Quick Hits (during which I watched Zero Dark Thirty…again)


dir. Laurence Olivier – 6.3 – Out of the blue several weeks ago I decided to start reading Shakespeare for fun. Actually, as I write this I remember that I was reading through Sandman by Neil Gaiman for the umteenth time and when I started reading the author’s imagination of A Midsummer Night’s Dream and I decided to read the play. Then I started reading Hamlet as a gaff. I had never really invested substantial time into reading Shakespeare and decided now was the time. I chose watching Olivier’s Hamlet to punctuate the task and, while slightly abridged, it is the best version of the play I had ever watched.

Beauty and the Beast

Jean Cocteau – 7.0 – A tale as old as time, as they say. Cocteau’s imagining of Beauty and the Beast is purely inspired.

City Lights

dir. Charles Chaplin – 7.1 (was 7.2) – I have a full review over here. However, this time I watched the film on the silver screen with a live organ accompaniment. It was pure magic!

Key Largo

dir. John Huston – 6.5 – There is not much to say on Key Largo, it is a fine noir film that I have been watching for years now. It is a keeper.


dir. Tim Miller – 6.1 – Superhero flick with cuss words. But you know this already because I might be the last interested person who had not watched it previously.

The Manchurian Candidate

dir. John Frankenheimer – 8.1 – I watched this film, original, many years back. I only have vague recollections of the first time other than some of the sweaty imagery and Jessica Fletcher acting much less becoming than I was used to. Even so many years later I do not want to have an effect on any new viewers so I will leave it brief. This may be one of the best edited films I have ever watched. It is brilliantly crafted and should be required viewing.

Naked Lunch

dir. David Cronenberg – 7.1 – Unlike the Manchurian Candidate I do not believe that The Naked Lunch should be required. This flick is…bonkers (pretend you are Fight Club Brad Pitt with a long Fight Club Brad Pitt pause in between is and bonkers, that is how I just wrote it). It is Cronenberg so that should give you enough foreplay to know if it will be a comfortable experience or not. Follow your heart and go with God on this one.


dir. Federico Fellini – 5.7 – Man I wish I loved all Fellini films. I really do. Amarcord and I just could not click. I have watched the film in three parts over too much time. It is a gorgeous film and I laughed (which I really hope was the point) but…

Zero Dark Thirty

dir. Kathryn Bigalow – 8.7 (was 7.5) – Every time I watch this movie I like it more and more as you can tell by the score. This might be attributed to this being my first viewing after I installed the new sound system so every explosion and gunshot had a little extra punch, either way Zero Dark Thirty is one of my favorites. A few weeks ago I received the Plain Archive edition of ZDT and I cannot complain about anything.

Jour de Fete

dir. Jacques Tati – 5.7 – This, and the following two films, will be revisited someday. Playtime is such a magnificent picture and was part of a boxed set with several other Tati films. Of these three none of them hooked me. I am expecting more out of Trafic which will be soon. It is possible that I have been watching too much slapstick of late but my eyes just couldn’t be bother will their adhesion to the tube. Maybe later. I laughed, for sure, but now may not have been the best time to watch.