Far and Away (1992)

Another Slap Here is another film in the tradition of “The Quiet Man:” Irish as hard drinkin hard fightin dopes downyou luvem. Once again, the hero is a fighter with a pure heart who the fight-addicted crowds love. Once again, the fiery redhead needs to be won with land as a matter of her dowry.… Continue reading Far and Away (1992)

Family Guy (1999- )

Formulas It all started with “The Flintstones”, I suppose. In its time, it was novel. Since then we’ve had a number of versions of the dumb dad cartoon. This one was recommended to me by a reader because it is edgier than the others. Here’s the formula we have to all these: “Simpsons,” “South Park,”… Continue reading Family Guy (1999- )

Audition (1999)

Simple Folding of a Love Story People forget that ‘Casablanca’ was a B-movie, made quickly and cheaply. Its success depended on its unimportance — several modern trends were being followed by the various artists involved and they had the freedom to go a little further than they could on important films. As with that, so… Continue reading Audition (1999)

Indochine (1992)

Communism as Theater Nothing has the same flavour of sadness as a film gone awry, especially a film with weight. And this has weight at least from its aspirations and budget — even more from the much delayed European examination into their colonial crimes. There’s some lovely photography here, but none of it is cinematic.… Continue reading Indochine (1992)

Zero Effect (1998)

Son of What There are only a few ways into a story. One of these is to embrace the narrator and carry the viewer through their eyes and the engagement of the world that gives us love. Here, Kasdan does this while referencing Holmes, where this notion of detached observation originates. There’s an elegant purity… Continue reading Zero Effect (1998)

Impromptu (1991)

Fluid, Woven Passion Sometimes you just like a movie. I admit I was prepared to like this. It features Chopin, and he is a large part of my musical world. His stuff really is magical, but only when flowing through a rich vessel. The things he wrote when he was with Sands are a touchstone… Continue reading Impromptu (1991)

First Strike (1996)

Step by Step Watching Jackie movies is sometimes a real challenge, especially the English language ones. This barely qualifies as English, but is the best one. What he does with ordinary objects is absolutely amazing. There’s a classic ladder bit here. Ignore the plot — standard filler. Posted in 2004 Ted’s Evaluation — 3 of… Continue reading First Strike (1996)

JFK (1991)

Conspiracy of the Simple I have my own theory about film. There is always an explicit acknowledgement that what you are seeing is a film, distinct from reality. Many films incorporate that recognition into their being; the simple ones are just films about films and filmmaking, but there are other sophisticated ways of self-reference. It… Continue reading JFK (1991)