Archive for February, 2004

Dracula: Prince of Darkness

The first time I saw “Dracula: Prince of Darkness” was at a midnight show at the Mann Fox Oxnard. It was 1973. The other film was “The Gruesome Twosome.” The theater was in a shopping center parking lot, and that weekend the carnival was in town. People started lining up for the midnight show around eleven o’clock. Read the rest of this entry »

West Side Story

“How do you solve a problem like Maria?” Oops, wrong musical. Still, the question still applies for “West Side Story.” Maria (Natalie Wood) is the demure PR (that’s Puerto Rican in 1950’s slang) who falls for former bad boy from across the tracks Tony (Richard Beymer). Read the rest of this entry »

Double Jeopardy

Hell hath no fury like a woman scored, and Libby Parsons is furious. Libby has just been framed for the murder of her husband, and now she has to stew in prison. You can’t blame Libby for being mad. Read the rest of this entry »

Shattered Glass

The printed word can be a powerful thing, especially when it appears in a publication like The New Republic, which bills itself as the official in-flight magazine of Air Force One. The New Republic may not have a huge circulation, but it does have the ear and trust of people who matter, lawmakers, politicians, and competing journalists who would love nothing more than to see the magazine fall from grace. Read the rest of this entry »


They first meet in an out-of-the-way pub, late at night, during a rain shower. The perfect setting for a little intrigue. They’re nameless at first, but hey, isn’t that Robert De Niro? Yeah, and the woman behind the bar, wasn’t she Truman’s fantasy in “The Truman Show?” That guy sitting at the bar? Didn’t he double-cross Tom Cruise in “Mission: Impossible?” And speaking of double- crossing, isn’t that guy in the booth the same person who tripped up Harrison Ford in “Patriot Games?” Read the rest of this entry »

The Ring

Not since the over-hyped “The Blair Witch Project” have I had the pleasure of sitting through (just barely) such a ponderous and preposterous thriller as “The Ring.” If you think that’s praise, look up facetious in the dictionary. Based on the Chinese thriller of the same name, “The Ring” is as annoying as it is cloying. Read the rest of this entry »

Films Review February


Barry Pepper is very effective as Matty Demaret, the son of a Brooklyn crime boss who wants in on the family action. Reduced to being an errand boy after he refuses to kill the man responsible for sending his father (Dennis Hopper) to prison, Matty gets fed up with his lower run status and convinces his paroled father and uncle (John Malkovich) to trust him and his friends with an important money drop. Read the rest of this entry »

The Exterminator

A lot of water has passed underneath the bridge since Vietnam, but for John Eastland, the war never ends. He suffers from horrific nightmares (I guess watching your buddy get his head chopped off would do the trick), but tries to get on with his life working at a meat packing plant in New York. Read the rest of this entry »


I met author Stephen King when he was on a promotional tour for the film “Creepshow.” Straddling into the room, his hair looking as if he had just awoken from a deep sleep, King sat down at the table and jokingly inquired “Okay, who’s got the drugs.” I immediately knew that this was someone I would want to hang out with. Read the rest of this entry »

This 3,000 Miles Feels Like an Eternity

"3,000 Miles To Graceland" is one of the most stupefying experiences to come out of a major studio this year. Shot by another music video wunderkind and starring the usually reliable Kurt Russell and Kevin Costner, "3,000 Miles To Graceland" is an unforgiving mess. Nothing makes sense in this homage to gritty crime noir thrillers. Read the rest of this entry »