RSS feed for Zach
  • The Last Black Man in San Francisco

    The Last Black Man in San Francisco

    ★★★★★

    Even better the second time.

  • Scandal

    Scandal

    ★★★

    I found Scandal to be a decent but disappointing early Kurosawa effort that could have been a lot better had it balanced its cast of characters and cut some overly lengthy scenes and character interactions. Had it introduced Shimura's character earlier and made his transformation and turmoil more engaging and affective, this could have been an extremely compelling courtroom drama. It starts strong, but than quickly peters out and stumbles around until a rousing conclusion. A re-edit possibly could have strengthened it.

  • Blackhat

    Blackhat

    ★★★½

    First time watching the Director's Cut. Superior to theatrical.

  • Den of Thieves

    Den of Thieves

    ★★★★½

    Den of Thieves is a return to form for Gerard Butler and easily the best movie 50 Cent will ever be involved with. It's a simple and elongated crime epic that isn't afraid to build up tension and hold back the action until absolutely necessary. Heat comparisons are unavoidable, but it does enough to differentiate itself. Unfortunately, the last five minutes of the movie throws on a twist that comes straight out of a Fast and Furious movie instead of…

  • Stuck on You

    Stuck on You

    ★★★★

    Stuck on You is a very underrated comedy/drama from brotherly director duo The Farrelly Brothers. While not particularly laugh out loud funny, it is an extremely sweet and good natured drama that touches on some important subjects that Hollywood should focus more on. It combines the themes of two other films of theirs, Dumb and Dumber and Shallow Hal, as it examines the nature of brotherhood, the notion of true beauty on the inside, and specifying that special needs or…

  • Icarus

    Icarus

    ★★

    Icarus (The Killing Machine) is a half decent Dolph Lundgren vehicle in which he both stars and directs. There is a surprisingly strong and original story at the center of this action picture, but it's muddled by some poor direction and weak stylistic execution that renders some of the action sequences incomprehensible. Another major issue with the film is that the sound mixing is all off, with most of the characters' dialog being drowned out by the excessively loud score…

  • Carlito's Way

    Carlito's Way

    ★★★½

    Although a tad over long and repetitive in parts, especially in regards to its protagonist's goals and flaws, Carlito's Way excels purely because of De Palma's stylistic touches. There are two truly great suspense sequences in this film (one towards the beginning and the other a lengthy near twenty minute cat and mouse foot chase between Pacino and a group of gangsters) and I would recommend watching the entire movie just for them. It's both an unbearably tense picture and…

  • A Dangerous Man

    A Dangerous Man

    ½

    I'd give this a zero if I could.

  • The Killer Elite

    The Killer Elite

    ★★★

    The Killer Elite is one of Sam Peckinpah's more underseen gems of the 70s that tackles such topics as the CIA, morally complex men, and revenge. However, as with many of Peckinpah's films, it never feels entirely focused, from both its storytelling to its unique editing style. It's hard to explain, but it's hard to not appreciate or admire The Killer Elite somewhat, even though it's not a very good film. It has some thrilling action scenes, a great cast,…

  • Ong Bak: Muay Thai Warrior

    Ong Bak: Muay Thai Warrior

    ★★★

    Ong-Bak is a fairly impressive debut from Tony Jaa, the Thai martial artist who blew up in the martial arts scene after this film was released in 2003. It's ironic that Jaa would be compared to Bruce Lee after this film, as Ong-Bak is very similar to Lee's debut action film, The Big Boss. Both films tell the story of a humble and kind man who knows martial arts, but prefers not to fight people, until absolutely necessary. They also…

  • Pray For Death
  • Navajo Joe

    Navajo Joe

    ★★

    While I admire Sergio Corbucci as a filmmaker, there is no denying that Navajo Joe is one of his weakest films. Star Burt Reynolds had infamously stated that he worked with the "wrong Sergio," referring to Sergio Leone and his ability to make Clint Eastwood a star with their films. However, I wouldn't exactly say that Burt got the wrong Sergio, but simply a lousy script and a production that feels terribly rushed, which may be partially to blame upon…