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billkerwin

Cinema Addict - 2296 Film Ratings

Member Since: Dec 18, 2009

Location: Columbus, OH, USA

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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). "
78 35% The Wolf Man (1941) - May 21, 2011
"It is well paced, atmospheric--good photography and great use of the fog machine!--but Chaney is miscast as the expatriate son of English aristocrat Rains. Though Chaney is a great Wolf Man--a simple, good-natured fellow who blunders through social interactions and is beyond his depth when confronted with an ancient curse--he doesn't match up with the character Siodmak wrote. (Re-write: Chaney as a self-made U.S. tycoon). The special effects show their age, and the ending seems rushed. "
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."
86 71% Summer Storm (1944) - May 07, 2011
"Linda Darnell shines with youthful beauty, George Sanders excels in showing us just how sad and lost a lust-filled man can become, and Edward Everett Horton thoroughly enjoys playing a lecher. Sirk had not yet developed his Hollywood style (this was his second American film) but he directs with great fluidity and continental sophistication, and a few of his set pieces (the Russian Orthodox wedding, the maid glimpsing the killer's hands through a chink in the wooden bathhouse) are very fine. "
81 48% The French Connection (1971) - Dec 21, 2009
"Doesn't look that unusual anymore, for we have become accustomed to disagreeable heroes in a harsh world. Still, it is gritty, realistic, with a good performance from Hackman. The film is essentially heartless, however, and leaves you little reason to care about anybody. Like a Brian De Palma film without the elegance."
75 27% The Young One (1960) - Aug 21, 2011
"This Indie "B" made by blacklisters has a few cool Bunuel touches (hairy spider being stepped on, raccoon devouring chickens, numerous close-ups of feet), and the ending is surprisingly tolerant and European: a story that features statutory rape and false racist accusations ends with a hint of hope instead of the murder/suicide combo that a similar "A" Hollywood studio product would require. Scott is fine here too in this his last major role, but still the whole thing never quite jells. "
95 94% One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975) - Dec 21, 2009
"Despite a jarringly triumphant, slow-mo conclusion, this film is unusually restrained in the matter-of-fact humanism of its direction and the detailed realism of its ensemble acting. Nicholson delivers the performance of a lifetime, but it is a performance which emerges organically from a real world in a way Cool Hand Luke, with all his Hollywood Christ imagery, never could. It is a quintessentially American story viewed through a distinctively European eye, and therein lies its uniqueness. "
72 19% The Sound of Music (1965) - Dec 22, 2009
"Saccharine film with absolutely no chemistry between the two leads. Directed by Minnelli and lasting not more than two hours, it might have been good, but it wasn't and it doesn't and it isn't. "
80 42% Crossfire (1947) - May 10, 2011
"This might have been a fine noir, but it never recovers from the censors and script doctors. Ryan's homophobic character was turned into an anti-semite, which makes nonsense of the plot. You know, it happens all the time: one fellah invites another fellah up to his hotel room for a drink, and the first fellah tells the other fellah he's a Jew, so the other fellah goes crazy and beats him to death. Hunh? Ryan is good and creepy, Mitchum is good too, but Robert Young is weak as the detective."
91 86% All the Real Girls (2003) - Jun 08, 2011
"It suffers just a bit from a fashionable disdain for plot, but the superb acting (natural and skillful in improvisation, astonishing in emotional power), the starkly beautiful cinematography, the evocative musical score, and the way all three are unified into a powerful whole by the poetic intensity of Green's direction, more than make up for it. Few films give us a place as fully realized as this small, decaying North Carolina factory town. "