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Tuesday, October 7 2003

Cromwell (1970)

Ken Hughes' portrait of Cromwell allows him to recast the military, particularly its leaders, as betrayed by politicians of all stripes.


The Bedford Incident (1965)

Addresses the danger inherent in the military hierarchy and social isolation.


Tuesday, September 30 2003

2 Fast 2 Furious (2003)

'It's the juxtaposition, like Sergio Leone would do that really well.'"


Fargo (1996)

This is the film's genius, its simultaneous emulation and excavation of true crime's obsession with dull or spectacular minutiae, coupled with a refusal to make such details cohere into master plans and meanings.


Better Luck Tomorrow (2003)

'There are so many things that typify growing up in Southern California in the late '70s and early '80s. Miniature golf.'"


Bend It Like Beckham (2002)

Indian and British, white and brown and black, queer and straight. It's all in the mix.


Monday, September 22 2003

Wings of Desire (Der Himmel über Berlin) (1987)

Wings of Desire is the most optimistic of films, finding freedom and potential in the quotidian privileges most of us take for granted.


Versus (2000)

Versus and Ichi the Killer challenge the concept of righteous motivation, offering protagonists so morally ambiguous that it's difficult to distinguish who is 'good' and who is 'evil'.


Scared Straight! (1978)

'I don't want to end up in there,' is a repeated mantra.


The Dancer Upstairs (2002)

John Malkovich and Javier Bardem shed welcome light on their thinking about this sophisticated meditation on terrorism, trust, and desire.


Monday, September 15 2003

Targets (1968)

Draws parallels between Bobby and Charles Whitman, though there's a much larger issue at stake: the availability of guns, at the root of the rise of violence in America.


Hook (1991)

Hook is thoroughly watchable, often amusing, fitfully entertaining.


Enough (2002)

The first bit of news I heard on waking up this morning was that the wedding was off.


Enigma (2001)

Michael Apted speaks of his intent to make the country appear 'beautiful' and, consequently, we're spared shots of bombed-out London or casualties of any kind.


The Endurance: Shackleton’s Legendary Antarctic Expedition (2001)

Shackleton does manage some spectacular feats against dire odds, which is why the story of his expedition is so tailor-made as dramatic spectacle.


By Brakhage: An Anthology - PopMatters Film Review )

If we call Stan Brakhage's films 'experimental,' it's because no other filmic term fits his style.


Tuesday, September 9 2003

Nobody’s Fool (1994)

Paul Newman plays Donald 'Sully' Sullivan, a shiftless 60-year-old forever dodging his responsibilities.


Lost in La Mancha (2002)

What will most surely whet fans' appetites are the DVD's two 50-minute interviews with Terry Gilliam.


Identity (2003)

As James Mangold neatly puts it, these characters are running along 'a kind of Möbius strip of hell.'"


Double Vision (Shuang Tong) (2002)

Shows how the struggle to see and know is an increasingly complex and global one.


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