David Lynch – Dune [Extended Edition] (1984)

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SEVERAL of the characters in ”Dune” are psychic, which puts them in the unique position of being able to understand what goes on in the movie. The plot of ”Dune” is perilously overloaded, as is virtually everything else about it. As the first king-sized, Italian-produced science-fiction epic, ”Dune” is an ornate affair, awash in the kind of marble, mosaics, wood paneling, leather tufting and gilt trim more suitable to moguls’ offices than to far-flung planets in the year 10191. Not all of the overkill is narrative or decorative. Even the villain, a flying, pustule-covered creature, has more facial sores than he absolutely needs. Continue reading

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Ishirô Honda – Gojira AKA Godzilla (1954)

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Quote:
One of the longest-running series in film history began with Ishiro Honda’s grim, black-and-white allegory for the devastation wrought on Japan by the atomic bomb. As his visual metaphor, Honda uses a 400-foot tall mutant dinosaur called Gojira, awakened from the depths of the sea as a rampaging nuclear nightmare, complete with glowing dorsal fins and fiery, radioactive breath. Crushing ships, villages, and buildings in his wake, Gojira marches toward Tokyo, bringing all of the country’s worst nightmares back until an evil more terrible bomb — capable of sucking all the oxygen from the sea — returns the monster to its watery grave. The original film is chilling, despite some rather unconvincing man-in-a-suit special effects, and brimming with explicitly-stated anti-American sentiment. All of that was removed for the U.S. release directed by Terry Morse. It was replaced with bad dubbing and tedious added footage starring Raymond Burr. The resulting edit was just another monster movie, but was still popular enough to assure future Toho Studios monster films a wide American release. Gojira No Gyakushu (1955) was next in the series. Continue reading

Kanji Nakajima – Hako aka Box (2003)

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Quote:
The scene of the story is laid in a tranquil village in some future world, where high technology is integrated with its nostalgic scenery.
Under “the exhausted tree”, a machine is built, which supports the life of the tree.
There lives “an old craftsman” who fixes it. “The Box” made by him is rambling along the old railroad, taking the memories of the people and the events in the village in it. In his quiet life, The old craftsman is worried about The Box, saying ” I have not fulfilled his wish yet”.
Then, the monotonous and peaceful scene in the village has begun to change slowly after the old craftsman’s death – the tree fallen down, The Box broken.
The mourning for The Box, however, will open up a new prospect.
What is the wish of The Box which is now appearing ? Continue reading

Charles Lamont – Abbott and Costello Go to Mars (1953)

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They don`t really go to Mars, they go to Venus, but first they go to New Orleans. While working at a missile base, Bud Abbott and Lou Costello inadvertently launch a rocket ship with themselves aboard. After a wild ride around New York City (the Statue of Liberty ducks when the rocket heads her way), Bud and Lou land in the outskirts of New Orleans. The boys are convinced that they`ve reached Mars, and their faith in this supposition is affirmed when they come across several strangely costumed `creatures` (actually revellers at the Mardi Gras). Meanwhile, bank robbers Jack Kruschen and Horace McMahon stow away on A&C`s rocketship. When Bud and Lou return, the crooks force them to make a quick getaway into outer space. After several days of weightlessness, the four space travellers land on Venus, a planet populated by the gorgeous winners of the Miss Universe contest (including Anita Ekberg). Venusian queen Mari Blanchard falls in love with Costello, only to order him and his companions to return to earth when Lou proves to be unfaithful. Reportedly, this bizarre melange of sci-fi and slapstick was based on a story by Charles Beaumont, who received no screen credit (it`s worth noting that Beaumont`s later Queen of Outer Space boasts a remarkably similar plotline). Long considered the team`s worst film, Abbott and Costello Go to Mars (`and about time!` quipped the New York Times` TV-movie reviewer) is rather likeable in its own incoherent way. – All Movie Guide Continue reading

François Truffaut – Fahrenheit 451 [+Extras] (1966)

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Based on the 1951 Ray Bradbury novel of the same name. Guy Montag is a firefighter who lives in a lonely, isolated society where books have been outlawed by a government fearing an independent-thinking public. It is the duty of firefighters to burn any books on sight or said collections that have been reported by informants. People in this society including Montag’s wife are drugged into compliancy and get their information from wall-length television screens. After Montag falls in love with book-hoarding Clarisse, he begins to read confiscated books. It is through this relationship that he begins to question the government’s motives behind book-burning. Montag is soon found out, and he must decide whether to return to his job or run away knowing full well the consequences that he could face if captured. Written by Brian Rathjen {briguy_52732@yahoo.com}
Continue reading

Terry Gilliam – Brazil (1985)

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SYNOPSIS
Brazil constitutes Terry Gilliam’s enormously ambitious follow-up to his 1981 Time Bandits. It also represents the second installment in a trilogy of Gilliam films on imagination versus reality, that began with Bandits and ended in 1989 with The Adventures of Baron Munchausen. To create this wild, visually audacious satire, Gilliam combines dystopian elements from Orwell, Huxley and Kafka (plus a central character who mirrors Walter Mitty) with his own trademark, Monty Python-esque, jet black British humor and his gift for extraordinary visual invention. The results are thoroughly unprecedented in the cinema. Continue reading

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