkin to write 9 pages of dialogue as an opening scene. Also, taking a cue from film noir, it is rapid-fire, intense…

Paths of Glory

“Paths Of Glory” is a 1957 Stanley Kubrick film adapted from the novel of the same name penned by Humphrey Cobb. First off, I’m watching the Criterion Collection Blu-Ray and it looks great. Second, we almost immediately have a scene where General George Mireau, played by George Macready, slaps a soldier because he’s a “baby,”…

Alien 3

After last night’s Oscar mediocrity, I’m plunging ahead with rewatching “Alien 3.” This and “Alien 4,” or whatever the fuck it’s called was included in the blu-ray set I purchased. I really should have waited for the individual titles to come out, but they got me, so I’ll watch these final two movies which I…

Winter’s Bone

“Winter’s Bone” concerns itself with the plight of an Ozarks’ family during the winter. The family’s father, Jessop, is a methamphetamine manufacturer who has either skipped bail for a prior arrest or has been killed. Jessop also put up his and his family’s house as collateral for the bail. Due to his not showing up…