Celluloid Junkie - 4355 Rankings
Member Since: Apr 3, 2006
Location: Tel Aviv, Israel
Bio: I'm a writer. I lean towards arthouse cinema, realism and old Italian stuff, and some guilty pleasures include horror, kung fu, and anything strange and unusual. Favorite filmmakers include (in no particular order): Jacques Rozier, Mario Monicelli, Maurice Pialat, Emir Kusturica, R.W. Fassbinder, Asghar Farhadi, C.T. Dreyer, Antonio Pietrangeli, Dino Risi, Werner Herzog, Lina Wertmüller, Luchino Visconti, Claude Chabrol, Nicolas Roeg, Sidney Lumet, Satyajit Ray, Sam Peckinpah, Sergei Parajanov, John Cassavetes, Michelangelo Antonioni, Lynne Ramsay, Abbas Kiarostami, Woody Allen, Federico Fellini, Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Alan Clarke, Terry Gilliam, Costa-Gavras, Aki Kaurismäki, Jafar Panahi, Douglas Sirk, Ernst Lubitsch, Kaneto Shindo, Jean Renoir, Ermanno Olmi, Cristian Mungiu and Francesco Rosi.
|35 T2||Kafka (1991) - Dec 10, 2010
"Steven Soderbergh sullies the name of Franz Kafka by directing this generic, mostly trite and sometimes laboriously quirky fictional script with the character of the great author as its protagonist. Jeremy Irons is tasked with portraying poor Kafka, Theresa Russell is degraded with the role of the fatalish "girl", and Ian Holm's talent is wasted playing a Bond villain. Watch Welles' The Trial or Gilliam's Brazil instead."
|58 T5||Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974) - Oct 16, 2007
"Scorsese's decent attempt at a chick flick succeeds in putting some warts on a family/romantic road movie, but never really takes off beyond that. It gets everything right on a superficial level but doesn't do enough to penetrate the heart. Watch for child actress Jodie Foster in a very tomboyish role."
|83 T10||The Saragossa Manuscript (1965) - Sep 01, 2007
"Don Quixote meets Baron Munchhausen and they spend 1001 Nights together. Based on a novel, a frame-tale nesting many tall tales, sometimes several one within the other, with everything coming together eventually. Has' adaptation is majestic; marvelously directed and played, packed with intrigue and humor, ghosts and witchcraft, foolhardy swordsmen and gorgeous temptresses. The sets are mesmerizing. A rare union of artistic excellence and enthralling fantasy adventure."
|40 T3||Citizen X (1995) - Sep 04, 2009
"The great Donald Sutherland and Max von Sydow, as well as the potentially compelling true case of Andrei Chikatilo (one of the most prolific serial killers on criminological record), are wasted on a very average made-for-TV production. A tame, thrill-less thriller with mediocre text. Although said to be critical of the USSR's conduct in the case, Citizen X lavishes its protagonists with adulation and omits such crucial facts as the execution of an innocent suspect who confessed under torture."
|83 T10||Salvatore Giuliano (1962) - Aug 31, 2010
"Excellent neorealist film about the MIS, Sicilian separatists stirring up civil conflict after WWII, and the bandit Salvatore Giuliano who was its Emiliano Zapata. I sensed traces of Pepe le Moko here as well as Wajda, but it is most closely akin to the later, better-known and slightly inferior The Battle of Algiers. Probably an inspiration, Salvatore is also a highly polyphonous civil uprising movie. Daringly and cunningly, it avoids featuring its namesake. The main character is only spoken of."
|20 T1||Avatar (2009) - Jan 11, 2010
"The fx here are the cutting edge and a swarm of talented craftsmen must have been hired to design this imaginary world. But true to sci-fi tradition, the actual imagination invested here is next to nil. The future is a slightly embellished present and the alien planet is primitive Earth with cat-eyes and shinier colors. The plot is a rehash of Pocahontas, and the pretty looks are not enough to offset the stench of the ridiculously terrible text (or of the cheesy music)."
|60 T6||Rebel Without a Cause (1955) - Mar 08, 2011
"JD's crowning acting achievement is nicer than most Hollywood melodramas of its day, but the greatness of a Douglas Sirk eludes it because it lays on the psychology too thick. By saying "they called me a chicken. You know daddy, chicken?" James is just naggingly explicating previous subtext, and with gun-totting cops after them it's not the best time to "reveal" to his girl that the younger kid considers them family. Erasing a select third of the script's lines would have really elevated this."
|68 T7||The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957) - Mar 29, 2010
"Col. Nicholson's foolhardy, then complacent orderliness spices up a literate but otherwise ordinary "feel good" war movie script. The comparatively easy conditions in camp, tolerance and leniency shown by Japanese captors toward unruly captives are an affront to history. Actual slaving by the Japanese was atrocious. Lean (the producers' umpteenth choice to direct, with Ford, Hawks, Zinneman, Wyler etc. unattainable) and the good cast made this movie far better than it should have been."
|35 T2||Raid on Entebbe (1976) - Dec 26, 2009
"It's a bad movie, glaringly unrealistic and unresearched. It was made to capitalize on what was, at the time, American delight in and fascination with the very risky but luckily successful Israeli operation to rescue hostages from the clutches of Palestinian terrorists aided by Idi Amin. It interested me as an Israeli for historical reasons, but apart from a very nice impression of Amin by Yaphet Kotto, I doubt that modern international viewers would find much value in this."
|60 T6||Carnage (2011) - May 02, 2012
"It's evident from the start that Carnage is intelligently written. There's realism in the dialogue, with a few hilarious moments. Its quest to gradually step up the carnage then grows more and more labored, ultimately overwrought. It seems to be a rehash of "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?", superior to the source but still not great. Despite the best efforts of the script, its strongest points are the performances and cinematography."