Featured Movies

Howard Hawk's 1932 film is the inspiration for the famed De Palma remake, and shows the De Palma film as much more of a remake than you might have realized, with all of the basic elements lifted from here. This one is just a strong shot of that good old early filmmaking quality and attention to craft, telling a thinly-veiled gloss on the Al Capone story, and was considered insanely violent for its day.

Darren Aronofsky returns with his CGI blowout version of Noah, which imagines Old Testament times as rife with special effects, giant Transformer-esque rock monsters, and a miracle per minute. He tries to shoehorn this into an environmental parable, as mankind was punished for ruining the environment [none of that wickedness or idolatry here] which doesn't work. But it has a wackadoodle third-act twist so left field it kind of becomes somewhat worthwhile.

This movie got unexpectedly good reviews in a number of places, even on best of the year lists, that I finally decided to watch it. Eh. Liam Neeson is a depressed guy at an Alaska oil refinery whose plane goes down with a bunch of roughnecks in the wilds and have to fend off hungry wolves. Yes, it's unexpectedly bleak, but that doesn't prove to be quite enough. More interesting is whether Neeson is assuming control but leading everyone astray, although that isn't explored.

Frank goes to a gay cruising spot by a gorgeous lake, where he spots the alluring Michel. Soon he sees Michel killing his boyfriend, which makes Michel suddenly seem SUPER HOT. The movie then delves into a gay attraction to dangerous men--it's not exactly aligned with the gay agenda--and Frank's possible death drive in his yearning for this guy he knows is a killer. Also features a spot-on depiction of a gay public sex spot, not that I know anything about such things.

The Unique CdM Rating System...

...Evaluates a movie's goodness AND badness! OLIVIAS represent GOODNESS, DIVINES represent BADNESS

Scintillating Essay

Moviegoers in Harm's Way

There has been a spike in movies this summer that depict mass destruction and skyscrapers toppling, yet we rarely if ever see a dead body or even any blood. What effect does this have on moviegoers, and what does it tell us about the way filmmakers view their audience?

Enthralling Videocast

The Birds: Explained!

Here you will encounter my answer to the enduring question about this film: Why do the birds attack? I point out that if you pay attention to the non-attack material, you can see that the bird attacks are the physical manifestation of the mother's rage against rival's for her son's affection.

Readers Respond

Brian De Palma has recently become my most-watched director, and I'd have to say you write the only real worthwhile material I've ever found about him.

-- Randal, California

Two Random Photos