Thursday, September 9, 2010

The American

Jack (Clooney), a seasoned assassin, is constantly on the move/under attack. After a job in Sweden ends in unexpected disaster (including a bullet to his girlfriend’s skull) Jack retreats to the Italian countryside to work on a more low-key assignment: constructing a weapon for a mysterious contact, Mathilde. Happy to finally reside in a danger-free zone, Jack befriends a local priest and falls in love with a local prostitute (very New Testament!). All seems relatively peaceful at surface level, but is it really possible for Jack to put his precarious existence as an international assassin on hold? Of course not!  (Plot summary by Screen Crave)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Expendables

An all-star cast of action-movie icons headline Sylvester Stallone's explosive action thriller about a group of hard-nosed mercenaries who are double-crossed during a treacherous mission. Approached by the shadowy Church (Bruce Willis) to overthrow tyrannical South American dictator General Gaza (David Zayas) and restore order to the troubled island country of Vilena, stoic soldier of fortune Barney Ross (Stallone) rounds up an unstoppable team that includes former SAS soldier and blade specialist Lee Christmas (Jason Statham); martial arts expert Yin (Jet Li); trigger-happy Hale Caesar (Terry Crews); and cerebral demolitions expert Toll Road (Randy Couture). Traveling to Vilena on a reconnaissance mission with his old pal Christmas, Barney meets their local contact, a cagey guerrilla fighter named Sandra (Giselle Itie), and together the trio scopes out the landscape.. It isn't long before Barney and Christmas have discovered that their actual target is not General Gaza but James Monroe (Eric Roberts), a former CIA operative who has recently gone rogue. Monroe won't be easy to get to either, because his hulking bodyguard Paine (Steve Austin) is a force to be reckoned with. When their mission is compromised, Barney and Christmas are forced to flee, leaving Sandra behind to face almost certain death. But Barney isn't the kind of soldier to abandon a mission, or a hostage, and now in order to get the job done he'll need the help of his old crew. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi

Sunday, August 1, 2010


Dom Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) is an extractor. An extractor is an individual who steals information by tapping into a person’s deep subconscious during a dream. This is the new way of doing corporate espionage and Cobb is the best of his kind. Unfortunately, Cobb has been accused of killing his wife Mal and is unable to go back home due to his fugitive status. The story starts when Cobb has been hired by Cobalt Industries to extract confidential data from their business rival Saito (Ken Watanabe). When Cobb and his team fail to get the proper information from Saito, they are forced to flee for their safety from Cobalt. Saito catches up with them before they can leave and gives Cobb an offer he cannot resist. Saito demands that Cobb do an inception to Robert Fischer (Cillian Murphy) and in exchange he will be able to go back home to his family in the United States. Cobb agrees and he forms a stronger team to do the seemingly impossible job of controlling indirectly the thoughts of a different person without him even noticing.  (Summary by Reel Advice Movie Reviews)

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse (2010)

The story begins with the revelation that Seattle is being plagued by a string of unsolved murders, which Edward suspects to be the cause of a newborn vampire that is unable to control its thirst.  Edward and Bella fill out college applications, while Bella explains to Edward her desire to see Jacob, her werewolf friend, again so she can make things right with him. Meanwhile, Alice Cullen has a vision that Victoria, a vampire that is hunting Bella, is back in town.  Although Edward fears for her safety, Bella insists that Jacob and the rest of the werewolf pack would never harm her, but Edward is still not convinced. Bella escapes to La Push to see Jacob while Edward is away, and arrives afterwards at her house unharmed. This convinces Edward that the La Push werewolves are harmless to her and he allows Bella to visit Jacob once in a while, as long as she keeps a phone with her at all times. During one of these trips, Jacob confesses that he loves Bella and forcibly kisses her. Bella punches him which breaks her hand. When Edward finds out, he threatens to break Jacob's jaw if he ever kisses Bella without her consent again. A few days later Bella tries to get Edward to make love to her before turning her into a vampire. Edward initially refuses, explaining to Bella that he could very easily kill her. Eventually, upon realizing how much it means to Bella, he says that he is willing to try in the future as long as they are married first. Despite having an aversion to marriage, Bella realizes that spending eternity with Edward is more important to her than anything else and accepts his proposal.  Bella and the Cullens realize that the murders in Seattle are being committed by Victoria and an "army" of newborn vampires that she has created. The Cullen family, abandoned by the Denali Coven, joins forces with the La Push werewolf pack in order to combat this threat. As everyone else prepares for battle, Edward and Bella camp up in the mountains, where they are later joined by Jacob and Seth Clearwater, a young member of the werewolf pack, to wait out the light. Bella, as a delicate human, starts to freeze in the harsh weather of the mountain. Jacob warms up Bella with his abnormal body heat, much to Edward's horror. During the night, Bella overhears a conversation between Edward and Jacob, in which they temporarily forget about their hatred towards each other. In the morning, Jacob overhears Edward and Bella discussing their engagement and becomes very upset. He runs off, but at Bella's request, Edward brings Jacob. He threatens to join the fight and get himself killed because he feels that Bella doesn't love him. When Bella begs him not to, Jacob insists that he will unless she asks him to kiss her. Furious, she does so, and while kissing him she realizes that she is in love with him as well. Edward finds out about this, but isn't angry. Bella realizes that she loves Edward more than Jacob.

Victoria eventually finds Bella's hiding spot, but Edward kills her while Seth kills her partner Riley. The Cullens and the Quileute werewolves, meanwhile, destroy her "army", though Jacob is injured when saving Leah Clearwater from a newborn. He heals swiftly under the supervision of Carlisle. Several members of the Volturi arrive to destroy Victoria's army, and end up only killing the one newborn who surrendered. They are also told that while Bella hasn't become a vampire yet, the date for her transformation has been set. Bella visits Jacob in his home to tell him that she has chosen to be with Edward. Heartbroken by her choice, Jacob reluctantly agrees to stop trying to come between her and Edward. Bella then goes back to Edward. They go to Alice, who already knows they're getting married.  Alice has already made a number of plans for the wedding, but Bella edits some of them. After this, they go to Edward's meadow. Edward says that they can make love before marrying if she wants to, but Bella has decided to do things his way: marriage, making love, and then becoming a vampire. They then decide they need to tell Charlie about their engagement. The epilogue is told from Jacob's point of view, who is suffering from a broken heart. He receives an invitation to Bella and Edward's wedding. Inside it is a letter from Edward, thanking him for "everything," and saying that if Jacob didn't want to come, he didn't have to. Jacob, after reading the letter, runs away in his wolf form to escape the pain he feels.

Plot Summary by Wikia Entertainment

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Iron Man 2 (2010)

"The world is aware that billionaire inventor Tony Stark is the armored superhero Iron Man. Under pressure from the government, the press, and the public to share his technology with the military, Tony is unwilling to divulge the secrets behind the Iron Man armor because he fears the information will slip into the wrong hands. With Pepper Potts, and James “Rhodey” Rhodes at his side, Tony forges new alliances and confronts powerful new forces.”   synopsis from

View the Teaser Trailer.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Robin Hood

After the death of Richard the Lion-Hearted, a skilled archer named Robin Longstride (Russell Crowe) travels to Nottingham, where villagers suffer under a despotic sheriff and crippling taxation. He meets and falls in love with a spirited widow, Marion (Cate Blanchett), although she is skeptical of his motives. Hoping to win her heart and save the village, Robin gathers a band of warriors to fight corruption in Nottingham, little knowing they will soon be fighting to save England itself.

Official Site of Robin Hood Movie.

Sunday, April 18, 2010


Police detective John 'Scottie' Ferguson is asked by an old college friend, Gavin Elster, if he would have a look into his wife Madeleine's odd behavior. Lately, she's taken to believing that she is the reincarnation of a woman who died many years ago and Elster is concerned about her sanity. Scottie follows her and rescues her from an apparent suicide attempt when she jumps into San Francisco bay. He gets to know her and falls in love with her. They go to an old mission church and he is unable to stop her from climbing to the top of the steeple, owing to his vertigo, where she jumps to her death. A subsequent inquiry finds that she committed suicide but faults Scottie for not stopping her in the first place. Humiliated and haunted by what has happened, he leaves the police force. Several months later, he meets Judy Barton, a woman who is the spitting image of Madeleine. He can't explain it, but she is identical to the woman who died. He tries to re-make her into Madeleine's image by getting her to dye her hair and wear the same type of clothes. He soon begins to realize however that he has been duped and was a pawn in a complex piece of theater that was meant to end in tragedy. Written by garykmcd

For a detailed PLOT SUMMARY, see Spark Notes.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Alice in Wonderland

Disney version of Lewis Carroll's Children's story. Alice becomes bored and her mind starts to wander. She sees a white rabbit who appears to be in a hurry. She chases it into its burrow - and enters the merry, topsy-turvy world of Wonderland! Memorable songs and whimsical escapades highlight Alice's journey, which culminates in a madcap encounter with the Queen of Hearts - and her army of playing cards!

Part of the synopsis written by Tim Pickett, as published in IMDb.

For a detailed plot summary, you may visit BookRags.

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Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

It’s been two years since Megatron’s body was dropped to the depths of the ocean. Since then a private team of humans called Nest have been working with the Autobots to eliminate the remaining Decepticons. Just when they think their job is nearly done, one Decepticon reveals a terrifying prophecy— “the Fallen shall rise again.”

The Fallen is one of the ancient Prime brothers, descendents of Optimus Prime. But unlike the others, the Fallen hated humans. He planned to destroy the Earth’s sun, giving him access to a powerful energy source and annihilating the human race in the process. In order to destroy the sun, he needed a massive device buried somewhere in Egypt. But his brothers were loyal to the human race and wouldn’t let him destroy the world. Instead, they sacrificed their lives to protect the key—the only object that would engage the device.

Sam (Shia Labeouf) is heading off to college 3000 miles away from his girlfriend MacKayla (Megan Fox), his overprotective and emotional mother, and his anxious father. While packing, he finds a sliver of the energy cube (which was destroyed in the previous film) attached to his sweatshirt. When he touches it, the sliver sends signals into his mind, causing him to see symbols which he later discovers are the lost language of the Primes. These symbols lead him, his girlfriend, his cowardly roommate, and a robot expert to Egypt in search of the key that will engage the sun-destroying device. The Decepticons set out in search of Sam, planning to probe his mind for the symbols and then destroy him.

The Autobots come to his rescue, but Optimus Prime, the last member of the Prime family, pays the ultimate sacrifice. With Optimus Prime gone, the fallen can rise again and set forth his plan to destroy the planet. Now both Sam and the Fallen seek the key; not only does it have the power to engage the sun-blasting device, but it can also resurrect Optimus Prime.

Official Website of the Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

Friday, April 9, 2010

The Lion King

The king of all lions, Mufasa, has a baby called Simba. This greatly angers Mufasa's brother Scar, who would have been next in line to the throne. Scar plots to kill Simba and Mufasa, and leads them to a gorge. There Mufasa is killed by a herd of Wildebeest, and Simba is led to believe by Scar that he is responsible for his death. Simba then runs away, and Scar becomes king of the pridelands. After several years, in which time Simba has grown up, he returns with the help of some new friends to the pridelands, where he has a final battle with Scar and wins back the pridelands.

The Lion King is the highest grossing 2D animated film of all time in the United States, and received positive reviews from critics, who praised the film for its music and story. During its release in 1994, the film grossed more than $783 million worldwide, becoming the most successful film released that year, and it is currently the twenty-eighth highest-grossing feature film.

Finding Nemo

Marlin (a clown fish) is a widower who only has his son Nemo left of his family after a predator attack. Years later, on Nemo's first day of school, he's captured by a scuba diver and taken to live in a dentist office's fish tank in Sydney.

So, while Marlin ventures off to try to retrieve Nemo, Marlin meets a fish named Dory, a blue tang suffering from short-term memory loss. The companions travel a great distance, at times hooking a ride with turtles and encountering various dangerous sea creatures such as sharks, anglerfish and jellyfish, in order to rescue Nemo from the dentist's office, which is situated by Sydney Harbor. While the two are doing this, Nemo and the other sea animals in the dentist's fish tank plot a way to return to Sydney Harbor to live their lives free again.

For pictures, reviews, cast, videos, and posters, you may view starpulse.

To download this movie for free, go to SHAREUP.

Spider-Man 3

After his previous adventures, Peter Parker (Toby Maguire) hopes to marry his girlfriend Mary Jane (Kirsten Dunst). But Peter is told by the police that the original killer of his uncle is still on the loose and his trail has been lost. The killer, Flint Marko, runs into a neuclear weapon testing facility and his atoms are fused with sand. After that he becomes the evil SANDMAN. But thats not all, as Harry Osbourne (James Franco) wants his revenge and become the second Green Goblin! Also, an alien life force fuses to Spiderman and starts to poison him / kill him / make him go crazy and Spidey finally rips the suit of. But Peter's rival photographer, Eddie Brock Jr. takes the suit and becomes the powerful yet lethal Venom. Will Spiderman defeat all of these enemies?

Extracted from Ruined Endings.

For trailers, pictures, reviews, casts and more information, go to the Spider-Man 3 Official Site

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs

As we rejoin the motley herd from the two previous Ice Age films, Manny the mammoth (Ray Romano) nervously pampers his expectant mate, Ellie (Queen Latifah), while his best friend, Diego the saber-toothed tiger (Denis Leary), bristles at the thought of Manny's domesticated existence. Meanwhile, Sid the sloth (John Leguizamo) continues to annoy everybody, and Scrat the rock rat is still trying to get that acorn. When Sid accidentally discovers an underground world populated by dinosaurs, he steals three dino eggs so that he, too, can become a "mommy." After the little ones hatch, their real mom comes to retrieve them, and snatches Sid as well, prompting the others to band together yet in order to rescue their friend. ~ Perry Seibert, All Movie Guide

 For more reviews, photos, casts, trailers and links, see IMDb, the Internet Movie Database.

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Independence Day

On July 2nd, communications systems worldwide are sent into chaos by a strange atmospheric interference.  It is soon learned by the military that a number of enormous objects are on a collision course with Earth.  At first thought to be meteors, they are later revealed to be gigantic spacecraft, piloted by a mysterious alien species. After attempts to communicate with the aliens go nowhere, David Levinson, an ex-scientist turned cable technician, discovers that the aliens are going to attack major points around the globe in less than a day. On July 3rd, the aliens all but obliterate New York, Los Angeles, and Washington. The survivors set out in convoys towards Area 51, a strange government testing ground where it is rumored the military has a captured alien spacecraft of their own. The survivors devise a plan to fight back against the enslaving aliens.

When the world counter- attacked, the alien ships are invincible to normal weapon systems, then the President of the United States, decides to head to area 51, to formulate a plan to defeat the aliens.  The ultimate encounter occurs when mysterious and powerful aliens launch an all out invasion against the human race. The spectacle begins when massive spaceships appear in Earth's skies. But wonder turns to terror as the ships blast destructive beams of fire down on cities all over the planet. Now the world's only hope lies with a determined band of survivors, uniting for one last strike against the invaders - before it's the end of mankind.  The war is ultimately won on July 4, our Independence Day.

Synopsis contribution by Gustaf Molin, John Wiggins, and Robert Lynch

For more information about this film, visit Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.

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The Dark Knight

Batman raises the stakes in his bourgeois war on crime. With the help of Lieutenant Jim Gordon and District Attorney Harvey Dent, Batman sets out to dismantle the remaining criminal organizations that plague the city streets. The partnership proves to be effective, but they soon find themselves prey to a reign of chaos unleashed by a rising mastermind known to the terrified citizens of Gotham as The Joker, a psychopathic criminal whose eerie grin, laughter, and inhuman morality makes him as dangerous than what he has yet to unleash.

It becomes an agenda to Batman to stop the mysterious Joker at all costs, knowing that both of them are in an opposite line. One has no method at all and seeks to see the world plunge into the fire he has yet to light. One represents the symbol of hope and uses his own shadow to bring the peace and order he has yet to accomplish doing.

Part of synopsis written by Peteagassi.

Official Website of The Dark Knight

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Star Wars (all episodes)

The Original Trilogy

The original trilogy begins 19 years later as Vader nears completion of the massive Death Star space station which will allow him and Sidious, now the Emperor, to crush the rebellion which has formed against the evil empire. He captures Princess Leia Organa who has stolen the plans to the Death Star and hidden them in droid R2-D2. R2-D2, along with his counterpart C-3PO, escape to the planet Tatooine. There, the droids are purchased by Luke Skywalker, son of Anakin, and his step-uncle and aunt. While Luke is cleaning R2-D2, he accidentally triggers a message put into the robot by Leia, who asks for assistance from Obi-Wan. Luke later assists the droids in finding the Jedi Knight, who is now passing as an old hermit under the alias Ben Kenobi. Obi-Wan tells Luke of his father's greatness, but says that he was killed by Vader. Obi-Wan and Luke hire the Corellian space pilot and smuggler Han Solo and his Wookiee co-pilot Chewbacca to take them to the rebels. Obi-Wan begins to teach Luke about the Force, but allows himself to be killed in a showdown with Vader during the rescue of Leia. His sacrifice allows the group to escape with the plans that allow the rebels to destroy the Death Star.

Vader continues to hunt down the rebels, and begins building a second Death Star. Luke travels to find Yoda to become trained as a Jedi, but is interrupted when Vader lures him into a trap by capturing Han and the others. Vader reveals that he is Luke's father and attempts to turn him to the dark side.  Luke escapes, and returns to his training with Yoda. He learns that he must face his father before he can become a Jedi, and that Leia is his twin sister. As the rebels attack the second Death Star, Luke confronts Vader under the watch of the Emperor. Instead of convincing Luke to join the dark side, the young Jedi defeats Vader in a lightsaber duel and is able to convince him that there is still some good in him. Vader kills the Emperor before succumbing to his own injuries, and the second Death Star is destroyed, restoring freedom to the galaxy.

The Prequel Trilogy

The prequel trilogy follows the upbringing of Anakin Skywalker, who is discovered by the Jedi Knight Qui-Gon Jinn. He is believed to be the "Chosen One" foretold by Jedi prophecy to bring balance to the Force. The Jedi Council, led by Yoda, sense that his future is clouded with fear, but reluctantly allows Qui-Gon's apprentice Obi-Wan Kenobi to train Anakin after Qui-Gon is killed by the Sith Lord Darth Maul.

At the same time, the planet Naboo is under attack, and its ruler, Queen Padmé Amidala, seeks the assistance of the Jedi to repel the attack. The Sith Lord Darth Sidious secretly planned the attack to give his alias, Senator Palpatine, a pretense to overthrow the Supreme Chancellor of the Galactic Republic. The remainder of the prequel trilogy chronicles Anakin's fall to the dark side, as Sidious attempts to create an army to defeat the Jedi and lure Anakin to be his apprentice.  Anakin and Padmé fall in love and secretly wed, and eventually Padme becomes pregnant. Anakin soon succumbs to his anger, becoming the Sith Lord Darth Vader. While Sidious reorganizes the Republic into the Galactic Empire, Vader participates in the extermination of the Jedi Order, culminating in a lightsaber battle between him and Obi-Wan. After defeating his former apprentice, Obi-Wan leaves Vader for dead. However, Sidious arrives shortly after to save him and put him into a suit of black armor that keeps him alive. At the same time, Padmé dies while giving birth to twins. The twins are hidden from Vader and are not told who their true parents are.

Synopsis extracted from Wikipedia.

Star Wars Home Page

Schindler's List

Schindler's List (1993) is Steven Spielberg's unexpected award-winning masterpiece - a profoundly shocking, unsparing, fact-based, three-hour long epic of the nightmarish Holocaust. Its documentary authenticity vividly re-creates a dark, frightening period during World War II, when Jews in Nazi-occupied Krakow were first dispossessed of their businesses and homes, then placed in ghettos and forced labor camps in Plaszow, and finally resettled in concentration camps for execution. The violence and brutality of their treatment in a series of matter-of-fact (and horrific) incidents is indelibly and brilliantly orchestrated.

Except for the bookends (its opening and closing scenes) and two other brief shots (the little girl in a red coat and candles burning with orange flames), the entire film in-between is shot in crisp black and white. The film is marvelous for the way in which it crafts its story without contrived, manipulative Hollywood-ish flourishes (often typical of other Spielberg films) - it is also skillfully rendered with overlapping dialogue, parallel editing, sharp and bold characterizations, contrasting compositions of the two main characters (Schindler and Goeth), cinematographic beauty detailing shadows and light with film-noirish tones, jerky hand-held cameras (cinema verite), a beautifully selected and composed musical score (including Itzhak Perlman's violin), and gripping performances.

The screenplay by Steven Zaillian was adapted from Thomas Keneally's 1982 biographic novel (Schindler's Ark), constructed by interviews with 50 Schindler survivors found in many nations, and other wartime associates of the title character, as well as other written testimonies and sources. Oskar Schindler was an enterprising, womanizing Nazi Sudeten-German industrialist/opportunist and war profiteer, who first exploited the cheap labor of Jewish/Polish workers in a successful enamelware factory (Deutsche Emailwaren Fabrik or D.E.F.), and eventually rescued more than one thousand of them from certain extinction in labor/death camps.

Before the film was made, Spielberg had offered Holocaust survivor and director Roman Polanski the job of making the film, but Polanski declined. Since then, ten years later, Polanski made his own honored Holocaust film, the Best Director-winning The Pianist (2002). Stanley Kubrick abandoned his own plans to make a similar film in the planning stages, called "The Aryan Papers" - based on the Louis Begley novel Wartime Lies.

The unanimously-praised film with a modest budget of $23 million deservedly won seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director (the first for Spielberg), Best Cinematography (Janusz Kaminski), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Original Score (John Williams), Best Editing (Michael Kahn), and Best Art Direction. It also won nominations for two of its male leads: Best Actor (Liam Neeson) and Best Supporting Actor (Ralph Fiennes), Best Costume Design, Best Sound, and Best Makeup. Other organizations including the British Academy Awards, the New York Film Critics Circle, and the Golden Globes, likewise honored the film. It was the first black/white film since The Apartment (1960) to win the Best Picture Academy Award, and the most commercially-successful B/W film in cinematic history.

Review by Tim Dirks

To know more about the film, go to filmsite.

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Clash of the Titans

The gods of Ancient Greece were immortal. Endowed with super- natural powers, they breathed the rareified air of Mount Olympus, lived on ambrosia and nectar and were worshipped by the mere mortals who dwelt on the plains below and built temples to their honor.

Love and charity were not necessary part of the lives of these super-beings.  They frequently betrayed their god-like attributes. Benevolent, vengeful contrary and bawdy, they quarreled and fought for power and pursued selfish aims, In fact, they were almost human.

Persius, son of Zeus, could be considered an immaculate start to any man's life, but not when your father's philandering has upset a fistful of gods as powerful as Hera, Athene, Thetis and Aphrodite. Persius was to experience the vagaries of the humor and temper of the gods.

CLASH OF THE TITANS tells of Persius' battles to win the hand of beautiful Andromeda. The gods look down and help or hinder according to their whims, as Persius, aided by Pegasus, the winged horse, and Bubo, an owl of uncommon talent, overcomes the three Stygian witches with one eye between them, a monstrous two-headed wolf/dog, Dioskilos; Medusa of the Gorgon's head; and ultimately the terrifying Kraken, a giant monster raised from its primeval home on the sea-bed to bring destruction.
(Synopsis from the official pressbook)

For pictures, reviews, casts, and more details about the film, go to

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Citizen Kane

The newspaper baron Charles Foster Kane, one of the richest and most powerful men in America if not the world, dies. His last word: "Rosebud". A newspaperman digs into his past seeking the meaning of the enigmatic word. He finds evidence of a child torn away from his family to serve Mammon. Grown into manhood, Charles Foster Kane becomes a newspaperman to indulge his idealism. He marries the niece of the man who will become President of the United States, and gradually assumes more and more power while losing more and more of his soul. Kane's money and power does not bring him happiness, as he has lost his youthful idealism, as has the America he is a symbol for.

Written by Jon C. Hopwood

For more details about this film, go to filmsite.

To download this movie for free, go to ALLMOVIA.COM.

Monday, April 5, 2010

The Silence of the Lambs

Based on Thomas Harris's novel, this terrifying film by Jonathan Demme really only contains a couple of genuinely shocking moments (one involving an autopsy, the other a prison break). The rest of the film is a splatter-free visual and psychological descent into the hell of madness, redeemed astonishingly by an unlikely connection between a monster and a haunted young woman. Anthony Hopkins is extraordinary as the cannibalistic psychiatrist Dr. Hannibal Lecter, virtually entombed in a subterranean prison for the criminally insane. At the behest of the FBI, agent-in-training Clarice Starling (Jodie Foster) approaches Lecter, requesting his insights into the identity and methods of a serial killer named Buffalo Bill (Ted Levine). In exchange, Lecter demands the right to penetrate Starling's most painful memories, creating a bizarre but palpable intimacy that liberates them both under separate but equally horrific circumstances. Demme, a filmmaker with a uniquely populist vision ( Melvin and Howard , Something Wild ), also spent his early years making pulp for Roger Corman ( Caged Heat ), and he hasn't forgotten the significance of tone, atmosphere, and the unsettling nature of a crudely effective close-up. Much of the film, in fact, consists of actors staring straight into the camera (usually from Clarice's point of view), making every bridge between one set of eyes to another seem terribly dangerous. -- Tom Keogh

For more details and reviews, please see this item at

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Patton (1970)

Patton (1970) is the epic film biography of the controversial, bombastic, multi-dimensional World War II general and hero George S. Patton. The larger-than-life, flamboyant, maverick, pugnacious military figure, nicknamed "Old Blood and Guts," was well-known for his fierce love of America, his temperamental battlefield commanding, his arrogant power-lust ("I love it. God help me, I do love it so. I love it more than my life"), his poetry writing, his slapping of a battle-fatigued soldier, his anti- diplomatic criticism of the Soviet Union, and his firing of pistols at fighter planes.

The film, shot in 70 mm. widescreen color, received a phenomenal ten Academy Awards nominations and won seven major awards: Best Picture, Best Actor (Scott refused to accept the honor), Best Director (Franklin J. Schaffner), Best Story and Screenplay (Francis Ford Coppola and Edmund H. North), Best Art Direction/Set Decoration, Best Sound, and Best Film Editing. Its other three nominations were: Best Cinematography, Best Original Score (Jerry Goldsmith), and Best Special Visual Effects. The story was based on two books: Patton: Ordeal and Triumph by Ladislas Farago and A Soldier's Story by General Omar Bradley (portrayed by Karl Malden). As a result of Coppola's breakthrough win in 1970, he went on to write and direct The Godfather (1972).

Although George C. Scott portrayed the famous general perfectly and became Scott's archetypal film, the role was also considered by Burt Lancaster, Rod Steiger, Lee Marvin, Robert Mitchum and John Wayne. The subject matter was remade as a TV-movie entitled The Last Days of Patton (1986), also with Scott in the lead role.

Review by Tim Dirks

Web Site of General S. Patton

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Friday, April 2, 2010

Black Hawk Down

Action/war drama based on the best-selling book detailing a near-disastrous mission in Somalia on October 3, 1993. On this date nearly 100 U.S. Army Rangers, commanded by Capt. Mike Steele, were dropped by helicopter deep into the capital city of Mogadishu to capture two top lieutenants of a Somali warlord. This lead to a large and drawn-out firefight between the Rangers and hundreds of Somali gunmen, leading to the destruction of two U.S. Black Hawk helicopters. This film focuses on the heroic efforts of various Rangers to get to the downed black hawks, centering on Sgt. Eversmann, leading the Ranger unit Chalk Four to the first black hawk crash site, Warrant Officer Durant who was captured after being the only survivor of the second black hawk crash, as well as many others who were involved. Written by Matthew Patay: revised by Brady Schloz

Official Website of Black Hawk Down

To download this movie for free, go to ALLMOVIA.COM.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Jurassic Park

Jurassic Park is based on the premise of scientists successfully extracting dinosaur DNA from the thorax of preserved prehistoric mosquitoes, cloning it, and recreating and breeding a variety of dinosaurs to roam a for-profit theme park. People are awed by the accomplishment until something goes horribly wrong. The novel prompts one to explore the motives and responsibility for the experiment, as well as the consequences.

The story opens in a remote village of Costa Rica. Several individuals, in separate incidents, have sustained horrible injuries by what one of the victims calls a "raptor". As the plot unfolds, it becomes clear that the velociraptor is one of the most vicious, and therefore dangerous, of the dinosaurs inhabiting the tiny country, and the animals are part of a project that is the brainchild of John Alfred Hammond, a billionaire capitalist.

John Hammond had started with the idea of developing "consumer biologicals" which involved duplicating rare or genetically engineered animals for a profit. Between 1983 and 1985 he had raised $870 million from investors to fund his proposed corporation, International Genetic Technologies, Inc. All the while, he insisted on absolute secrecy about the project.

What Hammond, through his researchers, had done was to develop what he called, "the most advanced amusement park in the world, combining the latest in electronic and biological technologies." To make his project more cost efficient, Hammond used as few personnel as possible in the park, investing instead in computer technology and automation wherever possible. In the park the dinosaurs, creatures recreated through genetic engineering, roamed in a setting meant to be opened to all the world to visit -- for a substantial price.

Hammond's amusement park never makes a public opening, as events get out of hand during a visit by private parties. The scientists' cloned and newly created life forms --the dinosaurs-- get out of control, inflicting gruesome and sometimes deadly injuries on the visitors. Scientists find they are unable to predict the behaviors, abilities, and adaptations of their creations. As the novel ends, many of the visitors to the park have died. What is so disturbing to the survivors and investigators is the evidence that some of the creatures have developed the ability to reproduce and to survive outside of the park setting.

by Michael Crichton, Ballentine Books, 1990

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Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest

The second part of a trilogy, PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: DEAD MAN'S CHEST is a fantastic tale of pirates, love, and the supernatural. Blacksmith Will Turner (Orlando Bloom) and his upper-class love Elizabeth Swann (Keira Knightley) are preparing to wed when they are confronted with a warrant for their arrests because they helped the notorious pirate Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) escape the authorities. Their only choice for a pardon is to find Jack and return to Lord Cutler Beckett (Tom Hollander) with the flamboyant captain's compass. Will's attempt to track Jack down, however, becomes an adventure unto itself: Jack is being held captive on an island where the natives think he is a god. To make matters worse, the infamous Davy Jones (Bill Nighy) and his Flying Dutchman crew are after Jack, seeking his soul to repay a debt. With his beard of tentacles and a lobster claw for a hand, heartless Jones is no mere mortal. He and his men are slowly evolving, taking on the attributes of various sea creatures, and with the help of a giant sea monster, the Kraken, they rule the waters. Seeking respite from his fate with Davy Jones, Jack enlists the aid of Tia Dalma (Naomie Harris), a practitioner of the supernatural, in an effort to locate the Dead Man's Chest that supposedly contains Jones's still-beating heart. Whoever possesses the heart controls Jones, and thereby controls the seas. And so the adventure continues as Jack, Will, and the Black Pearl crew track down the Flying Dutchman in search of redemption. This rollicking summer adventure, directed by Gore Verbinski (THE WEATHER MAN, THE RING), features multiple intersecting storylines, unique stunts, and a pithy script that lets each main character shine, while the costumes and makeup for Jones and his sea creature crew are nothing short of spectacular.    ---   By Rotten Tomatoes

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The Titanic

84 years later a 100-year-old woman named Rose DeWitt Bukator tells the story to her granddaughter Lizzy Calvert, Brock Lovett, Lewis Bodine, Bobby Buell, and Anatoly Mikailavich on the Keldysh about her life set in April 10th 1912, on a ship called Titanic when young Rose boards the departing ship with the upper-class passengers and her mother, Ruth DeWitt Bukater, and her fiancé, Caledon Cal Hockley. Meanwhile, a drifter and artist named Jack Dawson and his best friend Fabrizio De Rossi win third-class tickets to the ship in a game. And she explains the whole story from departure until the death of Titanic on its first and last voyage April 15th, 1912 at 2:20 in the morning. [Written by Anthony Pereyra]

After winning a trip on the RMS Titanic during a dockside card game, American Jack Dawson spots the society girl Rose DeWitt Bukater who is on her way to Philadelphia to marry her rich snob fiancé Cal Hockley. Rose feels helplessly trapped by her situation and makes her way to the aft deck and thinks of suicide until she is rescued by Jack. Cal is therefore obliged to invite Jack to dine at their first-class table where he suffers through the slights of his snobbish hosts. In return, he spirits Rose off to third class for an evening of dancing, giving her the time of her life. Deciding to forsake her intended future all together, Rose asks Jack, who has made his living making sketches on the streets of Paris, to draw her in the nude wearing the invaluable blue diamond Cal has given her. Cal finds out and has Jack locked away. Soon after wards, the ship hits an iceberg and Rose must find Jack while both must run from Cal even as the ship sinks deeper into the freezing water. [Written by hEmRaJ (]

Deep-sea explorer Brock Lovett has reached the most famous shipwreck of all - the Titanic. Emerging with a safe believed to contain a diamond called 'The Heart of the Ocean', he discovers the safe does not hold the diamond but a drawing of a beautiful woman wearing it. When Brock is later interviewed on TV, he shows the drawing to the cameras, and a 100-year-old woman named Rose Calvert living in Michigan recognizes the woman in the drawing - herself! On a visit to Brock's explorer ship over the wreck, Rose tells her story of the Titanic and its ill-fated voyage. Engaged to a would-be steel magnate, Caledon Hockley, she boards the Titanic's first-class suites with him & her mother in Southampton. Also boarding are Jack Dawson & his friend Fabrizio, after a lucky poker game wins them tickets in steerage. When Rose attempts suicide by jumping off the stern in 3rd class, Jack pulls her back onto the ship...and a bond is forged between them as Jack is invited by her into 1st-class the following day. Rose's mother & Cal Hockley try desperate measures to keep them apart. But that strategy goes out the window when the Titanic collides with an iceberg, and due to a design flaw begins to sink - despite being proclaimed 'unsinkable'. Now Rose & Jack must fight to stay alive, but is young Jack already doomed because of his lower status as a steerage passenger? [Written by Derek O'Cain]

Titanic, the ship of dreams. Is also known as Unsinkable, and it was unsinkable on its departure on April 10th, 1912. And on its epic journey a poor artist named Jack Dawson and a rich girl Rose DeWitt Bukator fall in love, until one night, their fairytale love for one another turns into a struggle for survival on a ship about to founder to the bottom of the North Atlantic. Rose leaves her fiancée Caledon Hockley for this poor artist, but when the Titanic collides with the Iceberg on April 14th, 1912, and then when the ship sinks on April 15th, 1912 at 2:20 in the morning, Jack dies and Rose survives and 84 years later Rose tells the story about her life on Titanic to her grand daughter and friends on the Keldysh and explains the first sight of Jack that falls into love, then into a fight for survival. When Rose gets saved by one lifeboat that comes back, they take her to the Carpathia with the 6 saved with Rose and the 700 people saved in the lifeboats. The Carpathia Immigration Officer asks Rose what her name is and she loved Jack so much she says her name is not Rose DeWitt Bukator, but her name is Rose Dawson. She seen Cal looking for her, but he doesn't see her, and they never ended up together, her mom, Cal, and friends of the family has know choice but to think that she died on the Titanic. But in the crash of 1929, Cal is married, but then he put a pistol in his mouth and committed suicide. So Rose is an actress in the 20's, and now 84 years later Rose Calvert is 100 years old and tells her grand daughter Lizzy Calvert, Brock Lovett, Lewis Bodine, Bobby Buell, and Anatoly Mikailavich the whole story from departure until the death of Titanic on its first and last voyage, and then to Rose all Titanic and the real love of her life Jack Dawson is all an existence inside of her memory, and Titanic is to rest in peace at the bottom of the North Atlantic from 1912 until the end of time. [Written by Scotty McCoy]

Semi-official website of The Titanic

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The Shawshank Redemption

In 1946, a banker named Andy Dufresne (Tim Robbins) is convicted of a double murder, even  though he stubbornly proclaims his innocence. He's sentenced to a life term at the Shawshank State Prison in Maine, where another lifer, Ellis "Red" Redding (Morgan Freeman), picks him as the new recruit most likely to crack under the pressure. The ugly realities of prison life are quickly introduced to Andy: a corrupt warden (Bob Gunton), sadistic guards led by Capt. Byron Hadley (Clancy Brown), and inmates who are little better than animals, willing to use rape or beatings to insure their dominance. But Andy does not crack: he has the hope
of the truly innocent, which (together with his smarts) allow him to prevail behind bars. He uses his banking skills to win favor with the warden and the guards, doing the books for Norton's illegal business schemes and keeping an eye on the investments of most of the prison staff. In exchange, he is able to improve the prison library and bring some dignity and respect back to many of the inmates, including Red.

One day a newcomer named Tommy (Gil Bellows) tells Andy that in prison he talked to an inmate named Ernie (Joseph Ragno) who said he killed a banker's wife and her boyfriend but that it was framed on Andy. Andy tells the warden who is skeptical. The Warden then has Tommy shot. Andy dosen't want to help the warden with his scam anymore but the warden blackmails him into further help by threatening to destroy the library. One morning, Andy is gone. The Guards search his cell and eventually find that he dug his way out of the wall with the hammer and hidden the hole with the poster. This feat took Andy nearly 20 years. Andy then takes the money accumulated from the scam(a bankers salary for 20 years) and leaves town. The police attempt to arrest the Warden who commits suicide. Red passes his parol board and reunites with Andy in a Pacific Mexican Town.

The movie is based on a book by Stephen King, bearing the same title.
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The Godfather

Popularly viewed as one of the best American films ever made, the multi-generational crime saga The Godfather is a touchstone of cinema: one of the most widely imitated, quoted, and lampooned movies of all time. Marlon_Brando and Al_Pacino star as Vito Corleone and his youngest son, Michael, respectively. It is the late 1940s in New York and Corleone is, in the parlance of organized crime, a "godfather" or "don," the head of a Mafia family. Michael, a free thinker who defied his father by enlisting in the Marines to fight in World War II, has returned a captain and a war hero. Having long ago rejected the family business, Michael shows up at the wedding of his sister, Connie (Talia_Shire), with his non-Italian girlfriend, Kay (Diane_Keaton), who learns for the first time about the family "business".

Through Michael's life the nature of the family business becomes clear. The business of the family is just like the head of the family, kind and benevolent to those who give respect, but given to ruthless violence whenever anything stands against the good of the family.

A few months later at Christmas time, the don barely survives being shot by gunmen in the employ of a drug-trafficking rival whose request for aid from the Corleones' political connections was rejected. After saving his father from a second assassination attempt, Michael persuades his hotheaded eldest brother, Sonny (James_Caan), and family advisors Tom Hagen (Robert_Duvall) and Sal Tessio (Abe_Vigoda) that he should be the one to exact revenge on the men responsible.

After murdering a corrupt police captain and the drug trafficker, Michael hides out in Sicily while a gang war erupts at home. Falling in love with a local girl, Michael marries her, but she is later slain by Corleone enemies in an attempt on Michael's life. Sonny is also butchered, having been betrayed by Connie's husband. As Michael returns home and convinces Kay to marry him, his father recovers and makes peace with his rivals, realizing that another powerful don was pulling the strings behind the narcotics endeavor that began the gang warfare. Once Michael has been groomed as the new don, he leads the family to a new era of prosperity, then launches a campaign of murderous revenge against those who once tried to wipe out the Corleones, consolidating his family's power and completing his own moral downfall. Nominated for 11 Academy Awards and winning for Best Picture, Best Actor (Marlon_Brando), and Best Adapted Screenplay, The Godfather was followed by a pair of sequels: The Godfather II and The Godfather III.

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When his brother is killed in a robbery, paraplegic Marine Jake Sully decides to take his place in a mission on the distant world of Pandora. The place is inhabited by the Na'vi, a humanoid race with their own language and culture.

A Na'vi is a ten-foot-tall (3 m) blue-skinned species of sapient humanoids, who live in harmony with nature, worshiping a mother goddess called Eywa. To facilitate relations with the Na'vi and research of Pandora's biosphere, scientists grow Na'vi-human hybrid bodies called avatars that are operated via mental link by genetically matching humans. Jake Sully replaces his twin brother, a scientist trained as an avatar operator but murdered in a robbery.

As Grace, anthropologist Norm Spellman (Joel David Moore) and Jake collect biological samples and data in the forest in their avatar forms, a thanator's attack separates Jake from the group. Neytiri (Zoe Saldana), a female Na'vi, rescues Jake from predators in the forest, and seeing portents from Eywa, brings him to Hometree, where her clan, the Omaticaya, live. Neytiri's mother Mo'at (C. C. H. Pounder), the clan's spiritual leader, shows interest in the "warrior dreamwalker" and instructs her daughter to teach Jake their ways.

In Pandora, Jake learns of greedy corporate figurehead Parker Selfridge's intentions of driving off the native humanoids in order to mine for the precious material unobtanium scattered throughout their rich woodland. In exchange for the spinal surgery that will fix his legs, Jake gathers intel for the cooperating military unit spearheaded by gung-ho Colonel Quaritch, while simultaneously attempting to infiltrate the Na'vi people with the use of an "avatar" identity. While Jake begins to bond with the native tribe and quickly falls in love with the beautiful alien Neytiri, the restless Colonel moves forward with his ruthless extermination tactics, forcing the soldier to take a stand - and fight back in an epic battle.

Official Website of Avatar

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Ben Hur

Judah Ben-Hur lives as a rich Jewish prince and merchant in Jerusalem at the beginning of the 1st century, during the time Jesus was becoming known for his "radical" teachings. Together with the new governor, his old friend Messala arrives as commanding officer of the Roman legions. At first they are happy to meet after a long time but their different politic views separate them. Judah learns that his friend has changed and has become an arrogant conqueror, full of the grandeur of Rome.

During the welcome parade a brick falls down from Judah's house and barely misses the governor. Although Messala knows that they are not guilty he sends Judah to the galleys and throws his mother and sister into prison. But Judah swears to come back and take revenge. Through fate and good fortune, Judah survives the galleys and manages to return to Jerusalem in the hopes of finding his mother and sister, who were also imprisoned.

But during a sea battle, Ben-Hur saves the life of commander Quintus Arrius (Jack_Hawkins), who, in gratitude, adopts Ben-Hur as his son and gives him full control over his stable of racing horses. Ben-Hur never gives up trying to find his family or exact revenge on Messala. At crucial junctures in his life, he also crosses the path of Jesus, and each time he benefits from it.

The highlight of the film's 212 minutes is its now-legendary chariot race, staged largely by stunt expert Yakima_Canutt. Ben-Hur's Oscar haul included Best Picture, Best Director for the legendary William_Wyler, Best Actor for Heston, and Best Supporting Actor for Welsh actor Hugh_Griffith as an Arab sheik.

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Monday, March 29, 2010


Maximus is a powerful general, yet loved by the people of Rome.  The aging Emperor, Marcus Aurelius, also loved him.  He chooses Maximus to be his heir over his own son, Commodus, so that rule might pass from the Caezar back to the people and the Senate.  Marcus' power-hungry son has other ideas, however.  Commodus murdered his father and seizes the throne.

Escaping an ordered execution, Maximus hurries back to his home in Spain, too late to save his wife and son from the same order. Taken into slavery and trained as a gladiator by Proximo, Maximus lives only so that he might someday take his revenge and fulfill the dying wish of his emperor. The time soon comes when Proximo's troupe is called to Rome to participate in a marathon of gladiator games held at the behest of the new emperor, Commodus. Once in Rome, Maximus wastes no time in making his presence known, and is soon involved in a plot to overthrow the emperor with his former love Lucilla, Commodus' sister, after whom he lusts, and also the widowed mother of Lucius, heir to the empire after his uncle, and democratic-minded senator, Gracchus.

Released in the United States on May 5, 2000, the movie was a box office success, receiving generally positive reviews, and was credited with briefly reviving the historical epic. The film was nominated for and won multiple awards; it won five Academy Awards in the 73rd Academy Awards including Best Picture. Although there have been talks of both a prequel and sequel, as of this posting, no production has begun.

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The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957)

British POWs in Burma are employed by the Japanese to build a bridge; meanwhile, British agents seek to destroy it. After surrendering his unit to the Japanese. Colonel Nicholson demands his men behave by the book, and refuses to cooperate with the equally dutiful Japanese commander. When the Japapese insist that the POWs build a bridge, they decide to build the best one possible, thereby restoring morale. But after one of the men escapes to Australia and lets the British commander there know of the operation, he is sent back to the jungle to destroy the tactically-crucial bridge that his comrades are desperately trying to complete.

Genres:                Action/Adventure, Drama, Adaptation and War
Running Time:      2 hrs. 41 min.
MPAA Rating:       PG

For a detailed review, see also Rober Ebert: The Bridge on the River Kwai.

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Lord of the Rings Trilogy

The Lord of the Rings tells an epic tale of good against evil, spanning three volumes - The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers and The Return of the King. The story begins at Bag End in the Shire, at the home of Frodo Baggins. Frodo is a Hobbit - a small creature with hairy feet and a large appetite, not normally prone to adventuring. Frodo has a gold Ring given to him by his Uncle Bilbo, who had 'found it' after its loss by a creature called Gollum, in the course of a previous long journey recounted by JRR Tolkien in The Hobbit.

Wise to the powers that the magic ring holds, the dark Lord Sauron wants it, knowing it will enable him to enslave the people of Middle Earth. In his effort to thwart Sauron, Frodo recruits the fellowship of a wizard, an elf, a dwarf and others, on a mission to destroy the ring by casting it into the volcanic fires of Mount Doom, where it was made. However, the ring unleashes its own powers as a result of the struggle...

Official Site of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy