Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Short Takes Vol 3


Mon 9/4

Syriana: A movie for our times. Tom Clancey meets Kevin Phillips. The Crash of oil politics. Say what you will about the politics of the people who made this movie, they are closer to the mark then we might wish they were. If that's still not enough for you, there is a scene where George Clooney has his finger nails removed by pliers (who says he dosn't understand the wants of conservative audiances).

Wed 9/6

Casino Royale: Charles K. Feldman produced satire of James Bond movies, taken very losely from Ian Flemings first 007 novel. Four directors, an all star cast, and lots of cameos, this movie is an inchoherent mess. For a better a film from the same year that covers similar territory see In Like Flint. However the Herb Alpert themed title sequence is not to be missed. DVD also contians the first screen presentation of the James Bond character, a 1954 episode of the anthology series Climax, staring Barry Nelson as an American James Bond, and Peter Lorre as Le Chiffre.

Fri 9/8

The Big Heat: I chose this Fritz Lang directed Noir as my film to view in memory of the recent death of Glenn Ford. Ford plays a police detective investigating the suicide of a fellow officer, what he finds conncets the dead cop to rampent corruption in their unnamed city. When Ford's officer Bannion gets too close, the syndicate controling the city has his wife Katie (played Jocelyn Brando, Marlon's sister) killed. Of course this only serves to make Bannion more deteremed. This strong little film also features Gloria Grahame and a young Lee Marvin.

Sun 9/10

Rated R: Republicans in Hollywood: 2004 AMC produced documentary (filmed during the 2003 California recall election) about the Republican minority in the entertainment buisness. One of the films central questions is if GOP affiliation is a liability in the industry, something which the films talking heads (all Repulicans or their sympathisers) disagree on. B-list Republicans featured in this doc include Patricia Heation, Pat Sajak, Drew Carey and Ben Stein.

Teus 9/12

The Second Civil War: I had wanted to see this HBO produced satire since I first heard about it, shortly before its television debut in 1997. The plot concerns an Idaho governor (Emmy winner Beau Bridges) who closes his states border after the nation is inendated with refuges from various crises across the globe. Phil Hartman is the indecisive President who lets the crises get out of control, perpetuating the nations slide into a second civil war (hence the title). The film boasts a cast of noteables including James Earl Jones, James Coburn and Denis Leary. While not succesfull on a number of levels, this movie does succeed (as well as seced) in making the viewer more then a little peved about the devisive tendences present in America today. I would however have a hard time recomending this film, though it is better then its cinematic cousin Canadian Bacon.

West Wing: Season 2: Finished the second season of one of my all time favorite shows. Because of my mission I was not able to get into this series until mid-way through season 3, so I've been doing some catching up over the past few years. What else can I say about the program other then its just increadably written and acted. Season 2 was Emily Procters year on the show, as well as the year that Bartlet reveled his MS to the public.


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