Hey folks, Harry here… With yet another column written in the hospitality of my hospital stay… that said, I’m being released today – which gives me such an amazing delightfully happy experience writing this particular column, knowing – it’s my last on a small screen, not in my native environment. I’m well enough to leave here, but I’ve still got months of hard work ahead of me, if I’m to walk again. But that’s fine. From here on out, I’ll be working out constantly in my living room as I watch these new releases – and I’ll even pedal as I write some of the future columns. That said – thank you for reading and supporting these columns – they gave me something to continue to contribute during some of the most painful and exhausting days I’ve lived through thus far. Providing me with quite a few smiles. So thank you. As usual, the links and pictures link over to Amazon – where you can learn more on these titles or purchase them if you feel like it. If you do, a percentage of that purchase will continue to help keep these columns coming – especially in the darkest of times. SO thank you again!
Tuesday, March 8th, 2011 – Harry is free from the Hospital Day!!!
Chris Morris’ satiric comedy about Suicide Islamic Fundementalist Terrorist Bombers is an exceptional biting look at something that seems incredibly dangerous and forbidden to joke about… and yet… we all need to lighten up about. Many critics, not just me, compared the film to DR. STRANGELOVE – I made the caveat that FOUR LIONS wasn’t as iconic as Kubrick’s run at the absurdly dark humor… but it doesn’t fail to show the absurd truth of the matter… humanizing these modern day kamikazes as pretty much the biggest losers imaginable. As a result – the film is affecting, hilarious and gives you quite a bit to talk about after the fact. Also – the first film distributed by ALAMO DRAFTHOUSE FILMS! Hopefully the first of many! Great stuff!
I love Matt Damon as an actor – he’s just so fucking good. I watched him in THE ADJUSTMENT BUREAU and didn’t once see the great character he played recently for Soderbergh – nor Jason Bourne or any numbers of other characters he’s played. His roles involve smart acting. Then he takes the time to lend a brilliant and biting narration to this Academy Award winning documentary about - essentially what exactly is fucking our country in the ass. This isn’t about Republicans or Democrats – it’s about how they’re both fucking us regularly. The documentary – while surely outlining exactly why we should all be crying, managed to entertain as well as outrage me. This just won the Academy Award for BEST DOCUMENTARY this year… Consider it a must see! In fact, I suggest you buy a copy – watch it – and then send it to your Senators and Representatives. They should be inundated with this film – from their constituents. It is that important.
I loved the first season of this – and thought the suggested retail for the Blu Ray is $49.99, Amazon is currently selling it for $22.99 – so over half off. So this is very definitely the way to score it. Now why get the Blu Ray? To be honest, KNB. Their Zombie work in this show is stunning. There’s a brilliance that one can not fully appreciate, until you see it in the superior HD image that full 1080p, delivered on Blu Ray delivers. I’ve a lot of reasons to be in agony right now – but the key one is having to wait forever for the next season. Of course… perhaps this year – once I’m walking – KNB and Frank will let me film my first upright cameo in years on this show. Just so long as the make up takes at least 7 hours to apply. I want epic makeup – I think Ginger Zombies are under represented in cinema. I’m just saying. OH – anyways… there’s a good deal of extras, but mainly – I just want to watch Season 2. Soon. I’ve no idea where it is headed.
I like this movie – it was far more enjoyable than CRASH… I love the story – and there’s a holy fuck moment in the film that scared the fuck out of me. I can totally bond with this film, because I can totally imagine having to break Yoko out of jail someday. Seems likely. She’s just violent. It’s the South Korean in her.
Wish I’d seen this in theaters with my wife. JJ Abrams produced it – and frankly – the grumpy pissed off indignant former great anchor… played by Harrison Ford – just made the movie for me. I liked to pretend he was playing Dan Rather – who was totally fucked over by CBS. A decision that made me forever decide to no longer watch CBS Nightly News – which I had watched my entire life. ANYWAY – there’s more to the movie than Harrison’s part – and as a huge smitten Rachel McAdams fan – and as someone that has loved Diane Keaton from her early Woody Allen days… And I’ve now seen Patrick Wilson in a few Romantic Comedies – and I like him in these types of films. It isn’t close to being as great as BROADCAST NEWS or a film like NETWORK or even a hair of the ass of ALL THE PRESIDENT’S MEN, but it isn’t trying to be any of those. It’s just a sweet story. And it is sweet. Watching Harrison Ford being mean to Rachel – just made the movie for me.
I’m saving this Blu ray for when I get home on Tuesday. I can watch EXCALIBUR for a week, non-stop. I love the film that much – I love that it is PG – and that there’s no other PG film like it. I mean – the fucking is brutal, the nudity explicit – and it is PG? Limbs hacked off. Brutal violence… and the MPAA of 1981 said – “Yeah, Kids totally should see this shit!” and I agree. This is the definitive Knights in Armor film. Nothing comes close. Ever. It also helps that as a kid – when this movie came out – my girl friend was the daughter of the people that made Merlin’s skull cap and the jewelry in the film. And she made me this Stained Glass window with flowers pressed inside of it – that we picked together at the Renaissance Faire we met at. When I was 10. She was my first kiss and my first Skinny Dipping partner. If you’ve never seen EXCALIBUR – you must. It is far better than any fantasy knights in armor film ever made. Just amazing. Just writing about it makes me want to watch it now – but I won’t. I’m saving it for my big projection screen at home – and I’ll bike as I watch it. As I will while working on watching the titles from now on.
Another great Miyazaki feature animated classic. The excellent US Dub, might annoy you – but that’s ok – cuz Disney did the right thing and has the original Japanese soundtrack in place as well! Along with the French Dub track as well. I’ve never seen NAUSICAA in a theater – so being able to see the crystal clarity of this animation on BluRay was such a delight. Disney’s also done a great job with special features – take a look:
• World Of Ghibli: Visit Nausicaa's world in this enchanted interactive experience.
• Behind The Studio: Discover the film's fantastic origins in this fascinating documentary, including an interview with Hayao Miyazaki!
• Enter the Lands: Explore the many worlds of Studio Ghibli through this interactive map!
• Studio Ghibli Trivia Challenge: You're your Knowledge
• Original Japanese storyboards
• Behind the Microphone: With A-List Voice Talent
• The Birth Story Of Studio Ghibli Featurette
• Original TV trailers
Remember when John Woo & Ringo Lam were making ungodly fucking awesome cool movies with soul out of Hong Kong? Well – THE MAN FROM NOWHERE is that kind of badassery – and I just fucking loved it. I had the opportunity to see this twice on the big screen during FANTASTIC FEST… and the second I got the Blu Ray – I put it on and watched it here in Rehab – and then showed it to a friend here – and they were blown away. The final… oh… 30 minutes… will just fucking knock your dick in the dirt. So fucking badass! This is a crazy violent film – and the knife fight you’ll see in this film – will have you squirming, squealing and way damn excited. It’s great. Just great. If you love films that raise your blood pressure – this is one of them.
I really love Miyazaki’s son’s adaptation of Ursula LeGuin’s THE FARTHEST SHORE novel out of the Earthsea series… It doesn’t quite equal his father’s work, but hey, he’s starting out. What I do want to see is a lot more work from him. Disney has done a really good job with this DVD – I just wish they released it on Blu Ray!
I love that EXIT THROUGH THE GIFT SHOP was nominated for Best Documentary – and I am very happy that it didn’t win – as the absurdity of it being nominated was enough for me. I don’t believe technically this was a documentary – strictly speaking. Instead it is a brilliant work of performance art. Banksy (Matthew Vaughn) has created an unsolvable mystery with this documentary – that goes far beyond who he really is – instead – it is a document about the artform of which he is king, but then in creating the definitive documentary about that genre of art – he not only documented it, but created the most absurd new artist of the form. If you love Orson Welles’ F IS FOR FAKE – that’s the kind of brilliance you have on tap here. If you held out for the Blu Ray – here ya go! By all means watch it!
I was actually shocked when this did not appear on the BEST DOCUMENTARY nomination list at the Academy Awards this year – not because any of the films nominated, didn’t deserve it. But because it is a GREAT documentary that does in fact cast an incredibly bright and new light at the horrors of the Nazi Propaganda department – in how they tried to portray the Warsaw Ghetto effort in a favorable light – and it is… shocking, stunning and just amazing. Seriously so. Can not recommend highly enough.
This is… hilarious. It is also porn. But if you like the film REEFER MADNESS – this film similarly plays as propaganda – but as Pro-Pot propaganda that portrays Marijuana as an amazing Aphrodisiac that gets both men and women horny (kinda true) – but then it also professes in hilarious “FACTUAL” documentary-esque examples of Pot in action as an Aphrodisiac – and while these scenes are not particularly hot – they were crazy funny. Also – John Holmes performs in this. But my fave part is watching Billy Curtis (real Munchkin) talking about pot with a joint in his hand on Hollywood Blvd. Sort of reminded me of Jeff Mahler.
If you know of the infamous exploitation filmmaker, Joe D’Amato, and upon looking at this box art – you might think this could be good exploitation – and it really isn’t. There’s two moments of horror at the opening and in the ending scene… the rest is just mediocre sex. SO I can not really recommend this.
If you loved Edwige Fenech in HOSTEL 2 – learn why Eli Roth fell in love with her in her prime. Edwige Fenech was easily one of the hottest women ever in exploitation – and this very exploitive take on the novel, MADAME BOVARY is outstanding. This is sexy and hot. GOOD STUFF if the box art appeals to you – it gets better! Nothing like young horny Edwige Fenech to pass the time in Rehab – or wherever you need time passed.
Next week, we’ll be looking at THE FIGHTER, HEREAFTER, WASTE LAND, BATMAN: BRAVE AND THE BOLD – Season 1 – Part 2, GAMERA VS ZIGRA/GAMERA: THE SUPER MONSTER, YI YI (Criterion Blu), AU REVOIR LES ENFANTS (Criterion Blu), THE WILDEST DREAM: CONQUEST OF EVEREST, BATTLE OF THE WARRIORS (Blu), ANCHORMAN Blu, FERNANDO DI LEO CRIME COLLECTION, SHARKTOPUS, SNOOPY COME HOME, A BOY NAMED CHARLIE BROWN, BLOOD (Blu), BMX BANDITS (Blu), CANDLELIGHT IN ALGERIA, INTERPLANETARY, SUGAR BOXX and THUNDER IN THE CITY.