Showing posts from September, 2016

LA Confidential

LA Confidential is a 1997 crime film directed and witten by Curtis Hanson and was co-written by Brian Helgeland. Based on the book of the same name by James Ellroy, it has become one of the most beloved and critically acclaimed films of modern cinema, winning two Oscars at the 1998 Academy Awards.


Taking place in 1950's Hollywood, the set-up finds a group of three cops trying to solve a mass murder that gives way to a larger conspiracy. That's the condensed version of a complex plot.

While the story gets rolling once we're in the main mystery it takes awhile to get off the ground. There's a lot of time dedicated to character set-up, probably more than necessary. It definitely requires at least a second viewing because of a few scenes that are necessary build-up, but originally come off as filler.

The mystery is just ok, mostly because it's difficult to follow and the payoff isn't that strong. Even though the who done it is a good twist you can see it comin…

The Deer Hunter Review

The Deer Hunter is a 1979 Vietnam anti-war drama directed by Michael Cimino and written by Cimino/Deric Washburn/Louis Garfinkle/Quinn K. Redeker. It has garnered a reputation as one of the greatest movies of all time, earning 5 Oscars and being preserved in the Library of Congress.
The movie follows a soldier named Michael (Robert De Niro) before, during and after his military service in the Vietnam War. During these times, we also see the relationships with his friends and how they change over time.
The film's themes boil down to every message the media has crammed down our throats since Vietnam itself; America sucks, Vietnam was unjustified, war is bad. I'm not saying they're completely wrong, I'm saying we've heard it a lot and it does get tedious after awhile.
The film makes sure that you not only care about these characters, but also that you feel their struggle and journey. You feel the happiness of a wedding, the chaos of Vietnam and the isolation of c…

My Pitch for a Better Season 4 of Arrow

Note: This version of season 4 ofArrow carries over consequences of events that happened in my version of season 3. Please read that before this.
Oliver wakes up in a hospital bed, his head wrapped in bandages. Detective Lance is sitting next to him. He promises Oliver that nobody ever found out. Oliver thanks him as he leaves. The doctor and nurse come in a remove Oliver's bandages, revealing burn marks on almost half of his face. Later, Diggle and Felicity rush in and ask him what happened. He describes the fight on the rooftop and what the Red Hood said about Ra's al Ghul. That can't be right, though, because Ra's has been dead for years.
Oliver wants to find out what's going on, but his loved ones force him to stay put. We have a quiet moment between Felicity and Oliver as they ask each other if they're ok. Felicity seems much more distraught, however, and Oliver holds her f…

Chaplin Review

Chaplin is a 1992 bio-drama written by William Boyd/William Goldman/Bryan Forbes and directed by Richard Attenborough. The film stars Robert Downey Jr. as Charlie Chaplin and it tells the story of the performer's life.


The story is good, however, it suffers from the same problems that every other post-Lincoln biographical picture had: they tried to tell the story of Chaplin's entire life. Bios that try this often end up the same way: pointless. The reason Lincoln worked so well is that it told a single story of Lincoln's life: him trying to pass the 16th Amendment. With Chaplin, you get a very broad sense of his whole life and so the movie isn't really about anything. It's just scenes cut together one after the other to show Charlie Chaplin's life. That's never worked for a movie, that's supposed to have a point, and it doesn't work here.

The screenplay is alright, but much of it doesn't stand out. However, a lot of the jokes they add are f…