Monthly Archives: September 2016

last week’s films…



Bananas (1971), Woody Allen ★★★★★

Without Limits (1998), Robert Towne ★★★★★

Based on a true story I wasn’t familiar with, and the ending surprised me. A snippet of Lee Michaels’ hit was a bonus.

Kubo and the Two Strings (2016), Travis Knight ★★★★★

ParaNorman (2012)was another good one directed by Travis Knight. Stay seated during the credits; first, Regina Spektor’srendition of GH’s classic – then the stop motion in action shots.

Men & Chicken (2015), Anders Thomas Jensen ★★★★

Now You See Me (2013), Louis Leterrier★★★

High-Rise (2015), Ben Wheatley ★★★★★

Also directed the outstanding A Field in England (2013).

Star Trek Beyond (2016), Justin Lin★★★★★

The Unspeakable Act (2012), Dan Sallitt★★★★★

An interesting study of one section of a family unit, who at one point gets a knowing glare from the other sister.

Green Room (2015), Jeremy Saulnier★★★★★

I didn’t realize that Jeremy Saulnierdirected Blue Ruin (2013), which was also excellent, from the opening scene to the ending.

The Silent Partner (1978), Daryl Duke ★★★★

Screenwriter credit to Curtis Hanson, who passed away September 20th.



last week’s films…

Phoenix (2014), Christian Petzold

German film. I saw the actress on the cover and thought – have I seen this already? Turns out I recognized the lead actress – Nina Hoss, who was in another Petzold film I saw – Barbara (turns out they collaborated in 5 films).

Hello, My Name Is Doris (2015), Michael Showalter

The second 2016 movie that I’ve watched twice so far. #2 for the year.

Dark City (1998), Alex Proyas

What’s your name honey?


Well that’s an appropriate name.

Hannibal season 3

Hannibal season 2

Last time someone rang my doorbell this early, it was a census taker. 

Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation (2015), Christopher McQuarrie

Join the IMF. See the world. On a monitor. In a closet.

Knowing (2009), Alex Proyas

Silver Streak (1976), Arthur Hiller rewatch

Who you looking for?

White guy.

Well, if I see any I’ll let you know.

Promised Land (2012), Gus Van Sant

Francofonia (2016), Alexander Sokurov


last week’s films…


Faust (2011), Alexander Sokurov

One of my favorite directors – directed Alexandra (2007), #1 for 2008, and once made a movie in one take – Russian Ark (2002).

The Sea of Trees (2015), Gus Van Sant  movie of the week

I used actual bread crumbs.

You are handsome.


You used bread crumbs. Handsome and Gretel.

I’ve always been a fan of Gus Van Sant’s films, especially his death trilogy: Gerry (2002), Elephant (2003), and Last Days (2005). I really should have known better than to listen to critics, when I heard this was booed at a film festival, and that scared me off from seeing this at the theater. I literally blinked and it was gone. Showed maybe a few days at a theater across town. Snooze you loose. Streamed it on Amazon. #1 for the year.

The Witness (2015), James D. Solomon

Currently #2.

I was sixteen when my sister Kitty was murdered in New York City.

Documentaries are unique in that in some cases you have no idea where the story will lead you. The script is written as the facts are uncovered. The Witness shows how many people blindly set in their minds what the media feeds them. Even when they get is so wrong.
Ranked in 2016 list due to it’s U.S. release this year. I’d been waiting to see it for months, and finally Amazon has it streaming.

Ocean’s Twelve (2004), Steven Soderbergh

Not a rewatch. I wasn’t sure, until I realized that (back when I used to watch t.v.) I never saw this all the way through.

Wet Hot American Summer (2001), David Wain

Oh I’m sorry I’m late, I thought we said 9:30.

No we said 9 so we could be here by 9:30.

Wonder Boys (2000), Curtis Hanson

The Beaver (2011), Jodie Foster

The Childhood of a Leader (2015), Brady Corbet

Ranked #7. Directorial debut for Brady Corbet, who starred as one of the two home invaders in the 2007 U.S. version of Michael Haneke’s Funny Games. Film has an auspicious start – reminded me of Led Zeppelin’s Black Country Woman, where the technician is talking to the band and Jimmy Page says – no leave it. Then the music starts, and you know you’re in for a ride. One of the best scores in recent memory. Streamed it on Amazon. 2016 U.S. release date.

Hannibal season 1

The way I binge watched it it should have been a movie. It would flow much better, instead of the editing to commercial cuts throughout. Ingenious approach to Thomas Harris’ characters. Mads Mikkelsen was brilliantly cast. Many echos to The Silence of the Lambs, Red Dragon, and Manhunter (the last two being versions of the first novel). Have not read Harris’ Hannibal Rising yet, but I just downloaded the kindle book so I may drop what I’m reading to catch up.

last week’s films…

Sully (2016), Clint Eastwood

New #1 for the year. The opening scene gets your attention. A good crowd at the 11:40am showing yesterday and almost everyone stayed seated through the first half of the credits.

Mysterious Object at Noon (2000), Apichatpong Weerasethakul movie of the week

Watching Mysterious Object made me think of this movie quote: You are going to be filming me and the actors, I am going to be filming the actors, and Terry is going to be in charge of filming the whole thing, from the 1968 film Symbiopsychotaxiplasm – Take One.

Son of Saul (2015), Laszlo Nemes

Very difficult to watch.

A Mighty Wind (2003), Christopher Guest

Casualties of War (1989), Brian De Palma  rewatch

Blood Father (2016), Jean-Francois Richet

De Palma (2016), Noah Baumbach, Jake Paltrow

During one of the last scenes of Casualties of War, after the Courts-martial sentencing, when the 4 are marching out past Michael J Fox, Sean Penn, last in line, stops and leans over and says something to him. De Palma tells us what he really said in this documentary.

Sunset Song (2015), Terence Davies

Beautiful film.

Children of Men (2006), Alfonso Cuaron

It was good.

Learning to Drive (2014), Isabel Coixet

Ben Kingsley earned both stars. There is only one learning to drive movie: Mike Leigh’s Happy-Go-Lucky (2008) with Sally Hawkins and Eddie Marsan. Movie actually almost made a comeback at around the 70 minute mark (90 minute film) but fell once again toward the conclusion. The scene with the past facing her and then was sitting next to her and she asked him questions could have been done better, and there was a chance to use this once again at the end.

last week’s films…

Petulia (1968), Richard Lester

From the opening scene with Janis Joplin’s cameo, definitely feels like Haskell Wexler’s Medium Cool (1969).

The Finest Hours (2016), Craig Gillespie

Another outstanding Chris Pine and Ben Foster film (also in Hell or High Water).

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939), Frank Capra