Showing posts from September, 2015

Recently Rated Movies: Catching Up with Christopher Lee (the actor, not my brother…) Pt. 6

The Resident (2011) Dir: Antti Jokinen TC4P Rating: 5
I know Hilary Swank likes to work, but why The Resident? Isn't there something more noble she could do with her time? Isn't there a stern, hardheaded frontierswoman that needs to be portrayed somewhere? Yeah, I know she started out in the original film version of Buffy, but you just don't think of her in this genre. Not that it is a bad thing to have her in something horror-oriented, but I cannot imagine what would have attracted her to the job except a sizable paycheck. 

The Resident is product, cut and dried. Mostly dried, because it is as rote and numb as a stalker film can be. From its case, to its DVD label, to its trailer, to its DVD menu. Every move telegraphed, every camera angle expected, every emotion cut out with the rest of the cookies. The poster I show at the right has one big head (Swank's), and I chose this one over the other one with two big heads (Swank's and co-star Jeffrey Dean Morgan, who is fai…

Recently Rated Movies: Catching Up with Christopher Lee (the actor, not my brother…) Pt. 5

Glorious 39 (2009) Dir: Stephen Poliakoff TC4P Rating: 6
Without doing much in the way of research, I don't know how far Britain's pro-appeasement movement went to protect their position during the rise of Nazism in Europe, but murdering opposing Parliament members and making them to appear suicides? I suppose if the movement were actually a front to eventually allow Hitler to have his way, then sure, I'd buy it. I'm not sure if that is what Glorious 39 is selling, as the majority of pro-appeasement figures seem to believe, like PM Neville Chamberlain, that such an approach is the only way to keep the Nazis from running roughshod over England. It doesn't seem like the sort of thing to call for the very noticeable and mysterious deaths of leading citizens.

Glorious 39 is about a true loss of innocence, as the idyllic country life of its lead character Anne (known as Glorious to her family, and played appealingly by Romola Garai) comes crashing down when she discovers pr…

Recently Rated Movies: Catching Up with Christopher Lee (the actor, not my brother…) Pt. 4

Safari 3000 (1982) Dir: Harry Hurwitz TC4P Rating: 3
My first true experience with the car racing madness which gripped the entertainment world in the mid-to-late ‘70s was getting to see The Gumball Rally in a school gym. (This is not to discount my youthful love of Wacky Races in any way, but that was a previous iteration of the same madness.) I don’t remember the context of why we were allowed to see the film, but just that it made its way to our school and my friends and I all got a much needed break watching what we thought then was a hilarious film. (Honestly, it could have been The Diary of Anne Frank, and we still would have had a good, riotous time, as long as we got out of class.) I have heard from others in the Anchorage area who were around my age at that time that Rally played at their schools, so perhaps some enterprising exhibitor decided that if the kids weren't going to come to the movie theatre, bring the movie theatre to them. Regardless, Rally brings back memories …

The Best of Bread [Remastered Gluten-Free Edition]

When last we joined our hero [], he was mired in sadness and not just a little bit of outrage at the exorbitant cost of a 24 oz. loaf of Udi’s Gluten Free bread at his local Target store.
As I stated in that post, the cost of the 24 oz. bag over the regular 12 oz. loaf they carried was just a shade under three times as much (for only twice the content). My suggestion was that this smacked of either taking advantage of those Target considered easy targets because of their hipster trendiness or being evil shits for making it insanely expensive for those who have a serious medical need to avoid normal baked goods and use a popular alternative.
My normal mode of operations is to create a personal boycott when such methods arise. I don’t need to drag the rest of the world into my temper tantrum; keep it small and confined to my own actions. And it would be easy for me to just simply not shop at Target anymore. There is nothing that they sell at Target that I cannot find …

Recently Rated Movies: Catching Up with Christopher Lee (the actor AND my brother…) Pt. 3

Here is another round of capsule reviews for several of the Christopher Lee films I have been pounding down for the last couple of weeks. 
An interesting note: While I was in the midst of finishing up the first segment of this series, I received a phone call from my youngest brother, whose first and middle names are also Christopher Lee. I had titled this series "Catching Up with..." and then appended the title with "(the actor, not my brother)," but now I had literally caught up with A Christopher Lee. 

Yes, I didn't post the first two parts of this series until after I talked to him, but I decided to keep things in the order in which they were created, and that includes changing the title this time to reflect that very necessary contact. Regardless, it was so good to hear from him after over a year of radio silence, and I won't allow time to pass like that again.
And now, more capsule reviews of some smaller C. Lee flicks, and I must say that it is a very di…

Donald J. Trump Revealed to Actually Be a Cartoon Character?

I'm not stating this as a certainty. I just think there is a slight chance that Donald J. Trump might actually be a cartoon character, due to his middle initial being "J".


Abraham J. SimpsonBartholomew J. SimpsonBullwinkle J. MooseElmer J. FuddHomer J. SimpsonHubert J. FarnsworthMarge J. SimpsonMichigan J. FrogPhilip J. FryPhineas J. WhoopeeRocket J. SquirrelSheldon J. PlanktonSimple J. MalarkeyStimpson J. Cat
Yes, Trump has an actual middle name (John), and only a few of these cartoon characters also have middle names. However, that doesn't erase the fact that he acts far more cartoonish than some of these characters. And anyone falling for his bullshit is clearly living a rich fantasy life (though not nearly as rich as Donald J. Trump).

In the United States Constitution, Article II, Section 1, Clause 5, it reads:

"No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible…

Recently Rated Movies: Catching Up with Christopher Lee (the actor, not my brother…) Pt. 2

Of the Christopher Lee films I have seen to this point, the one area in which I hardly need delve are his most famous and popular roles. It has been decades since I first saw his Hammer Draculas and his turn as Frankenstein’s Monster, his villainous appearances in Bond and Three Musketeers films, and his Fu Manchu series countless times, and every role is etched in my memory. His later appearances in major modern epic series (LOTR, Star Wars) are also to be counted in this group, even if I hold little fondness for the last three Star Wars entries. I have also seen many of his supporting roles in films such as Serial (1980, of which I am still fond), a variety of turns alongside his old chum Peter Cushing in non-Hammer horror flicks, and his odd cameo in The Magic Christian (as a vampire waiter on an ocean liner). 

The point is that I am already well-versed in his major roles. In reviewing his oeuvre over the past couple of weeks and recalling his movies that I have actually seen to thi…

Recently Rated Movies: Catching Up with Christopher Lee (the actor, not my brother…) Pt. 1

In resurrecting many of the old regular columns on this blog, my favorite was often Recently Rated Movies, wherein I would shorthand my usual long-winded blathering and comment oh so very briefly on a series of films I had recently seen and rated on IMDb. To begin this column regularly again, I am tying it into a project in which I have been engaged for the past three weeks. I have been employing the Charts function on Flickchart to create lists that show me which films of one of my favorite actors I have yet to see. Because I have watched so many films overall (11,000+), for there to be films for someone like, say, Boris Karloff, they would either have to be films I have intentionally putting off for one reason or another, films that were harder to find in the past, or simply something I had little interest in viewing.
I began the project with Bela Lugosi, and quickly knocked out eleven of his films in short order (luckily most of them are barely over an hour long), including the infa…