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: Li'l Duce's Reviews Palace  ( 324676 )
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« #1185 : July 20, 2023, 03:02:40 AM »

Lincoln (2012) I didn't know this was directed by Spielberg until I watched the final credits running. Maybe, had I known it when I bought the disk, I wouldn't have bothered. Anyway, to appreciate this movie one must have knowledge of all the games, pretty much dirty, that went on behind the scene preluding to the vote for the 13th amendment. if one feels it's worth the effort is welcome, otherwise he0ll watch the usual biopic  exalting the blue, red and white power to coalesce the opposites (nowadays that doesn't seem to be the case). TLJ is very good, as usual, while DDL I suspect is the worst Lincoln of movie history. His voice has got non bass register (that confers the character authority)and he's screeching frequently. In the final speech he manages to make such awkward gestures with his arms that would arouse Liz Truss' envy. The only thing I save are the scenes shot in the Congress (though I always expected somebody to shout "Hang Mike Pence!") but of course it is better to read some book to know how the business went.


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« #1186 : July 25, 2023, 01:24:47 PM »

Iron Man Three  (2013) Very good in the first part, more of a thriller than superhero stuff. Then the special effects get the upper hand but still it is entertaining. 7-8/10


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« #1187 : July 26, 2023, 02:40:14 AM »

Cabaret (1972) I decided to give it a second chance after having read Kael's enthusiastic review, but mostly because I wanted to hear again the songs. The musical numbers in the cabaret are still  worth my time, though not all are of the same quality. They get a 8-9/10 even because of Grey (a Paolo Poli clone). Minnelli, like him, deserved her Oscar but I couldn't care less about the vicissitudes of her and York. So the movie is worth only for the music.


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« #1188 : July 26, 2023, 06:33:06 AM »

Cabaret (1972) I decided to give it a second chance after having read Kael's enthusiastic review, but mostly because I wanted to hear again the songs. The musical numbers in the cabaret are still  worth my time, though not all are of the same quality. They get a 8-9/10 even because of Grey (a Paolo Poli clone). Minnelli, like him, deserved her Oscar but I couldn't care less about the vicissitudes of her and York. So the movie is worth only for the music.

"Cabaret" was our final exam in film class in college.  I hadn't seen it before, so I was taking notes in the dark (1974).  i did get an "A" in the class; my brother was in the same class and got "B" and to this day he argues that he did better in that class than I (he's an attorney now).

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« #1189 : July 26, 2023, 08:22:35 AM »

and to this day he argues... (he's an attorney now).



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« #1190 : July 28, 2023, 12:10:27 PM »

Breakout (1975) This is one who gets better and better about at half-time. Before it was badly plotted, badly shot and even Duvall was playing badly. But then it really starts cooking, the action becomes what it was expected to be and there is even a very good epilogue with a special effect I hadn't seen before. Good time-waster. 7/10


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« #1191 : August 02, 2023, 05:52:15 AM »

Sun Valley Serenade (1941) I bought it for Glenn Miller's numbers: In the Mood and Chattanooga Choo Choo are delivered in great versions. And that's about all.  Payne is not a comedian but Henie was a surprise: very good comedienne, I thought she was there only for the sportsmanship but she's easily better than Berle.


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« #1192 : August 14, 2023, 02:12:28 PM »

Menage all'italiana (1965) This lame would-be comedy about a compulsive polygamist is only notable for the presence of Anna Moffo and the debut on the screen of Tyrone Power's daughter (who will achieve great success worldwide in the '80's as part of a singing duo with her then husband). Here she was 13 years old and is very provocative (more than Sue Lyon, at least) though I think that she will be very pretty once she will reach her thirties. Actually, now that she's over 70, is still very attractive. The main musical theme (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1nHadYd6wGA&list=PLDmdF1ma6cZrR2gtRydp0UTi0QxIy2drj&index=5 )shows the Maestro rehearsing for the one, much more famous, to be heard in Petri's Indagine. But the 3 songs heard here (one sung inevitably by Moffo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=noW8Qt9kMO4&list=PLDmdF1ma6cZrR2gtRydp0UTi0QxIy2drj) are really awful. 5/10


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« #1193 : August 21, 2023, 03:40:12 PM »

The Doors (1991) I saw it in a cinema, but can't remember with whom (I usually do O0). Anyway It is even better of what I remembered. A pity that special effects were not as advanced at the time, the drug inspired scenes would have obviously gained from them. Anyway, the portrait of Morrison (the movie is about him) comes up quite vivid: a talented guy who had the luck to join the right band (and vice versa) but who was reaching for the "unreachable star"  (whatever it was for him) by drugs and alcohol. That's it.  Maybe Stone should have insisted more on the different approach the rest of the band had towards their profession, comparing it to Morrison's. Still I think the movie makes it clear that Morrison was more honest than the rest of his colleagues who proclaimed to hope to die before they get old (the only exception being Cobain). Kilmer is perfect (not as a singer, in spite of Morrison not being a good one: but  just compare how he doesn't hit the high note in Break On Through). Meg Ryan is as miscast as can be. 8-9/10

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« #1194 : August 22, 2023, 10:24:36 AM »

The Great Escape (1963) I saw it in the summer of 1966 (or !967?) and thought it was very good. Then again on tv in the 80's and didn't like it. Now I reevaluate it, a good suspense story. But I wonder whether the italian version was cut. Anyway 8/10


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« #1195 : August 24, 2023, 12:16:11 AM »

The Jungle Book(1967) Two good songs (Bare Necessities - try the Armstrong's version though - and the Louis Prima's monkey number ) and a story that is without melodrama and childishness. A pity the elephant numbers are dull. 7/10


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« #1196 : August 24, 2023, 10:21:56 AM »

Alice in Wonderland(1951) Unfortunately the italian dvd, though promising multilingual audio, had only the italian version. So I cannot judge the songs apart from the classic title one. Visually it is not as impressive as it should have been, especially in the last part. 5/10


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« #1197 : August 25, 2023, 09:59:37 AM »

Jailhouse Rock (1957) Presley's best movie for most fans. Presley plays a no good lad, a bastard for once and sings three classics: JR, Treat Me Nice and my favorite (You're So Square) Baby I Don't Care. Judy Tyler is pretty. The story is better of what I remembered, especially in depicting how the music industry was functioning at the time. 7-8/10 


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« #1198 : August 29, 2023, 11:02:38 AM »

Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter? (1957) Very good comedy with a very good Jayne Mansfield and a good Tony Randall. It is a satire on TV and publicity and it still works. I don't like the title, though. 7-8/10


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« #1199 : August 29, 2023, 02:33:00 PM »

Designing Woman (1957) This Minnelli had completely passed me by, I didn't even know there was a movie around with that title. It's a good comedy which seems to own much to a previous Tracy-Hepburn movie. But I'm sure that Simon took the inspiration from this one for The Odd Couple: the poker scene must have been the click in Simon's mind. Peck is no comedian and Bacall has never troubled my sleep. A pity Charisse didn't make it as her supposed rival. But it's Mickey Shaughnessy who delivers a great performance as the punch-drunk fighter. 7/10


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