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…

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House of Games

BBBB (out of 5) Lindsay Crouse is excellent as a psychiatrist who has hit the limelight with the publication of a best-selling book.  High on her superior power, she blurs the professional line when a patient of hers tells her that he is on the hook with a bunch of gamblers and is in danger of…

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La Bamba

BBB.5 (out of 5) Touching, energetic film biography of pop singer Richie Vallens, who was among the first Latino sensations to hit the airwaves in the sixties. Born to a poor family in California, Vallens (Lou Diamond Phillips) overcame his humble origins and kept singing his music until it made him famous. Sadly, his life…

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Baby Boom

BBB (out of 5) Diane Keaton is a riot in this charming comedy about a businesswoman who suddenly finds herself in the position of motherhood. After a distant relative dies, a child services employee shows up during a busy work day with infant in tow and tells Keaton that, as she is the child’s only family,…

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Roxanne

BBBB.5 (out of 5) In this modernized adaptation of Cyrano De Bergerac, adapted by Steve Martin from Edmond Rostand’s play, he plays a good-hearted fireman with a famously large nose that he refuses to talk about. When a gorgeous astronomer named Roxanne (Daryl Hannah) moves into town for the summer, he is immediately smitten but unable…

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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…

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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…

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The Glass Menagerie

BBB (out of 5) After years of playing the leads in a number of Tennessee Williams adaptations for the screen, who better to direct a film version of one of the southern scribe’s less turgid pieces than Paul Newman? He directs real-life wife Joanne Woodward as the domineering mother who lords over her shy, physically…

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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…

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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…

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Nuts

BBB.5 (out of 5) Barbra Streisand has no end of fun chewing up all the scenery in this psychological drama. She plays a prostitute accused of murder who must first go through a preliminary trial for the courts to decide if she is mentally fit for a full-blown murder trial. Richard Dreyfuss is also excellent as the…

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Outrageous Fortune

BBBB (out of 5) Two fantastic lead performances plus a clever screenplay by Leslie Dixon make this an outrageously fun comedy to watch. Shelley Long is marvelous as an aspiring actress who falls in love with a costume shop retailer (Peter Coyote) only to witness him die in a bombing. Another student in her acting class…

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