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ON THE SILVER SCREEN: PLANET OF THE 99% (ELYSIUM)

 

By Brian Lafferty

August 9, 2013 (San Diego) – Last August, I declared on Facebook that you will never see me post about politics and religion on social media.  That’s an easy rule for me to follow on Facebook and Twitter.  Not so much when reviewing movies (Gerrymandering, Client 9).  Writer and director Neill Blomkamp packs so many socio-political issues into his latest film, Elysium, that it demands discussion.  

HOME VIDEO HERALD: GOOD WILL HUNTING (BLU-RAY)

By Brian Lafferty

 

September 17, 2011 (San Diego) – In the 1950s critics writing for the French film magazine Cahiers du Cinema came up with the Auteur Theory. Later propagated by American film critic Andrew Sarris, it stated that the director is the author of the film. It further goes on to assert that an author can leave a mark in each of his films to the point where someone can say, “That’s an Alfred Hitchcock film” or “That’s a John Ford film.”

 

ON THE SILVER SCREEN: DISEASE THE DAY

By Brian Lafferty

 

September 9, 2011 (San Diego) – Every now and then a movie comes along that reminds us of the danger that lurks on the surfaces we touch and the air we breathe. I’m talking about one of cinema’s most potent types of villains: the deadly virus. Filmmakers as diverse as Elia Kazan (Panic in the Streets), Robert Wise (The Andromeda Strain), Wolfgang Petersen (Outbreak), and Danny Boyle (28 Days Later) have touched on it.

 

ON THE SILVER SCREEN: "BUREAU" IS AN INTELLIGENT FILM, BUT ENDING NEEDS "ADJUSTMENT"

By Brian Lafferty

 

March 6, 2011 (San Diego) – After my mother died last November I learned something about myself: I have no regrets. I never say, “If only…” Instead, I tell myself, “If it weren’t for…” When I look back on my first twenty-five years of existence I see that I wouldn’t be where I am now if I did anything differently.

 

ON THE SILVER SCREEN: HOLIDAYS BRING A MIXED BAG OF MOVIES

 

Reviews:  True Grit, Tangled, The Fighter, and I Love  You Phillip Morris

By Brian Lafferty

 

December 30, 2010 (San Diego)—Today’s column is going to be different. Normally I post one movie review at a time. Today I will have several shorter reviews in this one post.  Before I post them I would like to explain what has happened the last two months that have made for less reviews than normal.

 

 

ON THE SILVER SCREEN: CLINT EASTWOOD'S DIRECTION, PETER MORGAN'S SCRIPT GIVE "HEREAFTER" LIFE

By Brian Lafferty

 

October 23, 2010 (San Diego)--After the hilarious yet powerfully dramatic and tragic Gran Torino and the rousing Invictus, director Clint Eastwood has followed up with the somber and sedate Hereafter, which presented a challenge for my attention span. The movie opens with a spectacular tsunami that nearly takes the life of French journalist Marie LeLay (Cecile De France). For the first hour after this sequence I started getting a little restless, feeling that the film wasn’t delivering anything close to the level of the opening action. But that changed over the next hour and I began to fully appreciate it. It doesn’t rank among Eastwood’s best directorial efforts but it is a good movie that doesn’t have a lot to say about its subject matter but is interesting if you’re willing to listen.

 

ON THE SILVER SCREEN: MATT DAMON, DIRECTOR PAUL GREENGRASS IN THE ZONE WITH "GREEN ZONE"

 

By Brian Lafferty

March 14, 2010 (San Diego's East County) -- Green Zone is relentlessly exciting from beginning to end. We know there never were weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) in Iraq, which was the primary reason we went to war. We know what the outcome will be in the end, that there’s no turning back and we’re in it for the long haul, WMDs or not. Despite this common knowledge, screenwriter Brian Helgeland manages to incorporate a mystery that keeps us guessing until the very end in addition to exciting action sequences.

 

ON THE SILVER SCREEN: “INVICTUS” IS ROUSING, WELL-WRITTEN, AND WELL-ACTED

By Brian Lafferty

December 21, 2009 (San Diego’s East County)--Invictus is a movie that brought out a lot of the fan in me. It is a feel good film that had me cheering. It is one of the most rousing films of the year.

The movie begins with the release of Nelson Mandela (Morgan Freeman) after decades of imprisonment. Through sometimes shocking and powerful real news footage, which includes riots, we see Mandela winning the South African presidency against all odds. This news footage is real from 1994, but in Forrest Gump style Morgan Freeman is digitally, and seamlessly, inserted in the real Mandela’s place. It wasn’t even five minutes in and I was starting to cheer for him to succeed.

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