Taxi Driver

Posted in Crime, Drama with tags on April 24, 2014 by Mark Walker

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Director: Martin Scorsese.
Screenplay: Paul Schrader.
Starring: Robert DeNiro, Jodie Foster, Cybill Shepherd, Harvey Keitel, Albert Brooks, Peter Boyle, Leonard Harris, Joe Spinell, Victor Argo, Martin Scorsese, Diahnne Abbott, Steven Prince, Norman Matlock.

Listen, you fuckers, you screwheads. Here is a man who would not take it anymore. A man who stood up against the scum, the cunts, the dogs, the filth, the shit. Here is a man who stood up.

Now regarded as a cinematic classic, I have to admit that Martin Scorsese’s “Taxi Driver” was always a film that left me as isolated as it’s lead character. The first time I saw it, I thought it vastly overrated. Admittedly, I was in my teens at this point and never managed to fully grasp it’s themes. With each viewing it did grow in stature but I could never really get over my initial judgement. It’s not often that I’ll backtrack on my opinion but I have now come full circle and can appreciate just how good a film it is, and why it’s regarded as one of the true greats of American cinema.

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Oldboy

Posted in Crime, Drama, Mystery with tags on April 3, 2014 by Mark Walker

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Director: Spike Lee.
Screenplay: Mark Protosevich.
Starring: Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Olsen, Samuel L. Jackson, Sharlto Copley, Michael Imperioli, James Ransone, Max Casella, Pom Klementieff, Lance Reddick, Richard Portnow, Linda Emond, Elvis Nolasco, Rami Malek, Hannah Ware, Hannah Simone, Ciera Payton, Elvy Yost.

Heaven make me free of it. The rest is silence.”

Park Chan Wook’s 2004 Korean original of “Oldboy” is one of the most visceral and emotionally devastating thrillers that you’re ever likely to find. As a result, it totally baffled me when I heard about the intentions for an English language remake. I don’t care how much of an impressive cast or crew were assembled, as far as I see it, there really isn’t anything else that could have been brought to treading this ground again. Now that I’ve seen Spike Lee’s version, I stand by that even more. This was a completely pointless exercise.

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TRIVIA TIDBITS

Posted in Uncategorized on April 1, 2014 by Mark Walker

Welcome back to Trivia Tidbits. For those of you out of the loop, this is a little compilation of 10 movie related facts that I always find interesting. So without further ado, this weeks are… 20140401-101732.jpg

1: The title of the film “American Beauty” refers to a breed of roses that while pretty and appealing in appearance, is often prone to rot underneath at the roots and branches of the plant. Thus, the tagline “…look closer” tells the viewer that when they look beyond the “perfect suburban life” they will find something rancid at the root.

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Nymphomaniac: Volumes I & II

Posted in Drama with tags on March 25, 2014 by Mark Walker

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Director: Lars von Trier.
Screenplay: Lars von Trier.
Starring: Charlotte Gainsbourg, Stellan Skarsgård, Stacy Martin, Shia LeBeouf, Jamie Bell, Uma Thurman, Christian Slater, Willem Dafoe, Jean-Marc Barr, Connie Nielsen, Mia Goth, Sophie Kennedy Clark, Udo Kier, Michael Pas, Jesper Christensen, Saskia Reeves, Caroline Goodall.

Perhaps the only difference between me and other people is that I’ve always demanded more from the sunset. More spectacular colours when the sun hit the horizon. That’s perhaps my only sin.

When provocateur Lars von Trier released the magnificent “Dogville” in 2003 and followed it up with “Manderlay” in 2005, I was very eager to see him complete his USA: Land of Opportunities trilogy. Unfortunately, the third instalment “Wasington” never came to fruition. He did, however, venture into another trilogy – focusing on depression. The gruelling and unforgettable “AntiChrist” was the first, followed by the restrained and meditative “Melancholia“. Now, von Trier completes this outstanding trilogy in style.

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Spin-Off Blogathon

Posted in Uncategorized with tags on March 23, 2014 by Mark Walker

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Sati over at the always interesting and visually stunning blog Cinematic Corner has came up with a great idea for her first Blogathon. It leaves a lot of room for choices but the rules are fairly simple in that we are asked to choose a minor character that we love and why we would like to see them take the leading role in a film. What would that film then be like? For further information stop by Sati’s blog here and get involved. And now I invite you to…

Sit down… grab yourself an eggroll. We got everything here from a diddle eyed Joe to a damned if I know.“…

And by that, I’m talking about Gary Oldman’s marvellous character from Tony Scott and Quentin Tarantino’s

True Romance“.

It ain’t white boy day, is it? Naw man, it ain’t white boy day – it’s

DREXL SPIVEY.

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Drexl is a pimp who’s also involved in the narcotic’s business with a high ranking gangster known as Blue Lou Boyle. He has scars on his face and one of his eye’s has seemingly lost it’s sight. Added to which, he’s a white man with dreadlocks who believes himself to be a black Rastafarian. Drexl is a merciless brutal killer and a man with whom you do not fuck. As he was once the pimp of Alabama Whitman (Patricia Arquette), he is confronted by Clarence Worley (Christian Slater) which results in being the catalyst for a crime spree involving mobsters, police and Hollywood producers.

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What’s not to be interested in when we are first introduced to Drexl? The scars are on his face and dress sense are enough to grab your attention. In the space of 10 minutes screen time, Oldman really brings this character alive and makes a lasting impression. Despite an abundance of talent in True Romance, Drexl is, without doubt, the most memorable character. So much so, that he’s simply not in it enough. 20140314-092222.jpg In a prequel to the film, the possibilities would be endless when incorporating Tarantino’s criminal underworld. We’d witness the rise of Drexl from his younger years as a viscous street hood and hired-gun under the guidance of L.A. crime bosses Joe Cabot (Lawrence Tierney) and Marsellus Wallace (Ving Rhames). His viscousness would eventually invite the attention of dogged and equally sadistic police detective Jack Scagnetti (Tom Sizemore). Scagnetti would bring Drexl to justice with him serving an 8 year sentence in San Quentin prison where he would befriend Vic Vega (Michael Madsen). Once released, he would again go back to his old habits and become involved in the sex and drug trade before his involvement with Blue Lou Boyle (Robert De Niro) and his eventual confrontation with Clarence (Christian Slater).

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As if that’s not enough, Gary Oldman had already stated in an interview that he would love to do a film on Drexl Spivey.
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Mark Walker

Grudge Match

Posted in Comedy, Drama, Sport with tags on March 14, 2014 by Mark Walker

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Director: Peter Segal.
Screenplay: Tim Kelleher, Rodney Rothman.
Starring: Robert DeNiro, Sylvester Stallone, Kim Basinger, Alan Arkin, Kevin Hart, Jon Bernthal, LL Cool J, Barry Primus, Anthony Anderson, Ireland Baldwin, Rich Little, Roy Jones Jr, Evander Holyfield, Mike Tyson.

Yeah, look at us! We’re not dead! Everyone’s laughing at us! The whole world’s laughing at us! But we’re not dead! In fact, I feel more alive now than I ever felt!

Although their careers have went in very different paths, Sylvester Stallone and Robert DeNiro have been around roughly the same amount of time and have, on occasion, come together. In 1976, they were Best Actor nominees for two of their most successful roles in “Rocky” and “Taxi Driver” (both losing out to Peter Finch in “Network“) and in 1997 they shared the screen for the first time in “Cop Land“. Now they’re at it again…

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TRIVIA TIDBITS

Posted in Uncategorized on March 13, 2014 by Mark Walker

Welcome back to Trivia Tidbits. For those of you out of the loop, this is a little compilation of 10 movie related facts that I always find interesting. So without further ado, this weeks are…

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1: Tommy Lee Jones was the studio’s original (and preferred) choice to play Snake Plissken in John Carpenter’s “Escape from New York“. The studio was reluctant to cast Kurt Russell, who ultimately got the part, because of his previous work.

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