Saturday, December 29, 2012

Film Quote of the Day

Mr. Braddock: Ben, this whole idea sounds pretty half-baked. 
Benjamin: Oh, it's not. It's completely baked.

- The Graduate, 1967

Monday, December 24, 2012

Character Duo Spotlight: Harry and Marv

Harry Lyme and Marv Merchants are known as the "Wet Bandits" because of their calling card for always leaving the water running after robbing a house. Around the holidays when burglaries most often occur, Harry poses as a police officer to check out the security of a suburban neighborhood to make sure they are taking the proper precautions, when really he and his partner plan to rob them when they're away on vacation. But the two bumbling bandits don't count on an eight-year old mistakenly being left behind and will stop at nothing to defend his home. Played by Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern in the 1990 family comedy Home Alone and its 1992 sequel Home Alone 2: Lost in New York.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Melancholia (2011)

Newlyweds Justine and Michael have their wedding reception party at her sister Claire and her husband John's lavish mansion, however there is trouble brewing in paradise between families which puts a strain on Justine, making her wonder if she'll ever really be happy. Meanwhile a planet called Melancholia is slowly approaching the earth, supposedly referred to as a "fly-by", that may or may not pass by without impact. The visual effects are stunning, as well as the extraordinary musical score in this tense family drama. Starring Kirsten Dunst, Alexander Skarsgard, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Kiefer Sutherland, Stellan Skarsgard, John Hurt 7/10 Rated R

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Film Quote of the Day

Danny Vinyard: So I guess this is where I tell you what I learned - my conclusion, right? Well, my conclusion is: Hate is baggage. Life's too short to be pissed off all the time. It's just not worth it.

-American History X, 1998

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Character Spotlight: John McClane

John McClane is a tough, crude, wise-cracking, chain-smoking New York City cop whose been on the force for many years. This has greatly effected his personal life so much so that his marriage to his wife Holly is dwindling. John always seems to find himself at the wrong place at the wrong time, and being the good guy that he is he reluctantly steps in where there's trouble because no one else will. This is what makes him someone we will most always root for because of his relentless efforts to not give up and get the job done by whatever means necessary. Played by Bruce Willis in four of the Die Hard films, John McClane is one of our great heroes in cinema that everyone would want to be there in a life and death situation. 

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Film Quote of the Day

Shooter McGavin: Just stay out of my way... or you'll pay! Listen to what I say! 
Happy Gilmore: Hey, why don't I just go eat some hay, make things out of clay, lay by the bay? I just may! What'd ya say? 

-Happy Gilmore, 1996

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Panic Room (2002)

Foster plays Meg Altman, recently divorced who moves into a fancy brownstone in New York City with her eleven year old daughter Sarah. Previously owned by a millionaire, the house has a panic room so in case of intruders, they are safe in that room. Lo and behold three burglars show up on the day they move in, to steal three million dollars in bearer bonds. After Meg discovers from the security cameras that they're in the house, she and her daughter run into the panic room, not knowing that the money is hidden in there with them. A white knuckle thriller that'll keep you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end. Easily one of Foster's best films. Starring Jodie Foster, Jared Leto, Forest Whitaker, Kristen Stewart, Dwight Yoakam, Patrick Bauchau 8/10 Rated R

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Film Quote of the Day

Hedley Lamarr: My mind is aglow with whirling, transient nodes of thought careening through a cosmic vapor of invention.
Taggart:  Ditto.
Hedley Lamarr: "Ditto?" "Ditto," you provincial putz?!

-Blazing Saddles, 1974

Friday, November 23, 2012

Top Ten Guilty Pleasures

Have you ever seen a movie that was deemed a bomb, yet you couldn't help but watch it over and over? Despite terrible dialogue, corny cliched moments and bad acting? We all have a few. These are my top ten guilty pleasures.

10. Sin - 2003
Starring: Gary Oldman, Ving Rhames, Barry Cox
The Premise: A cripple ex-cop seeks vengeance after his drug-addicted sister is brutally raped.
Why I watch it: If it wasn't for Oldman and Rhames I wouldn't bother to stomach this cliched editing mess that has no plot and horrible writing.

9. Pee Wee's Big Adventure - 1985
Starring: Paul Ruebens, Elizabeth Daily, Mark Holton
The Premise: After his beloved bicycle is stolen, man-child Pee-Wee goes on a big adventure to find it.
Why I watch it: Okay so it's a lame story and the main character is immature, but it makes you laugh. And it's Tim Burton, 'nuff said.
8. Ernest Saves Christmas - 1988
Starring: Jim Varney, Douglas Seale, Oliver Clark
The Premise: A goofy cab driver tries to help Santa Claus find a replacement before Christmas Eve.
Why I watch it: It's Ernest! He's zany, he's wacky, he's hilarious and he's going to help out Jolly Old Saint Nick! 

7. UHF - 1989
Starring: Weird Al Yankovic, Kevin McCarthy, Michael Richards
The Premise: Daydreamer George can't keep a job until his uncle lets him in charge of a dying UHF television station.
Why I watch it: Seeing Weird Al spoofing on Indiana Jones and Rambo is enough to sit through this outrageously silly comedy.

6. Supergirl - 1984
Starring: Helen Slater, Faye Dunaway, Peter O'Toole 
The Premise: Superman's cousin arrives on Earth seeking the power source to save her city, while an evil woman named Selena wants to rule the world.
Why I watch it: A good cast for one, and the effects aren't bad, plus Dunaway makes such a great villainess.


 5. Conan the Barbarian - 1982
Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, James Earl Jones, Sandahl Bergman
The Premise: A warrior of great strength wants revenge after an evil warlord murders his family and village. 
Why I watch it: Arnold may not be the greatest of actors, but this adventure story is epic, with awesome music and cinematography.


 4. Conan the Destroyer - 1984
Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Wilt Chamberlain, Sarah Douglas
The Premise: Conan the great warrior is asked to bring a young girl on a perilous journey to find a key that will fulfill her destiny.
Why I watch it: Yeah it's a lame sequel with some really stupid moments, particularly a one-horned monster at the finale, and it's extremely campy but in a fun way.


3. Howard the Duck - 1986
Starring: Lea Thompson, Tim Robbins, Jeffrey Jones
The Premise: A walking, talking duck is transported to Earth to save the planet from evil dark overlords while wooing a girl in a punk rock band.

Why I watch it: It's lighthearted with good special effects and a lot of duck puns, despite the strange relationship between Howard and human Beverly.

 2. Masters of the Universe - 1987
Starring: Dolph Lundgren, Frank Langella, Courteney Cox
The Premise: A warrior and his friends try to find a cosmic key so they can save their city from the evil Skeletor.

Why I watch it: Again another cheesy film, but a lot of fun. Skeletor is such a devilish villain who loves dramatic turns and overlong speeches.


1. The Pirate Movie - 1982
Starring: Kristy McNichol, Christopher Atkins, Ted Hamiltion
The Premise: An ex-pirate falls in love with the major general's daughter, but she can't marry until her older sisters do.

Why I watch it: Tacky songs, corny jokes and lots of sexual innuendo, this spoof of the Pirates of Penzance has such catchy music it's guaranteed to put you in a good mood.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Film Quote of the Day

Marty McFly: Hey, Doc, we better back up. We don't have enough road to get up to 88. 
Dr. Emmett Brown: Roads? Where we're going, we don't need roads

-Back to the Future, 1985

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Character Spotlight: Lex Luthor

Deeming himself, "The greatest criminal mind of our time", Alexander Luthor (nicknamed Lex) resides in his secret lair two-hundred feet below ground level in the city of Metropolis, along with his girlfriend Eve Teschmacher and bumbling sidekick Otis. After finding about the invincible being called Superman, Lex and his two loyal followers devise an evil plan to destroy Superman and everything good that he stands for. Lex Luthor has been played by Kevin Spacey in the 2006 film Superman Returns, as well as Michael Rosenbaum in the television series Smallville, but for me there is none that's more memorable than Gene Hackman's performance in the 1978 film Superman the Movie. He is evil yes, but in a comedic way that despite being the villain you can't help but find him like-able.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Blob (1988)

In the small town of Arborville, California, a meteor crash lands in the woods. An old man discovers the meteor rock and inside is a gooey, jelly-like substance, which attaches itself to his hand and ends up killing him. Unsure what it is or where it came from, this bizarre life form is growing in size as it starts killing the townspeople, while teens Brian Flagg and Meg Penny try to stop it. Remake of the 1958 film starring Steve McQueen has some scary special effects, is well paced, and in my opinion is a lot more entertaining than the original. Starring Kevin Dillon, Shawnee Smith, Donovan Leitch, Jeffrey DeMunn, Candy Clark, Joe Seneca, Ricky Paull Goldin 7/10 Rated R

Monday, October 29, 2012

Film Quote of the Day

Robbie: I don't even know your last name. 
Glenn: It's Guglia. 
Robbie: Guglia? Oh, so Julia's last name's gonna be Guglia. Julia Guglia! That's funny! 
Glenn: Why is that funny? 
Robbie: I - don't know. 

-The Wedding Singer, 1998

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close (2011)

After his father dies in the World Trade Center on 9/11, eleven year old Oskar Schell finds a key in an envelope that had once belonged to his father. Soon after his discovery, he sets out on an arduous adventure through the city to find whatever it unlocks, hoping that somehow it can get him closer to his father. Extremely moving and incredibly heartbreaking story of an amazingly smart young boy coming to terms with grief. Starring Tom Hanks, Sandra Bullock, Thomas Horn, Viola Davis, John Goodman, Jeffrey Wright, Max von Sydow 7/10 Rated PG-13

Monday, October 22, 2012

Character Spotlight: Edward Scissorhands

Amid rows of pastel houses and perfectly trimmed lawns, stands a huge dark castle on top a hill. And in that house lives a very extraordinary creature named Edward. Isolated from people, Edward isn't like normal humans because he has sharp scissors for hands, making simple everyday tasks rather difficult. Unfortunately the inventor who had made him died before he got the chance to give Edward hands. But despite his unusual outward appearance, Edward is sweet and kind. He also had a wonderful talent of trimming hair and making shapes out of hedges. He is played by Johnny Depp in the 1990 fantasy film Edward Scissorhands.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Dazed and Confused (1993)

It's the last day of school at Lee High School, Austin, Texas, 1976. The senior students are doing degrading initiation rituals on the new freshman, and later that night planning to cruise around and have one wild party consisting of drinking, getting laid and stoned. Hilarious coming-of-age film with an awesome ensemble cast and a kick ass soundtrack; think the American Graffiti of the 70's. Starring Jason London, Rory Cochrane, Sasha Jenson, Wiley Wiggins, Michelle Burke, Matthew McConaughey, Adam Goldberg, Anthony Rapp, Marissa Ribisi, Shawn Andrews, Cole Hauser, Milla Jovovich, Joey Lauren Adams, Ben Affleck, Parker Posey 7/10 Rated R

Monday, October 8, 2012

Film Quote of the Day

Andie: You know you're talking like that just because I'm going out with Blane.
Duckie: Blane? His name is Blane?! Oh! That's a major appliance, that's not a name!

- Pretty in Pink, 1986

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Showgirls (1995)

Nomi Malone is on her way to Vegas to be a dancer, where she meets a girl named Molly Abrams, who becomes her friend and roommate. Molly is a costume designer at the Stardust Casino, while Nomi is a stripper in the Cheetah's Topless Club. Molly brings Nomi along to watch the dance show Goddess where she meets the star Cristal Connors. Cristal begins to notice and arranges an audition for Nomi, but James, one of her bouncer friends think she has too much talent to be showgirl. What can you say about this God awful piece of junk? It's degrading, disgusting, the characters are boring, the acting is horrible, and the dialogue is even worse. Despite it being such a box office flop, it has since had a big cult following, but it's bad, really, really bad. Starring Elizabeth Berkley, Kyle MacLachlan, Gina Gershon, Glenn Plummer, Robert Davi 4/10 Rated NC-17

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Film Quote of the Day

Jonathan Harker: She's alive?
Van Helsing: She's Nosferatu.
Jonathan Harker: She's Italian?

- Dracula Dead and Loving It, 1995

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Character Duo Spotlight: Ollie Dee and Stannie Dum

Ollie Dee and Stannie Dum live in a magical place called Toyland, where they work for The Toymaker making toys for the holiday season. They live in a shoe along with Mother Peep, her daughter Bo Peep and several other children. While Ollie is the smarter of the two, Stan is a little slower, but both are good and loyal friends who help out when there is trouble afoot. Trouble being in the form of the nasty and villainous Silas Barnaby, owner of the shoe looking to collect the mortgage. But Ollie and Stannie assure Mother Peep that they'll ask their boss for the money without any trouble, and hilarious hijinks ensue. Played by the wonderful comedy team of Oliver Hardy and Stan Laurel, in the 1934 musical comedy film Babes in Toyland (aka March of the Wooden Soldiers).

Saturday, September 22, 2012

The Deep End of the Ocean (1999)

Beth Cappadora and her family live in Massachusetts. They go traveling to Washington D.C. because she is to attend her high school reunion when her youngest son Ben suddenly disappears in the crowded hotel lobby. There is a worldwide search to find him but are seemingly unsuccessful. Nearly a decade later, the Cappadora's have relocated to Chicago, where Beth just by sheer coincidence thinks she may have found her long lost son. The performances are poignant but as far as story is concerned, it seems a little far-fetched. Based on the best selling novel by Jacquelyn Mitchard. Starring Michelle Pfeiffer, Treat Williams, Jonathan Jackson, Whoopi Goldberg 7/10 Rated PG-13

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Film Quote of the Day

Lone Starr: I still don't understand how I'm going to lift that big statue with this little ring.
Yogurt: Never underestimate the power of the Schwartz!

-Spaceballs, 1987

Sunday, September 16, 2012

The Men Who Stare at Goats (2009)

Bob Wilton is a journalist for the Ann Arbor Daily Telegram. When his wife leaves him for his editor, Bob decides to travel to Kuwait to write about the Iraq War. While there he meets Lyn Cassidy and discovers that he is an agent of a special forces operation in the U.S. New Earth Army, soldiers who claim to have psychic powers by staring at goats and killing them, among other things. Thinking this is a story that should be told, Bob helps Lyn in trying to find the leader who is missing. In all honesty I found this movie both uninteresting and unfunny; but despite the film itself being very bizarre (which was supposedly based on actual events), McGregor and Clooney make a really good pair, as well as the always memorable Bridges and Spacey. Starring Ewan McGregor, George Clooney, Jeff Bridges, Kevin Spacey, Robert Patrick 6/10 Rated R

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Film Quote of the Day

Old King Cole: I'll give 50,000 guineas for the capture of that scoundrel dead or alive.
Stannie Dum: Dead or Alive?
Old King Cole: Dead or Alive!
Stannie Dum: Can't you make up your mind which way you want him?

-Babes in Toyland, 1934

Monday, September 10, 2012

Out of the Comfort Zone

We all have places we're comfortable in; a special chair, a certain room, it's a security blanket. So what if we're taken out of it, by choice or by force to an environment that is entirely different from the norm? These films are just a few of what it is like to be in an unknown world, where we're out of the comfort zone.

1. Jurassic Park - 1993 
A pair of archeologists are summoned to check out a dinosaur themed park and soon after are in a fight for survival against the prehistoric creatures.

2. The Wizard of Oz - 1939
Farm girl Dorothy Gail is caught in a tornado and knocked out, then wakes up to find herself in a world of witches, munchkins and a yellow brick road that leads to a magical city.

3. Jaws - 1975
A city police chief who has a fear of water is duty bound to search the uncharted waters for a killer shark to save a resort community.

4. Witness - 1985
Tough city cop John Book has to temporarily hide out in the rural Amish community in order to protect himself and a witness to a murder he's investigating.

 Can you think of other films that follow this same theme? Don't be afraid to share!

Friday, September 7, 2012

The Witches (1990)

After his parents are killed in an accident, young Luke goes to live with his grandmother in England, telling him tales of witches, how to spot them and how they hate children. They go to spend a holiday at a big and fancy hotel, where Luke discovers that there are witches also staying at the hotel, and that the leader known as the "Grand High Witch" is devising a diabolical plan to get rid of the children of England. A fun and incredibly imaginative story, that once you see it it's sure to become an instant favorite. Based on the children's book by Roald Dahl. Starring Anjelica Huston, Mai Zetterling, Bill Paterson, Brenda Blethyn, Rowan Atkinson, Jasen Fisher 7/10 Rated PG

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Character Spotlight: Dr. Hfuhruhurr

Doctor Michael Hfuhruhurr, whose name is often mispronounced but sounds just as it's spelled, is a brilliant brain surgeon, known for inventing the cranial screw-top to enter the brain. After he has a car accident with a beautiful woman named Dolores Benedict, and operates on her to save her life, he marries her soon after. But he can't help compare her to his first wife Rebecca, whom he keeps a little statue of on his dashboard, and often quotes their favorite poems of John Lillison. However he doesn't realize that his new wife is evil and manipulative, and just out for money. Frustrated and unsatisfied with his marriage, he ends up falling for the one thing he is fascinated and aroused by; a human brain. Played by the hilarious Steve Martin in the 1983 sci-fi comedy The Man with Two Brains, Michael Hfuhruhurr is a character that's a little naive but on the nutty side.

Friday, August 31, 2012

French Kiss (1995)

When Kate finds out that her fiance Charlie has fallen in love with a French Goddess named Juliette, and tells her he's not coming back home, Kate decides to travel all the way to Paris, in spite of her fear of flying to win him back. While on her way there she meets smutty Frenchman Luc Teyssie, a petty thief who smuggles in a stolen diamond necklace and vine cutting so he can use them, and Kate to have his own vineyard. Meg and Kevin have great chemistry in this cute rom-com; and you got to love Kline's hammy French accent. Starring Meg Ryan, Kevin Kline, Timothy Hutton, Jean Reno, Francois Cluzet, Susan Anbeh 7/10 Rated PG-13

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Film Quote of the Day

Hoover: Will you tell those assholes to shut up?
Boon: Hey! Shut up you assholes!

-National Lampoon's Animal House, 1978

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Psycho (1998)

Heche plays Marion Crane, a secretary from Phoenix, Arizona who is supposed to deposit some money for her boss but steals it for her and her boyfriend. Stopping at a motel because of inclement weather, she meets Norman Bates, the owner of the motel. Marion has a change of heart and decides to go back to Phoenix but ends up being murdered. A week after her sudden disappearance, her sister and a private investigator try to find out what happened. Pointless shot-by-shot carbon copy of the 1960 Hitchcock classic; Heche is not believable and Vaughn is ridiculously miscast as Norman Bates. Forget this one ever existed and see the original. Starring Vince Vaughn, Anne Heche, Julianne Moore, William H. Macy, Viggo Mortensen, Rita Wilson, Robert Forster, Philip Baker Hall, Rance Howard 4/10 Rated R

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Film Quote of the Day

Argus Filch: Students out of bed! Students out of bed! Students out of bed!
Minerva McGonagall: They are supposed to be out of bed you blithering idiot!

-Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows Part 2, 2011

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Character Spotlight: Captain Hook

James Hook lives in Never Land, and is the Captain of the pirate ship The Jolly Roger. In addition to being a captain, he spends his time killing Indians and Lost Boys (runaway orphans). His long-time nemesis Peter Pan cut his arm off and fed it to a crocodile, which was replaced with a hook, thus giving him the nickname "Captain Hook". Hell bent on getting his revenge, he uses Peter's children as bait to lure him back to Neverland for a long-awaited battle. Played by Dustin Hoffman in the 1991 Spielberg film Hook, Captain Hook is one of the most recognizable pirates ever, featured in the children's book Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie. Hoffman's portrayal of the ruthless and sleaziest villains of the seven seas is easily a nostalgic favorite.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Change-Up (2011)

David is a stressed-out lawyer who is also married, and a family man. Mitch is a single, care-free, stress-free actor and womanizer. Thinking the other has it made, they make a wish that they had one another's life. The next morning they wake up to shockingly discover that they have switched bodies, but soon find out that other friends' lifestyle isn't at all what they expected. Funny as hell with raunchy humor a plenty; think Freaky Friday for the guys. Starring Ryan Reynolds, Jason Bateman, Leslie Mann, Olivia Wilde, Alan Arkin 7/10 Rated R

Sunday, August 12, 2012

My Top Ten Favorite Movies

I've seen and reviewed many many films, but what are my favorites of all time? It was hard to pick from so many, but here are my top ten favorite movies.

10. Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid - 1969 
Starring: Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Katharine Ross
Why I love this film: Besides being one of the best westerns ever filmed, this telling of the Butch and Sundance "Hole in the Wall" gang who robbed both trains and banks also has a terrific blend of adventure, suspense, action, humor, and of course the appeal of the two main characters. Newman and Redford have such great chemistry and it shows on screen.

9. West Side Story - 1961
Starring: Natalie Wood, Richard Beymer, Russ Tamblyn, George Chakiris, Rita Moreno, Simon Oakland
Why I love this film: Adapted from Shakespeare's love tragedy Romeo and Juliet, this story is centered on Puerto Rican Maria, who falls in love with an American named Tony but are forbidden to be together because of their differences in society, and the two rival gangs of New York City, The Sharks and The Jets. The musical numbers by the legendary Leonard Bernstein are fantastic, and that's why it is one of my favorite musicals ever made.

8. Young Frankenstein - 1974
Starring: Gene Wilder, Marty Feldman, Madeline Kahn, Teri Garr, Peter Boyle, Cloris Leachman, Kenneth Mars
Why I love this film: Dr. Frederick Frankenstein, the descendant of the mad scientist Victor Frankenstein wants nothing to do with his grandfather's work. However after the death of his great grandfather, Frederick inherits his castle in Transylvania where he is drawn to how he recreated life. A parody of one of the most famous monsters in horror, this film by the incomparable Mel Brooks never ceases to make me laugh out loud every time I see it.

7. Amadeus -1984
Starring: F. Murray Abraham, Tom Hulce, Jeffrey Jones, Elizabeth Berridge, Christine Ebersole
Why I love this film: Although it's the story of the life of one of the greatest composers who ever lived, Amadeus is about Mozart's rival composer, Antonio Salieri, who both envies and hates him for being the most famous composer in Vienna, and after attempting suicide he blames himself for Mozart's death. Everything about this film is great; the acting, the writing, the costumes, the sets and of course the music is the cherry on top.

6. Sunset Boulevard - 1950
Starring: Gloria Swanson, William Holden, Nancy Olsen, Erich von Stroheim, Cecil B. DeMille
Why I love this film: Swanson plays Norma Desmond, the aging silent film queen that Hollywood has long since forgotten about to perfection; with the help of an unsuccessful writer to help finish her script, Norma plans to return to the silver screen. I love the dark noirish feel of this film, in addition to the moments of black comedy.

5. Rebel Without a Cause - 1955
Starring: James Dean, Natalie Wood, Sal Mineo, Jim Backus, Ann Doran, Corey Allen, Dennis Hopper
Why I love this film: The film that defined teenage rebellion, Jim Stark is the new kid in town who is misunderstood by his parents, pressured by the local bullies, arrested for drunkenness and becomes friends with classmates Judy and Plato, who also have a difficult family life. What makes this film so memorable are the three lead performances; and their longing for acceptance and friendship.

4. It's a Wonderful Life - 1946
Starring: James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore, Henry Travers, Thomas Mitchell
Why I love this film: Good friend and family man George Bailey is in a terrible dilemma and is so desperate that he considers suicide, until a man claiming to be his guardian angel saves him and shows him what life would be like if he never existed. What makes it so poignant is the fact that George has touched many lives, and in seeing that George realizes his own self-worth.

3. Psycho - 1960
Starring Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles, Martin Balsam, John Gavin, Simon Oakland
Why I love this film: It's Hitchcock, need I say more? A young woman is in her own private trap when she meets loner hotel owner Norman Bates, whose also in a trap because of his confined mother. After she goes missing, her sister and boyfriend try to find out what happened to her. The buildup of suspense in this film is still as brilliant today, as only the master of suspense could do. And of course Bernard Herrmann's famous score of screeching violins can't be beat.

2. Immortal Beloved - 1994
Starring: Gary Oldman, Jeroen Krabbe, Isabella Rossellini, Valeria Golino, Johanna ter Steege
Why I love this film: After Beethoven's death, his secretary Anton Schindler sets out to find the identity of Ludwig's secret lover, known only as the "Immortal Beloved", that is to inherit all his music. The atmosphere of the film and wonderful acting from such a talented cast, particularly Gary Oldman as Beethoven makes this so special; the lavish locales and scenes, all being set to Beethoven's best symphonies is truly unforgettable.

1. The Dark Knight - 2008
Starring: Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Gary Oldman, Michael Caine, Aaron Eckhart, Morgan Freeman, Maggie Gyllenhaal
Why I love this movie: The vigilante known as The Batman has a new villain to fight; The Joker, who lives for anarchy and chaos, not to obtain wealth or power but just because he has so much fun doing it. Along with the new District Attorney Harvey Dent, Batman battles to take him down, while the Joker tries to bring them down to his level. Along with the remarkable performance of the Heath Ledger, one of the most terrifying portrayals of the Joker, the action is like being on one wildly fun and exhilarating roller-coaster ride.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The Dark Knight Rises (2012)

It has been eight years since Harvey Dent's death, and Gotham City has put away more criminals because of the Dent Act. The vigilante known as The Batman has vanished as well as Bruce Wayne, and Wayne Enterprises is on the verge of collapse. A new villain, the massive monster called Bane plans to destroy Gotham while a saucy cat burglar named Selina Kyle plays cat and mouse with Bruce. The effects and stunts in this film are unbelievable, and what makes it so compelling is Bruce Wayne's struggle to choose to return as The Batman or not. Newcomers Gordon-Levitt and Cotillard are terrific, as well as Hathaway who makes an unforgettable heroine and Hardy, who in spite of his face being covered delivers a chilling performance. Starring Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Anne Hathaway, Gary Oldman, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Marion Cotillard, Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman 9/10 Rated PG-13

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Character Spotlight: Oda Mae Brown

Oda Mae lives in New York, New York and owns a small business where she is supposedly a spiritual reader and adviser. But unbeknown to her customers she is just a fake who scams them out of money. However, Oda Mae is shocked to realize that in fact she really has psychic abilities and can hear the voices of the dead, which her mother and grandmother also possessed but she never believed she did. Until a ghost named Sam contacts Oda, telling her he desperately needs her help because his girlfriend is in danger and needs Oda to be the medium. Played by Whoopi Goldberg (in an Oscar-winning performance) in the 1990 romantic drama Ghost, Oda Mae is a unique character with a spunky attitude and an extraordinary gift, who learns that death cannot stop real love.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Horrible Bosses (2011)

Nick, Kurt and Dale are three friends with one thing in common; they all completely hate their bosses and are making their lives a living hell. But quitting is not an option for the guys, so they contemplate, hypothetically what if they were to get rid of them? What if they were to hire a hit-man to kill them? At first hesitant but then thinking about how happier their lives would be without them around, they meet an ex-con who helps them, suggesting to the trio to do the others crimes and make it look like an accident. However being amateurs in planning a caper, it is a lot more complicated then the men soon realize. Totally funny dark comedy; a crazy, non-stop laugh riot with a lot of raunchy humor. Starring Jason Bateman, Charlie Day, Jason Sudeikis, Colin Farrell, Jennifer Aniston, Kevin Spacey, Donald Sutherland, Jamie Foxx 7/10 Rated R

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Character Spotlight: Eric Draven

Eric is a rock musician who's engaged to be married on Halloween, to his girlfriend Shelly Webster. However his life is tragically cut short when he is shot and stabbed the night before their wedding, and his girlfriend is brutally beaten and raped by a gang of lowly thugs. A year later on the same day, Eric is resurrected back from the dead and led by a black crow, to avenge his and Shelly's murder. Painting his eyes black and face white to look like a porcelain harlequin mask, Eric is ready to face his killers. He is played by Brandon Lee in the 1994 American Gothic film The Crow.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Iron Lady (2011)

This is the story of Margaret Thatcher, formerly Margaret Roberts who was a grocer's daughter growing up in Britain. As seen through flashbacks Margaret meets businessman and future husband Denis, is voted on to become a member of Parliament, and despite being in a political world of men runs in the race for British Prime Minister, the first female to ever do so. As shown in the present day, she is haunted by the ghost of her deceased husband. Streep is absolutely incredible, and plays Thatcher with such strong-will and conviction, as a woman who just wanted to make a difference in the world. Starring Meryl Streep, Jim Broadbent, Olivia Colman, Iain Glen, Richard E. Grant, Anthony Head, Michael Maloney, Susan Brown, Nick Dunning, Alexandra Roach 8/10 Rated PG-13

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Character Spotlight: Mary Katherine Gallagher

Mary Katherine Gallagher resides in the little town of Besamee Heights, where she goes to Catholic School and because her parents had died, lives with her grandmother. She is the rewind girl at her local video store, and ever since she was a little girl she'd dream of becoming a superstar so she could get kissed. So when she finds out that her school is having a talent contest, she is most eager to enter it, despite her grandmother's refusal. Played by the hysterically funny comedienne Molly Shannon, Mary Katherine Gallagher was first seen on the sketch comedy and variety show Saturday Night Live and later made her film debut in the 1999 comedy Superstar. In spite of her accident-prone personality, Mary Katherine is an inspirational character, who believes in her dreams so strongly, no matter who or what puts her down which is very admirable.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Crazy, Stupid, Love (2011)

Cal Weaver and his wife Emily are getting a divorce after twenty-five years of marriage. Shocked and humiliated by this, Cal resorts to drinking in bars and going on and on about his wife cheating on him with another man. Until Cal meets Jacob Palmer, a smooth womanizer who transforms him into a confident ladies man. Meanwhile Cal's son Robbie is smitten with the babysitter Jessica but she's in love with Cal. And Hannah, a young law student who's almost sure her boyfriend is planning to propose to her ends up catching Jacob's eye. A crazy, hilarious screwball movie; the acting is great, the story is realistic and not the typically sweet chick-flick. Starring Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, Julianne Moore, Emma Stone, Marisa Tomei, Kevin Bacon 7/10 Rated PG-13


Saturday, July 14, 2012

Character Spotlight: Jack Dawson

A poor young man whose parents had died, Jack is quite the talented sketch artist, traveling to Paris and drawing portraits for ten cents a piece. He thinks he's the luckiest guy in the world when he wins a ticket on Titanic when playing poker. While aboard the ship meets rich debutante Rose Dewitt-Bukater when rescuing her from nearly falling off the luxury liner. He ends up falling in love with her, but their places in society are worlds apart and conflict with their ever- growing affections for each other. Played by Leonardo DiCaprio in the 1997 James Cameron film Titanic, Jack Dawson is a down-on-his luck character who is given a twist of fate, but at the ultimate price.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Top Ten Films About Horses

10. Wild Hearts Can't be Broken - 1991
9. A Day at the Races - 1937
8. Dreamer - 2005
7.  Flicka - 2006
6. Seabiscuit 2003
5. The Horse Whisperer - 1998
4. Black Beauty - 1971
3. Secretariat - 2010
2. War Horse - 2011
1. National Velvet - 1944

Saturday, July 7, 2012

The Scarlet Pimpernel (1982)

It is Paris, 1792, during the Reign of Terror of the French Revolution. A mysterious figure is at large called The Scarlet Pimpernel (named after the red flower used as his insignia) who is helping to  prevent the people of France from being sent to the guillotine. Sir Percy Blakeney is a debonair aristocrat who meets and falls in love with a beautiful theater actress named Marguerite St. Just after he rescues her brother Armand. However Paul Chauvelin, a Frenchman who is also vying for Marguerite, plans to stop The Scarlet Pimpernel, afraid he'll try to restore the monarchy. Anthony Andrews is utterly charming in this interesting television movie, based on the novels The Scarlet Pimpernel and Eldorado by Baroness Orczy. Starring Anthony Andrews, Jane Seymour, Ian McKellen, James Villiers, Malcolm Jamieson 7/10

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Character Spotlight: Martin Brody

Originally from the violent streets of New York City, Martin Brody is a police chief that is relocated to a small coastal island town called Amity. And despite having a terrible case of aqua-phobia, has a house near the water where he lives with his wife Ellen and sons Michael and Sean. So when a killer shark terrorizes the islanders of Amity on Fourth of July weekend, it is Martin's job as chief of police to deal with the situation and solve the problem, even if that means facing his worst fear. Played by Roy Scheider in the 1975 blockbuster hit Jaws, Martin Brody is a good cop and family man, but also gutsy and tough when he needs to be.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Toughest Female Characters in Film

It's not just the men who can get down and dirty when it is necessary. These female characters are all strong-willed, tough-as-nails and when they need to, they can kick some serious butt. Girl Power! That's why they're on my list of the toughest female characters in film.

10: Alabama Whitman
Played by: Patricia Arquette
In the Film: True Romance

9: Marge Gunderson
Played by: Frances McDormand
In the Film: Fargo 

8: Leeloo
Played by: Milla Jovovich
In the Film: The Fifth Element

7. Danielle De Barbarac
Played by: Drew Barrymore
In the Film: Ever After

6. Erin Brockovich
Played by: Julia Roberts
In the Film: Erin Brockovich

5. Valeria
Played by: Sandahl Bergman
In the Film: Conan the Barbarian

4. Guinevere 
Played by: Keira Knightley
In the Film: King Arthur

3. The Bride
Played by: Uma Thurman
In the Film: Kill Bill Volume 1

2. Ellen Ripley
Payed by: Sigourney Weaver
In the Film: Alien

1. Sarah Connor
Played by: Linda Hamilton
In the Film(s): The Terminator and Terminator 2: Judgment Day

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 (2011)

In the eighth and final film of the Harry Potter saga, Harry along with his friends Ron and Hermione continue their search for the Horcruxes of Lord Voldemort to be able to destroy him, but unfortunately Voldemort finds out that the trio are hunting them. Harry realizes that the last of the Horcruxes is inside the Hogwarts Castle, but they need help getting in. However after Severus Snape, the now Headmaster of Hogwarts knows that Harry is back, the inevitable battle between good and evil begins. Many say this is the best of all the Harry Potter films and I must agree; with awesome edge-of-your-seat action, stunning visual effects, and epic battle scenes it is a remarkable conclusion to an unforgettable series. Based on the novel by J.K. Rowling. Starring Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, Ralph Fiennes, Michael Gambon, John Hurt, Jason Isaacs, Gary Oldman, Alan Rickman, Maggie Smith, David Thewlis, Julie Walters 9/10 Rated PG-13

Monday, June 25, 2012

Character Spotlight: Ace Ventura

Ace Ventura resides in Miami, Florida and is a very different type of private investigator; he solves crimes that involve missing or lost pets. To the detectives at the police department he's a joke and constantly laughed at because he isn't considered a real detective. But Ace has keen instincts and is a master of disguise. So when the Miami Dolphins most beloved football mascot is stolen, it's Aces' chance to prove just how good a detective he really is. Played by the talented and funny Jim Carrey in both Ace Ventura: Pet Detective and Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls, Ace is not a character you're likely to forget; from his eccentric, unpredictable behavior to his love of animals he is who you'd want in a sticky situation because he always gets his man, or beast for that matter.

Friday, June 22, 2012

The Beaver (2011)

Walter Black used to be a happy guy; a successful businessman and a good family man. But now is depressed with despair cause his business is declining as is his personal life. His wife Meredith wants him to move out and his oldest son Porter uses notes to write down all of Walter's habits so he won't become like him. After trying and failing at his suicide attempts, Walter finds a hand puppet in the shape of a beaver in the trash. Soon afterward he gives him a voice and personality of his own and through the beaver he starts to turn his life around. An unusual story; daring and surprisingly watchable. Despite what you may think do not judge a book by its cover. Starring Mel Gibson, Jodie Foster, Anton Yelchin, Jennifer Lawrence, Cherry Jones 7/10 Rated PG-13

Monday, June 18, 2012

Top Ten Films of William Holden

1. Sunset Blvd. (1950)
Role Played: Joe Gillis

2. Stalag 17 (1953)
Role Played: Sgt. J.J Sefton

3. The Wild Bunch (1969)
Role Played: Pike Bishop

4. The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957)
Role Played: Shears

5. Network (1976)
Role Played: Max Schumacher

6. Golden Boy (1939)
Role Played: Joe Bonaparte

7. The Towering Inferno (1974)
Role Played: Jim Duncan

8. Love in a Many-Splendored Thing (1955)
Role Played: Mark Elliott

9. Picnic (1955)
Role Played: Hal Carter

10. Sabrina (1954)
Role Played: David Larrabee

Friday, June 15, 2012

Drive (2011)

Ryan Gosling is known as The Driver, a mechanic, movie stunt driver and getaway driver for criminals. He leads a pretty lonely life until he becomes close with his neighbor Irene and her young son Benicio. He also meets Irene's husband, Standard who has returned after being in jail. But Standard still owes money to a gangster and if he doesn't rob a pawn shop he'll come after his family. So Driver agrees to help Standard with the job only if he pays off the debt. Adapted from the James Sallis novel, Drive is a subtle film but on the other side it is explicitly violent film with entertaining chases; think The Man With No Name meets Bullitt. Starring Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan, Bryan Cranston, Christina Hendricks, Ron Perlman, Oscar Isaac, Albert Brooks 7/10 Rated R

Monday, June 11, 2012

Character Duo Spotlight: Wayne and Garth

Wayne Campbell and Garth Algar are the best of buddies who live in Aurora, Illinois. They have their own television show on the local cable access station called "Wayne's World" where they talk about which female stars they like, interviewing local people and playing their guitar. When a big tv executive offers to buy the rights to the show, Wayne is excited about the big money they'll get. However Garth is not so quick to sign the contract, suspicious that maybe the guy is trying to take advantage of them. The fun-loving characters of Wayne and Garth were originally seen on the hit comedy skit show "Saturday Night Live" and are played in their film debut by Mike Myers and Dana Carvey.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Bel Ami (2012)

Paris 1890; Georges Duroy is a poor ex-soldier who has just returned to France, hoping to make his fortune. He meets an old acquaintance from the war named Charles Forestier and is invited to dinner at his home. There Georges meets Madeleine, Charles' wife, Clotilde de Marelle, and Virginie Walters. Soon he finds himself climbing up the social ladder of wealth and power not by getting close to the richest men of Paris, but by seducing their wives. Bel Ami is an erotic and intoxicating film; the three leading ladies are all terrifically played but it is Pattinson who steals the show, so immersed in the role of the desperate money-hungry Georges, he looks like he just stepped out of the 19th century world. Starring Robert Pattinson, Christina Ricci, Uma Thurman, Kristin Scott Thomas, Colm Meaney, Holliday Grainger 7/10 Rated R

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Creepiest Houses in Film

What makes these structures so creepy? Well in addition to their eerie outward appearances, are the unsuspecting horrors that await anyone who dares to enter them. So be warned, and take extreme caution to these creepiest houses in film.

1. Bates Residence - Psycho (1960)

2. Amityville House - The Amityville Horror (1979)

3. The House on Haunted Hill (1959)

4. The Myers House - Halloween (1978)

 5. The Overlook Hotel - The Shining (1980)

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Super 8 (2011)

School is finished for the summer in the town of Lillian, Ohio. Charles Kaznyk enters the local film competition and seeks his friends Joe, Alice, Evan, Cary, Preston and Martin to help him make his low budget zombie movie on his Super 8 camera. They start by filming at the train station one night when they witness a horrendous train wreck. Soon afterward, strange things start to occur; power outages, dogs begin running away, and people start disappearing. After the local authorities overhear air force frequencies, the military begins to invade the small town and turn it upside down. A fun and nostalgic thrill experience, although similar to Cloverfield it still has a lot of heart. Starring Kyle Chandler, Elle Fanning, Joel Courtney, Noah Emmerich, Ryan Lee, Zach Mills, Riley Griffiths, Gabriel Basso 8/10 Rated PG-13

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Top Ten Films of Barbra Stanwyck

1. Double Indemnity - 1944
Role Played - Phyllis Dietrichson

2. Sorry, Wrong Number - 1948
Role Played -Leona Stevenson

3. The Lady Eve - 1941
Role Played - Jean Harrington

4. Golden Boy - 1939
Role Played - Lorna Moon

5. Titanic - 1953
Role Played - Julia Sturges

6. Annie Oakley - 1935
Role Played - Annie Oakley

7. Meet John Doe - 1941
Role Played - Ann Mitchell

8. Ball of Fire - 1941
Role Played - Katherine "Sugarpuss" O'Shea

9. Executive Suite - 1954
Role Played - Julia O. Tredway

10. The Thorn Birds - 1983
Role Played - Mary Carson

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Even Cowgirls Get the Blues (1993)

Sissy Hankshaw was born with abnormally large thumbs and had been hitchhiking since she was a kid. A former model, she travels to New York City to see her friend "The Countess" where she is persuaded to a ranch called the "Rubber Rose" in Oregon, to be featured in an ad for a new feminine hygiene spray. There she meets a bunch of cowgirls and takes a liking to Bonanza Jellybean, their leader. Strangely bizarre film; has some funny moments but is quite awful, and the only memorable performance being by John Hurt. Based on the 1976 Tom Robbins novel. Starring Uma Thurman, Lorraine Bracco, Angie Dickinson, Pat Morita, Keanu Reeves, Rain Phoenix, John Hurt, Crispin Glover, Sean Young, Heather Graham, Roseanne 5/10 Rated R