"Never hurrying, but never lingering, The Inglorious Bastards is a tribute to the kind of relaxed, professional B-list filmmaking that existed for decades before it was killed by television and rising production costs," writes Grady Hendrix in the New York Sun. "In [Enzo] Castellari's hands, a gang of naked, submachine-gun-wielding Nazi women comes off like just another surreal incident on the way to the Swiss border. In [Quentin] Tarantino's remake, it will probably be a breathless, glossy shot that reviewers will talk about for years. But while the remake will most likely have a Saving Private Ryan-size budget and A-list stars, it probably won't be able to recapture the original's sense of a professional team of men on a mission: to complete their movie against all odds."
"Yet another very good American movie that vanished from theaters in the blink of an eye but will be found enduring on on the DVD shelf is George A Romero's Diary of the Dead," writes Daniel Kasman. "The lean, but robust umpteenth entry in the director's decade-spanning zombie series, Diary of the Dead, on its modest scale, gets it all right: broad but brawny characterizations, stalwart, plucky survival, a healthy dose of social criticism, and uncomfortable, necessary violence." Related: Philippa Hawker's interview with Romero in the Age.
"Lucifer Rising exists as an intersection between two filmic ideas, and it is within this intersection that the film gains it's power," writes Mike at Esotika Erotica Psychotica: "more than any other film, Kenneth Anger's Lucifer Rising is about spectacle and hypnosis."
For Michael Atkinson, writing at IFC, Wholphin "might be the most relentlessly fascinating and inventive showcase for new short films in the country." Also: "The new Flicker Alley set, Perils of the New Land, is straight as an arrow, collecting pre-World War I silents that address, in of course outrageously pulpy and melodramatic and stereotypical ways, the issues facing turn-of-the-century immigrants in America (New York, precisely)."
Dave Kehr in the New York Times on Tyrone Power: "Though the source of his appeal is evident - his only rival for physical beauty on the Fox lot was his frequent costar, Loretta Young - the secret of his endurance is harder to pin down. Hollywood in the 1930s did not lack for strikingly handsome leading men, but while most of his chiseled brethren sooner or later fell by the wayside, Power continued to be a box office force until his premature death in 1958."
"I know of few films that reveal more of what 'life is about' than Charles Burnett's Killer of Sheep." A review from J Robert Parks. Related: The Errata podcast.
"Dance Party, USA moves from a shocking, hilariously recognizable profane rant to the bloom of teen love, and it never misses a beat along the way," writes Vadim Rizov at the House Next Door. As for the other Aaron Katz film in Benten's box, "If Quiet City is annoying and fascinating in equal measure, it nonetheless offers another counter-argument to the supposedly monolithic nature of m*****core: it's the most gorgeous film out of the movement."
Peter Nellhaus: "The Free Will is ultimately about is the choices one makes in life, assuming that they are choices, the responsibility for the actions one takes, and that no matter what we do, we finally end up alone either in death or to face a future that can still offer unexpected possibilities." Also, Lee Kang-sheng's Help Me Eros.
Guy Savage has the Noir of the Week: Bob le flambeur.
Paul Matwychuk on Car Wash: "Even on my tiny iPod screen, the film was bursting with life, good humour, and a vivid sense of time and place."
Glenn Kenny's "Monday Morning Foreign Region DVD Report" is now happening in the Auteurs' Notebook, and first up in the new locale is Budd Boetticher's Seminole, "an Eastern Western, as it were—it's set in Florida, and it star Rock Hudson as Lt Lance Caldwell, a West Point graduate with roots there, and connections to its peaceful Seminole tribe - a tribe that Caldwell's commanding officer, Major Harlan Degan (Richard Carlson), intends to drive out of the land.... The Optimum disc, alas, doesn’t do the film many favors."
Online viewing tip. Jim Emerson presents a "condensed version of David Fincher's 1999 comedy masterpiece, Fight Club, to accompany and expand on my personal/critical essay."
DVD roundups: Sean Axmaker, DVD Talk, PopMatters and Slant.
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