Category Archives: film criticism

Heat-Haze Review

I’ve just finished watching Seijun Suzuki’s “Taisho Trilogy” and I still feel like some its characters–befuddled, bewildered and enchanted. These three films, all of them set in Japan during the short-lived Taisho period–a period roughly corresponding in spirit, though not … Continue reading

Posted in film criticism | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

What’s the Buzz?

Much as I try to like Roger Corman’s work, every so often he hits a note so flat it gives me an ear-ache. Case in point: “The Wasp Woman.” This trim 63-minute 1959¬†entry from Corman’s own Filmgroup organization, is a … Continue reading

Posted in film criticism | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Lives of the Gangsters

A while back I wrote about the “outlaw romanzas” that were common in the 1940s following the success of the 1939 film “Jesse James.” Now I would like to discuss what was, in a sense, their follow-up, the series of … Continue reading

Posted in film criticism | Tagged , | Leave a comment

When You Re-make a Classic

CAUTION: Contains “spoilers” I wonder whether Taylor Hackford knew what to expect when he agreed to direct a re-make of Jacques Tourneur’s 1947 film noir “Out of the Past.” I don’t believe that audiences and critics swooned over the Tourneur … Continue reading

Posted in film criticism | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Dazzlers

There is a moment in “42nd Street” when any first-time viewer’s eyes will open wide with disbelief. We watch Ruby Keeler singing and dancing to the title song and suddenly the theater stage on which she performing is transformed into … Continue reading

Posted in film criticism | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

“There’s only one Johnny!”

CAUTION: Contains “spoilers.” I think a lot of people do “Key Largo” a disservice by trying to shoehorn it into either the Gangster Movie or the Film Noir mold. Yes, it has gangsters in it, and it is thematically, if … Continue reading

Posted in film criticism | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Close, but…

Jesus Franco’s “Count Dracula” (“El Conde Dracula”) was promoted as an authentic filming of Bram Stoker’s novel–and to an extent it is, taking budgetary restraints into account. The first portion of the film, which details Jonathan Harker’s experiences as a … Continue reading

Posted in film criticism | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment