Friday, October 31, 2008


Halloween is here, and I hit my goal for one horror movie a week for October. Go me!

In addition to those reviews, here are some other movies I was able to scare up reviews for in the past month:


* Ashes of Time Redux, the restoration of Wong Kar-Wai's martial artist stunner. I was very excited to see this, as you will likely read!

* Blindness, a take on the post-apocalyptic genre where a disease strikes people like Mark Ruffalo and Gael Garcia Bernal blind, while leaving Julianne Moore with her sight so she can be Queen. I'm still torn on this film, and was almost going to rate it at "Rent It" right up until posting time. I am still struggling with whether or not its doldrums overpower the good bits or vice versa.

* Happy-Go-Lucky, the new Mike Leigh dramedy with a stellar performance from Sally Hawkins as the eternal clown.

* Let the Right One In, a Swedish vampire film that really gives the genre a whole new lease on its undead life.

* Rachel Getting Married, Jonathan Demme's unbalanced movie about family nearly stifles great turns from Anne Hathaway and Rosemarie DeWitt as sisters trying to deal with their past as they move into the future.

* W., Oliver Stone's perplexing biopic of George W. Bush.

* What Just Happened, a Hollywood tell-all that tells nothing, despite some good work from Robert DeNiro. Based on a book by Art Linson, the story has been defanged beyond recognition.


* Chaplin: 15th Anniversary Edition, the flawed biopic stays memorable thanks to Robert Downey, Jr.

* Flight of the Red Balloon, wherein one of my favorite contemporary filmmakers, Hou Hsiao Hsien, pays tribute to one of my favorite children's films.

* Ludwig, the gigantic Luchino Visconti biography of the mad king of Bavaria. This took a while to get through, which is why I slowed down some. (Plus, I have some big sets I am starting, too.)

* Mondays in the Sun, a Javier Bardem vehicle about men struggling with unemployment in Spain. A surprisingly meaningful drama with good characters and a balance of humor.

* The Picture of Dorian Gray, the chilled 1940s adaptation of the Oscar Wilde classic. Directed by Albert Lewin.

* Six in Paris, an anthology of French New Wave directors tackling different neighborhoods in the City of Light. Produced by Barbet Schroeder, and featuring segments by Rohmer, Chabrol, and Godard.

* Touch of Evil: 50th Anniversary Edition, a two-disc examination of Orson Welles' troubled noir classic.

* The Unforeseen, a dreamy, soulful documentary about urban sprawl and its effect on Austin, Texas. Co-produced by Robert Redford and Terrence Malick.

* Warner Home Video Western Classics Collection, collecting six cowboy movies from the Warner Bros. vaults, only two of which--the Rod Serling-penned Saddle the Wind and the Gregory Peck-vehicle The Stalking Moon--are really worth it. Also features Anthony Mann's Cimarron, William Holden in Escape from Fort Bravo, and Richard Widmark as another charismatic bad guy in The Law & Jake Wade.

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