Friday, December 09, 2005
New Movie & DVD Reviews from Combustible Celluloid.com
Here we are in the middle of awards season, and the pickings are slim. It's easily the worst batch since 2000. Last week I would up reviewing a couple of throwaways: Going Shopping and First Descent, and I caught up with the not-screened-for-the-press Aeon Flux over the weekend. Three new Oscar hopefuls opened this week, and all three of them are duds, especially Rob Marshall's Memoirs of a Geisha. At least others seem to agree with me on that one, but I can't understand how critics across the board, both mainstream and obscure, both highbrow and lowbrow, are falling for the latest Parade Float, Ang Lee's Brokeback Mountain. Don't be surprised if it takes home several gold statues next spring. Finally, we have Stephen Gaghan's Syriana, which, simply put, is an Important Message in search of a movie.
In new DVDs, Warner Home Video's gorgeous King Kong is surely one of the year's biggest events, not to mention Milestone's release of Kong's predecessors, Grass and Chang. I checked out some classics by three great directors of the studio era, Alfred Hitchcock's Lifeboat (Fox), Preston Sturges's The Miracle of Morgan's Creek (Paramount) and Fritz Lang's amazing Rancho Notorious (currently available only on a British import DVD). Finally, I had one Halloween slasher-flick leftover, The Janitor (Elite), and Miramax's hit 1991 documentary Paris Is Burning.
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