Posts Tagged ‘Vincent D’Onofrio’
Thursday, May 19th, 2022
“It’s an art movie. Doesn’t count. I’m talkin about movie movies.”
April 10, 1992
I have enjoyed some of Robert Altman’s movies over the years, but never became a full-on “he’s one of my favorites” convert like so many film buffs a little older than me. In fact the only ones I’ve ever reviewed are MCCABE & MRS. MILLER, POPEYE and NASHVILLE. POPEYE was definitely the first Altman movie I saw, since it starred my biggest childhood hero (not Robin Williams – Popeye). THE PLAYER was the first one I watched as a grown-ish person trying to see good movies for adults.
I don’t hear people talk about it that much these days, but it has an 86 on Metacritic, which they quantify as “universal acclaim.” And it has a Criterion Edition. I remember it being viewed as a major cultural event in the film coverage I read in magazines and alternative weeklies of the time. In his review, Roger Ebert brought up Wall Street scandals and said the movie “uses Hollywood as a metaphor for the avarice of the 1980s,” but in my memory people enjoyed it as a satire of Hollywood executives. My most specific memory about it was a certain cameo in a movie-within-the-movie meant to parody the “pat Hollywood endings” joked about throughout the movie. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Adam Simon, Brion James, Bruce, Bruce Willis, Buck Henry, Burt Reynolds, Cynthia Stevenson, Dean Stockwell, Fred Ward, Greta Scacchi, Hollywood satire, Lyle Lovett, Michael Tolkin, Peter Gallagher, Richard E. Grant, Robert Altman, Steve James, Tim Robbins, Vincent D'Onofrio
Posted in Reviews, Thriller | 27 Comments »
Tuesday, March 6th, 2018
One thing the DEATH WISH remake has in common with the original: it feels kinda disreputable. I went to it knowing it had gotten poor reviews, that it had been delayed, that the trailers had been scoffed at by anybody I ever heard talk about it. People have looked down on Roth’s movies since HOSTEL, and they’ve given up on Bruce Willis ever giving a shit anymore, and they assume any remake is a cynical i.p. cash-grab, even if it’s DEATH WISH and it’s been in development for years and years and Stallone almost did it and Joe Carnahan almost did it and etc. Most of all, they don’t want to see a movie right now that seems like it might glorify a white guy shooting minorities, or support the moronic Trumpian worldview of “good guys with guns” who can save the day by executing the “animals” who they just know are scurrying all around in the “hellholes.”
I was not immune to most of these concerns. But also I came to it as someone who enjoys the Charles-Bronson-starring DEATH WISHes 1, II, 3, 4: THE CRACKDOWN and V: THE FACE OF DEATH all in different ways, and has read both Death Wish by Brian Garfield and its sequel Death Sentence, and championed the movie (sort of) adapted from that book, and also read Bronson’s Loose!, the great DEATH WISH series making-of book by Paul Talbot, and have an interest in many rip-off vigilante and revenge movies. And also I have opinions about all of Roth’s films and about violence and politics in genre movies and in real life and I love Bruce Willis and want to see him restored to full Bruce powers. So I went in complicated. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Bruce, Bruce Willis, Camila Morrone, Eli Roth, Elisabeth Shue, Joe Carnahan, Mike Epps, revenge, vigilantes, Vincent D'Onofrio
Posted in Action, Reviews | 49 Comments »
Friday, September 30th, 2016
First of all, man, I am never gonna get that theme song out of my head. It’s on the original and the three sequels and on this remake it’s just on the end credits, other than some sly hints at its rhythm adapted to percussion and that exotic flute type thing that modern film composers love. But it’s so catchy and I’ve heard it so many times this last week or two that it’s burned onto my brain like what used to happen to TVs if you left it on a DVD menu all day. Thanks alot, Elmer Bernstein.
In Antoine Fuqua’s THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN, we have a small town in Kansas (not Mexico) being threatened by a wealthy land baron (not bandits) who comes in with a bunch of killers, and makes a shitty, non-negotiable offer for their land, that he says they can accept or be killed when he comes back in three weeks. And he makes this threat at gunpoint inside the church! Not cool.
This opening shows the dangers of normal people standing up to these bullies: they quickly execute the first guy who does it, and this escalates into a massacre. This asshole Bogue (Peter Sarsgaard) tells the in-his-pocket-out-of-fear sheriff to leave the bodies where they are, burns down the church and stops by the whorehouse on the way out. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Antoine Fuqua, Byung-hun Lee, Chris Pratt, Denzel Washington, Ethan Hawke, Haley Bennett, Luke Grimes, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, Martin Sensmeier, Matt Bomer, Nic Pizzolato, Peter Sarsgaard, Richard Wenk, Vincent D'Onofrio
Posted in Action, Reviews, Western | 46 Comments »
Monday, June 15th, 2015
Let’s face it, MAD MAX: FURY ROAD means this is an all time great movie summer. Whatever else comes out, who gives a shit. Irrelevant. It could be nothing but THE COBBLER coming out every week until September and it would still be one for the record books. Therefore it seems weird to be praising a more normal, not world-shattering part 4 movie in this same summer, but I’m an honest man so I have to do it. JURASSIC WORLD is a solid, fun sequel and although I’m not sure I liked it quite as much as I liked LOST WORLD when I first saw that, I think this is the best of the sequels.
But Vern, you’re saying, THE LOST WORLD sucks. Hold onto your buts. I admit that my tastes in Jurassic Parks are different from most people around here. So I’m sure you will disagree with me that this is clearly, by far, for sure without even a remote question the best of the non-Spielberg-directed JP joints on every possible level forever and always amen may the force be with you and I hope they burn in hay-ell.
It’s odd that they waited 22 years to do this premise. In retrospect it seems like parts 2 and 3 were treading water trying to figure out what the hell to do in the wreckage of the actual Jurassic Park, the aftermath of the failed pre-opening in part 1. This time it’s a natural extension of that first concept. What would it be like if they actually got their shit together and opened the park, and made it work for a while and become a popular vacation destination before nature finds a way to fuck it up? Isn’t it time we actually saw Ian Malcolm’s prediction of the Pirates of the Caribbean eating the tourists? (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: 3D, B.D. Wong, Brian Tee, Bryce Dallas Howard, Chris Pratt, Colin Trevorrow, dinosaurs, good part 4s, Irrfan Khan, Jake Johnson, Katie McGrath, Michael Crichton, Nick Robinson, Omar Sy, part 4s, Steven Spielberg, Ty Simpkins, Vincent D'Onofrio
Posted in Reviews, Science Fiction and Space Shit | 151 Comments »
Thursday, October 24th, 2013
Well, shit. I hope ESCAPE PLAN isn’t the last gasp for straight ahead R-rated theatrically released movies from the ’80s action icons. I guess Schwarzenegger has another one in the works called SABOTAGE. And there’s always the off chance that an EXPENDABLES sequel could be made where they’re trying harder and it mostly works on its own merits, not just nostalgic references and goodwill. We action fans all kinda hoped the EXPENDABLESes would remind the rest of the world that they used to love those types of movies and reignite their popularity, so we could all go see them on the big screen with the loud speakers and with a big crowd excited to experience it together and maybe afterwards there would be some high-fiving, possibly some push ups.
The possibility seemed real enough that we got Arnold Schwarzenegger starring in THE LAST STAND and Sylvester Stallone starring in BULLET TO THE HEAD and now both of them starring in ESCAPE PLAN. All of these movies have been flops at the American box office, even though all of them have been pretty enjoyable, and better than any non-sequels either of these guys have done since the ’90s.
But hey, at least a couple of us were there to appreciate it. ESCAPE PLAN is a solid, enjoyable Stallone vehicle where Schwarzenegger gets to be the joking sidekick. Rob Schneider was busy. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: 50 Cent, Amy Ryan, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Faran Tahir, Jim Caviezel, Mikael Hafstrom, Sam Neill, Sylvester Stallone, Vincent D'Onofrio, Vinnie Jones
Posted in Action, Reviews | 48 Comments »
Wednesday, June 15th, 2011
From the director of PUNISHER #2 and the star of PUNISHER #3 comes a solid, entertaining period gangster movie. It’s a biopic of Danny Greene, an Irish American union president, gang enforcer and dodger of car bombs in Cleveland, Ohio circa early ’60s through late ’70s. If it had been done as two separate movies maybe it would’ve got an arthouse release and some critical respect, but they did it as one so it was barely released by Anchor Bay and nobody ever heard of it.
(read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Christopher Walken, Jonathan Hensleigh, mafia, Mike Starr, Paul Sorvino, Ray Stevenson, Robert Davi, Tara Reid, true crime, Val Kilmer, Vincent D'Onofrio, Vinnie Jones
Posted in Crime, Reviews | 43 Comments »
Wednesday, February 5th, 2003
Somehow this week I ended up seeing two independent movies starring Kieran Culkin as a troubled rebel kid in a private school uniform. That’s just the way life is sometimes, I guess.
You know my theory about Culkins. They squirt ’em out on a conveyor belt somewhere and sell ’em cheap to filmatists. I’m not sure they even have separate identities, they probaly just call them “Rory” when they’re young and “Kieran” when they’re a teen and “Macaulay” when they quit acting and start going to clubs. If you buy the media hype about them being actual kids, then Kieran must be the most successful of the group because he’s doing legitmate acting roles and he must be 16 or so. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Bill Pullman, Claire Danes, Emile Hirsch, Jeff Goldblum, Jena Malone, Jodie Foster, Kieran Culkin, Susan Sarandon, Vincent D'Onofrio
Posted in Comedy/Laffs, Drama, Reviews | 5 Comments »
Monday, December 4th, 2000
Well friends it looks like ol’ Vern has some explainin to do. And the sad thing is I don’t have jack shit to say for myself. Sometimes a man just has to do what a man does when he has to do it, or whatever. There comes a time in a man’s personal journey, that is to say in man’s life, that that journey must take a break, or sojourn, in that journey, is what I’m trying to say. A hiatus.
Okay some of you motherfuckers are looking at me real blank eyed and what not. I haven’t written a column for a couple weeks, jackasses. I guess you didn’t miss me, then. It was supposed to be mysterious. Like – what is Vern up to? Where has he gone? What personal discoveries has he made? Will we ever be the same? Oh I do hope he comes back. And soon!
So here I am again. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: biopic, Donal Logue, Janeane Garofalo, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Kevin Pollak, Vincent D'Onofrio
Posted in Drama, Reviews, Romance, Vern Tells It Like It Is | No Comments »