MEMENTO

Poffy The Cucumber

The Reverse Genius Principle. 9) And that’s when we realize we could never be sure of anything to begin with. 8) When Leonard eventually thinks he has found his wife’s killer, eleventh-hour reveals shock us with the possibility that his whole crisis may be nothing more than delusion. 7) Editing MEMENTO must have been like navigating inside Las Vegas hotels with … Read More

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FLAGS OF OUR FATHERS

Poffy The Cucumber

Raising Glory: the sham behind the glam. When the legend becomes fact, print the legend. – Reporter, THE MAN WHO SHOT LIBERTY VALANCE (1962). Director Clint Eastwood‘s waving-flag film is, ironically and thankfully, the farthest from a Flag Waving maroon-necker as a post 9-11 American movie can be. When I learned of this film’s production last year, I admit to … Read More

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THE DEPARTED

Poffy The Cucumber

Martin Scorsese’s Badfellas. Cops who are robbers. Robbers who are cops. And a hip hop star synonymous with exposed underpants who steals the show. A welcome return to form for the premier gangster movie-maker, Martin Scorsese, who bats one outa the park with THE DEPARTED. Ferociously funny, doggedly compelling, a tour de force of gritty production, tightly-wound storyline, sneeringly salty … Read More

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MATCH POINT

Poffy The Cucumber

Unmatched. There is such a brilliant hook in Woody Allen‘s MATCH POINT that to say anything about it would ruin its impact. So I’m going to anyway. It’s the woman in me. Writer-director Allen leans so heavily on the tennis idiom (from opening the film with a tennis analogy dependent on luck – a ball nicking the top edge of … Read More

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A PERFECT WORLD

Poffy The Cucumber

A Perfect Vision of an Imperfect World. Nature versus nurture. Fathers versus sons. Justice versus The Law. T-bones versus tater tots. The power of Clint Eastwood’s films has always come from Eastwood’s bravado in addressing moral ambiguity. (Even his death-dealing avenger films – the DOLLAR trilogy, JOSEY WALES, the DIRTY HARRY series, etc. – are so powerful not because of … Read More

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BEING JOHN MALKOVICH

Poffy The Cucumber

The Importance of Being Malkovich. It’s about a puppeteer who finds a portal into the head of a real-life actor… No, it’s about an over-sexed, 105-year-old pirate who runs a company on the 7 ½ floor of a building who has found a way to live forever… No, it’s about a woman who realizes she is transsexual after having sex … Read More

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TOY STORY

Poffy The Cucumber

Plastic Fantastic. Y’know, I always suspected my toys were coming to life when I wasn’t looking! In TOY STORY, young Andy’s toys lead lives of noisy desperation come every birthday and Christmas – no one wants to be one-upped by a new addition to the toy box. Led by Cowboy Woody (there’s a BROKEBACK joke just waiting to happen), Mr. … Read More

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V FOR VENDETTA

Poffy The Cucumber

V versus W: No Betta Vendetta. …an expression of a mood, and it is a warning. The mood it expresses is that of near despair about the future of man, and the warning is that unless the course of history changes, men all over the world will lose their most human qualities, will become soulless automatons, and will not even … Read More

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THE SOPRANOS – SEASON 3-32: UNIVERSITY

Poffy The Cucumber

Bringing True Violence to the Simulated Screen. Once again, THE SOPRANOS explores the nature of True Violence, impacting our atrophied sensibilities with its directness. But how is the beating to death of a stripper so disturbing to our supposedly hardened psyches? Surely what we have seen over the years on our cathode-ray tubes and in darkened theaters has prepared us … Read More

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THE SOPRANOS – SEASON 3-30: EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH

Poffy The Cucumber

The Antisocial Truth behind the Socially-Acceptable Fiction. THE SOPRANOS leans heavily on Freud. And I’m a Freud kinda guy (over a Jung kinda guy – as I am a Nietzsche Kinda Guy over a Kant Kinda Guy – and no, I did not appreciate the shot at Nietzsche in Episode 20 (“D-Girl”), “Nietzsche wound up talkin’ to his horse”). Freud … Read More

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JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR

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Nails It. A rockgasmic Judas-eye view of the last days of Christ. Directed by Norman Jewison (FIDDLER ON THE ROOF) and powered by the mountain-leveling throats of Ted Neeley (Jesus) and Carl Anderson (Judas), JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR is as reverent as it is blasphemous, as bombastic as it is humble, as god as it is zilla. Written by the inimitable … Read More

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APOLLO 13

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The Greatest Successful Failure of all Time. O, swear not by the moon, the fickle moon, the inconstant moon… — Shakespeare, “Romeo and Juliet.” As I watch Ron Howard‘s APOLLO 13, I smell that familiar kerosene funk in the air: solid rocket boosters firing, RP-1 propellant and liquid hydrogen surging, flux capacitor giga-watting – yes, it’s the Tom Hanks Oscar-Machine … Read More

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FAHRENHEIT 9/11

Poffy The Cucumber

My Fellow Americans (er…kind of), One part of me wants to live the peaceable life, wallowing in my hobbit hole, unmindful of the B-29 Superfortresses amassing off the Normandy Coast, staring out at the stars and asserting that Clint Eastwood is the greatest example of Manhood in our century, whilst another side of me wants to shake the shoulders and … Read More

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TENACIOUS D THE COMPLETE MASTERWORKS

Poffy The Cucumber

Once every hundred-thousand years or so, when the sun doth shine and the moon doth glow… Not exactly Spinal Tap. Not exactly Martin & Lewis. Not exactly normal. Once in a great while, an act appears that shimmers with such kineticism, such verve and lust, that audiences are scorched into submission – such an act is The Darkness – oh, … Read More

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BATMAN BEGINS

Poffy The Cucumber

Dark Knight Reconstructionist Theory. Droves of bats against an ocher sunset, teasing out the infamous Bat Logo on the sky with their swarming bodies; the first five seconds of BATMAN BEGINS are scintillating. Then it just keeps getting better. If there is bedrock truth in the axiom, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” then surely the inverse is also … Read More

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THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE RETURN OF THE KING

Poffy The Cucumber

deus ex tolkiena. Okay, tattered robes deployed? – check; multiple story lines at the ready to entwine and entangle viewers? – check; sets constructed on a budget which would’ve stamped out hunger in Ethiopia? – check; everyone smeared in poo? – check – let’s roll! Trust me, Gentle Viewer, if you’ve not seen the first two installments of this bloated, … Read More

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