Crime

Karel Reisz – Who’ll stop the rain (1978)


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Plot summary from DVD Verdict:
Ray Hicks (Nolte) is an ex-Marine who served in Vietnam first in combat and now as a merchant seaman, which allows him to come and go between Vietnam and the US. This provides him a unique opportunity to smuggle things from Southeast Asia to home, but he’s never done anything like the request from his journalist friend John Converse (Michael Moriarty, in another laid back but outstanding performance): bring 2 kilos of pure heroin from Vietnam and deliver it to his wife at home, and collect a cool 10 grand for his efforts. What seemed an easy way to make some quick cash just as quickly spirals out of control, as John Converse’s wife Marge (Tuesday Weld) is attacked by two thugs (Richard Masur and Ray Sharkey) who want to steal the heroin for themselves and their corrupt cop boss (Anthony Zerbe). Hicks shows up in time to thwart the attack, but now they’re on the run while John returns and is kidnapped to force Hicks’s hand. A mountaintop commune will provide the backdrop for the stunning confrontation. Read More »

Robert Hamer – Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949)


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Synopsis:
Director Robert Hamer’s fiendishly funny Kind Hearts and Coronets stands as one of Ealing Studios’ greatest triumphs, and one of the most wickedly black comedies ever made. Dennis Price is sublime as an embittered young commoner determined to avenge his mother’s unjust disinheritance by ascending to her family’s dukedom. Unfortunately, eight relatives—all played by the incomparable Alec Guinness—must be eliminated before he can do so. Read More »

Abel Ferrara – King of New York (1990)



King of New York is a 1990 crime drama film, starring Christopher Walken, Laurence Fishburne, David Caruso, Wesley Snipes, Victor Argo, Giancarlo Esposito, and Steve Buscemi. It was directed by independent filmmaker Abel Ferrara and written by Nicholas St. John.

The King of New York is now widely acknowledged as one of the best hard-edged crime thrillers of the past thirty years, certainly since the golden age of the 1970s. Read More »

Dominik Graf – Die Katze AKA The Cat (1988)


Quote:
One of the highlights of this year’s Edinburgh International Film Festival, it’s already apparent, is a retrospective of the work of Dominik Graf, a genre specialist mostly unknown outside his natve Germany, who has worked in both film and TV, specialising mainly in crime dramas. The program also includes other German crime TV shows selected by Graf to contextualise his work (including Sam Fuller’s Dead Pigeon on Beethoven Street and uber-rare work by Czech emigre Zbynek Brynych, best known otherwise for The Fifth Horseman is Fear). Read More »

Abel Ferrara – Bad Lieutenant [+Commentary] (1992)


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Description: This provocative film has an almost documentary-like feel in its depiction of New York lowlife, and another credible performance by Harvey Keitel, but at times it’s as stagnant as the “hero’s” life – Ferrara holds the shots too long, as if we’re supposed to look for something more into them than what is actually there. Still, the film is certainly not the exploitive trash that some have labeled it as, and deserves a solid “7”. Read More »

Wes Craven – The Last House on the Left [+Extras] (1972)

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Wes Craven’s first film was a crude but shocking horror opus that, like George A. Romero’s Night of the Living Dead (1968), became a grind house hit largely because it went much further than terror films before it had been willing to go. Often compared to Ingmar Bergman’s stark medieval rape drama The Virgin Spring (1960) (though one wonders whether this was influence or just coincidence), Last House on the Left follows a group of teenage girls heading into the city when they hook up with a gang of drug-addled ne’er-do-wells and are brutally murdered. The killers find their way to the home of one of their victim’s parents, where both father and mother exact a horrible revenge. Like Tobe Hooper’s The Texas Chainsaw Massacre two years later, Last House on the Left was an unrelievedly dark vision of contemporary horror that inspired many future films which copied its effects without achieving its visceral impact. — Mark Deming (AMG) Read More »

Michel Audiard – Elle Boit Pas, Elle Fume Pas, Elle Drague Pas, Mais… Elle Cause! aka She Does Not Drink, Smoke or Flirt But… She Talks (1970)

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the AMG wrote :

“This offbeat satirical comedy finds a beautiful and talkative housekeeper (Annie Girardot) working for several colorful employers. One is a former prostitute living with a prominent politician. Also included is a ribald bank teller and a strange man who helps out at a church for wayward boys and sings at a homosexual nightclub. The housekeeper’s verbose nature leads to blackmail for her clients…” Read More »