Posts Tagged ‘Donald Sutherland’
Thursday, September 15th, 2022
July 31, 1992
BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER is an unusual cult movie because it’s largely remembered for the same reason it’s dismissed: it’s overshadowed by its long running TV show followup. In that sense it’s Gen-X’s answer to M*A*S*H.
Had that not happened, maybe there would be more passion for this likable if not entirely successful execution of a cute horror-comedy idea. The director is Fran Rubel Kuzui (TOKYO POP), the screenwriter is then-25-year-old Roseanne staff writer Joss Whedon, and its gimmick is almost there in the title: what if the popular, mall-loving, air-headed Valley Girl cheerleader was not just fodder in a vampire movie, but the chosen one destined to protect humanity? I can’t actually think of many Valley Girl cheerleaders in horror – it seems more like a twist on fake horror movies within other movies than on the actual genre – but it works as a tongue-in-cheek way to cross a high school comedy with horror, and at least superficially point to the serious place where their themes can overlap. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Alexis Arquette, Ben Affleck, Candy Clark, cheerleaders, David Arquette, Dolly Parton, Donald Sutherland, Fran Rubel Kuzui, Hilary Swank, James Lew, James Paradise, Joss Whedon, Kristy Swanson, Luke Perry, Michele Abrams, Natasha Gregson Wagner, Paris Vaughan, Pat E. Johnson, Paul Reubens, Randall Batinkoff, Ricki Lake, Rutger Hauer, Stephen Root, Terry J. Leonard, Thomas Jane, vampires
Posted in Comedy/Laffs, Horror, Reviews | 30 Comments »
Monday, May 2nd, 2022
“I always used conspiracy theories because, not that I really believe in them in any way, it’s more like it’s kind of the lure of it… There is like endless stuff about the moon. So, in that respect, it was so strange for me that we got supported by NASA. I have no clue why they’re doing this. Honest to God. I have no inkling of an idea why they did this, but obviously, they need it.”
—Roland Emmerich to Collider
MOONFALL is the most recent picture from director Roland Emmerich (UNIVERSAL SOLDIER), now available on video. It uses pretty much the same character tropes, broad cliches, annoying humor and preposterous approach to plotting that made him briefly an A-list director after (for reasons I still have not been able to discern) people liked those things in INDEPENDENCE DAY. That was a long time ago, and for quite a few years now the public has been less accepting of Emmerich’s product. By now all the destruction in his movies is computer generated, and we’ve seen every single thing everywhere digitally destroyed many times over, so the novelty has worn off. But somehow I’ve grown to get more of a kick out of his wildly ridiculous movies because they seem much more charming now that everybody agrees they’re just some puzzling bullshit that Hollywood made for some reason and not the current state of the art for blockbuster filmmaking.
In other words, this was by far the dumbest shit I’ve seen in a while, so I enjoyed it. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Charlie Plummer, disaster movies, Donald Sutherland, Eme Ikwuakor, Halle Berry, Harald Kloser, John Bradley, Michael Pena, Patrick Wilson, Roland Emmerich, Spenser Cohen, Zayn Maloney
Posted in Reviews, Science Fiction and Space Shit | 24 Comments »
Wednesday, May 26th, 2021
Yes, it’s true – in 2019, 28 years after the release of the hit movie BACKDRAFT, it got a DTV sequel. Since I hadn’t seen the original when this came out two years ago I didn’t really pay attention, and kind of assumed it was just an unrelated firefighter movie taking on the brand name.
In fact there’s quite a bit of continuity: original screenwriter Gregory Widen (HIGHLANDER) returns, the lead character is meant to be the grown up son/grandson of Kurt Russell’s characters, William Baldwin returns as Brian McCaffrey (now assistant chief) and Donald Sutherland returns as crazy/fun pyromaniac Ronald Bartel. Also it’s supposed to be the same fire station, there are photos of Russell and Scott Glenn on the wall, the events of part 1 are discussed, and (in a real fuckin stretch) Brian uses the phrase “career dissipation light,” which was already a stretch when he repeated it back to a corrupt Alderman he heard using it 28 years ago. Are we really to believe he loved it so much he made it part of his lingo? (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Alisha Bailey, Donald Sutherland, Gonzalo Lopez-Gallego, Gregory Widen, Joe Anderson, Randy Edelman, William Baldwin
Posted in Reviews, Thriller | 19 Comments »
Thursday, November 14th, 2019
I’d heard that AD ASTRA might be one of those movies like THE AMERICAN or SOLARIS that is a little slow or arty or whatever but since it’s a big release with a big movie star from OCEAN’S ELEVEN a bunch of people who aren’t comfortable with that type of movie see it and either get real disappointed or fall asleep about ten minutes in. That might’ve been a myth, because it got a B- Cinemascore, which is the same as HUSTLERS. But I guess hearing that got me primed because it was alot more exciting than I expected!
This is the first movie I’ve seen by James Gray (LITTLE ODESSA, THE YARDS, WE OWN THE NIGHT, TWO LOVERS, THE IMMIGRANT, THE LOST CITY OF Z), but I know he has a reputation for quiet and thoughtful dramas. And honestly I didn’t expect as much sci-fi as we get – it’s a little further into the near future than I thought. From the trailer it looked more like a straight astronaut drama. And I got nothing against astronauts, there are many fine astronauts, but I think I was born without that gene many guys have that makes them involuntarily swell up with patriotism any time they think about a person or object that has been to the moon. Or maybe I just didn’t see THE RIGHT STUFF at an impressionable age. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Brad Pitt, Donald Sutherland, James Gray, Kimberly Elise, Liv Tyler, Natasha Lyonne, Ruth Negga, Tommy Lee Jones
Posted in Reviews, Science Fiction and Space Shit | 20 Comments »
Monday, July 22nd, 2019
It could be argued that LOCK UP isn’t quite an action movie – that it’s more of a drama with some violence and extreme villainy. And if it is action I’m not sure how it fits into the theme of this series about a shift in the genre heading into the next decade. No, it doesn’t seem like the ’90s ones with “DIE HARD on a _____” type hooks (CLIFFHANGER, DAYBREAK) or special effects and stylized settings (DEMOLITION MAN, JUDGE DREDD). But it’s also not quite the over the top feel we associate with the ’80s because of movies like RAMBO: FIRST BLOOD PART II, COBRA and, well… OVER THE TOP. It has a score by Bill Conti (fresh off of THE KARATE KID PART III) that brings ROCKY-like majesty, especially during the montage of the harrowing football game that’s intentionally more about hurting him than sport. This is Stallone in tough-but-vulnerable mode, and even has a part where he builds to a yelling, emotional speech kinda like the end of FIRST BLOOD.
I attribute the film’s timelessness and grit to director John Flynn, a legend to me because of THE OUTFIT and ROLLING THUNDER in the ’70s and OUT FOR JUSTICE in the ’90s. This was his followup to BEST SELLER. He didn’t generally participate in trends – he just made John Flynn movies. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Bill Conti, Danny Trejo, Darlanne Fluegel, Donald Sutherland, Frank McRae, Jeb Stuart, John Flynn, Sonny Landham, Summer of '89, Sylvester Stallone, Tom Sizemore, Tony Lip
Posted in Action, Drama, Reviews | 10 Comments »
Monday, January 4th, 2016
For four years now it’s been my tradition to kick off a new year with Clint Eastwood. This year I’m starting it with Clint and a rowdy gang of G.I. goofballs including roughneck Telly Savalas, new agey Donald Sutherland, bitter wiseass Don Rickles and young, harmonica-playing, exactly-the-same-looking Harry Dean Stanton (credited as Dean Stanton). It kinda feels like one of those fun ensemble war pictures like THE DIRTY DOZEN or THE GREAT ESCAPE, except the idea behind it is much more cynical.
Clint plays Kelly, a once great soldier, demoted and disillusioned after an incorrect order caused him to blow up some of his own men. When he finds out about a stash of gold bars in a German bank he finally has a mission he can believe in again: get together a crew to penetrate the enemy lines early and get the loot. Everyone thinks/knows it’s crazy, but the lure of the bling is enough. In fact, they have trouble with more and more people joining the group and expecting a share.
At times it can be kind of a broad comedy, and with that old timey type of military humor where they complain about their job but they just talk about hating to have to lug heavy things around, or get bossed around, they don’t talk about the psychological trauma of having to kill people, or almost being killed, or seeing their friends killed. But in a way this is a very subversive movie, because here’s The Great War, the one we can all get behind, the one that made them The Greatest Generation, and our titleistical heroes never even mention ideals or what they’re fighting for. What they end up getting behind is a big payday. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Brian G. Hutton, Carol O'Connor, Clint Eastwood, Don Rickles, Donald Sutherland, Harry Dean Stanton, heist, Lalo Schifrin, Mike Curb, tanks, Telly Savalas, Troy Kennedy-Martin, WWII
Posted in Action, Reviews, War | 29 Comments »
Monday, November 25th, 2013
(I’m trying to mark the biggest spoilers as usual, but be careful with this one if you don’t want anything given away)
You remember back when THE HUNGER GAMES came out I avoided it. I know this makes me a weirdo, but it wasn’t until Francis Lawrence signed on to direct the sequels that I got interested. The conventional wisdom was that part 1’s Gary Ross (PLEASANTVILLE, SEABISCUIT) was a classy director and this was a step down to replace him with the guy who did CONSTANTINE and I AM LEGEND. But I’m a fan of Mr. Lawrence, I see some genius behind the admittedly large flaws of those movies. As pretty good as THE HUNGER GAMES is I’m way more impressed by Lawrence’s depiction of post-human-New-York-City and Will Smith’s performance as the lonely omega-scientist. Yeah, we all know that there are some problems when the vampires turn out to be leaping computer animated beasts, but shit, they’re better than the animated dogs in HUNGER GAMES. Scarier and with more personality and meaning. Let’s not pretend either of these is flawless, but I know which one I like better.
Now Lawrence’s first HUNGER GAMES chapter has hit, and virtually ever review I’ve seen says what I predicted, that he made a better movie than the first one. See you guys, I know shit.
(read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Amanda Plummer, Donald Sutherland, dystopian futures, Francis Lawrence, Jeffrey Wright, Jena Malone, Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Philip Seymour Hoffman
Posted in Reviews, Science Fiction and Space Shit | 99 Comments »
Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012
Friends, it is my sad duty to verify reports that Isaac Florentine’s ASSASSIN’S BULLET (formerly titled SOFIA on IMDb, and out on DVD today) is no good. I guess it played a couple of theaters at some point, and it has a 0% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. I can’t say I really disagree. It’s dull and amateurishly written and even though it has a weird thing going on with being a vanity project for some lady I never heard of, that’s not enough to make it very fun.
(read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Christian Slater, Donald Sutherland, Isaac Florentine, Timothy Spall
Posted in Reviews, Thriller | 19 Comments »
Friday, January 28th, 2011
I got mixed feelings about some sucker remaking a Charles Bronson movie. On one hand it’s obviously foolish, because no man has ever been discovered who could stand toe-to-toe with Bronson in badass presence. It doesn’t matter who you get to star, unless maybe Lee Marvin is alive again, or Clint is interested in remaking old Michael Winner movies. Barring that, anybody’s gonna pale in comparison.
On the other hand, alot of Bronson’s movies are (by design) pretty formulaic, they’re all about taking the type of basic situations you’d want to see Charles Bronson in and then putting Charles Bronson in them. Therefore if you do have a new action icon to star in some movies, these are the types of movies you might want to try to put him in. And Jason Statham isn’t a bad candidate, in my opinion. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Ben Foster, Donald Sutherland, hitman, Jason Statham, Millennium Films, remakes, Simon West
Posted in Action, Reviews | 123 Comments »
Friday, December 10th, 2010
I always try to stay up to date on my favorite action movie guys. I accept them as human beings who age and deteriorate like all of us do (not including Prince), and I am very interested in their later works. But alot of people don’t, they turn on their stars if the oxygen ever hits their skin or if their metabolism betrays their bellies. That Australian beer commercial with Steven Seagal that came out recently, I saw comments on other sights it was posted and everybody fixated on his weight, obviously not having seen any of the 26 movies or two seasons of reality TV he’s done in the past 10 years. Same thing with Stallone, every time he comes out with a new one people start gagging about him being old, like it’s the most appalling thing they’ve ever seen. This is just the people reinforcing Hollywood’s obsession with young pretty people, but look at Clint. He’s older, greyer, more withered and hoarse than either of those guys, and I don’t think I’ve heard anybody feelin lucky enough to make fun of him for it.
(read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: astronauts, Clint Eastwood, Donald Sutherland, James Cromwell, James Garner, Marcia Gay Harden, Old Man period, Tommy Lee Jones, William Devane
Posted in Drama, Reviews | 33 Comments »