Posts filed under ‘Lisa from Zuma’

Mister Roberts (guest)

MOVIE: Mister Roberts

GUEST: Lisa from Zuma

NUTSHELL: Honest and truthful WW II story without a single shot fired nor single drop of blood spilled. Yarn about not the dangers of war, but the indignities. A young Navy lieutenant battles a petty captain for the hearts and minds of the supply ship USS Reluctant.

GOOD THINGS: John Ford at the helm, so to speak. Henry Fonda in his finest hour and a half. Jack Lemmon at his best. Comraderie in spades. Laundry room explosions. WACs! (Hell, who doesn’t like a good WAC once in a while.) Fonda vs. Cagney for the Pacific Theater middleweight championship. “Order of the Palm” ceremony. I want one! Ahem… Anyway, back in the day when your television had but seven channels, “Mister Roberts” playing on Movies Till Dawn was better than sex. (I was 11 years old. Duh.) Jimmy Cagney as an a-hole. How rare. Busty broads in ill-fitting Navy uniforms.

BAD THINGS: None, unless you count Doug Roberts buying the farm.

FEATURES: Last film role for William Powell, playing the now-legendary “Doc,” a sage for the ages. Jack Lemmon, as the irrepressible Ensign Pulver, who would dock a sequel bearing his name, rank, and federal tax identification number.

UNCOMFORTABLE MOMENTS: James Cagney, microphone and captive audience in hand, emasculating his crew.

NOTABLE: John Ford fell ill, and Mervyn LeRoy cajoled “Mister Roberts” into history. Henry Fonda once said he considered playing Doug Roberts on Broadway (Tony-winner) and playing him again on screen was his life’s greatest honor. With “Gardens of Stone,” one of the few great films about war never to feature a weapon stronger than cheap whiskey or panty hose. Look close: Clint Eastwood, Gene Hackman and Dustin Hoffman are featured extras. Talk about a dreamboat? Oy. Fonda’s daughter years later was also near battle.

BEST PART: Henry Godamned Fonda climbing the bridge of that ship and pitching that captain’s prized palm tree into the drink. I’m not worthy.

BEST LINE: My name is Ensign Pulver, and I just threw your bloody palm tree overboard. Now what’s all this crap about no movie tonight?

CROWNS: 5 out of 5 palms

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January 13, 2010 at 1:10 pm Leave a comment

Midnight Cowboy (guest)

MOVIE: Midnight Cowboy

GUEST: Lisa from Zuma

NUTSHELL: Texas “cowboy” gigolo and sleazy, sickly New York City con man form an inexplicable bond in this potent look at the American Dream gone sour.

GOOD THINGS: Jon Voight as “Joe Buck,” Dustin Hoffman as “Ratzo Rizzo,” and the famous final scene.

BAD THINGS: The famous final scene.

FEATURES: Brenda Vaccaro, Sylvia Miles, gaudy Manhattan pot parties, sex, leather fringe, go-go boots.

UNCOMFORTABLE MOMENTS: The famous final scene.

NOTABLE: Singer-Songwriter Harry Nilsson’s “Everybody’s Talkin’” took pop radio by storm in 1969, and has been a pop staple ever since.

BEST PART: The bus ride to Miami.

BEST LINE: I’m walkin’ here!

CROWNS: 5 out of 5 Stetsons

January 13, 2010 at 1:08 pm Leave a comment

The Great Escape (guest)

MOVIE: The Great Escape

GUEST: Lisa from Zuma

NUTSHELL: Stupid Nazis unwittingly imprison the craftiest Allied escape artists in Stalag Luft North, only to witness the largest and most effective mass breakout of POWs in military history. Based on a true story. Show is stolen by Steve McQueen as Captain Virgil Hilts, “The Cooler King.”

GOOD THINGS: Steve Fucking McQueen, man! Steve plays baseball, Steve rags on the Germans, Steve does a Super Bowl of Motocross on the 1944 German landscape. Steve! Steve! STEVE!!!! Steve stomps major ass in this epic. Oh, and Elmer Bernstein’s music is rather dandy.

BAD THINGS: Donald Pleasence losing his sight. Charles Bronson’s accent. Hello? Peru was an Ally? Steve Fucking McQueen getting recaptured. (This would have never happened in real life.)

FEATURES: Crack performances from Jimbo Garner, James Donald, James Coburn, and Richard Attenborough. Oh, and Steve Fucking McQueen.

UNCOMFORTABLE MOMENTS: McQueen can’t get that frigging BMW over a dairy fence.

NOTABLE: More than 600 American and British officers spent the better part of a year planning this March 1944 run for the roses. About 100 of them made it, none, sadly, via motorcycle.

BEST PART: Are you nuts? Steve Fucking McQueen haulin’ booty on his stolen scooter.

BEST LINE: One has to ask for some very strange favors in the job I have.

CROWNS: 5 out of 5 shovels

January 13, 2010 at 12:31 am Leave a comment

Gardens of Stone (guest)

MOVIE: Gardens of Stone

GUEST: Lisa from Zuma

NUTSHELL: In this, Francis Ford Coppola’s best war film, stunning performances depict the Vietnam-era American home front (specifically Arlington National Cemetery) and the struggle and uncertainty of the young and old guard. Infinitely more moving than “Apocalypse Now” or anything by that other guy.

GOOD THINGS: James Earl Fucking Jones, dude. I don’t believe in gods, but if I did, they’d resemble James Earl Jones. Wardrobe department totally nailed the clothes, making “Gardens of Stone” one of the few military films ever photographed whose costumes were appropriate.

BAD THINGS: Body bags.

FEATURES: D.B. Sweeney, Anjelica Huston, James Caan, Mary Stuart Masterson, Laurence Fishburne, Dean Stockwell, US Army Old Guard.

UNCOMFORTABLE MOMENTS: Guy in theater sobbing: “Jesse! Jesse!”

NOTABLE: After watching this, try “In Country” with Bruce Willis. I dare you not to walk in front of a train.

BEST PART: The dinner. Nobody does dinner better than Coppola. Just look at him. Francis likes the food.

BEST LINE: Here’s to us, and those like us.

CROWNS: 5 out of 5 wreaths

January 13, 2010 at 12:20 am Leave a comment

Billy Jack (guest)

MOVIE: Billy Jack

GUEST: Lisa from Zuma

NUTSHELL: Native American ex-Green Beret hero stomps ass, saves horses, and gets all goofy about a “freedom school” in the Arizona desert. Writer-director-actor-malcontent Tom Laughlin’s ode to his own ego. Co-written by Laughlin and his squeeze Delores Taylor, who lovingly plays the character “Jean.”

GOOD THINGS: Ass-stomping. Billy Jack could have kicked Bruce Lee’s tight little backside. Good guys you love, bad guys you hate. Does it get much better? Methinks not.

BAD THINGS: That damned boom microphone hogging the camera.

FEATURES: Ass-stomping, plus: David Roya as “Bernard.” (Rumor is, Roya couldn’t go anywhere for years without somebody wanting to stomp his ass.) Released in 1971, and quickly climbed into the Top Five GUY Movies of all time. Not to mention, a butt-load of ass-stomping.

UNCOMFORTABLE MOMENTS: Er, the, uh, ball-crushing. Yeow! Plus: Laughlin’s producer credit reads ”Mary Rose Solti.” Huh?

NOTABLE: Spawned “The Trial of Billy Jack” and “Billy Jack Goes to Washington.” Soundtrack ditty “One Tin Soldier” spent a few weeks at the top of the charts. Little guys in black cowboy hats got their asses stomped all over the country following release of this film.

BEST PART: City park ass-stomping tied with Corvette lake-driving.

BEST LINE: You know what I’m gonna do? Just for the hell of it? I’m gonna take this right foot and wallop you on the left side of your face, and you know what? There’s not a damn thing you can do about it.

CROWNS: 4 out of 5 berets

January 12, 2010 at 11:07 pm Leave a comment

Almost Famous (guest)

MOVIE:  Almost Famous

GUEST:  Lisa from Zuma

NUTSHELL:  The dream of every Los Angeles teenager in the 70s comes to life in a large-screen, nicely crafted format. Joins “The Wall” and “Quadrophenia” as greatest rock films ever.

GOOD THINGS:  Guitars and puka shells and yellow Levis bellbottom cords, and lots of ’em.

BAD THINGS:  Kids in audience wondering aloud: “What’s Led Zeppelin?”

FEATURES:  Guitar bands, pot, acid, private planes, and guitars.

UNCOMFORTABLE MOMENTS:  Kids in audience wondering aloud “What is CREEM?”

NOTABLE:  Leaping from garage roof into pool while on acid.

BEST PART:  Lester Bangs playing Ben Fong-Torres like a Stratocaster.

BEST LINE:  I’m a Golden God!

CROWNS:  5 out of 5 Telecasters (Wow! – ed.)

January 9, 2010 at 11:28 pm Leave a comment


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