Category Archives: Drama

Dangerous (1935)

Bette Davis is just fine in the role of Joyce Heath, the talented and self-destructive actress who is brought back from the brink by the creepily-obsessive adulation of architect Don Bellows (Franchot Tone). The problem is the herky-jerky and sporadic treatment of the problems that Joyce suffers from, notably alcoholism. She seems to be a heavy drinker just so that she can say she’s a down and out has-been, like it was something to aspire to! Continue reading

Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

Edmund Gwenn won an Oscar for his portrayal of the real deal Santa Claus that for some reason has escaped an old folks home and decided to wreak his holiday brand of havoc on the capitalist pigs at Macy’s, as well as firing up a little girl’s imagination which has been stymied by her divorced workaholic and very sensible mother. He’s also got no use for drunken Santa imposters, pop psychiatry, and doesn’t mind going to trial to prove he is the one and only Santa! Continue reading

Beyond Tomorrow (1940)

Three friends have their Christmas Eve dinner plans canceled so they do what anyone would do under the circumstances – devise a wacky Candid Camera-style stunt by tossing wallets with ten dollar bills and each one of their business cards into the street! Then they wait to see if anyone has the old Christmas spirit in them and returns the wallet with the cash. And anyone who does will be invited to dinner! Continue reading

9 Souls (2003)

This is the movie about nine guys who break out of prison that manages to be both funny and sad that we’ve all been waiting for!

It’s a bit of a dirty trick since you get lulled into the rollicking road trip aspect of the film following their exploits as they search for some buried treasure that the tenth guy in their cell (he didn’t get to go on their field trip for some reason) has clued them in on only to have the carpet pulled out from under us ever so slowly and deliberately as the movie’s second half unfolds. Continue reading

Blue Spring (2001)

Blue Spring is one of those movies where I kept waiting for something to happen that would shake things up and distinguish it from any number of other boring, brooding teen pics. Instead, the movie wanders around for the first hour like an uninspired delinquent ditching class without any plans, before finally settling on detailing the rivalry between former friends Kujo and Aoki and how Aoki just wanted Kujo’s attention.

Aoki clearly forgot that he, Kujo, and the rest of the senior class at the local all boys high school just don’t care about anything or anyone! Gawd Aoki! Try to remember your gimmick! Continue reading

The Web of Silence – A.I.D.S. (1994)

webofsilencetitleI knew I was in trouble right from the beginning when a message appeared on the screen that if this film caused someone to meditate, then it would have been worth the effort. I was pretty sure that when I tracked down a copy of The Web Of Silence – A.I.D.S., it was because it was an Italian movie that was going to either gross me out or make me laugh and hopefully both. I was also pretty sure that I didn’t buy it because I was in need of meditation inspiration. That’s what my day job is for. Continue reading

Dead Reckoning (1947)

dead-reckoning-posterHumphrey Bogart plays recently returned war vet Rip Murdock. He’s searching for the truth behind the death of Johnny, his best friend from the service. Rip knows that Johnny was a damn good paratrooper and he deserves his Congressional Medal of Honor, even if it has to be awarded posthumously. That’s not so much to ask for a guy who gave everything he had to kick the Ratzis in their Teutonic nads, is it? Continue reading

Rainy Dog (1997)

RainyDogCoverYuji is one of those hitmen who exudes that sort of anti-hero attitude that somehow makes guys who murder other guys for a living seem to be someone we would want to look up to.

Kicked out of his gang, he still does some freelance work. He runs around Taiwan shooting people in his long, white trench coat and sunglasses. He comes home and watches video clips from Gamera movies on his computer. He doesn’t talk much and he has really good hair. He even has one of those quirky superstitions where he refuses to go out in the rain because his grandmother always told him that it was bad luck. Continue reading

The Astronaut (1972)

The Astronaut Title ScreenIt’s a conspiracy spanning the cold depths of space from Earth to Mars and back again! And for the people in charge of America’s space program, the stakes have never been higher! (Stakes like avoiding budget cuts – this is a government agency after all.)

For the ex-pilot at the center of it all, it’s a chance for redemption after a flight that went horribly wrong and killed three people on the ground, leaving him so depressed, a job at NASA impersonating the most famous (but dead) astronaut of all time, sounded like a great career choice. Continue reading

Reunion in France (1942)

ReunionInFrancePosterDuring World War II, Hollywood eagerly joined up with America and her allies in an effort to whip a little Axis tail and they too wanted to launch their own assaults trumpeting freedom, courage, and sacrifice. But in wartime, you have to be able to think outside the box and come up with that one-two punch the enemy never sees coming! Thus the excruciatingly unsuccessful teaming of Joan Crawford and John Wayne in a movie about occupied France. (Another unpleasant aspect of a wartime movie like Reunion in France is that sometimes the audience suffers a little friendly fire and becomes collateral damage.) Continue reading