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billkerwin

Cinema Addict - 2296 Film Ratings

Member Since: Dec 18, 2009

Location: Columbus, OH, USA

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95 94% The Gay Desperado (1936) - Mar 13, 2011
"A musical featuring an operatic tenor, no dancing, and a plot involving stereotypical Mexican bandits aspiring to be stereotypical U.S. gangsters? Bad, right? Yeah, that's what I thought, but I was wrong. The script is sweetly goofy, the art direction and shot composition (featuring looming shadows, Diego Rivera sombreros and huge phallic cacti) is lovely and camp, Martini, Lupino, and Carrillo are charming, and the whole cast--including the Raft, Robinson and Cagney lookalikes--is a hoot."
82 52% Zoo in Budapest (1933) - Jun 05, 2011
"When the camera is moving, this film is poetic and original in the way it creates an unearthly paradise within the confines of a crowded urban zoo, but when the camera stops and the actors start talking, it seems stilted and almost primitive. Since this is probably director Rowland Lee's best film, I can't help but think its power is best attributed to its great cinematographer Lee Garmes. Definitely an unusual, memorable film, and Loretta Young has never been more beautiful."
75 27% Kalifornia (1993) - Jan 26, 2010
"Stylish and slick, full of cruelty and irony but ultimately hollow, this movie culminates in extreme violence staged in a mannequin-populated model home at the center of the Dreamland nuclear testing site. (Insert symbolic interpretation here.) Partially redeemed by the detached cool of an emotionally distant Duchovny narration, two mannered but amusing performances from Pitt and Lewis, and the unsmiling elegance of Michelle Forbes."
85 66% Dames (1934) - Dec 06, 2010
"The plot is tedious, and Hugh Herbert is irritating as usual. But Blondell is gorgeous, Powell and Keeler are ideal starry-eyed juveniles, and the Berkeley production numbers are up to the "Gold Digger" standard. The dancing/singing suits of long underwear in "The Girl at the Ironing Board" are cute and slightly perverse, "Dames" is the usual stunningly inventive Berkeley paean to female beauty, and the two "I Only Have Eyes For You" numbers show the early '30's musical at its best."
69 11% Take This Waltz (2012) - Apr 18, 2014
"Gee, can the quirky indie girl/part-time journalist with emotional range (if not depth) decide between the sensible husband/writer of cook books (Rogen) and the poet guy who pulls a rickshaw for tourists (Luke Kirby)? And will the fact that Rickshaw Boy lives in the equivalent of a loft apartment perched atop an old lighthouse affect her decision? You bet it will. (There's one neat scene amid the dodge 'em cars when the colored lights turn off, but that's not nearly enough to make a film)"
100 99% The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928) - Dec 24, 2009
"As Norma Desmond once said about silent movies, "We didn't need dialogue. We had faces!" Here's the ultimate proof. Falconetti's performance is so magnificent, the close-ups so relentless and involving, that you will be convinced this is a 15th Century documentary. This is a profound film about faith and cruelty."
89 80% Inside Llewyn Davis (2013) - Apr 06, 2014
"The folk revival was filled with generous, expansive personalities--like that of Dave Von Ronk--but if it had been peopled instead by cautious Gen-X types, envious, trapped in their own egos, it might have looked something like this. It is a well made film, expertly shot and edited, enriched by the existential concerns that made "A Serious Man" such a rewarding experience. John Goodman creates his most obnoxious character ever, and Isaac is very good (although not quite as good as the cats). "
92 89% The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean (1972) - Mar 12, 2010
"Some people think this a mess, but I think that its eccentric performances, complex Milius script and continual (yet controlled) tonal shifts--from realism to folk tale to surrealism to farce and then back to realism again--make this a uniquely enjoyable epic Western. More than any other film outside the Peckinpah oeuvre, it effectively chronicles and mourns the disappearance of the Old West. Newman is good, and Stacey Keach is a standout in an hilarious cameo as "Original Bad Bob the Albino.""
96 96% McCabe & Mrs. Miller (1971) - Nov 22, 2014
"Altman subjects the Western to the sort of radical genre criticism he would apply to the private eye film two years later in "The Long Goodbye." This film is a study in contrasts: poetic and atmospheric, yet dirty and downbeat too, tied together by the haunting music of Leonard Cohen. Beatty and Christie both deliver superb performances, creating deeply flawed people worth rooting for even though we never really like them. Auberjonois and Keith Carradine give stand-out performances too."
100 99% Belle de jour (1967) - Mar 14, 2010
"A beautiful and enigmatic film. Surrealism in a high-class bordello . . . what could be more enticing? This is Bunuel at the the height of his powers, when--with a style as deceptively simple as Howard Hawks'--he causes the reveries and jokes of the unconscious mind to materialize within a realistic narrative as naturally and casually as the appearance of the sitcom neighbor next door. Also . . Catharine Deneuve-and this is saying a lot--has never been more beautiful. "