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Showing posts from April, 2014

seize the day

My Glib Review of The Wolf Of Wall Street.

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Glib Reviews of Recently Released DVDs
The Wolf Of Wall Street - Directed By Martin Scorsese
Its pretty difficult, given all the similarities structurally and otherwise between this film, and Scorsese’s most re-watchable film; Goodfellas, not to jump right in with comparisons. The stories of two very different, but maybe not so different kinds of criminals, diverge enough for the films to be distinct: Wolf Of Wall Street has a grander, slower pace than the rapid fire coke binge that is Goodfellas.
There is maybe more coke in ‘Wolf,’ than in ‘Goodfellas,’ but just as DiCaprio’s Operatic winking at the camera is tempered by other drugs, especially Quaaludes, Wolf Of Wall Street has a more labyrinthine languorous (I did doze occasionally) rhythm to it. The three hours feels like three hours, but in grand old Scorsese tradition, you feel the length is fairly well justified. Master film makers at work.
Though, on one viewing of Wolf Of Wall Street, I can’t call it a masterpiece, but I didn’t…

Swashbuckler Fest 2014

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Swashbuckler Fest 2014
Sinbad the Sailor - Directed by Richard Wallace
Another delightful entry in my (much delayed) SwashBuckler Fest 2014. I’m really enjoying all the technicolor palette these films tend to have, and how well they use that to great effect. 
This particular version of Sinbad comes with one small mechanical creature, a mocking bird that basically spend the picture hanging out with Sinbad, giving him clues to his enemies doings that fly right over his smiling face. Sinbad is played by Douglas Fairbanks Jr.
Fairbanks almost lives up to his Famous father’s level of swashbuckling. I’d say in every way except the weird lack of sword fighting show offery; almost all of the ‘fight scenes’ have abbreviated sword bits, but oh the leaping, and the bounding. This Sinbad really is more of a thief and a scoundrel, using his quick wits (and no planning whatsoever) instead of his sword, or fists. He almost has that same twinkle as His Pops. Almost.
The story sets itself up as being Si…

Super Hero Movie Update #1 2014

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Super Hero Movie Update #1 2014
Captain America: The Winter Soldier - Directed by Anthony Russo, Joe Russo
Thor: The Dark World - Directed by Alan Taylor

Yesterday I actually went to the movie theatre downtown and paid almost 18 bucks to see Captain America : The Winter Soldier on the big 3d screen. In the evening, I watched the most recent Marvel superhero movie on Blu Ray, Thor: The Dark World. (after falling asleep about 10 minutes in the night before)
As far as being cinematic entertainment, both had their strengths and weaknesses. Thor, despite starring a bunch of “Gods” and having a great pace, thanks to Game Of Thrones (and many other ‘big’ TV shows) stalwart director, Alan Taylor; does not have the gravitas it should considering the ridiculously high stakes the villain and heroes are playing for.
Therein lies the problem, Christopher Eccleston does a good job with what he has to work with. It’s just well, he doesn’t have much to work with. Malekith is really kind of one note and h…

Walking Fantan Alley

Scaramouche, Swashbuckler Fest 2014

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SwashBuckler - Fest 2014
Day 2 (a few days ago, I’ve been busy)
Scaramouche - Directed by George Sidney
Scaramouche is worth sitting through just for the climatic sword fight at the end which is a huge 6 minute school of swashbuckle and derring-do. Stewart Granger is a Bastard (the old school royal dad, not so royal mom kind, not the modern what a jerk variety) who feels immense guilt for flirting with a girl who turned out to be his sister. 
The Scaramouche in the title refers to When Granger has to take it on the lamb when his l’l Bro like chum Richard Anderson (A teen Oscar Goldman from Six Million Dollar Man!) gets killed in a duel, he hides out with the red headed gal that should be his girlfriend, in a Commedia dell’arte troupe. Scaramouche is a much pranked upon clown, whose grotesque mask is more real than any Frenchman in the picture.
This movie is as close as cinema gets to a live action Daffy Duck Cartoon than any film I know. It is ludicrously over the top all the time. Stewa…

Swashbuckler Fest 2014

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SwashBuckler Fest 2014
I decided after watching this really great compilation of Errol Flynn Sword Fights that my Film Prof from almost 30 years ago posted on facebook, stating that he always wants to watch ‘Swashbucklers’ this time of year.  I am a huge fan of such movies myself, be they the typical Pirate movie, or the Samurai and Ronin of Japanese cinema, I love a great sword fight.
So I decided to do a quick four night, four movie Swashbuckler festival. I first instinct was to reach for the store copy of Captain Blood, then see what else we had, more obscure, maybe. But then I remembered that I had at home, a cheapie ‘boxset’ of ‘ Great Pirate Movies” that I got somewhere on sale. It has four Swashbucklers on it, including one of my all time faves, that I hadn’t watched in maybe ten years, Scaramouche. But that movie is on disc two.
Against all Flags - Directed by George Sherman
The first picture though, and rightly so, was a Flynn, an Errol Flynn who is The Swashiest Buckler of the…