Monday, August 22, 2022
Thursday, August 18, 2022
Saturday, August 13, 2022
The 2022 Booksteve Film Festival has been canceled for the remainder of the year. Why? Well, back in January, I watched an average of a movie a day. The last couple months, however, I've been busy with stuff I can't do while watching movies. With August nearly half over, I find that I've only seen one and one half movies thus far and this next week is filled with errands and doctors' appointments and helping son Bookdave (returned from Grad School with Masters' Degree in math Education!) get set up for his first real job.
So here are the movies for August. Above, SKIPALONG ROSENBLOOM was low-budget hilarity from the 1950s! A parody not just of cowboy pictures but of TV cowboy pictures in particular, complete with fake commercials! Ex-boxers "Slapsie Maxie" and Max Baer, Sr. co-star as hero and villain, respectively, with Jackie Coogan, Raymond Hatton, Fuzzy Knight, and other familiar names and faces.
This one was much fun but I was watching online and meant to get back to it and haven't had the chance. Low-budget Lubitsch Touch still makes for a great atmosphere. Merle Oberon is effervescent as the Hiccuping lead whose husband (Melvyn Douglas) doesn't pay enough attention to her. Buzzy Meredith is an iconoclastic pianist who enters her life and quickly upsets it. No idea how it ends...yet.
Saturday, August 06, 2022
Just finished THE SANDMAN and I'll give the overall series a definite 4/5 stars. I truly believe that episode 6 was the single best and most accurate adaptation of a specific comic book story--two, actually--that I have ever seen!
Naysayers aside, the casting is flawless on every score with David Thewlis, John Cameron Mitchell, Mason Alexander Park, Kirby Howell-Baptiste, and Boyd Holbrook among the MANY standouts. Let me put it this way--there was no one who DIDN'T work for me. I did not even recognize old favorite (and longtime Gaiman-collaborator) Sir Lenny Henry as the the voice of one great character!
Tom Sturridge is appropriately stoic, deadpan, and morose as Dream, with a much less extreme hairstyle and no bleached-white skin being the main differences from the comics. His ocassioanl sorta-kinda smiles as he recognizes his own humanity more are priceless.
The overall series was more episodic than most binge-designed series are these days but the adaptation of The Doll's House--one of the most-revered SANDMAN stories was well-done and even added a few touches from other story arcs.
The final episode was basically just clearing up some loose ends and setting the stage for possible future episodes. Not sure it worked on its own as an episode, but a nice coda to a lovely adaptation of one of the greatest of all comic book series.
Dark fun on a couple of dark, stormy days here.
Thanks, Neil, for the quality control. And thanks to all involved for making the DREAM of a lot of fans come true after all these years.
Monday, August 01, 2022
When I started this project I was watching a lot of movies per month but things have slowed to a crawl.
This one was a blast--two hours of mindless cartoon violence with a cool lead and a hammy villain, also a good performance by the little girl from Tarantino's last movie.
A revisit for this one--a sharper than sharp satire of fame and the desire for it. Kidman's best in my opinion, and a fun performance--and great ending--with my friend Ileana Douglas!
Gould's career fell rapidly throughout then '70s, leading to this fairly standard good guy trying to evade multiple bad guys plot, filmed cheaply with Canada standing in for Harvard. Kate Jackson shows some screen presence in her first big screen role after ANGELS hit big but not enough to help.
Hadn't planned on seeing this one but glad I did. A great story, fun new characters, and lots of what the young folk call "the feels."
Surprisingly good horror film with more fear than gore, a creepy performance by Hawke, and absolute winning and empowering performances by the two young leads playing brother and sister.