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Old 09-13-2017   #371
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Beatles - Hippies - Hells Angels

The Beatles, Hippies And Hells Angels - 2017 - 7/10



Scoring this a 7 for Beatles fans. Casual onlookers, give a 6.
Labour of love overview of Apple Corps. Wide eyed, trusting souls, launch a “new business model.”
Behind the scenes histories as told by the office girls, a few hangers on, and the accountant.
Especially, the accountant. The Beatles, at the height of their success had tax liabilities to choke royalty.
“Set up your own company." They did, and this doc shows where a flood of the money went.
Packed with photos, many I had never seen before, as well as fresh voices.
Funny, engaging, bittersweet. From gear to groovy to bummer. Must for moptop folks.
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Old 09-13-2017   #372
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Don't Breathe

Don’t Breathe - 2016 - 6/10



Three twentyish burglars prowl Detroit homes.
They follow guidelines (keep the haul under $10K to avoid felony), tight timetables.
For some, it might be hard to work up sympathy for lowlifes who steal their stuff.
“Cause I’m disadvantaged!” or “Growin’ up was hard!” or “I ain’t rich like you!”
Even less sympathy when they target the Gulf War vet who lives in a forlorn neighborhood.
He’s all alone, and he’s blind.
Being thugs, they decide to hit the blind guy’s house in the middle of the night.
Course your powers of prediction are likely superior to those fools.
Acceptable home invasion thriller.
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Old 09-14-2017   #373
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Fortier

Fortier: S01 - 2001 - 6/10



Canadian police procedural follows “elite” unit given dirty cases, primarily sex crimes.
Dr Fortier is the female psychologist assigned to the team.
Solid ensemble show, though Fortier’s quirks are overdone and distracting.
S01 has ten episodes. Five two-part stories.
OK, but not on par with the best Scandinavian crime shows, though this is a decade earlier.
Note - Set in Quebec, Fortier is a French language production.
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Old 09-14-2017   #374
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Murder Is My Beat

Murder Is My Beat - 1955 - 5/10



My mistake. I mistook Barbara Payton for Beverly Michaels and grabbed this from my stash.
Pretty bad film from the get-go. Note police captain in awful black n white checked sportcoat. Ugh.
Dead man found in fireplace, face and hands burned beyond recognition.
Blame falls on girlfriend - clubgirl - hooker at cheap bar.
Cop traces her to mountain cabin (chance to see snow for no reason).
Atrocious dialogue, like the writer attempted wiseguy Noir and ended up with junior high mimicry.
Acting uniformly bad. Photography ranges from static to overused stock. No pace.
There must have been ten minutes of trains roaring past. Plus, a couple minutes tour inside a ceramics factory!
Blows, man. Payton’s final film. From this point on, her story was ugly.

Barbara Payton - Biography - IMDb
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Old 09-14-2017   #375
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The Limehouse Golem

The Limehouse Golem - 2017 - 6/10



1880 London. A serial killer is loose and authorities at a loss.
Historical note: Jack the Ripper was 1888.
A marginalized detective is given the case, purpose being if he fails, he will be the scapegoat.
The inspector’s attention turns to an unrelated domestic murder instead.
Suspects include Dan Leno, George Gissing, Karl Marx.
Methodical pace allows various imagined scenarios to unroll in gaslit Victoria England.
Aside from the illuminated British Library, this is set in dirty alleys and the hazy confines of the music hall.
Soiled look will appeal to fans of Ripper Street, Mr Holmes, Sergeant Cribb ...
Bill Nighy fine in role originally meant for Alan Rickman.
Steer clear of spoiler reviews. Devilish corkscrew ending.
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Old 09-15-2017   #376
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Maya

Maya - 1949 - 6/10



After the ship docks, crewmen hurry into the red light district in search of company.
The most acclaimed prostitute goes by many names, but most call her Maya.
Ennui fills her. Whereas the other girls force bright smiles and laughs, she is resigned.
One seaman falls for her, and falls hard. He starts imagining an “us,” though she dissuades him.
The lighting and set design are remarkable, an offshoot of Expressionism.
Narrative itself is drama, replete with meaning-heavy dialogue.
Could’ve and might’ve been a play. Felt stagey despite attempts to open it up.
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Old 09-15-2017   #377
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The Double

The Double - 2013 - 6/10



How come I never heard of this one?
Oh, because it was way too confusing and artsy for 98% of the planet?
Evocative Orwellian set design, straight out of Brazil sets the tone of an oppressive worker drone state.
Insecure, nebbishy Jesse Eisenberg bobbles adrift in vast, gloomy, mega-corporation, going nowhere fast.
Then his double, Jesse Eisenberg, arrives, swaggering confidence and gusto.
The pair meet, and the charismatic one offers to help his meek counterpart.
Viewers can spot that L for loser across his forehead.
Bleak, often wickedly funny film based on Dostoyevsky story.
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Old 09-16-2017   #378
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Subway

Subway - 1985 - 6/10



Christopher Lambert goes blonde! Isabelle Adjani longs for love! Jean Reno hits the drums!
Petty thieves, musicians, police and bodybuilders slum and slam in the Paris subway.
Early Luc Besson film is flashy, empty headed, filled with attractive, soulless characters.
Henchmen chase an impulsive opportunist who hides himself in the underground of the underground.
Metro police are more concerned about a roller skating purse snatcher.
Love tries to flourish -- as does a pop concert!
Mindless fun, and a prevue of bigger things to come.
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Old 09-16-2017   #379
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Thundering Sword

Thundering Sword - 1967 - 5/10
AKA - Shen Jian Zhen Jiang Hu // 神 劍 震 江 湖



To bring balance to the martial arts world, mystical sword must be found and destroyed.
Two rival clans seek. One righteous, one wicked. One handsome male, and one attractive female.
Do they fall in love? Can love conquer all?
Overtly theatrical looking story features only a handful of swordfights.
Instead there are three songs, some sweeping musical cascades, and moral lessons.
Not a terrible film, but less action than expected from a Shaw Brothers production.
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Old 09-17-2017   #380
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Panique

Panique - 1947 - 6/10



Some never catch a break.
Take Monsieur Hire. He keeps to himself, pays bills promptly and in full, does not gossip, is nice to children.
And yet -- he is a bit of a social outcast, even though he has lived in the village three years.
When an elderly spinster is murdered in an empty lot, citizens start looking for the killer in their midst.
A mysterious woman arrives, and Monsieur Hire casts his lonely gaze her way.
This is a film of surface appearances, simmering with suspicion and mob fury.

I suspect Panique resonated strongly when released in post WWII France.
Occupation, collaboration and the Vichy government were fresh in memories.
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