We proceed with the survey of the 1996 Version of Roger Ebert’s Video Companion. Entries under ‘A’ Heading. What follows are entries within the B class.
Titles in daring letters: Seen by Me; in any other case, not seen or solely partly seen
Numbers in parenthesis: Star Scores by Roger Ebert
Numbers in brackets: My Scores
Babyfever (3) – 1994
Child It’s You (3) – 1983
An illustration, completely satisfied and unhappy, of what John Sayles was able to when he left his do-gooderism, boomer ‘radicalism’, and striving for ‘significance’ on the shelf. A most completely satisfied end result, by far his finest work, in addition to a tragic reminder of why his different works fall quick, not as a consequence of lack of expertise however extra of self-aggrandizing ‘social consciousness’.
Child’s Day Out (1 ½) – 1994
Backbeat (2) [2 ½] – 1994
This movie accentuates the issue of the inimitable nature of movie star. Some individuals are important for what they’ve achieved, however celebrities owe a lot of their fame to their picture. The Beatles clearly completed a lot in music, however the unmistakable faces of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, and George Harrison have been etched in our collective consciousness. Anthony Hopkins appears nothing like Richard Nixon, however Oliver Stone made it work as a result of it got here right down to Nixon the doer, a key agent of historical past. In distinction, the Beatles grew to become pop icons, and it’s by no means convincing for others to play them, identical to Elvis films fail for the easy purpose that there was just one King of Rock n Roll. Equally, Martin Scorsese’s THE AVIATOR was least convincing with Cate Blanchett and Kate Beckinsale within the respective roles of Katharine Hepburn and Ava Gardner. There was just one Hepburn, just one Gardner. At any fee, BACKBEAT is a moderately lackluster telling of the Early Beatles, all of the extra disappointing as a result of these had been heady occasions for the younger lads.
Backdraft (3) – 1991
Again to College (3) [2 ½] – 1986
Rodney Dangerfield and Sam Kinison(as an unlikely gung-ho historical past instructor) are nearly the one causes for watching this silly film.
Again to the Seashore (3 ½) – 1987
That is thought of higher than the unique 60s films with younger Annette and Frankie.
Again to the Future (3 ½) – 1985
As a sci-fi comedy car for Michael J. Fox, it was bought as light-hearted fare. But, there’s a moderately nasty shading to the fantasy, one about changing the mother and father you might have with those you’d choose. No must homicide your mother and father and substitute them with good robots. Simply return in time and tweak issues in order that, within the New and Improved Actuality, your father’s a Cool Man and your mom a slim babe, all of the whereas the ‘dangerous’ individuals of city grovel at their toes. Michael J. Fox performs a cool child burdened with the cosmic injustice of getting uncool mother and father. It’s as if the mother and pa by no means obtained over the truth that a fairly lady settled for a loser pushed round by the ‘winners’ in class again within the 50s. Through the years, the daddy’s self-confidence cratered to zero, and the mom led a lifetime of repressed regret, placing on the burden. No surprise the son is raring to teach the dad into form. Often, fantasies like this contain a want to return in time and alter one’s personal previous. However as Michael J. Fox’s character is picture-perfect, the issue includes not himself however his mother and father, whom he loves however is clearly ashamed of. As life classes go, isn’t it higher to simply accept individuals as they’re?
Again to the Future Half II (3) – 1989
Again to the Future Half III (2 ½) – 1990
Unhealthy Boys (3 ½) – 1983
Watched this way back on the insistence of a good friend. Without delay grimly lifelike and shamelessly exploitative. Sean Penn obtained observed for his highly effective efficiency.
Unhealthy Boys (2) – 1995 (the one with Will Smith and Martin Lawrence)
Unhealthy Firm (3 ½) – 1995 (Ellen Barkin and Lawrence Fishburn film)
Unhealthy Ladies (1 ½) – 1994
I recall the foolish trailer.
Unhealthy Affect (3) – 1990
Badlands (4) – 1974
Arduous to imagine Terrence Malick made two masterpieces within the Seventies earlier than returning a pair a long time later as one of the crucial pompous figures in cinematic historical past.
Unhealthy Lieutenant (4) – 1990
A pile of rubbish, a mondo trasho imitation of Dostoevsky and Scorsese. A type of porno-Morality Story. The ‘dangerous lieutenant’ is a corrupt cop as anti-hero whose playing money owed are coming due(and coming for his life); he grabs for last-minute redemption by means foul and truthful. Among the many ‘sleek’ moments is a imaginative and prescient of Jesus in a church that seems to be, sure you guessed it, a Negro, sheeeeiiiit. Nonetheless, Keitel wears his coronary heart on his sleeve(and bares his dong within the discount, maybe as a reminder that the actual Jesus died on the Cross with privates uncovered). Far inferior to even Scorsese’s weakest efforts however, taking part in satan’s advocate, arguably more true in some methods; it’s uncooked sewage than handled sewage ‘cleaned’ into artwork.
Bagdad Cafe (3 ½) – 1988
Ballad of Little Jo (3) – 1993
Ballad of the Unhappy Cafe (3) – 1991
Bang the Drum Slowly (4) – 1973
What’s with baseball films and tearjerkers? One other variation of PRIDE OF THE YANKEES? Perhaps I’ll see it sooner or later.
Barcelona (3) [2 ½] – 1994
Whit Stillman, so good with the ensemble solid in METROPOLITAN, falters right here with two primary characters who do little however nag at one another. What a drag. As for the protracted last half with one of many fellas clinging to expensive life whereas pals and associates learn passages from Battle and Peace, it’s gotta be among the many most unbearable issues in film historical past.
Barfly (4) – 1987
As soon as once more, Ebert can’t resist a film about drunkards.
Bar Ladies (1 ½) – 1995
Barton Fink (3 ½) – 1991
With BARTON FINK, the Coens lastly got here into their very own as a power to reckon with. Whereas ample expertise and ingenuity had been on show of their first three choices, skeptics puzzled whether or not the Coens may transfer past impressed parody and homages. BARTON FINK turned these ‘bugs’ into options of real originality.
Fundamental Intuition (2) – 1992
I solely caught just a few scenes on video due to the hype about Sharon Stone’s snatch and the intercourse/violence. What rubbish. Through the years, some critics reappraised the film as a biting satire on the predatory nature of American sexuality(interwoven with capitalism), much less a chunk of sensationalism than a critique of it. Yeah, positive.
Basketball Diaries (2) – 1995
Batman (2) – 1989
Batman Without end (2 ½) – 1995
Batman Returns (2) – 1992
Magnificence and the Beast (4) – 1991
I vaguely keep in mind this, one of many follow-ups to LITTLE MERMAID, heralded as Disney’s return to cultural relevance. It was okay.
Beetlejuice (2) – 1988
Earlier than Dawn (3) [2 ½]- 1995
Richard Linklater is finest as a private film-maker than as an ‘mental’ movie artist. BEFORE SUNRISE is painstakingly(sincerely and conceptually) all the pieces DAZED AND CONFUSED shouldn’t be. The strategy is ‘European’, and the cerebral romanticism is moderately treasured. It jogged my memory of the person on the porch in IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE: “Why don’t you kiss her as an alternative of speaking her to dying?”
Earlier than the Rain (3 ½) – 1995
Like PULP FICTION launched in the identical yr, BEFORE THE RAIN performs video games with chronology, maybe inappropriate given the gravity of the topic. The methods appear designed extra as show of ‘brilliance’ than pathway to revelation. The contrived plot(particularly one involving forbidden love) exams one’s credulity, however genuinely highly effective moments are interspersed all through. The movie seems to distinction the tribal Balkans with the Liberal West of London. However, isn’t the so-called ‘Liberal West’ actually animated by Jewish tribal supremacism? And what has the ‘liberal’ immigration and ideologies insurance policies achieved to the UK? With Africans working round with machetes and Muslims battling Hindus within the streets, the way forward for UK will probably make the Balkan issues look delicate by comparability. A minimum of ex-Yugoslavia midway solved the disaster by separatism that allowed for extra homogenous states. In distinction, the UK embraced Range because the treatment for all the pieces. What fools.
Being There (4) [3 ½] – 1980
The performances and the course(by Hal Ashby) are impeccable and make the movie appear extra clever and insightful than it truly is. Upon nearer scrutiny, it barely registers as satire. That mentioned, given the trajectory of American Politics because the Eighties, the movie obtained one factor proper. The joke has grow to be actual, and nobody can inform anymore.
Belle Epoque (3 ½) – 1993
It received the Finest Overseas Movie Oscar, by no means a very good signal. Fluff.
Benny and Joon (3) – 1993
Finest Boy (4) – 1980
Betrayal (4) – 1983
Beverly Hills Cop (2 ½) – 1984
I heard that is fairly respectable. The director later went onto to make MIDNIGHT RUN, one in all my favorites. I did see BEVERLY HILLS COPS II, and it was unbelievably dangerous.
Large (3) [3 ½] – 1988
One of many few occasions a ridiculous thought made for film magic. Penny Marshall’s oddball comedy has simply the suitable steadiness of silliness and sensitivity, the alternative of what John Hughes concocted with WEIRD SCIENCE. A task Tom Hanks was born to play. In BIG, he performed a boy in a person’s physique, and later he performed a person with a toddler’s thoughts in FORREST GUMP, a Mt. Rushmore for dumb innocence.
Large Chill (2 ½) – 1983
In 1975, Michael Medved and a compatriot wrote “No matter Occurred to the Class of 65?” BIG CHILL provides some clues as to what got here of the technology a decade later. Center-aged, the boomer characters have come to the belief of how they weren’t so ‘completely different’ but had been. Did they ‘promote out’ as professionals and ‘yuppies’ or just develop wiser? Is there integrity to riot or has it grow to be a futile irrelevance? The balanced and ‘fair-minded’ strategy makes it passionless and boring. (Alternatively, FOUR FRIENDS is stuffed with partisan ardour but additionally painfully obnoxious.)
The Large Simple (4) – 1987
I recollect it was fairly good. Most memorable scene was when Ellen Barkin grabbed the fallacious man’s crotch.
The Large Pink One (3) – 1980
THE BIG RED ONE THE RECONSTRUCTION is the favored(if not definitive) model of Sam Fuller’s conflict film primarily based on his experiences as a younger soldier at Normandy and past. Fuller labored with restricted means, and it’d be foolhardy to match this work with big-budget productions like THE LONGEST DAY and PATTON(or SAVING PRIVATE RYAN). Nonetheless, Fuller wasn’t a lot of a director, and his repute largely rests on having touched on racy points that Hollywood usually neglected. Working within the B-movie division, Fuller had extra ‘creative’ leeway. Nonetheless, he was no Nicholas Ray, and his turgid moralism was on par with that of Stanley Kramer.
The Large City (3 ½) – 1987
Invoice & Ted’s Bogus Journey (3)- 1991
Mildly amusing. The 2 leads’ California Teenager antics appear to be bogus imitations of Sean Penn’s landmark function in FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH. However then, all-around bogusness, even that of Invoice and Ted, is a part of the allure. Penn’s efficiency was actually superior, however one thing so exceptional wouldn’t sit proper in a chunk of fluff like this.
Chook (3 ½)3- 1988
I watched about 10 min of this. Charlie Parker was marrying some Jewish broad. I do know Eastwood loves Jazz, however his visible fashion was by no means jazzy, and I’ve a tough time imagining him as a director of a film about Jazz.
Birdy (4) – 1985
Far-fetched however tantalizing premise that may have labored within the arms of somebody much less obnoxious and sensationalistic than Alan Parker.
Bitter Moon (3) [3 ½]
Roman Polanski at his perverse nastiest. It’s about appalling individuals and doesn’t make for simple viewing(regardless of the humor). A middle-aged man hooks up with a younger lady however dumps her in essentially the most unceremonious method possible. She will get even by turning him right into a paraplegic and having intercourse with ghastly Negro. Entangled of their net is a moderately typical English couple whose assumptions are shaken to the core.
Black Marble (3 ½) – 1980
Black Rain (3 ½) – 1990
Shohei Imamura’s Hiroshima movie is finest when detailing the delicate after-effects of the Bomb, the way in which individuals sweep faint however troubling indicators beneath the rug(or tatami) for a peace of thoughts and social acceptance. However the inevitable catches up regardless of the hope and denial. The movie is weakest in exhibiting the horrors of the bombing. The manufacturing values merely aren’t as much as the duty and moderately negates the understated facet of the movie. The over-acting by a mentally broken veteran can also be a minus. Nonetheless, one of the crucial measured and considerate movies concerning the conflict.
The Black Stallion (4) [3 ½] – 1980
The opening on the ship and the scenes on the island are wonders to behold. The center half sags a bit, however Mickey Rooney takes the reins and leads the boy and horse to a rousing ending.
Blade Runner (3) – 1982
Did BLADE RUNNER create the Future Noir aesthetics? Its retro-noir fashion is understandably celebrated however no much less spectacular is the movie’s neo-classic & neo-gothic motifs and mythic aura. Extra about poetics of temper than poetry in movement, it failed on the box-office. Vangelis’ rating is wonderful.
Blaze (3 ½) – 1989
Blink (3 ½) – 1994
Intelligent thought for a thriller involving treatment for blindness and not sure reminiscence.
Blood Easy (4) – 1985
It put the Coens on the map together with Jim Jarmusch because the impartial film-makers to look at within the Eighties. The self-conscious fashion and outlandish neo-noir plot definitely obtained the movie observed. Nonetheless, it appeared too intelligent by half, overly addled with film-school look-at-me antics. Looking back, its sense of riddle was no mind-game however an obsession the brothers would pursue all through their profession.
Blown Away (2) – 1994
Blow Out (4) [3 ½] – 1981
Movie-makers love what they do however, given the sensationalism of the medium, are generally given to doubt, even pangs of guilt. Clint Eastwood each pushed his killer picture to the hilt and unveiled the darkish facet of violence. Likewise, De Palma, who got here to prominence with sleazy horror, additionally made works that known as into query the exploitative nature of the medium, particularly with guys like himself in cost. Maybe, individuals choose horror parts contained within the horror style than leaking right into a semblance of actuality, which is what occurs in BLOW OUT. It failed large on the box-office however stays amongst De Palma’s finest works.
Blue (3 ½) [2 ½] – 1994
Kieslowski was a typical Polack. A complete suck-ass to the West. Whereas earthy and humorous amongst his personal variety, he obtained all treasured and reverential with Western Europeans(as hopeful fashions for Dumb Polacks). Kieslowski was a person of some expertise, however his westward-looking movies are marred by starvation for approval by the West. What a silly Polack.
Blue Chips (3) – 1994
Blue Collar (4) – 1978
When Paul Schrader wasn’t being so artsy and ‘European’(normally modeled on Robert Bresson), he may make an honest movie, and BLUE COLLAR is one such work. Like Martin Scorsese’s IRISHMAN launched about 4 a long time later, it’s about corruption on the planet of the working class and unions. It really works finest with particulars of day by day toil(at work and residential) however falters badly with the Large Assertion, which isn’t convincing. The characters within the movie are such idiots that they don’t want prime canines taking part in divide-and-conquer to mess them up.
Blue Kite (4) – 1994
It covers a momentous couple of a long time in China beneath Mao. Historical past strikes on a grand scale, like an elephant via a village. The movie meets the turmoil with a gentle and meditative gaze.
The Blues Brothers (3) – 1980
With Belushi and Ackroyd as bluesmen, the result’s each homage and parody of black music. The brothers, touched by disco gentle at a black church, tackle rich restauranteurs, disgruntled nation music band, the state-troopers(practically all of them, the Illinois Nazis(who say, “Jews are utilizing the blacks…”; so, the place’s the lie?), Carrie Fisher with an array of superior weaponry, the Chicago Police, and Metropolis Corridor. Too elaborate for a foolish premise however has its share of guffaws and a few wonderful automotive crashes.
Blue Sky (3) – 1994
Blue Metal (3) – 1990
Jamie Lee Curtis on this demented Katherine Bigelow film performs a NY cop who’s stalked by some sado-masochistic Jewish yuppie who seemingly goes instan-psycho upon choosing up a pistol at a criminal offense scene. Ridiculous and over-the-top however compelling as a sleazo motion thriller.
Blue Velvet (1) [3 ½] – 1986
Ebert hated this movie due to what was achieved to Isabella Rossellini. She will need to have been like a goddess to him. I hated it too however for a special purpose. The entire thing appeared an train in retardation and sadism. (It was my first Lynch movie.) Having come to know Lynch higher over time, I can higher recognize his goals in BLUE VELVET. I nonetheless don’t prefer it. “Child wanna fuc*” certainly.
Blume in Love (4) – 1973
Bob Roberts (3) – 1992
Tim Robbins’ crack at FACE IN THE CROWD? He satirizes David Duke and Pat Buchanan, however can a balless cuck-maggot play males with balls?
Physique Double (3 ½)
A kind of DePalma’s films that’s all fashion and on substance. It was infamous for the murder-by-drill scene.
The Bodyguard (3) – 1992
This appears like a horror film. Kevin Costner not solely kisses a useless Negress however dies for her. Discover one other line of labor, idiot!
Physique Snatchers (4) – 1994
Wonders by no means stop. Scumbag sleaze-meister Abel Ferrara really made a first-rate sci-fi horror flick, all of the extra exceptional given the success of the unique(Don Siegel) and remake(Philip Kaufman). What had been the percentages that one other good movie might be produced from the fabric? Ferrara’s model is as unsettling and thought-provoking(and politically related) as its predecessors.
Bonfire of the Vanities (2 ½) – 1990
I heard that DePalma’s most eagerly awaited film was a complete wash. I averted it for years and at last gave it a glance just a few years again however may stand solely about 20 min. Did the ‘liberal’ facet of DePalma get chilly toes and sabotage the mission lest he must get actual with some uncomfortable truths? Or, was he merely not meant for satire?
Boomerang (3) – 1992
The Enhance (3 ½) – 1988
James Woods is intense as a go-getter whose ambition is fueled by cocaine. It really works as a personality examine of a person pushed in equal components by self-importance and insecurity, wildly exacerbated by the white powder. However the film turns into kind of a cautionary story on the risks of drug use, and message films are boring.
Bopha! (3 ½) – 1993
Born on the Fourth of July (4) – 1989
Oliver Stone’s Vietnam follow-up to PLATOON is a richer work centered on people than on archetypes.
Bostonians (3) – 1984
The Bounty (4) – 1984
A balanced retelling of the ‘Mutiny on the Bounty’ story that provides Captain Bligh his due. (It however does justice to Fletcher Christian’s ill-fated romanticism as effectively.) Bligh stays unlikable however is offered, for good or for sick, indispensable to the enterprise of empire. Ant-and-grasshopper story for adults. Most attention-grabbing is the paradox of Bligh’s authoritarian methods, i.e. to what extent they’re of necessity or flaws of character, of energy or of weak point.
Boyfriends and Girlfriends (3) [3 ½] – 1988
By no means cared for Eric Rohmer, however his consistency as a maker of clever movies on the relations between women and men is plain.
Boys on the Aspect (3 ½) – 1995
Extremely, John Simon the snob beloved this film. Perhaps he had the hots for Mary-Louis Parker. This can be a totally detestable film, as horrible as THELMA AND LOUISE, and I solely wished all of the characters died in a horrible automotive crash(with the fuel tank exploding and burning everybody alive). To make issues worse, Drew Barrymore’s character is pregnant all through the film and on the finish offers delivery to a mulatto. Ewwwwwww. (Rattling the Christ-Cucks. Maintain abortion authorized.) I’ll take a slice of MYSTIC PIZZA as an alternative. And even SHAG THE MOVIE.
The Boy Who Might Fly (3) – 1986
Braveheart (3 ½) – 1995
Brazil (2) [2 ½] – 1985
Terry Gilliam’s star has pale over time, however BRAZIL was greeted with loads of accolades, and Ebert and Siskel had been within the minority as nay-sayers. It’s a really busy movie full of plenty of ‘concepts’, however just like the planet Jupiter, it’s extra fuel than core substance.
The Breakfast Membership (3) – 1985
It’s a dishonest and silly film pandering to the worst and most self-absorbed tendencies of American Youth however however works its magic inside these contemptible perimeters. In the event you shut off your vital schools and go together with the hammy cliches, it like MTV’s thought of Eugene O’Neill.
Breaking Away (4) – 1979
The love story isn’t convincing. Would a woman so fairly and sensible fall for such a man together with his ‘mama mia’ act? Nonetheless, it really works as a dream, and the remainder of the movie has an exquisite mixture of sophistication realism and social nostalgia, of individualism and familism.
The Bridges of Madison County (3 ½) – 1995
Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep in a soapy film primarily based on Oprah’s Ebook of the Month. Wild Horses and your entire starship fleet must drag me to see this one.
Vibrant Angel (3 ½) – 1991
Vibrant Lights, Large Metropolis (3 ½) – 1988
The e book isn’t a lot, however the film may have achieved with a much less restricted(and fewer well-known)actor — Michael J. Fox is indelibly Michael J. Fox — and extra impressed director. What occurred to the James Bridges who made PAPER CHASE, even URBAN COWBOY? That is directing-by-the-numbers. Phoebe Cates doesn’t add a lot both.
Convey Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia (4) [3 ½] – 1974
Sam Peckinpah lastly obtained to make a movie precisely the way in which he wished to, and the end result ranges from highly effective and interesting to repulsive and ludicrous. I feel Paul Seydor, an professional on Peckinpah, known as it the worst of the good American Movies. That sounds about proper.
Broadcast Information (4) – 1987
Holly Hunter was on the up-and-up within the 80s, and that is her triumph. She performs an obsessive producer, a stickler to element, a demanding boss. She’s a control-freak for whom all the pieces must be achieved by the letter. (If she’s so principled,why work in TV information than in print, the place high quality is less complicated to keep up?) However for all her dedication to requirements and integrity, it’s a enterprise in any case, and she or he’s assigned to make a shallow(and moderately dim) hunk look good. She additionally finds herself falling in love with him, and in the long run, she should select between precept and love. She chooses precept, however the man she rejected turns into successful anyway, and the information enterprise is modified perpetually regardless. In between is a Jewish man(who lacks the appears however has the smarts) who’s pushed(and pushed half-crazy) by rules and private points, envy particularly. Ultimately, all of them settle for their compromises and the world as it’s and transfer on. They arrive at a sure peace however with a sure melancholy. The film associates dumbness with shallow deception and intelligence with exhausting reality, however isn’t the larger downside in our world the truth that so many sensible Jews in academia and media are overtly dedicated to spinning lies to keep up their facade of ‘muh democracy’ that quantities to little greater than Jewish Supremacist Empire? What did Sam Harris say not too long ago about Hunter Biden’s laptop computer? What’s the technique of Cass Sunstein and the NYT? Sensible is best than dumb however no assure for integrity and reality.
The Buddy Holly Story (3 ½) – 1978
That is thought of one of many higher Rock n Roll films, a superior biopic.
Bugsy (4) – 1991
Is Warren Beatty convincing as a hot-blooded Jewish gangster?
Busy Malone (3 ½) [2 ½] – 1976
A cute concept that works for about 15 min however isn’t sufficient to maintain an entire film.
Bull Durham (3 ½) – 1988
Heard this can be a good film however didn’t look after something related to baseball. Did lastly see it, and sure, it was good, however I don’t keep in mind a factor.
Bullets over Broadway (3 ½) [3 ½] – 1994
This definitely has its share of guffaws, however a Woody Allen film with out Woody Allen is sort of a Clint Eastwood film with out Clint Eastwood. The place’s the meat? A kinder and nicer BARTON FINK.
Burden of Desires (4) [3 ½] – 1982
Many take into account APOCALYPSE NOW as one of many biggest in cinema, however naysayers however recognize HEARTS OF DARKNESS the documentary on the making of Coppola’s movie. Likewise, many viewers choose BURDEN OF DREAMS over Wernor Herzog’s FITZCARRALDO, which is extra forbidding than formidable regardless of(or exactly as a result of) all of the blood and sweat poured into it. Artwork isn’t about A for Effort.
Buster (3) – 1988
I heard this film with Phil Collins is fairly enjoyable.
The Butcher’s Spouse (2 ½) – 1991
Bye Bye Brazil (4) [3 ½]- 1979
It follows a ramshackle circus troupe, paying homage to early Fellini and Bergman. The communities wherein the characters ply their commerce have solely a faint semblance of modernity. They’re outcasts and hucksters but additionally bringers of pleasure and goals to individuals that point forgot.
Bye Bye Love (2) – 1995