Cry Freedom

BBB (out of 5) Newspaper editor Donald Woods (Kevin Kline) considers himself a liberal with a fair and unbiased opinion about racial inequality in his native South Africa, viewing a freedom fighter like Steve Biko (Denzel Washington) as a reckless activist for an otherwise worthy cause. An article about Biko in Woods’ newspaper is seen as incendiary…

Rate this:

The Witches Of Eastwick

BBBB (out of 5) Proof that even when he makes a bad movie George Miller is still making a good one, this delightful comedy is so enjoyable that even its weakest elements are forgivable. It purports to be based on the novel by John Updike, but the film adaptation has only retained the title and…

Rate this:

Fatal Attraction (1987)

ADRIAN LYNE Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBB.  USA, 1987.  Paramount Pictures.  Screenplay by James Dearden, based on his short film.  Cinematography by Howard Atherton.  Produced by Sherry Lansing, Stanley R. Jaffe.  Music by Maurice Jarre.  Production Design by Mel Bourne.  Costume Design by Ellen Mirojnick.  Film Editing by Peter E. Berger, Michael Kahn.  Academy Awards 1987.  Golden Globe Awards 1987.   Michael Douglas plays a hapless married man who is left…

Rate this:

Gaby: A True Story

BBB.5 (out of 5) Soapy but still touching story of a physically challenged young woman who does everything she can to live a perfectly confident life. Rachel Chagall is excellent in a true story as Gabriela Brimmer, a woman afflicted by cerebral palsy but taught by her nurse (Norma Aleandro) to read and to write, leading…

Rate this:

Empire Of The Sun

BBBB (out of 5) Christian Bale stars as a British boy living in Shanghai who is separated from his parents and taken to a prisoner of war camp when the Japanese invade the city. All alone and with no one to lean on for support, the boy comes up with his own sense of survival and…

Rate this:

Beverly Hills Cop II

BB.5 (out of 5) Eddie Murphy‘s hit character Axel Foley returns in this less successful sequel. He is once again the wisecracking Los Angeles police detective who is hot on the trail of a woman (Brigitte Nielsen) who apparently shot his good friend and colleague (Ronny Cox). On the trail of the killer he stumbles…

Rate this:

The Family (La Famiglia)

BBB.5 (out of 5) This richly detailed saga of multi-generational family life in Italy begins at the turn of the century, where an old man (Vittorio Gassman) is celebrating his 80th birthday while baby Carlo has just been born. The film then forwards to Carlo’s rambunctious childhood with his little brother Giorgio, then further on…

Rate this:

My Life As A Dog (Mitt liv som hund)

BBBBB (out of 5) This excellent film is one of the best records of childhood since The 400 Blows.  Anton Glanzelius is excellent as a little boy growing up in the big city whose mother takes seriously ill and he is sent to live with relatives in the Swedish countryside. He is welcomed immediately by his…

Rate this:

Au Revoir, Les Enfants

BBBB.5 (out of 5) Instant classic by the magnificent Louis Malle, based on his own memories of growing up in Nazi-occupied France. A young boy lives at his Catholic boarding school in the French countryside and becomes friends with a boy he later realizes is Jewish and has been hidden at the institution by its…

Rate this:

Good Morning, Vietnam

BBB.5 (out of 5) Robin Williams rules this film with his alternately hilarious, witty and touching performance. He plays Adrien Cronauer, a real-life radio host who starts broadcasting from Saigon in 1965 for the armed forces and uses anti-establishment humour and banned music to connect with his listeners. Naturally, the government doesn’t appreciate his guerrilla techniques…

Rate this:

Wall Street

BBB.5 (out of 5) If for nothing else, this film acts as an excellent time capsule of Reagan-era corporate greed, significantly different from nineties corporate greed because later tycoons wouldn’t decorate their apartments in such tacky, trendy styles.  Charlie Sheen gives a painfully weak performance as a desperate, low-level stock broker who longs to swim in…

Rate this:

Full Metal Jacket

BBBBB (out of 5) Probably the best fictional documentation of the Vietnam war alongside Francis Ford Coppola’s much more liberal Apocalypse Now, this film is Stanley Kubrick’s first film since The Shining and one of his very best. It concerns a green draftee (Matthew Modine) who experiences the horrors of boot camp (led by a…

Rate this: