Showing posts from October 8, 2017

Review: Poseidon

The plot? Umm, it’s about the title capsized cruise liner, and a few survivors who refuse to wait for help to come to them, and decide to rescue themselves. Kurt Russell is a former NY mayor and former NY fire-fighter (but you can call him Captain America) who is overly protective of daughter Emmy Rossum who in turn is dating Mike Vogel, much to Russell’s chagrin. Aussie Jacinda Barrett plays a single MILF (well, that’s really what she plays), travelling with son Jimmy Bennett. Richard Dreyfuss is a suicidal gay architect who thinks of going overboard before he sees a giant wave heading for the ship. Andre Braugher gets the fuzzy end of the lollipop as the pig-headed captain who wants everyone to stay put. Kevin Dillon plays a gambler named Lucky Larry, but that’s about it for his character’s development. Perhaps the most prominent character is Josh Lucas’s professional gambler, who turns reluctant hero when he takes a shine to Barrett and her kid. That’s Black Eyed Peas singer Fergi

Review: To Have and Have Not

Set in the early 1940s on the (French) Caribbean island of Martinique as France falls under Nazi occupation. Bogey plays an apolitical ex-pat American fishing boat captain who catches Lauren Bacall swiping the wallet of his latest client (Walter Sande). However, he soon realises that said client was about to run out on him without paying him the money he’s owed. When Sande winds up dead, Gestapo captain Dan Seymour seizes Bogey’s passport. Bacall wants Bogey to take her on his boat and off the island. Bogey, having already turned down an offer to help out the French resistance movement, has a change of heart (he needs the cash), agreeing to smuggle some people into Martinique whilst also helping Bacall get back to America (i.e. He develops a thing for her). Walter Brennan plays Bogey’s soused right-hand man, whilst Hoagy Carmichael plays a piano player called Cricket. Like the more famous “Casablanca” , this 1944 film from director Howard Hawks ( “Red River” , “Rio Bravo” , “El

Review: The Living Daylights

On a mission to rub out an assassin and assist in the defection of Russian General Georgi Koskov (Jeroen Krabbe), James Bond (Timothy Dalton) finds it difficult to complete the mission when he realises his intended target is a woman, cellist Kara (Maryam d’Abo), who is actually Koskov’s girlfriend. Koskov, who escapes unharmed, tells MI6 that rival General Pushkin (John Rhys-Davies) is behind the assassination attempt and Bond is sent to rub him out instead. Meanwhile, Bond gets to know Kara, and you know how that goes. Joe Don Baker plays American arms dealer and war buff Brad Whitaker, who plays a part in the criminal scheme at hand. Andreas Wisniewski plays a henchman fond of strangling his victims. Art Malik is Kamran Shah who is a Mujahadeen freedom fighter who proves a useful ally to Bond in the Middle East. Thomas Wheatley plays the frequently pissy British Secret Service affiliate Saunders, who sets up the initial defection plan and is annoyed when 007 goes rogue from those p

Review: Tales of the Grim Sleeper

The story of Lonnie Franklin Jr., a South Central L.A. family man who despite dealing in stolen cars, was considered a respectable man. Hell, he was the most affluent man in the neighbourhood. However, Lonnie had been harbouring a very dark secret for many years when he was finally arrested for the murders of at least 10 women (sex workers and/or drug addicts). Allegedly, the actual body count may be over 100. The title refers to the supposed 14 year gap between some of the murders, though Franklin may still have been active during that time. Although he usually makes very interesting films, I do tend to find Nick Broomfield a somewhat biased, subjective, and intrusive filmmaker…even at the best of times (which would be his two Aileen Wuornos films made about ten years apart). This 2014 documentary is probably one of his less intrusive films (despite Broomfield appearing on camera often throughout), and I’m a sucker for a serial killer story, as I’ve always been a true crime bu

Review: The Midnight Man

Burt Lancaster, a former cop who has recently served time for the manslaughter of his wife and her lover, has to take the crummy midnight shift of a security guard gig at a small town (in South Carolina) local college. It’s the closest thing to his natural line of work that he is allowed to do. His buddy Cameron Mitchell (also a former cop) got him the gig, and shares with Lancaster a need to snoop where it’s not wanted, and likely hazardous to his health. Not surprisingly, Lancaster discovers the dead body of a co-ed (Catherine Bach), daughter of a powerful Senator (Morgan Woodward), and with connections to a Psych professor (Robert Quarry), and earns him the ire of not only local sheriff Harris Yulin (who thinks it’s an open and shut case when an ‘obvious’ culprit is quickly found), but just about everyone else in town. Susan Clark is his one ally, his foxy parole officer whom he strikes up a relationship with. Charles Tyner is a perverted, religious zealot janitor (i.e. Prime susp