King Kong (1976)

JOHN GUILLERMIN Bil’s rating (out of 5): BB.  USA, 1976.  Dino De Laurentiis Company.  Screenplay by Lorenzo Semple Jr., based on the 1933 screenplay by James Ashmore Creelman, Ruth Rose, from an idea conceived by Merian C. Cooper, Edgar Wallace.  Cinematography by Richard H. Kline.  Produced by Dino De Laurentiis.  Music by John Barry.  Production … More King Kong (1976)

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Titus

BBBB (out of 5) Julie Taymor takes her groundbreaking stage production of Shakespeare’s first play and brings it to the screen, with all its bite intact for her cinematic directorial debut. Titus (Anthony Hopkins) is the leader of the Roman guard who captures the Queen of the Goths (Jessica Lange) and her sons and mercilessly … More Titus

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Blue Sky

BB.5 (out of 5) Jessica Lange deservedly won an Academy Award for her terrific performance as the near-nymphomaniacal wife of a career army man (Tommy Lee Jones) who must fight to save her husband when he is involved in a coverup involving nuclear arms testing. It’s got a lot of great dramatic impact, thanks mostly to … More Blue Sky

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Sweet Dreams

BBBB (out of 5) This is a wonderful, captivating film biography of the greatest country singer of all time, Patsy Cline. Obviously made to cash in on the success of Coal Miner’s Daughter, this one doesn’t quite have the same knack for capturing Southern culture the way Michael Apted’s film did, but by wisely sticking … More Sweet Dreams

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A Thousand Acres

BBB (out of 5) Jane Smiley’s brilliant Pulitzer Prize-winning novel is brought to the screen with less success than expected. The story, modelled on Shakespeare’s King Lear, concerns three sisters (Michelle Pfeiffer, Jessica Lange, Jennifer Jason Leigh) who have grown up on a vast Iowa farm and now find their family tearing apart when their … More A Thousand Acres

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Cousin Bette

BBBB.5 (out of 5) Critics and audiences unfortunately ignored this delightful though admittedly loose adaptation of Honore de Balzac’s searing novel. Jessica Lange is excellent as Bette, the passed-over old-maid relation of an impoverished society family who decides after having her potential lover Wenceslas (Aden Young) stolen from under her nose by young cousin Hortense (Kelly Macdonald), … More Cousin Bette

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