Home / Tag: Film reviews
03.24.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By David Luhrssen
Although Italian director Luchino Visconti was a pioneer of the grungy, grit-and-all filmmaking style called neorealism, he also loved all things grand and operatic. His final film, L�Innocente (1976), was in the latter mode, a costume drama in the high style of �70s art house film. It�s out now on DVD. Based on the novel by early 20th century author-adventurer Gabriele D�Annunzio, L�In...
03.21.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By David Luhrssen
Peter Bogdanovich was part of a generation of 1960s film critics who brought serious analysis to the products of old Hollywood. Soon enough he became a filmmaker, and although he felt at odds with the early �70s generation of Hollywood mavericks, he made some of the decade�s great movies with The Last Picture Show (1971) and Paper Moon (1973). The last years have not been busy for Bogdano...
02.01.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By David Luhrssen
I have been a good sport about the 2008 feature film adaptation of Brideshead Revisited, both when it came to theaters last summer and to DVD last month. But now someone was nice enough to send me �Brideshead Revisited: 25th Anniversary Collector�s Edition,� a DVD set of the 11-episode British television adaptation from 1982 (which I hadn�t seen in years) plus interesting bonus features. I stand...
01.21.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By David Luhrssen
The strength of Shakespeare comes from the evocative power of his language and his profound insight into human nature. One sign of that strength is the survival of his work, not only in elite settings but in popular culture. Another is the ability of his plays to be reset, restaged and reimagined. One startlingly good reimagination of the Great Bard is director Alexander Fodor�s adaptatio...
01.18.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By David Luhrssen
Evelyn Waugh�s meditation on faith and its absence, and the varieties of love and desire, found a new audience in the 1980s through a British television production of Brideshead Revisited. Readers of Waugh�s novel and fans of the lengthy miniseries will find some of their favorite bits missing from the 2008 film adaptation, out now on DVD. British director Julian Jarrold can be commended, howeve...
01.11.2009 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By David Luhrssen
Was Alex Proyas� 1998 film Dark City a forerunner to the Warchowski brothers�1999 hit The Matrix? For me, the connections never clicked until seeing Dark City on DVD. In Proyas� movie spinning blades (not bullets) are stopped in mid flight by mental force. Our hero is menaced by a seemingly endless legion of virtually identical foes�not Agent Smith replicants but beings called the Strangers, pal...
Tuesday, Jan. 6, 2009

Frost versus Nixon

The American political drama that began in the upheaval of the 1960s reached its climax with the Watergate scandal and ended in 1974 with the resignation of Richard Nixon. An epilogue was added to the story when Nixon emerged from seclusion in 1977 for an interview with British TV talk-show host David Frost. Nixon thought it would be softball, but Frost wound up pitching a harder game than anyone expected...
11.29.2008 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By David Luhrssen
Hungary, 1913: Dr. Josef Brenner is a famous novelist whose day job in psychiatry has drained his creativity, leaving him incapable of forming a story. But his patient, Gizella, can�t stop writing, covering sheets of paper and the walls of her cell with spidery script detailing her on and off demonic possession. She describes the Evil One entering her like �electricity endowed with some sort of ...
11.27.2008 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By David Luhrssen
Middle aged, pious and retiring, Muharrem leads a quiet life in an old neighborhood in the ancient crossroads city of Istanbul. He�s an office clerk, says his daily prayers as a devout Muslim and attends the ecstatic worship of the dervishes at a nearby religious foundation. When the sheikh of that order invites Muharrem to work for him as manager of the foundation�s extensive commercial and r...
11.01.2008 | | Posted at 12:00 AM
By David Luhrssen
Angelina Jolie has climbed a long way up from her days as a Tomb Raider. Nowadays her roles usually demand acting. In Changeling, she plays Christine Collins, a mother whose panic quietly overtakes her denial when her nine-year old son doesn�t run to greet her when she comes home. Her face registers the gathering unease as she calls out his name, going room by empty room before the realization...

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