Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Quick DVD Reviews

Nosferatu (1979)
For our annual Halloween movie, I picked this 1979 Herzog/Kinski collaboration. I had seen it once as a kid, and only remembered certain images - country roads, long fingernails and rats. Lots and lots of rats. I was thrilled to revisit it, and was pleasantly surprised by the thoughtful pacing and the incredible score, particularly the use of Wagner's Das Rheingold. It's a very unusual film with some bewildering performances, but that really adds its charm. I found the response to the plague to be rather interesting in relation of recent H1N1 hysteria. Grade: A-

I Love You Man
In the top tier of Apatow inspired comedies. Paul Rudd does a pretty damn good straight man, and Jason Siegel is able to be wacky without crossing over into annoying. The difference for me between this and so many other 'dumb' comedies is that it has some heart. I'm sure that I would have found it even more enjoyable if I were a Rush fan. Grade: B+

The Walking Dead (1936)
One of Karloff's finest performances, as a man who has returned from the dead to seek revenge after being framed for murder. It is really just a collection of mildly violent set pieces, but it is quite enjoyable. There are some nice effects - with a man being stuck by a train as a real standout. I wondered why such a low budget B movie worked so well. A little research informed me that its was director was Michael Curtiz, the man behind several charming little films such as Casablanca, the Sea Hawk and Mildred Pierce. Grade: B

It failed to meet my already low expectations. I could not find a single thing to like about it. It is rotten on every level. It is everything that is wrong with superhero movies. Why couldn't they just have filmed the Claremont/Miller miniseries? They somehow managed to suck all of the charisma out of Hugh Jackman. Keep in mind, this is coming from a man who named his firstborn Logan. Grade: D-


Anonymous said...

Wolverine. Two words ... "bone claws."

Anonymous said...

Did you notice that Karloff never actually kills anyone in The Walking Dead? The gangsters all die in accidents while fleeing from him. BTW, footage from this movie was used in the 1964 movie "Ensign Pulver" in a sequence where the sailors are watching a horror movie.