Image copyright © by Marcus Trahan



A 21st century, hip-hop, basketball version of the Othello story. I love Shakespeare, and I am always interested in adaptations of his works, no matter how far-fetched. One of my favorite versions of King Lear was Ran, by Akira Kurosawa, which obviously didn’t used the original text. I also like Romeo + ... Read more »

O Brother, Where Art Thou?


There are not many films that are as much fun as this one. It sparked a revival of “roots” music, which is really just old-timey country and folk and gospel. It’s music from before country got glitz, back when the Grand Old Opry was a lot of hicks standing on the stage a-pickin’ and a-fiddlin’ and a-pluckin’, people who really did grow up hardscrabble in the hills and the ... Read more »



When you hear that Tom Cruise and his partner Andrea Riseborough had their memories wiped five years ago for some bullshit security reason, you can be sure that something is rotten in the state of Oblivion. Someone is lying to them about what had really happened. The story is that aliens arrived about seventy years ago, and we fought them to a standstill, and then won. But winning had a ... Read more »



I’m tempted just to dismiss this in one sentence as the stupid, noxious piece of shit that it is, and get on with my life. But let me say just a few words about what makes it so bad …
What it is, is Fatal Attraction without the original sin. That is, Michael Douglas did fuck Glenn Close. Her reaction was, shall we say, a bit ... Read more »


(The Hidden Room, UK, 1949)

A nice little thriller directed in England by Edward Dmytryk during the period he was blacklisted in Hollywood by the anti-Americans on the House Un-American Activities Committee. A doctor is fed up with his wife’s affairs, and vows to kill the next man she philanders with. To that end, he makes an elaborate plan, thinking, like all megalomaniacs, that the perfect crime involves intricate ... Read more »


(Okkupert, Norway, France, Sweden, 2015)

Here’s an unusual one. In the near future Norway decides to go ultra-Green, shutting down its oil operations in the North Sea and relying on thorium reactors. But this means that Russia and the EU no longer have Norwegian oil to use, and this is unacceptable. So Russia simply takes over. The EU pretends that the fucking Russkis were invited in, and the US doesn’t want to get involved. Not ... Read more »

Ocean’s 11


In the right part, Frank Sinatra was a pretty good actor. I’m thinking of roles like Von Ryan’s Express, The Detective, and The Manchurian Candidate. This is not one of those roles. Akim Tamiroff can also be good, but he’s given nothing to work with here other than going apoplectic every two minutes or so. ... Read more »

Ocean’s 13


When Ocean’s 12 came out I posted a short review, and a facetious review of ((Ocean’s 13}}: Don’t press your luck, Steve, referring to Steven Soderbergh, who usually goes in for much edgier stuff than this, but has done an adequate job on these frothy caper movies. He does it again in 13. It is very complex, and you don’t believe a ... Read more »

Ocean’s Eleven


I never saw the original, Rat Pack version of this, from 1960. This is the re-make by Steven Soderbergh, and a bit of a departure for him. It’s fairly smart, with snappy dialogue, even though you don’t believe it for a second. An amusing night at the movies.

Ocean’s Twelve


The first time they stole $160,000,000. This time they have to give it back. Has some of the attractions of Eleven, but tries too hard to top itself, too many times. By the end I didn’t quite know who had done what to who. Whom. I suspect there were gaping plot holes, but wasn’t interested enough to root them out.