Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

(dir. M Nicholls) (1966) Fortify yourself before attending a party at George and Mildreds’. More Albee-inspired drink and depravity with great overheated performances (a big tick in particular for Sandy Dennis).

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His Girl Friday

November 5, 2014 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Classic Film, Comedy Film, FILM, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |

(Howard Hawks) (1940) High speed comedy with no feelings spared. Cary Grant’s and Rosalind Russell’s finest hour.

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Ed Wood

November 3, 2014 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Comedy Film, Drama Film, FILM, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |

(dir. Tim Burton) (1994) Somewhere after What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?, Johnny Depp became an art-house ham. There’s plenty of scenery to chew in this enjoyable romp of the notorious Fellini-Without-Talent (see: The Golden Turkey Awards (1980), Medved Bros) and which is stolen by Martin Landau as the incomparable Bela Lugosi.

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The Dinner Game

November 3, 2014 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Classic Film, Comedy Film, FILM, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |

(dir. Francis Veber) (1998) Kenneth Tynan said that you have to be cruel to be kind in high French comedy. In the present case, a bunch of nasty Parisian swells convene a regular dinner in which they have to bring along an unsuspecting dill, each with his own dumb hobby/obsession that their hosts can suavely, and discretely, mock. The book publisher’s friend has, by accident, found an idiot for the next round – in fact, he’s a world champion. But most satisfyingly, cruelty loses to stupidity in this sublime Gallic turn, and one also learns how many matches it takes…

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Withnail & I

Withnail and I

(dir. B. Robinson) (1985) Perfect homage to the strange death of swinging London. Withnail, I and Uncle Monty et al emblematize La Bruyere’s epigram that self-indulgence and severity towards others is the same vice. Looking up from our slim volume of Nigel’s poems, its pages stained with buttery tears from crumpets, we see the sky is beginning to bruise…home lads!  To Vim under the sink and one bar on.  (Look for more killer (and accurate) quotes from the film here). [See “Vivian & I” by Colin Bacon (2010, Quartet Books) for Withnail’s prototype, Vivian Mackerrell. Vivian & I available at Amazon.com]…

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