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larbeck's reviews view profile

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An amazing film  
on February 23, 2004 - 5:43 PM PST
  of The Big Blue (Director's Cut) (1988)
4 out of 7 members found this review helpful

I saw the cut American release and did not remember it being this good! Can there be a better complaint for a director's cut? Eric Serra score is wonderful, too and the "isolated score" feature is a nice bonus. But it is the contrast of the three personalities and the interplay between them that makes the film special.
Even mindess, yet still a waste of time  
on February 14, 2004 - 2:01 PM PST
  of Mystery Men (1999)
3 out of 10 members found this review helpful

It is unbelieve to see the great talent wasting in this turkey. And then this also where I learned to hate Ben Stiller. Keep in the lower 500 of your queue, if you must. But there is so much better things to see.
Theresa Russell  
on February 8, 2004 - 10:09 AM PST
  of Black Widow (1987)
1 out of 2 members found this review helpful

Theresa Russell is *so* evil in this! You will love hating her! Especially this scene (that I do not want to give away) where she gives this man a choice to either die happy or just die!
Perhaps the greatest comedy of 2003!  
on February 4, 2004 - 12:42 PM PST
  of Intolerable Cruelty (2003)
6 out of 13 members found this review helpful

I locked my keys in the car and I was late to see "School of Rock" and so I ended up seeing this instead. A much BETTER movie! The funniest movie of the year - but it *is* dark. There is a rather gross scene of violence, but both Clooney and Zeta-Jones prove what capabilible and flexible actors they are. One of the Coen Bros.'s third or four best - and that is a hell of a lot better than most filmmakers best any day!
Knebworth, scence of the greatest performance in rock'n'rock history  
on January 31, 2004 - 6:00 AM PST
  of Led Zeppelin (Disc 2 of 2) (2003)
3 out of 3 members found this review helpful

See part 1 for the first part of review....[BEWARE OF FANBOY MAXIMUS! All rationality is lost with sound of Zeppelin here!]

We have four tunes that did not make to the "The Song Remains the Same" including an alternate version of the single greatest blues song of human history ("Ever Since I Been Loving You"). But it is the Knebworth footage that is the best ever seen - of any musicians, anywhere anytime. Plant shines on "In My Time of Dying". Pagey rips open the sky with "Achilles Last Stand". John Paul Jones's work with the groundbreaking Yamaha GX-1 synth makes the mix ring the halls of Heaven while John Bonham (who I remember everytime I hear thunder) shakes the pillars of Hell. Between "In The Evening" and "Kashmir" it just never great better than this. I fear it never will.

I am seriously considering getting "Led Zeppelin FOREVER" on my gravestone.
The great music of all time  
on January 31, 2004 - 5:35 AM PST
  of Led Zeppelin (Disc 1 of 2) (2003)
2 out of 3 members found this review helpful

Okay, I am so biased. Fanboy Alert! I cannot be rational about Led Zeppelin. But consider, you pop in the disc and IMMEDIATELY you go the the first menu. This first half has vintage performances from the early days, warts and all. And Pagey solicted bootlegs from the fans to including this package - as Led Zeppelin never really cared much about filming themselves at the time because it was all about the MUSIC, maaaannnnn!

My first VHS tape was "The Song Remains the Same". My first DVD was "The Song Remains the Same". But when that day somes and I score that huge-mo home theater rig and whatever HD DVD format wins the war, my first HD DVD will be this one!!!

Rent it if you have any doubts. But seriously, how come you do not own it yet? I don't think I could be seriously involved with someone who doesn't own this DVD. How could I respect them?
Sooo utterly stooop and pid  
on January 31, 2004 - 5:18 AM PST
  of Dazed and Confused (1993)
1 out of 9 members found this review helpful

Homeboy Richard Linklater is a bit of a Big Deal here in Austin and I really love "Slacker" and "Beyond Sunrise" is great! But this is just full of the most stupid people on the planet and it is just a sad thang to watch. It is reported to be based on the director's life experience and THAT is so sad. Sadder still, it that when it was filmed at Bedichek Middle School, that mural was added to the school. Then when filming was over, it was restored without the graffiti and they are actually PROUD of this mural with Richard [explictive deleted] Nixon on the school wall!!!

AAAAGGGGGGGHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!! I swear our school district must sniff glue with Linkletter!!!!
I tell you what!  
on January 30, 2004 - 6:11 PM PST
  of A Huey P. Newton Story (2001)
5 out of 10 members found this review helpful

The next cracker that hands me a DVD with a two minute commerical at the very beginning that cannot be skipped, cannot be fast forwarded is the next mofo up against the wall come the revolution and I don't give a freak WHAT colour his mama is! I believe Brother Huey, Brother Eldrige (Cleaver), Brother Bobby (Seale) and all the other Panthers would be down with THAT!

But other than that, Roger Guenveur Smith does a great, great job channeling Huey and Spike put together a wonderful video of his performance. A great history lesson, required for people of Amerika - RIGHT ON!

Now to hell with mule, I just want my 40 acres and make it downtown, JACK!
I hated it at first, and started to love it  
on January 29, 2004 - 7:37 AM PST
  of The Man Who Fell to Earth (1976)
4 out of 4 members found this review helpful

This ain't no action picture. Actually, I believe it was a more mature film that I was when I first saw it. I hated it the first time. But after more viewing, I learned to love it and appreciate how it was really a groundbreaking film and perhaps ahead of it's time, in term of display a sense of angst in an artistic yet still cinematic way.

SPOILER: The really great thing about the film is the alien invasion is not defeated by a super weapon or crafty military technique but by convert agents who marginize and discredit this scout rather than killing and just render his ineffective and sad. And have the alien but so phyiscal fragile was inspired.

And, this from Robert Lloyd:

'Screenwriter Paul Mayersberg has described its parade of scenes as "circus acts following one another -- the funny, the violent, the frightening, the sad, the horrific, the spectacular." Roeg delights here in "taking away the crutch of time" ("It has puzzled people whether 25 minutes or 25 years have passed in the film"), eliminating transitions, cross-cutting, flashing forward and back, piling dissolve upon dissolve, letting the camera jerk and twirl and zoom -- finding new ways to see familiar things, while speculating on what the world might look like to someone from Out There.'

Not your normal film, not at all. And beside Bowie great, great performance, I was introduction to both Rip Torn and Buck Henry in this film.
To add to ColonelKong's excellent review...  
on January 26, 2004 - 10:32 AM PST
  of Once Upon a Time in Mexico (2003)
2 out of 3 members found this review helpful

I saw the film twice in the theater and I am a Rodriguez fan, without a doubt. And I believe this film proves that HiDef video has arrived! I did read some criticism of the garish colours in the scenery, especially in the streets of "Mexico City". But what these bakas did not realize that it was filmed in San Miguel de Allende and after spending a week there in the summer, in the clear mountain air, actually the colours seem a bit MUTED from the reality!!!

San Miguel, rawks, by the way, if you ever want to visit the Mexican interior.
Must see horror story for all parents  
on January 20, 2004 - 1:17 PM PST
  of Thirteen (2002)
9 out of 11 members found this review helpful

Nikki Reed co-wrote the screenplay based on her life, but Evan Rachel Wood plays her character. A great film of a teen gone wild, driven by pain so deep the sky cries. Holly Hunter is wonderful as always. Probably the best indy film of 2003. Catherine Hardwicke has crafted a masterpiece.
Nope, not funny  
on January 14, 2004 - 7:20 PM PST
  of Curb Your Enthusiasm: Season 1 (Disc 1 of 2) (2000)
2 out of 18 members found this review helpful

Not funny at all. Larry David is about the most unsymphetic character ever - PATHthic, actuall and it is painful to see the guest stars he brings to this cosmic waste of time.
The first anime movie I saw that was not great...  
on January 13, 2004 - 3:09 PM PST
  of The Castle of Cagliostro (1980)
1 out of 6 members found this review helpful

It wasn't *bad* - it is just not great. I had seen "Laputa:Castle in the Sky", "Akira", "Twilight of the Cockroaches" (not available on DVD at this writing) and "Barefoot Gen" at the theater before seeing this one and it left me cold. I only discovered later that Miyazaki directed it and that just proves that no one is perfect. Your milage will vary, but if any other Miyazaki film is available - I recommend any of them over this one - especially if it came after this.
Originally marketed as "a kinky sort of science fiction.."  
on January 10, 2004 - 8:14 AM PST
  of A Boy and His Dog (1975)
0 out of 14 members found this review helpful

..and it was - and not necessarily in a sexual sense either, but that is included as well. Neither Don Johnson or Jason Robards have been so animal or that dog so human. Well, except for the end.

[Larbeck walks off into the sunset, wickedly giggling to himself]
An amazing film, very good!  
on December 31, 2003 - 1:49 PM PST
  of Bounce Ko Gals (1998)
13 out of 14 members found this review helpful

An amazing film, as good as indy film I have seen in English but with a very modern Japanese outlook. There is this one scene while a Yakuza confronts a ko GAL...

Yakuza: How come you gals do so well? Every yakuza in Japan wants to know...but there's no one to ask.

Ko GAL: There's nothing special about us. Even in elementary school men are offering you 10,000 yen for a kiss. 20,000 to watch them masturbate... I don't know a girl who hasn't been groped on the train. That's what this country's like.

Yakuza: Perverted men treating women as objects?

Ko GAL: Trolling for us with money.

Yakuza: But why? Well? Why can you get 100,000 yen just for karaoke?

Ko GAL: Adults these days don't have any sense. They're like children, so real children have power.

Yakuza: And they take advantage of the grown-ups.

Ko GAL: Money is everything in this world. I won't kiss you for 10,000 yen, but for a million yen, I might. If a man had any sense, it would stop there. But there are guys who'll say "sure!" It's a pretty scary place, this world of ours.

No nudity, a bit of violence and language, no sex really but a great story and some fair acting by some young Japanese girls and you will be amazing at....well, I don't wanna give it any.
Film school offal  
on December 26, 2003 - 9:13 PM PST
  of Morvern Callar (2002)
4 out of 7 members found this review helpful

Samantha Morton and Kathleen McDermott are good actors. The tragedy is that their talent is so wasted in this terrible film, an aimless examination of a working class girl and her best friend who tries to cope with her boyfriend's suicide. Nothing is explained, little is resolved, that the journey is a disjoined mess that borrows from more B pictures than anyone cares to count and a selection of music that it was cut and pasted from a dentist's office, a factory, and a Z-grade bargain basement CD bin. Any decent film school would have rejected this entry and you should too. Also, a warning. There are no subtitles of any kind and the Scottish accent are thick. There is dialog that is totally unintelligible to these Texas ears. But sadly, I don't think it matters a bit.
The most expensive film ever made...  
on December 24, 2003 - 7:10 AM PST
  of For All Mankind (Criterion Collection) (1989)
6 out of 6 members found this review helpful

...with a budget of over 50 billion dollars and no hope for a sequel for many years. But all kidding aside, to make it with with only the voices of the astronauts and a score by Brian Eno was so inspired - it is a beautiful film, inspite of the fact it was shot mainly with low resolution video. It will probably look better on TV than it did on the movie screen.
I liked it!  
on December 16, 2003 - 9:24 AM PST
  of Johnny Mnemonic (1995)
5 out of 5 members found this review helpful

Okay, it is far from the best film ever made and was in no danger of winning an Oscar but I found the film rather enjoyable. The first William Gibson story to make it to the big screen and Ice-T is always good. That dolphin-in-a-tank biocomputer was a big mistake (it probably should have been a disembodied dolphin's brain in a bottle) but I hate the way this film is frequently the butt of jokes. It is no "Plan 9 from Outer Space" or "Ishtar" by any means.
A must see for all Americans  
on December 9, 2003 - 9:24 AM PST
  of Waco: The Rules of Engagement (1997)
11 out of 14 members found this review helpful

I saw this right after it came out. You may think you know how bad it was, just from reading the mainstream media. Using our government's own audio tapes and video, this documentary details one of the worst failures in U.S. law enforcement, due process all gone to hell, as they turned this stand off into a proving ground for new spy tech and mind control techniques that horrible failed on religious nuts. Sure the Branch Davidians were weird and probably some need to go to jail but they never deserved this - and certainly not all of those children. I could never trust President Clinton again after this and it just re-enforces my distrust of our Federales.
Oh, no! Watch for this...  
on December 9, 2003 - 9:08 AM PST
  of Metropolis (Moroder Edition) (1984)
1 out of 2 members found this review helpful

...and maybe it WILL make it to DVD someday. The critics ripped Giorgio Moroder for his music score and some mild colourization of this classic, but I must attempt, I loved it. Especially, the use of Pat Benetar's "This is my Heart" at the climax, the reconcilition of the heart and hands represented by the rebel worker and the Capitalist Leader. It sure beats the hell out of the rinky-tink piano score I got on a $4 VHS version recorded at LP.
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