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Criticker Zealot - 5164 Film Ratings

Member Since: Apr 3, 2006

Location: Tel Aviv, Israel

Age: 43

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, Radu Jude, 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.
more Featured Reviews
70 74% China Girl (1987) - Sep 23, 2010
"A simplified but not overly simplistic picture of violent conflict between Italian and Chinese youth along an international border in the form of lower Manhattan's Canal st. Another interesting divide represented is that between seedy but pacifistic adult bosses in both Chinatown and Little Italy, and their own unruly youth whose warmongering they can't control. An interracial love story is the backbone of the script. China Girl is the first of several Ferraras exhibiting resemlance to De Palma."
75 84% Brain Dead (1990) - Aug 14, 2007
"Brain Dead is a strange and unusual horror movie. Sometimes it's a bit campy, other times it's seriously artistic, and constantly it keeps you on the edge of your seat, wondering what will happen next. Pullman and Paxton are fabulous."
20 9% Pocahontas (1995) - Aug 24, 2009
"Everything that's wrong with Disney is on display here. Whatever charm it had in days of yore is nowhere to be found, only the clichés, the childish songs and the daft pandering to the lowest common denominator."
65 65% The Thief of Bagdad (1940) - Mar 08, 2010
"Gives a more 1001 Nights spin to the 1924 silent version. A classic epic fantasy film with spectacular sets, costumes and art design rendered in lush technicolor. As ever with grand productions, the script is shallow, contrived and unsophisticated, but it does have an innocent charm. Justin and Duprez are dashing and radiant as Prince Ahmed and the Princess of Basra, but their acting is completely overshadowed by that of the masterful Veidt as Jaffar. Malleson as Sultan and Sabu are also good."
40 27% The Tomb of Ligeia (1964) - Oct 22, 2010
"I liked the atmosphere created in the first act, but by the second the mystery is entirely transparent, which effectively removes any "horror" from stories like this. Worse, Poe neglected to see that cats are adorably cute rather than scary, and no amount of crafty staging from a talented film director seems to change that. In a showdown where Vincent Price fights the small furry animal, armed with whips and iron pokers, I was unequivocally rooting for the cat."
33 17% Grey Gardens (2009) - Jan 17, 2012
"Lange does a pretty good impression of Beale Sr. and Barrymore is almost there as Jr., but they both come off as far better adjusted than the real deal. This parasite of a film attempts to guess around the original documentary, contriving a corny melodrama to stand for the Beales' lives before and after its making. The Hollywood ending especially is thoroughly embarrassing. Watch the documentary instead, for heaven's sake. It is a vastly deeper and more intricate film."
73 79% A Passage to India (1984) - Nov 20, 2010
"A flawed but very good film. Throughout its long running time it never fails to engage, on the strength of an interesting and compelling story, picturesque locations and beautiful period production, consistently great directing and flowing pace. The main problem is with some of the characters and actors. Davis is perfect, but Banerjee spoils Aziz' fragile believability by overacting, Guinness' tour de force belies a stereotypical character in Godbole, and other characters are just a bit flat."
75 84% Decision at Sundown (1957) - Jun 28, 2009
"There's hardly anyone to root for in this mature and intriguing western, Budd Boetticher's finest. Most of the main characters are morally ambiguous at best but at least a little bit sympathetic. The text and delivery are no better than average for a western but I thought the plot and characters were generally excellent (better than the Boetticher westerns penned by Burt Kennedy). The only character whose development arc rang false was that of Lucy Summerton."
35 19% Straight to Hell (1987) - Jan 21, 2011
"An odd little modern western that's barely coherent and seems to be attempting some form of broad comedy, quite unsuccessfully one might add. The iconic faces of Courtney Love, Elvis Costello, Dennis Hopper, Jim Jarmusch, Joe Strummer, Grace Jones and others do appear, but even they don't add much spice to the generally boring display of costumed rejects randomly hollering and shooting at each other."
65 65% Thérèse Raquin (1953) - Sep 28, 2010
"Although Zola wrote Thérèse Raquin some seven decades prior, Carné's adaptation comes off as a variation on the better-known The Postman Rings Twice. While this is a fairly potent film by its last act, as far as variations on that theme go it is inferior to Visconti's Ossessione. Vallone resembles Burt Lancaster in both appearance and woodenness, and it is as if Signoret is here rehearsing for her role in Clouzot's Les Diaboliques."