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1996 Edition of Roger Ebert’s Video Companion - Titles Under 'B'
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We continue with the survey of the 1996 Edition of Roger Ebert’s Video Companion. Entries under ‘A’ Heading. What follows are entries in the B category.

Titles in bold letters: Seen by Me; otherwise, not seen or only partly seen

Numbers in parenthesis: Star Ratings by Roger Ebert

Numbers in brackets: My Ratings

Babyfever (3) – 1994

Baby It’s You (3)[4] – 1983

A demonstration, happy and sad, of what John Sayles was capable of when he left his do-gooderism, boomer ‘radicalism’, and striving for ‘significance’ on the shelf. A most happy result, by far his best work, as well as a sad reminder of why his other works fall short, not due to lack of talent but excess of self-aggrandizing ‘social consciousness’.

Baby’s Day Out (1 ½) – 1994

Backbeat (2) [2 ½] – 1994

This film accentuates the problem of the inimitable nature of celebrity. Some people are significant for what they’ve done, but celebrities owe much of their fame to their image. The Beatles clearly accomplished much in music, but the unmistakable faces of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, and George Harrison have been etched in our collective consciousness. Anthony Hopkins looks nothing like Richard Nixon, but Oliver Stone made it work because it came down to Nixon the doer, a key agent of history. In contrast, the Beatles became pop icons, and it’s never convincing for others to play them, just like Elvis movies fail for the simple reason that there was only one King of Rock n Roll. Similarly, Martin Scorsese’s THE AVIATOR was least convincing with Cate Blanchett and Kate Beckinsale in the respective roles of Katharine Hepburn and Ava Gardner. There was only one Hepburn, only one Gardner. At any rate, BACKBEAT is a rather lackluster telling of the Early Beatles, all the more disappointing because those were heady times for the young lads.

Backdraft (3) – 1991

Back to School (3) [2 ½] – 1986

Rodney Dangerfield and Sam Kinison(as an unlikely gung-ho history teacher) are just about the only reasons for watching this stupid movie.

Back to the Beach (3 ½) – 1987

This is considered better than the original 60s movies with young Annette and Frankie.

Back to the Future (3 ½)[3] – 1985

As a sci-fi comedy vehicle for Michael J. Fox, it was sold as light-hearted fare. Yet, there’s a rather nasty shading to the fantasy, one about replacing the parents you have with the ones you’d prefer. No need to murder your parents and replace them with perfect robots. Just go back in time and tweak things so that, in the New and Improved Reality, your father’s a Cool Guy and your mother a slim babe, all the while the ‘bad’ people of town grovel at their feet. Michael J. Fox plays a cool kid burdened with the cosmic injustice of having uncool parents. It’s as if the mom and dad never got over the fact that a pretty girl settled for a loser pushed around by the ‘winners’ in school back in the 50s. Over the years, the father’s self-confidence cratered to zero, and the mother led a life of repressed remorse, putting on the weight. No wonder the son is eager to coach the dad into shape. Usually, fantasies like this involve a wish to go back in time and change one’s own past. But as Michael J. Fox’s character is picture-perfect, the problem involves not himself but his parents, whom he loves but is obviously ashamed of. As life lessons go, isn’t it better to accept people as they are?

Back to the Future Part II (3) – 1989

Back to the Future Part III (2 ½) – 1990

Bad Boys (3 ½)[3] – 1983

Watched this long ago at the insistence of a friend. At once grimly realistic and shamelessly exploitative. Sean Penn got noticed for his powerful performance.

Bad Boys (2) – 1995 (the one with Will Smith and Martin Lawrence)

Bad Company (3 ½) – 1995 (Ellen Barkin and Lawrence Fishburn movie)

Bad Girls (1 ½) – 1994

I recall the silly trailer.

Bad Influence (3) – 1990

Badlands (4)[4] – 1974

Hard to believe Terrence Malick made two masterpieces in the 1970s before returning a couple decades later as one of the most pompous figures in cinematic history.

Bad Lieutenant (4)[2] – 1990

A pile of garbage, a mondo trasho imitation of Dostoevsky and Scorsese. A kind of porno-Morality Tale. The ‘bad lieutenant’ is a corrupt cop as anti-hero whose gambling debts are coming due(and coming for his life); he grabs for last-minute redemption by means foul and fair. Among the ‘graceful’ moments is a vision of Jesus in a church that turns out to be, yes you guessed it, a Negro, sheeeeiiiit. Still, Keitel wears his heart on his sleeve(and bares his dong in the bargain, perhaps as a reminder that the real Jesus died on the Cross with privates exposed). Far inferior to even Scorsese’s weakest efforts but, playing devil’s advocate, arguably truer in some ways; it’s raw sewage than treated sewage ‘cleaned’ into art.

Bagdad Cafe (3 ½) – 1988

Ballad of Little Jo (3) – 1993

Ballad of the Sad Cafe (3) – 1991

Bang the Drum Slowly (4) – 1973

What’s with baseball movies and tearjerkers? Another variation of PRIDE OF THE YANKEES? Maybe I’ll see it one day.

Barcelona (3) [2 ½] – 1994

Whit Stillman, so good with the ensemble cast in METROPOLITAN, falters here with two main characters who do little but nag at each other. What a drag. As for the protracted final part with one of the fellas clinging to dear life while friends and associates read passages from War and Peace, it’s gotta be among the most insufferable things in movie history.

Barfly (4) – 1987

Once again, Ebert can’t resist a movie about drunkards.

Bar Girls (1 ½) – 1995

Barton Fink (3 ½)[4] – 1991

With BARTON FINK, the Coens finally came into their own as a force to reckon with. While ample talent and ingenuity were on display in their first three offerings, skeptics wondered whether the Coens could move beyond inspired parody and homages. BARTON FINK turned those ‘bugs’ into features of genuine originality.

Basic Instinct (2) – 1992

I only caught a few scenes on video because of the hype about Sharon Stone’s snatch and the sex/violence. What garbage. Over the years, some critics reappraised the movie as a biting satire on the predatory nature of American sexuality(interwoven with capitalism), less a piece of sensationalism than a critique of it. Yeah, sure.

Basketball Diaries (2) – 1995

Batman (2) – 1989

Batman Forever (2 ½) – 1995

Batman Returns (2) – 1992

Beauty and the Beast (4)[2] – 1991

I vaguely remember this, one of the follow-ups to LITTLE MERMAID, heralded as Disney’s return to cultural relevance. It was okay.

Beetlejuice (2) – 1988

Before Sunrise (3) [2 ½]- 1995

Richard Linklater is best as a personal film-maker than as an ‘intellectual’ film artist. BEFORE SUNRISE is painstakingly(sincerely and conceptually) everything DAZED AND CONFUSED is not. The approach is ‘European’, and the cerebral romanticism is rather precious. It reminded me of the man on the porch in IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE: “Why don’t you kiss her instead of talking her to death?”

Before the Rain (3 ½)[3] – 1995

Like PULP FICTION released in the same year, BEFORE THE RAIN plays games with chronology, perhaps inappropriate given the gravity of the subject. The tricks seem designed more as display of ‘brilliance’ than pathway to revelation. The contrived plot(especially one involving forbidden love) tests one’s credulity, but genuinely powerful moments are interspersed throughout. The film appears to contrast the tribal Balkans with the Liberal West of London. But, isn’t the so-called ‘Liberal West’ really animated by Jewish tribal supremacism? And what has the ‘liberal’ immigration and ideologies policies done to the UK? With Africans running around with machetes and Muslims battling Hindus in the streets, the future of UK will likely make the Balkan problems look mild by comparison. At least ex-Yugoslavia halfway solved the crisis by separatism that allowed for more homogenous states. In contrast, the UK embraced Diversity as the cure for everything. What fools.

Being There (4) [3 ½] – 1980

The performances and the direction(by Hal Ashby) are impeccable and make the film seem more intelligent and insightful than it really is. Upon closer scrutiny, it barely registers as satire. That said, given the trajectory of American Politics since the 1980s, the film got one thing right. The joke has become real, and no one can tell anymore.

Belle Epoque (3 ½)[2] – 1993

It won the Best Foreign Film Oscar, never a good sign. Fluff.

Benny and Joon (3) – 1993

Best Boy (4) – 1980

Betrayal (4) – 1983

Beverly Hills Cop (2 ½) – 1984

I heard this is pretty decent. The director later went onto to make MIDNIGHT RUN, one of my favorites. I did see BEVERLY HILLS COPS II, and it was unbelievably bad.

Big (3) [3 ½] – 1988

One of the few times a ridiculous idea made for movie magic. Penny Marshall’s oddball comedy has just the right balance of silliness and sensitivity, the opposite of what John Hughes concocted with WEIRD SCIENCE. A role Tom Hanks was born to play. In BIG, he played a boy in a man’s body, and later he played a man with a child’s mind in FORREST GUMP, a Mt. Rushmore for dumb innocence.

Big Chill (2 ½)[2] – 1983

In 1975, Michael Medved and a compatriot wrote “Whatever Happened to the Class of 65?” BIG CHILL offers some clues as to what came of the generation a decade later. Middle-aged, the boomer characters have come to the realization of how they weren’t so ‘different’ yet were. Did they ‘sell out’ as professionals and ‘yuppies’ or simply grow wiser? Is there integrity to rebellion or has it become a futile irrelevance? The balanced and ‘fair-minded’ approach makes it passionless and dull. (On the other hand, FOUR FRIENDS is full of partisan passion but also painfully obnoxious.)

The Big Easy (4)[3] – 1987

I recall it was pretty good. Most memorable scene was when Ellen Barkin grabbed the wrong guy’s crotch.

The Big Red One (3)[3] – 1980

THE BIG RED ONE THE RECONSTRUCTION is the favored(if not definitive) version of Sam Fuller’s war movie based on his experiences as a young soldier at Normandy and beyond. Fuller worked with limited means, and it’d be foolhardy to compare this work with big-budget productions like THE LONGEST DAY and PATTON(or SAVING PRIVATE RYAN). Still, Fuller wasn’t much of a director, and his reputation largely rests on having touched on racy issues that Hollywood generally overlooked. Working in the B-movie department, Fuller had more ‘artistic’ leeway. Still, he was no Nicholas Ray, and his turgid moralism was on par with that of Stanley Kramer.

The Big Town (3 ½) – 1987

Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey (3)[2]- 1991

Mildly amusing. The two leads’ California Teenager antics seem like bogus imitations of Sean Penn’s landmark role in FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH. But then, all-around bogusness, even that of Bill and Ted, is part of the charm. Penn’s performance was truly awesome, but something so remarkable wouldn’t sit right in a piece of fluff like this.

Bird (3 ½)3- 1988

I watched about 10 min of this. Charlie Parker was marrying some Jewish broad. I know Eastwood loves Jazz, but his visual style was never jazzy, and I have a hard time imagining him as a director of a movie about Jazz.

Birdy (4)[3] – 1985

Far-fetched but tantalizing premise that might have worked in the hands of someone less obnoxious and sensationalistic than Alan Parker.

Bitter Moon (3) [3 ½]

Roman Polanski at his perverse nastiest. It’s about appalling people and doesn’t make for easy viewing(despite the humor). A middle-aged man hooks up with a young woman but dumps her in the most unceremonious way imaginable. She gets even by turning him into a paraplegic and having sex with ghastly Negro. Entangled in their web is a rather conventional English couple whose assumptions are shaken to the core.

Black Marble (3 ½) – 1980

Black Rain (3 ½)[4] – 1990

Shohei Imamura’s Hiroshima film is best when detailing the subtle after-effects of the Bomb, the way people sweep faint but troubling signs under the rug(or tatami) for a peace of mind and social acceptance. But the inevitable catches up despite the hope and denial. The film is weakest in showing the horrors of the bombing. The production values simply aren’t up to the task and rather negates the understated aspect of the film. The over-acting by a mentally damaged veteran is also a minus. Still, one of the most measured and thoughtful films about the war.

The Black Stallion (4) [3 ½] – 1980

The opening on the ship and the scenes on the island are wonders to behold. The middle part sags a bit, but Mickey Rooney takes the reins and leads the boy and horse to a rousing ending.

Blade Runner (3)[4] – 1982

Did BLADE RUNNER create the Future Noir aesthetics? Its retro-noir style is understandably celebrated but no less impressive is the film’s neo-classic & neo-gothic motifs and mythic aura. More about poetics of mood than poetry in motion, it failed at the box-office. Vangelis’ score is amazing.

Blaze (3 ½) – 1989

Blink (3 ½)[3] – 1994

Clever idea for a thriller involving cure for blindness and unsure memory.

Blood Simple (4)[4] – 1985

It put the Coens on the map along with Jim Jarmusch as the independent film-makers to watch in the 1980s. The self-conscious style and outlandish neo-noir plot certainly got the film noticed. Still, it seemed too clever by half, overly addled with film-school look-at-me antics. In retrospect, its sense of riddle was no mind-game but an obsession the brothers would pursue throughout their career.

Blown Away (2) – 1994

Blow Out (4) [3 ½] – 1981

Film-makers love what they do but, given the sensationalism of the medium, are sometimes given to doubt, even pangs of guilt. Clint Eastwood both pushed his killer image to the hilt and unveiled the dark side of violence. Likewise, De Palma, who came to prominence with sleazy horror, also made works that called into question the exploitative nature of the medium, especially with guys like himself in charge. Perhaps, people prefer horror elements contained in the horror genre than leaking into a semblance of reality, which is what happens in BLOW OUT. It failed big at the box-office but remains among De Palma’s best works.

Blue (3 ½) [2 ½] – 1994

Kieslowski was a typical Polack. A total suck-ass to the West. While earthy and humorous among his own kind, he got all precious and reverential with Western Europeans(as hopeful models for Dumb Polacks). Kieslowski was a man of some talent, but his westward-looking films are marred by hunger for approval by the West. What a stupid Polack.

Blue Chips (3) – 1994

Blue Collar (4)[3] – 1978

When Paul Schrader wasn’t being so artsy and ‘European’(usually modeled on Robert Bresson), he could make a decent film, and BLUE COLLAR is one such work. Like Martin Scorsese’s IRISHMAN released about four decades later, it’s about corruption in the world of the working class and unions. It works best with details of daily toil(at work and home) but falters badly with the Big Statement, which isn’t convincing. The characters in the film are such idiots that they don’t need top dogs playing divide-and-conquer to mess them up.

Blue Kite (4)[4] – 1994

It covers a momentous couple of decades in China under Mao. History moves on a grand scale, like an elephant through a village. The film meets the turmoil with a steady and meditative gaze.

The Blues Brothers (3)[3] – 1980

With Belushi and Ackroyd as bluesmen, the result is both homage and parody of black music. The brothers, touched by disco light at a black church, take on wealthy restauranteurs, disgruntled country music band, the state-troopers(nearly all of them, the Illinois Nazis(who say, “Jews are using the blacks…”; so, where’s the lie?), Carrie Fisher with an array of advanced weaponry, the Chicago Police, and City Hall. Too elaborate for a silly premise but has its share of laughs and some amazing car crashes.

Blue Sky (3) – 1994

Blue Steel (3)[3] – 1990

Jamie Lee Curtis in this demented Katherine Bigelow movie plays a NY cop who is stalked by some sado-masochistic Jewish yuppie who seemingly goes instan-psycho upon picking up a pistol at a crime scene. Ridiculous and over-the-top but compelling as a sleazo action thriller.

Blue Velvet (1) [3 ½] – 1986

Ebert hated this film because of what was done to Isabella Rossellini. She must have been like a goddess to him. I hated it too but for a different reason. The whole thing seemed an exercise in retardation and sadism. (It was my first Lynch film.) Having come to know Lynch better over the years, I can better appreciate his aims in BLUE VELVET. I still don’t like it. “Baby wanna fuc*” indeed.

Blume in Love (4) – 1973

Bob Roberts (3) – 1992

Tim Robbins’ crack at FACE IN THE CROWD? He satirizes David Duke and Pat Buchanan, but can a balless cuck-maggot play men with balls?

Body Double (3 ½)[2]

One of those DePalma’s movies that’s all style and on substance. It was notorious for the murder-by-drill scene.

The Bodyguard (3) – 1992

This sounds like a horror movie. Kevin Costner not only kisses a vain Negress but dies for her. Find another line of work, fool!

Body Snatchers (4)[4] – 1994

Wonders never cease. Scumbag sleaze-meister Abel Ferrara actually made a first-rate sci-fi horror flick, all the more remarkable given the success of the original(Don Siegel) and remake(Philip Kaufman). What were the odds that another good film could be made from the material? Ferrara’s version is as unsettling and thought-provoking(and politically relevant) as its predecessors.

Bonfire of the Vanities (2 ½) – 1990

I heard that DePalma’s most eagerly awaited movie was a total wash. I avoided it for years and finally gave it a look a few years back but could stand only about 20 min. Did the ‘liberal’ side of DePalma get cold feet and sabotage the project lest he have to get real with some uncomfortable truths? Or, was he simply not meant for satire?

Boomerang (3) – 1992

The Boost (3 ½)[3] – 1988

James Woods is intense as a go-getter whose ambition is fueled by cocaine. It works as a character study of a man driven in equal parts by vanity and insecurity, wildly exacerbated by the white powder. But the movie becomes more or less a cautionary tale on the dangers of drug use, and message movies are boring.

Bopha! (3 ½) – 1993

Born on the Fourth of July (4)[4] – 1989

Oliver Stone’s Vietnam follow-up to PLATOON is a richer work centered on individuals than on archetypes.

Bostonians (3) – 1984

The Bounty (4)[4] – 1984

A balanced retelling of the ‘Mutiny on the Bounty’ story that gives Captain Bligh his due. (It nevertheless does justice to Fletcher Christian’s ill-fated romanticism as well.) Bligh remains unlikable but is presented, for good or for ill, indispensable to the enterprise of empire. Ant-and-grasshopper tale for adults. Most interesting is the ambiguity of Bligh’s authoritarian ways, i.e. to what extent they are of necessity or flaws of character, of strength or of weakness.

Boyfriends and Girlfriends (3) [3 ½] – 1988

Never cared for Eric Rohmer, but his consistency as a maker of intelligent films on the relations between men and women is undeniable.

Boys on the Side (3 ½)[1] – 1995

Incredibly, John Simon the snob loved this movie. Maybe he had the hots for Mary-Louis Parker. This is a thoroughly detestable movie, as terrible as THELMA AND LOUISE, and I only wished all the characters died in a horrible car crash(with the gas tank exploding and burning everyone alive). To make things worse, Drew Barrymore’s character is pregnant throughout the movie and at the end gives birth to a mulatto. Ewwwwwww. (Damn the Christ-Cucks. Keep abortion legal.) I’ll take a slice of MYSTIC PIZZA instead. Or even SHAG THE MOVIE.

The Boy Who Could Fly (3) – 1986

Braveheart (3 ½) – 1995

Brazil (2) [2 ½] – 1985

Terry Gilliam’s star has faded over the years, but BRAZIL was greeted with plenty of accolades, and Ebert and Siskel were in the minority as nay-sayers. It’s a very busy film crammed with lots of ‘ideas’, but like the planet Jupiter, it’s more gas than core substance.

The Breakfast Club (3)[3] – 1985

It’s a dishonest and stupid movie pandering to the worst and most self-absorbed tendencies of American Youth but nevertheless works its magic within those contemptible perimeters. If you shut off your critical faculties and go along with the hammy cliches, it like MTV’s idea of Eugene O’Neill.

Breaking Away (4)[4] – 1979

The love story isn’t convincing. Would a girl so pretty and smart fall for such a guy with his ‘mama mia’ act? Still, it works as a dream, and the rest of the film has a wonderful combination of class realism and social nostalgia, of individualism and familism.

The Bridges of Madison County (3 ½) – 1995

Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep in a soapy movie based on Oprah’s Book of the Month. Wild Horses and the entire starship fleet will have to drag me to see this one.

Bright Angel (3 ½) – 1991

Bright Lights, Big City (3 ½)[3] – 1988

The book isn’t much, but the movie could have done with a less limited(and less well-known)actor — Michael J. Fox is indelibly Michael J. Fox — and more inspired director. What happened to the James Bridges who made PAPER CHASE, even URBAN COWBOY? This is directing-by-the-numbers. Phoebe Cates doesn’t add much either.

Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia (4) [3 ½] – 1974

Sam Peckinpah finally got to make a film exactly the way he wanted to, and the result ranges from powerful and fascinating to repulsive and ludicrous. I think Paul Seydor, an expert on Peckinpah, called it the worst of the great American Films. That sounds about right.

Broadcast News (4)[3] – 1987

Holly Hunter was on the up-and-up in the 80s, and this is her triumph. She plays an obsessive producer, a stickler to detail, a demanding boss. She’s a control-freak for whom everything has to be done by the letter. (If she’s so principled,why work in TV news than in print, where quality is easier to maintain?) But for all her commitment to standards and integrity, it’s a business after all, and she’s assigned to make a shallow(and rather dim) hunk look good. She also finds herself falling in love with him, and in the end, she must choose between principle and love. She chooses principle, but the man she rejected becomes a success anyway, and the news business is changed forever regardless. In between is a Jewish guy(who lacks the looks but has the smarts) who is driven(and driven half-crazy) by principles and personal issues, envy especially. In the end, they all accept their compromises and the world as it is and move on. They arrive at a certain peace but with a certain melancholy. The movie associates dumbness with shallow deception and intelligence with hard truth, but isn’t the bigger problem in our world the fact that so many smart Jews in academia and media are openly committed to spinning lies to maintain their facade of ‘muh democracy’ that amounts to little more than Jewish Supremacist Empire? What did Sam Harris say recently about Hunter Biden’s laptop? What is the strategy of Cass Sunstein and the NYT? Smart is better than dumb but no guarantee for integrity and truth.

The Buddy Holly Story (3 ½) – 1978

This is considered one of the better Rock n Roll movies, a superior biopic.

Bugsy (4) – 1991

Is Warren Beatty convincing as a hot-blooded Jewish gangster?

Busy Malone (3 ½) [2 ½] – 1976

A cute idea that works for about 15 min but isn’t enough to sustain a whole movie.

Bull Durham (3 ½)[3] – 1988

Heard this is a good movie but didn’t care for anything associated with baseball. Did finally see it, and yes, it was good, but I don’t remember a thing.

Bullets over Broadway (3 ½) [3 ½] – 1994

This certainly has its share of laughs, but a Woody Allen movie without Woody Allen is like a Clint Eastwood movie without Clint Eastwood. Where’s the beef? A kinder and nicer BARTON FINK.

Burden of Dreams (4) [3 ½] – 1982

Many consider APOCALYPSE NOW as one of the greatest in cinema, but naysayers nevertheless appreciate HEARTS OF DARKNESS the documentary on the making of Coppola’s film. Likewise, many viewers prefer BURDEN OF DREAMS over Wernor Herzog’s FITZCARRALDO, which is more forbidding than formidable despite(or precisely because) all the blood and sweat poured into it. Art isn’t about A for Effort.

Buster (3) – 1988

I heard this movie with Phil Collins is pretty fun.

The Butcher’s Wife (2 ½) – 1991

Bye Bye Brazil (4) [3 ½]- 1979

It follows a ramshackle circus troupe, reminiscent of early Fellini and Bergman. The communities in which the characters ply their trade have only a faint semblance of modernity. They are outcasts and hucksters but also bringers of joy and dreams to people that time forgot.

Bye Bye Love (2) – 1995

 

 
• Category: Arts/Letters • Tags: 1996, Movies, Roger Ebert 
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  1. Creepy Cosmopolitan Clown Culture Causing Civilization’s Collapse!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mTnPjWYsFbQ

  2. Hacienda says:

    I saw two of the movies on this list – Breaking Away, Blade Runner.

    Jewllywood is your metier, so you must have seen thru the subversive nature of Blade Runner. Still, an outstanding movie.

    No surprise that you rate Breaking Away highly. Indiana University was, maybe still is, a highly romantic place. If you’ve seen the campus, you would know. Breaking Away actually captured that. The limestone buildings. The capable and aware of their competence professionals. The snotty fraternities. The hot co-eds. Why Bob Knight coached there- tall white people who are really good at basketball. Surprisingly refined- high rated music department, art fairs that were actually good. And a working class that still cared- the cutters. The Midwest at its best. Heh, what a time that was.

    • Replies: @James J. O'Meara
  3. Franz says:

    Blade Runner – 1982

    The creation of Roy Batty by Rutger Hauer — pinnacle of 20th century film making.

    “I’ve seen things you people can’t imagine… gone… like tears in rain…”

    The one classic among the dross. Most classics are rare accidents like that.

    Seen by at least a few as a racial metaphor — the dynamic and strong, brought down by half-rotten soy boys who happen to outnumber them.

  4. Trinity says:

    “Badlands” was a good movie IMO. Loosely based on mass murderer, Charles Starkweather and his girlfriend going on a crime/ murder spree in the fitties.

    Always like movies based on true crime except unless they reverse the races like John Grisham. The original , ” In Cold Blood” with Robert Blake was an excellent movie, and Blake and the other actor were perfect for their roles as the two killers.

    No ” Born Losers” or ” Billy Jack?” Billy Jack , the leftist version of Dirty Harry with White boy Tom Laughlin playing a half breed Injun. Those Billy Jack movies were typical anti White propaganda that was common place back then and still continues to this day. Dude, had a cool hat though.

    • Replies: @AceDeuce
  5. “Badlands” was a good movie IMO. Loosely based on mass murderer, Charles Starkweather and his girlfriend going on a crime/ murder spree in the fitties.

    More relevant than ever. US has become a cultural badlands run by psychos and supported by idiots.

  6. Dumbo says:

    A middle-aged man hooks up with a young woman but dumps her in the most unceremonious way imaginable. She gets even by turning him into a paraplegic and having sex with ghastly Negro.

    LOL. Why do you watch all this crap? Polansky had two good movies, Rosemary’s Baby and The Tenant (maybe Repulsion too, with a young Deneuve), but ALL of his movies including the good ones are about Satanism, sexual perversion or extremely evil stuff. All of them. No wonder Sharon Tate was murdered, and I wonder if he wasn’t in on it too.

    P.S. The observation about Back to the Future is interesting. I liked it when it came out, but using a time machine to go to the past in order to change one’s parents into cooler ones seems a silly idea in retrospect, and just a stupid teenage fantasy. All teenagers think their parents are uncool, no matter what they are in reality. Using a time machine as the gimmick for that is a bit of a waste.

    • Replies: @silviosilver
  7. Trinity says:

    “Betrayed” starring Tom Berenger and (((Deborah Winger.))) Borrows from a real life incident where a ” White Supremacist” group called ” The Order” shot a Jewish radio talk show host in Denver. In the REEL version a group of “White Supremacists” shoot and kill a Jewish radio shit stirrer in Chicago.

    Decent movie if you can get past the anti White propaganda. Typical anti White stereotypes, super smart negro FBI agent, angelic Jew killed by evil Whitey, hehe, almost comedy disguised as drama. Came out in 1988, and I couldn’t understand why the “racist” White yahoos would hate Heebs back then. “Hunting” scene portrays the White plow boys as savages hunting down and shooting a Dindu in cold blood.

    As per usual, REEL is the inverse of REAL. Still worth watching.

  8. @Hacienda

    All I know about Indiana University is that when Héctor-Neri Castañeda was head of the Philosophy dept at Wayne State in Detroit, it was one of if not the best analytic departments in the US; then Castañeda went to Indiana University in 1969 and took about half the department — the good ones — with him. It never recovered. When I was there in the 80s people were still bitching about Hector.

  9. Hacienda says:

    Maybe he was the best. But, philosophers have this ability to seem much smarter than they actually are. And they truly do make fanciful by word games and new names for the same things. Keeps their customers. It’s like Wall Street brokers and investment managers- they simply cannot say that they provide no value. Although it is a proven point that they in fact provide no value. For one of them to say to a customer “I provide no value” would mean that they immediate lose that customer. Philosophers and most academics at this point are in the same boat. They simply cannot be honest with their students and say- “I provide no value. I mean at least beyond showing the right doors, meeting people, making things “fun” and “exciting”. This is what makes me great.”

  10. “I provide no value. I mean at least beyond showing the right doors, meeting people, making things “fun” and “exciting”.

    Without agreeing with any of your assumptions, and without trying to play Logic Nazi, I must point out that

    “I provide no value”

    does not follow from

    “showing the right doors, meeting people, making things “fun” and “exciting”.

    Ask Bill Gates. Or the boys at RAND.

    • Replies: @Hacienda
  11. Hacienda says:
    @James J. O'Meara

    Do you know the distinction between analytic and synthetic philosophy? It seems to be the crux of the miscommunication here.

    I’m in favor of more synthetic philosophy. Analytic philosophy is crippling.

  12. @Dumbo

    P.S. The observation about Back to the Future is interesting. I liked it when it came out, but using a time machine to go to the past in order to change one’s parents into cooler ones seems a silly idea in retrospect, and just a stupid teenage fantasy. All teenagers think their parents are uncool, no matter what they are in reality. Using a time machine as the gimmick for that is a bit of a waste.

    That was a particularly humorless take on a very enjoyable film. Look, Marty didn’t go back in time in order to change his parents. In fact, he didn’t deliberately go back in time at all; he got there by freak accident. Once there, his mission became to get back to 1985 and make sure his parents meet and fall in love (which, thanks to yet another accident, it seems they might not). That’s why he finds himself needing to “change his parents” (actually, just his dad), because if his mom doesn’t fall in love with his dad, according to the movie’s time-travel logic, he will cease to exist. What would have Jung-Freud done in his place? Made to understand by the Professor that his future existence was in peril, wouldn’t he try to talk his dad into making a move on future mom as well? Or would he tell himself, “damn, seems dad was always a massive dork, oh well, let us accept things as they are”? If the movie has any kind of theme, it’s the outsized effect that chance events can have on our lives. The movie exaggerates this to the hilt, but so what?

    • Replies: @Priss Factor
  13. @silviosilver

    Look, Marty didn’t go back in time in order to change his parents. In fact, he didn’t deliberately go back in time at all; he got there by freak accident.

    You’re talking as if the kid is for real in a real-life event.

    The whole thing is a movie constructed by the writers. So, even the ‘accidental’ things in the movie were designed to be ‘determined’.

    The movie clearly opens with a kid who loves his parents but is disappointed by them. He’s a rather likeable and cool kid, but his parents are such mopes who belong in a Todd Solondz movie.

    The writers cook up a scenario where he’s sent back in time and to DO WHAT? To fix the thing between his father and mother, which alters the future. With his help, the father(as young guy) finally mans up and asserts his place in the pecking order. So, it means his mother got to marry a Real Man than a dork, and that one moment changes the whole future.

    This is a fantasy about parents. TERMINATOR plays on the same logic but on a grimmer level. In the TERMINATOR, Sarah Connors is just a ne’er-do-well, a waitress of no great talent or dream. But someone from the future turns her into what she must be, was really meant to be: a fascist warrior for the human race.

    At any rate, there are no ‘accidents’ in narratives. Even when someone slips on a banana peel, it was put there by the writers.

  14. You’re talking as if the kid is for real in a real-life event.

    Of course I am. That’s perfectly normal when discussing a movie or a play or a novel.

    The writers cook up a scenario where he’s sent back in time and to DO WHAT? To fix the thing between his father and mother, which alters the future.

    According to you, the writers had an idea for a movie about a kid fixing the relationship between his parents, and the way they came up with was to have him accidentally travel back in time. This strikes you as more likely than the writers having had an idea about a car that can travel through time, kid gets in it and accidentally travels 30 years back and now what’s he do? You seriously reckon your version is more likely than this? Lol, okay.

    Personally, I think your take is ridiculous. I think it’s much more likely the writers send him back in time and then, needing something more than just finding a power source for the time machine, they come up with the idea of him having to make sure his parents meet and fall in love, else he’ll cease to exist and the whole ‘fabric of time and space’ risks being altered. Can’t have him thinking 1955 was a better time to be white than 1985, so hmm why not just stay there. And anyone with the vaguest idea of future stock market performance could have made a mint starting in 1955. Or you could even just have fun being an uncannily accurate guru predictor of various sporting and political events. There’s no reason anyone would automatically want to return to the time period he came from. Hence the necessity of the you’ll-cease-to-exist plotline.

    How much ‘fixing’ does Marty do anyway? His advice to his dad is no more than any other guy would give a friend in that situation. “She likes you bro, I can tell. Just go up to her and be confident!” When he comes back to 1985 he’s not expecting anything to have changed. He’s not wiping his brow thinking, phew, glad I fixed all that. He’s expecting the same old, same old. He’s as astonished as we are by the changes that have come over his parents.

    TERMINATOR plays on the same logic but on a grimmer level.

    You must be referring to the ‘logic’ needed to make your argument work. Otherwise, there are no important parallels here.

    At any rate, there are no ‘accidents’ in narratives. Even when someone slips on a banana peel, it was put there by the writers.

    Gosh, I had no idea writers deliberately come up with the stories they tell. Thanks for setting me straight on that.

    Oh and BTW, “Body Snatchers”? I checked it out on the strength of your and Ebert’s rating. I couldn’t take more than 40 minutes of it. Worse than even a shit-tier Stephen King movie.

    • Replies: @Priss Factor
  15. Uncle Joe says:

    What exactly is a “balless cuck maggot?” A writer who hurls insults under an assumed name?

    Hard to understand Unz’ obsession with some of this garbage. Between this guy and Anglin I find it impossible to recommend this site to anyone, even with all the intelligent content.

  16. What exactly is a “balless cuck maggot?”

    Take a good look at CucKen Burns.

    • LOL: Trinity
  17. @silviosilver

    Of course I am. That’s perfectly normal when discussing a movie or a play or a novel.

    No, only when it’s a serious work of art, in which case the artist creates and empathizes with a richly drawn character. Such an artist is after truth and meaning, and the character represents the complexity of life. The artist imagines the character as a living and thinking being with free will. He discovers surprising things in the creation of characters.

    But this isn’t so in most pop culture and propaganda. Characters are thinly drawn and made to serve an agenda, spread a message, or serve a purpose. Michael J. Fox is a thin pop culture character, and his adventure is about the anxiety of ‘cool’, so relevant to pop culture mentality. It’s a fantasy of having cooler parents than the one you have, and the whole adventure is predicated on rigging the past so that the future(the present) turns out better for your family. It’s okay as fantasy, and the movie is good for what it is. Still, I think it’s more meaningful to accept people as they are than fantasizing they’d be what you wish them to be.

    Personally, I think your take is ridiculous. I think it’s much more likely the writers send him back in time and then, needing something more than just finding a power source for the time machine

    But how does the movie begin? The beginning sets the tone. A cool kid is stuck in an uncool family. That is posited as the problem, which needs to be corrected, and the movie corrects it by time travel.

    I prefer the fantasy in IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE that teaches George Bailey to accept himself and people around him for what they are, warts and all. Reality isn’t altered for Bailey. His heart is changed, and through that, he’s able to see anew what seemed old and stale.

    • Replies: @silviosilver
  18. @Priss Factor

    No, only when it’s a serious work of art, in which case the artist creates and empathizes with a richly drawn character.

    Come off it, there isn’t any such rule. People are free to discuss any work of art they like, serious or unserious. You of all people should be able to grant that – has anyone in the entire history of the internet spilled as much ink discussing movies as you? (Not that I’m complaining. I enjoy reading your views. And although I don’t always agree with them, I usually find your views thought-provoking. Nice to have them collected in one place now.)

    Still, I think it’s more meaningful to accept people as they are than fantasizing they’d be what you wish them to be.

    Really? There’s no room in your world for idle fantasizing about how things might have been different? I didn’t expect you to be such a killjoy.

    • Replies: @Priss Factor
  19. Btw, how come “Body Heat” with William Hurt and Kathleen Turner wasn’t on this list? I know Ebert reviewed it. Wasn’t it included in this book or did you accidentally skip it? Definitely one of my personal faves.

    Also, there were two movies called “Blown Away” made in the 90s. The earlier one, not reviewed here, with Corey Haim, Corey Feldman and Nicole Eggert, for some reason – it was a pretty silly film – enthralled me as a teen. That Nicole Eggert, what a babe, I suppose that was one reason.

  20. Btw, how come “Body Heat” with William Hurt and Kathleen Turner wasn’t on this list?

    Not in 1996 edition.

    Noir by mush-head Kasdan? Is it good?

  21. @silviosilver

    Really? There’s no room in your world for idle fantasizing about how things might have been different? I didn’t expect you to be such a killjoy.

    About oneself, sure.

    About others, not so much.

  22. AceDeuce says:
    @Trinity

    No ” Born Losers” (sic) or ” Billy Jack?” Billy Jack , the leftist version of Dirty Harry with White boy Tom Laughlin playing a half breed Injun. Those Billy Jack movies were typical anti White (sic) propaganda that was common place (sic) back then…

    You whine about “anti-White propaganda” and yet you refer to Tom Laughlin as a “White boy”?

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