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  • The Blob

    The Blob

    ★★★½

    50s sci-fi paranoia updated with playful 80s slasher tropes and state-of-the-art practical effects work. Much credit to Muppet workshop alumni Lyle Conway (fresh off creating and designing on "Audrey II" in LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS), whose Blob creature straddles the line between silly and terrifying; amorphous jell-o sheets with a grotesque array of decaying body parts that slosh around the surface. Darabont & Russell's script is smart in the way it subverts some audience expectations and is especially ruthless to the…

  • Nightmare Cinema

    Nightmare Cinema

    W/O

    I came for the Joe Dante episode, which was fine, but I didn’t want to watch anymore after it.

  • Deadwood: The Movie

    Deadwood: The Movie

    ★★★½

    Three and a half stars for the film.
    Four and a half stars for the series.

  • Murderers' Row

    Murderers' Row

    ★★★

    Not great but it does have a hovercraft, Dean Martin drinking and driving, and a sexy Ann-Margaret doing two rather lengthy, swinging sixties dance routines. Probably an inspirational text for AUSTIN POWERS, I watched it because Tarantino programmed it at the New Beverly in his ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD series.

    56/100

  • Deathrow Gameshow

    Deathrow Gameshow

    Life's too short.

    W/O (about 20 minutes)

  • Jackass Number Two

    Jackass Number Two

    ★★★½

    Unrated DVD edition with horse semen drinking and ball leeching fully intact.

    65/100

  • Volver

    Volver

    ★★★

    That's right, three new releases in one day (and three different theaters).

    54/100

  • Crank

    Crank

    ★★½

    RUN LOLA RUN remade by American frat boys.

    50/100

  • Destricted

    Destricted

    ★★★★

    Just Larry Clark's IMPALED.

  • The Town That Dreaded Sundown

    The Town That Dreaded Sundown

    ★★½

    Very square for a “Grindhouse” film; this film would have seemed right in step with the B-movies of the 1950s much more than the exploitation schlock of the late 70s (perhaps this explains why one of the victims is named Samuel Fuller) but all the stuff with the Phantom killer is either unremarkable or unintentionally humorous (a chase with the killer has him decked out in his full gear and mask when it doesn't make a lick of sense for…

  • Rolling Thunder

    Rolling Thunder

    ★★★½

    Second viewing, first in theater.

    This worked better for me on this second viewing, perhaps partially due to the enthusiastic crowd receiving the film at the New Beverly but mostly because of how much I enjoyed the quiet scenes between Devane and Haynes which obviously aren’t going to lead anywhere rewarding for her and you can see her realize it progressively. Tommy Lee Jones is very solid in support even though he isn’t given much to do but his reaction upon hearing of about the forthcoming violence is priceless.

    64/100

  • Lars and the Real Girl

    Lars and the Real Girl

    ★★★

    This was a work print with a temp score and lacked final color timing. Grade obviously doesn't reflect the final product but it would take a lot of work to get me out of mixed territory because of tonal inconsistency and the general feeling that the film was making fun of a character that is more tragic than comic. Some terrific performances and especially fine work by Emily Mortimer and Paul Schneider (who I wish would get more work).

    51/100