Saturday, November 9, 2013

Return of Slapdash Reviews

More Slapdash Reviews, for those who are easily distracted by shiny things.

Svengali (1931): Fine comic performance by John Barrymore, but I think he neglected telling anyone else this was a comedy.

                                                        The evil eye of John Barrymore

Rhodes of Africa (1935): The movie that answers the question, "Mum, why is Rhodesia called Rhodesia?" Not the version of Cecil Rhodes' life I would have made, but then I'm not a warmongering, pro-colonialist, racially superior Brit.

Victory (1996): Deadly dull adaption of Joseph Conrad's masterpiece, with the delectable Irene Jacob and the not-so-delectable Willem Defoe. If anyone out there makes it to the end, please tell me how it turns out.

The Hindenburg (1975): Not even George C. Scott can elevate this essentially trashy adventure. A couple of nice set pieces, but not enough to justify the 125 minute length.

Agora (2009): Oppressive, destructive, ignorant, and murderous Christians in fourth century Alexandria set back civilization a thousand years. With Rachel Weisz as the brilliant philosopher Hypatia, who asks questions like, "Is the earth the center of the solar system?", "Why does the sun seem to change size?", and "Where is my idiot slave?" The epic scenes of destruction are very well done, the intimate scenes of celestial discovery, not so much.

4th century philosopher Hypatia, a visual approximation

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