Friday, March 29, 2013

Obama signs 'Monsanto Protection Act' written by Monsanto-sponsored senator — RT USA:
"With the president’s signature, agriculture giants that deal with genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and genetically engineered (GE) seeds are given the go-ahead to continue to plant and sell man-made crops, even as questions remain largely unanswered about the health risks these types of products pose to consumers."

Not surprising he would sign it given this. So we don't let companies build airplanes and use them for commercial flights without ensuring their safety, but they can throw things into our food supply and bear no consequences for what might happen. Yeah that makes a lot of sense.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Argo (2012)*
Ben Affleck the director takes great pictures of Ben Affleck the actor. That's the most praise I can lavish on the man since this is a middling effort (at best) shamefully trumpeting and relying on it's truthful basis, which is minimal, and never mentioning that its main plot point...never happened. Guys, look, I'm ok with basing your film on a true story, but change the names and don't pretend you're doing a documentary when you're not.

Monday, March 18, 2013

The Forgotten (2004)**
Starts off well and Julianne Moore tries her best, but halfway through the story goes in a silly direction.
The Paper Chase (1973)***
Quality film, but seemed more meaningful and special on first viewing. Subsequent viewings reveal major weaknesses such as the female character not socking the wildly abusive law student in the jaw, and all the tension in Kingsfield's class is might get called on? Still, John Houseman is great as Kingsfield and Lindsay Wagner is fetching as his daughter. Another good time capsule of the early '70's.
Targets (1968)***
Accomplished debut for film buff turned director Peter Bogdanovich. Interesting, well written script, quite good performances and some nifty camera work.

Friday, March 08, 2013

Anatomy of Hell (2004)**
Not exactly sure what the director was going for in this film of basically, two naked people getting to know each other for a few days but it's definitely not a rom-com! Lots of talk, lots of sex and genital-related activity, some closeups of areas that aren't usually shown in closeup, and an interesting use of a garden tool. A little too direct to be successful, but mercifully short. ("The woman" character gives new meaning to the term "sound sleeper"!)

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Staggering Guardian Report Ties David Petraeus to Iraq Torture Centers - Philip Bump - The Atlantic Wire:
"There are other amazing details in the story: that U.S.-funded cameras were used to capture torture footage for an Iraqi TV show; that much of the information came to light thanks to the secret documents Bradley Manning sent to Wikileaks."

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

Legend (1985)***
One of Ridley Scott's more visually arresting films but this "myth"-mash fails to engage. The actors try their best and Mia Sara (all of 15!) makes a lovely heroine, but the production design and cinematography are the true stars and the script seems more like an afterthought.

Saturday, March 02, 2013

Ffolkes (1979)**
"A" list cast stuck with a "B" list director, but still manage to make a watchable and enjoyable actioner about a quirky former soldier and his own team of mercenaries coming to the rescue of Queen and country.

Friday, March 01, 2013

The Hunger Games (2012)**
Technically well filmed and watchable despite its length but suffers from the first-in-a-trilogy story issues, and from the fact that the story just isn't all that well told. Unfortunately, its massive box office success has spawned far too many similarly dystopian sci-fi epics.