Change Your Image
Upload An Image
Crop And Save
ListsAn error has ocurred. Please try again
This is a wonderful film and will be especially delightful for people familiar with "A Christmas Carol" and with Dickens in general, but you don't need any background to enjoy it. Basically the film tells the story of how Dickens came to write this classic. The writer's process imagined in this film is true to life for many of us who are writers, though it isn't the only way from pen to paper.
Great acting, good sets, and great music with an excellent script help make this a new classic. The only deficit I saw was the less than opulent sets, which is why I gave it a 9 instead of a 10.
The special gift in this film is seeing Christopher Plummer back on the big screen. Jonathan Price also stands out as Dicken's father.
Go see this film. Go see it especially at the Xmas season.
By many standards, Australians are a bit quirky, and among Australians, Tasmanians are even more quirky. This assessment is from someone who lived there for 5 years and loved the place and the people. Nowhere have I seen this quirkiness captured better than in this series. The characterizations are so good that they are sometimes painful, but you get pain when you get so close to the truth. If you like the first episode, then stay with it because it gets better.
Lacks appealing characters
This series has a lot to recommend it, including the theme which is not normally addressed. I also like that there are no well known actors, so someone's future is not determined by their star power. But I watched the first 6 episodes and couldn't find any characters that appealed to me. In addition, I really noticed only one recurring character, who is a minor one in most of the episodes. I like to root for or against characters, and on occasion I like to imagine how I would do in any given situation. In this series I haven't been able to do it. Perhaps I should keep viewing more episodes, but I think 6 is sufficient.
Secret History of Comics (2017)
Wonder Woman is Wonderful
I've seen only the episode on Wonder Woman and it was great. The documentary goes back and provides great archival footage of the people who developed the original story line, but more interesting, it provides a look at the times and how this interacted with the people involved. They follow the history of Wonder Woman and the evolution of the character, and along the way they are many talking heads who provide a context in which to view the people and the comics.
OK but not up to the talent
This film has some really great actors in it - Sydney Greenstreet, Spencer Tracey, Lionel Barrymore, James Stewart, Gilbert Roland, John Hodiak, Richard Loo, etc. And it's got an exotic location (Malaya) and a war-time plot (getting rubber to outfit the US war machine in WW2). But it never manages to get going, maybe because Spencer Tracey was never really an "action" star, or maybe because the director Richard Thorpe, while prolific, wasn't particularly skilled in this genre (he's best known for Ivanhoe, Knights of the Round Table, The Great Caruso, The Student Prince).
It's worth a look, and Barrymore and Greenstreet do their usual wonderful jobs.
The Master Race (1944)
Ties to HUAC
Herbert Biberman (1900-1971) is the writer and director of this 1944 film. Biberman was a member of the left wing theatre group in New York City and was married to Gale Sondergaard. Both Biberman and Sondergaard were victims of the HUAC "red scare" Biberman served time in prison and both were blacklisted.
This was his third film as director, fifth as a writer.
Lloyd Bridges (1913-1998) has a minor role in the film. Bridges too was briefly blacklisted but turned around and would be a staunch right wing presence.
(Doc) Robert Golden produced the film. He also produced "Hitler's Children" (1943) which was directed by Edward Dmytryk, another director imprisoned during the HUAC trials. "Hitler's Children" was the most successful film for RKO, even surpassing King Kong, and led to this film being made.
From the film there aren't many obvious communist themes, but there is a sympathetic Russian soldier and there is a lot of emphasis on people working together. The film is ardently anti-Nazi.
George Coulouris (1903-1989) gives the best performance of his career. Osa Massen (1914-2006) is excellent.
Hollywood on Trial (1976)
This is a tough film to rate. In 1976 it would rate an 8 because it was revealing a topic that was being hidden. In 2017 you won't find much new here nor will it seem so strange.
The bottom line, of course, is that the film industry is not exempt from political influence, as if anyone needed to know that today. But even in the 40s and 50s, the film industry had already gone through the political editing for sexual content, and certainly the war films of the 40s were in response to political initiatives.
This film is well worth watching, but it will seem tame now.
Half a story
A film like this is viewed through the lense of our experience. In the 60s I was politically active, adored Bobby Kennedy and despised LBJ. So naturally I think the film was too kind to LBJ and too unkind to Bobby. But let's put that aside and look at the film itself.
The acting by Woody Harrelson and Jennifer Jason Leigh is excellent. You think you're watching the real thing. They are the only two actors who do such great job, and the others do OK.
There is a real sense that this is a docudrama rather than a film.
My main criticism is that the film makers stopped in mid film. The story of LBJ didn't end with the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It continued through the devastation of the Vietnam War. The true story is how Johnson squandered the legacy of JFK with his foreign policy, and all that is left out.
What I enjoy most in this series is how the writers weave in Shakespeare's lines from his plays into the dialogue. Though it's fictional, I can easily imagine that this is how he constructed some of his best dialogues.
I also enjoy the music, the locations, the costumes, and just about everything else. No this isn't a documentary nor even a docudrama, because so little is know about Shakespeare. Indeed, some claim he never existed at all, but if he did exist, his life could well have been like this.
What a marvelous treat this series is.
PS - the only change I would make is when they create this dialogue that will later appear in a play or sonnet, I wish they had captioned it and showed the form as it ultimately appeared.
"...works his wonders in mysterious ways..."
The idea of God working his wonder through an unlikely character is as old as the Bible. There have been several films ("Oh God" series comes to mind right away) and TV series (the best one was "Eli Stone"), and most of them are comedies with just a slight religious overtone. KPSW doesn't give as any more than these films/series did, but it is entertaining with a good cast, especially Jason Ritter.