Monday, July 11, 2011

OSS 117

OSS 117: If you like parodies of movies you've never seen, then these are the films for you.  They're like the Black Dynamite of French cold war spy thrillers - definitely more 'what's up tiger lily?' than Austin Powers.  If none of that makes any sense to you, you still might like these movies, if you like funny things and don't mind reading.

Rotten Tomatoes

Friday, June 10, 2011

Movies with guys named Ulric

Not much more these movies have in common.. one has subtitles, and one has sword fights.

A Somewhat Gentle Man

Rotten Tomatoes

Black Death
Rotten Tomatoes

Saturday, April 23, 2011


Babies we've watched this several times in our household - that's 2 adults and an 8yo and 2yo all enjoying it multiple times. Mostly we've seen it so much cuz our 2yo daughter insists on it - "THEN babies?" - but it's actually pretty funny. Babies do funny things - who knew?! It's also interesting to see the range of adaptability that babies (and humans in general) have across the world. The portions of the film that compare and contrast the daily life of babies in Namibian huts and Tokyo high-rises make you ponder the comforts you've come to take for granted.

Rotten Tomatoes

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Call of Cthulhu

The Call of Cthulhu - A faithful adaptation of a literary horror classic made by some skilled fans of H.P. Lovecraft. I think they pulled off the silent movie conceit very well.

Rotten Tomatoes

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Toy Story 3

Toy Story 3 - One of the best movie franchises out there, this third entry easily stands alongside its predecessors. Woody and Buzz and the gang are back - best prison break movie ever?!

Rotten Tomatoes

Monday, March 28, 2011

Violent Biopics

Carlos the Miniseries - based on "historical and journalistic research" this miniseries explores the career of Carlos the Jackal. Mixing re-enactments of real events with news footage, this movie's a mix of 'Munich' (with an obviously different set of characters to focus on) and Dog Day Afternoon. Lots of backroom dealings laying bare the motivations and motivators in 70s/80s terrorism.

Rotten Tomatoes

Mesrine Part 1: Killer Instinct - I haven't seen this one yet, but Vincent Cassel in a biopic of an infamous French gangster?! You make the call.

Rotten Tomatoes

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Pillars of the Earth

Pillars of the Earth - historical fictional novelized mini-series. Courtly intrigue, full bodices, swordplay and flying buttresses. All that and Al from Deadwood is a bishop.


Intelligence - so far (3 episodes in) we are really enjoying this Canadian TV series. It's like a mix of Sopranos and the Wire with polite Canadians. But in a GOOD way.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Femmes Fatale

The Square - great Australian noir-thriller. None of that artsy-fartsy foreign movie stuff here! (though subtitles wouldn't hurt in spots)

Rotten Tomatoes

Client 9 - Documentary on the very public downfall of the New York governor.

Rotten Tomatoes

Sunday, January 9, 2011


Firefly - the best short-lived space western in the 'verse. Pretty much Han Solo the TV show, with a family of well-drawn characters, snappy dialogue, and great suspense and action sequences. The movie that tried to wrap up the series' storyline, Serenity, is also available on instant watch.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Louie and Larry

Louie - this show stars Louis CK as himself (sort of) as he gets into some wacky shenanigans, with a liberal sprinkling of his hilarious stand up routines. Not afraid to dive into the dramatic and the absurd, this is a very original show, and I was glad to see it picked up for another season. The first season is available on instant watch.

The Larry Sanders Show - I'd forgotten how funny this show is and started rewatching the first season (four seasons are currently on instant watch.)  Garry Shandling, Rip Torn and Jeffrey Tambor star as the host, co-host and producer of a nightly talk show.  Great cast - including Janeane Garofalo and Jeremy Piven - and lots of star cameos.

The Last Exorcism

This movie was like an old E.C. Horror comic done in the guise of a documentary. It provides some really good scares and maintains a pretty consistent level of dread throughout. A preacher, whose level of actual faith is wanting, travels to a small town to perform an exorcism, bringing along a camera crew to film the proceedings.  

This movie is currently available for a streaming rental on Vudu.

Rotten Tomatoes

Detroit 187

I haven't watched a police procedural in awhile, but this one is pretty good.  Great characters (w/ some exceptions, but they definitely focus on the more interesting ones) and dialogue, not your usual cop-show storylines and a great soundtrack (I really want to find a listing of the songs used in this show.)  Michael Imperioli (Christopher from the Sopranos) heads an excellent ensemble cast.

The first season, still in progress, is streaming on Hulu. 

Wednesday, January 5, 2011


Some films by German director Michael Haneke

The White Ribbon - 2010 nominee for Best Foreign Language Film. The metaphorical stuff involved was way over my head, but I found this movie interesting anyway.

Rotten Tomatoes

Funny Games - this is intense, disturbing stuff - apparently intended by the director to be some sort of cinematic endurance test. He also directed the American remake.

Rotten Tomatoes

Code Unknown - a drama involving several converging storylines, starring Juliette Binoche.

Rotten Tomatoes

Claymation Shorts

Wallace and Gromit: A Matter of Loaf and Death - The dynamic duo's latest adventure, as Wallace is tempted by yet another strumpet!

Rotten Tomatoes

Peter and the Wolf - a remake of old classic, set to original 1936 score. Winner of 2008 Oscar for Best Animated Short.

Mary and Max - Not necessarily for kids, this features the voices of Philip Seymour Hoffman, Toni Collette and Eric Bana.

Rotten Tomatoes

Sleepers worth staying up for

Some movies most people might have missed, but that I think are worth a second look.

Fandango - starring young soon-to-be-better-known types such as Kevin Costner and Judd Nelson, this is a funny road-buddy-coming-of-age movie (my favorite part is the skydiving class!)

Rotten Tomatoes

Bob Roberts - Tim Robbins stars, writes, directs, plays music - probably made sandwiches for the crew too - in this mockumentary about a folk-singing right-winger on his way up the political ladder. Great supporting cast: Alan Rickman, Ray Wise, Giancarlo Esposito, Jack Black.

Rotten Tomatoes

Saturday, January 1, 2011


Network - winner of four academy awards (Actor, Actress, Supporting Actress and Screenplay) and more nominees than I have space for, this classic looks even more worthy of accolades now that we've become used to 57 channels of 24 hour news.  Starring Faye Dunaway, William Holden, Robert Duvall, Ned Beatty - do I have to go on?!

Rotten Tomatoes

Recently Decently Thrilling

Moon - Directed by David Bowie's son and starring Sam Rockwell, this is the rare sci-fi thriller that doesn't rely on lazer pistols and battle droids.  Rockwell plays the lone employee working on a lunar mining outpost.

Rotten Tomatoes

The Crazies (2010) - a remake of George Romero film from the 70s, this is a scary, suspenseful thriller set in a small farm town that was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Rotten Tomatoes

Legion - the wife and I may have been the only people on earth to enjoy this movie. Don't take it too seriously, it's big, dumb and campy, a supernatural thriller that will meet low expectations.

Rotten Tomatoes