Brooklyn, 1957. British-Russian Rudolf Abel (Mark Rylance) is arrested and charged with being a Soviet spy. In order for him to receive a fair trial he is assigned a defence lawyer in the form of James B. Donovan (Tom Hanks). Donovan has no choice but to accept the case, despite it being a guaranteed lose for him – the judge already calls Abel “The Russian” and has no qualms with admitting he has decided Abel is a spy before the case has even begun – and the case also puts a strain on Donovan’s personal life, with his family being attacked and Donovan being shunned in public. Even the police who respond to the call from the attack threaten to fight Donovan, yet he continues and pursues the case even deeper. After the case is over, American pilot Francis Gary Powers (Austin Stowell) is shot down using a secret spy plane, photographing key areas of the Soviet Union. When Powers is imprisoned within the USSR, Donovan is once again called upon to resolve the situation. Continue reading →
The Freeling family – Steven (Craig T. Nelson), his wife Diane (JoBeth Williams) and their kids Dana (Dominique Dunne), Robbie (Oliver Robins) and Carol Anne (Heather O’Rourke) live in a large house within the new-build residential community Steven works as a real estate agent for. They lead a normal life dealing with everyday family problems, but shortly after work begins on the digging of a new swimming pool they begin to experience strange goings-on within the house. Carol Anne is found talking to the television static late at night. Chairs being to rearrange themselves in the kitchen. The tree outside Robbie’s bedroom window seems more menacing than usual. Then one day, when Robbie’s tree attacks him, Carol Anne is left alone in her room and, when her family goes to find her, it appears she has been sucked through a portal in her closet. Continue reading →
During World War II, an entrepreneurial member of the Nazi party, Oscar Schindler (Liam Neeson) takes advantage of the mistreatment of Jewish citizens by using them for cheap labour in his enamelware factory. However, as he gets to know his workers better – particularly his right hand man Itzhak Stern (Ben Kingsley) – and witnesses first hand the inhuman brutalities they must endure – particularly at the hand of concentration camp overseer Amon Goeth (Ralph Fiennes) – Schindler begins to realise the change he can make to the people around him. Continue reading →
The self-styled Goonies are a group of kids – Mikey, Mouth, Chunk and Data – who find their childhoods in jeopardy when a golf course is scheduled to be built in place of their homes. Days before the final contracts are to be signed by their parents, the kids find a treasure map in Mikey’s attic and, accompanied by Mikey’s older brother Brand and girls Andy and Stef, the kids set out in search of the treasure that could save their homes. However, the villainous Fratelli family have just busted one of their number out of prison, and they stand in the kids’ way.
Celie and her younger sister Nettie are being raised by an abusive father in southern USA, near the start of the 20th Century. They have just lost their mother, and so far their father has taken the two children he raped into Celie and killed them in the woods. Now, though, their father’s eye has begun to wander onto the blossoming Nettie, so Celie is married off to a widowed man who needs a wife to take care of his house and his three unruly children. This new man turns out to be just as bad as Celie’s father, and it doesn’t help when he spends all his time pining for a lost love, in the form of Shug Avery.
It’s been a while since I’ve gotten involved in this kind of blogathon, however when Tom from At The Back nominated me, I couldn’t resist. It’s been set up by Nostra at My Film Views, and the original post can be viewed here. Essentially, this blogathon asks each participant to connect one actor/actress/director/movie to another actor/actress/director/movie in six connections or less. I’ve been asked to connect The Birth of a Nation to Daniel Bruhl, because apparently I did something wrong in a past life, and am now being punished for it. Continue reading →
I think I may be approaching the 1001 Movies List (and the other lists I’m going through) from something of a skewed perspective, in that I may be crossing off a few too many of the “better” movies before I get to the ones I’m not looking forward to as much. Bearing in mind yesterday I reviewed Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and today sees me tackling Raiders of the Lost Ark, I need to make sure I don’t eat all of my dessert before getting to the vegetables, as I also recently crossed off Back to the Future, Taxi Driver, RoboCop, To Kill A Mockingbird, Fargo and Boogie Nights as well. That being said, Bueller and Raiders made for a most enjoyable weekend of movie watching, with a little Jurassic Park: The Lost World thrown in for good measure (I’ll be writing something about that for French Toast Sunday this weekend, where we’re celebrating July with a month dedicated to Steven Spielberg, hence the Raiders viewing). Spielberg is one of my favourite directors, which shouldn’t be too much of a surprise considering he’s the guy behind Jurassic Park, the greatest movie ever made, but now I get the chance to talk about another one of the masterpieces he brought into cinemas. Continue reading →