Comedy

Review of Withnail and I

Comedy Comments Off on Review of Withnail and I

Withnail and I posterRating: ★★★★★★★☆☆☆

Review

Withnail and I is sort of like “Of Mice and Men,” except less American countryside and more British slums. Also more cooperation and less “I carry you entirely,” between the two main protagonist. In Actuality, it’s nothing like  “Of Mice and Men,” but it does have two charming leads that fail miserably at everything they do, so in that regard, we can see the comparisons with a British humor slant. If you find yourself enemployed, struggling, British, or just intensely stupid, you may be able to relate to the adventures of the film. it’s a comical odyssey, except with more coffee houses and less mythical Medusa woman. The film is quite an adventure, and though we may be only slightly able to relate to the misfortunes of the two leads, we find the charm and humor memorable and engrossing none the less.

Reason to Watch

There are many allusions to classic Shakespearean text, so that is absolutely a reason to watch. Or…

Context

The film is essentially a character study of two struggling men, surrounded in a palette of dry humor and British flair. For those interested in that idea, Withnail and I is about as good as it gets.

Most Memorable Quote(s)
  • Withnail: Free to those that can afford it, very expensive to those that can’t. 
  • Withnail: We want the finest wines available to humanity. And we want them here, and we want them now! 
What You Need to Get Through This Movie

Money, because without it, you may find eerie illusions to your own life to these two failing individuals, and you may climb and dive off the nearest bridge.

Trivia
  • Richard E. grant played the over the top drunk, Withnail. grant is a well known non-drinker, rarely having gotten intoxicated.
  • It was this film that prompted the family of Jimi Hendrix to take back full control over the use of his songs. They had grown dismayed by the association of Hendrix with drug culture in general.
Educational Content

They call bars pubs in Britian

Cops are dicks even in the U.K.

Justification for Rating

Withnail and I doesn’t have much to say, but watching this train wreck of a set of lead characters in Withnail and “unnamed” is unadultered entertainment, if you’re successful and awesome. if not, you may be who Withnail and I is based on and I am sincerely sorry about that, as you read this in your local library because you can not afford Internet.

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j5EmCKbWS6c

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Comedy

Review of Monty Python and the Holy Grail

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Monty Python and the Holy GrailRating: ★★★★★★★★★☆

Review

The legend of King Arthur gets the irreverent Python treatment. The film contains a seemingly endless stream of “quote worthy” one-liners, and slapstick set pieces. The Knights of the Round Table go off in search of the Holy Grail and the first port of call is a plague-ridden community, ringing with the cry of “bring out your dead”. Subsequently our brave knights encounter a wedding of convenience which is attacked by Arthur’s men while the groom continually attempts to burst into song. The Knights are nearly thwarted by the dreaded, tree-shaped “Knights Who Say Ni!” and then the feisty Black Knight, who brushes off the loss his arms and legs in combat and threatens to bite off his opponent’s legs. A French military officer taunts them with classics such as “I fart in your general direction”. Rabbits feature heavily, God knows why, ranging from the huge “Trojan” rabbit to the killer bunny that decapitates one of the knights. I really needn’t go on other than to say the film is basically a relentless barrage of the bizarre and has a somewhat surreal ending, but it is a Python movie so nothing should really surprise you.

The story is absurd in the extreme but for Python-lovers it is a work of genius. To others it probably just seems pretty silly.

Reason to Watch

Arthurs fight with the Black Knight alone makes the film worth watching.

Context

Made at a time when the popularity of Monty Python was at a peak on both sides of the Atlantic.

Most Memorable Quotes

“Come back here and I’ll bite your legs off!”

“Your mother was a hamster, and your father smelt of elderberries.”

What You Need To Get Through This Movie

It is essential to ensure that you do NOT watch with either someone who “just doesn’t get it” or, conversely, a “Python bore” who endlessly quotes or analyzes. Both categories will completely ruin your enjoyment of the film so it is best to keep a large blunt object handy to deal with offenders.

Trivia

In the scene where the mob is weighing the ‘witch’ there are two quick shots of the crowd just as she is being put on the scales. In the second of the shots, one of the men is ex-Beatle and co-producer George Harrison.

Educational Content
  1. Do not rely on Monty Python films for your knowledge of history.
  2. English humor can be really weird.
  3. If you really don’t “get it” just pretend you do, believe me it will be better for everyone.
  4. The French and English have never really got on too well.
  5. In order to maintain air-speed velocity, a swallow needs to beat its wings forty-three times every second.
  6. You never know when useless facts may come in handy.
Justification for Rating

The high rating is either due to;

Me believing that the film is an English comedic masterpiece

or

I really just don’t get it but don’t want people to think I am a dumbass.

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Action

Review of Fight Club

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Fight Club Movie PosterRating: ★★★★★★★★★☆
Review

In this extremely dark and violent comic drama, the “Narrator” a depressed, angst ridden young man is dissatisfied with the world around him. He hates his work and has attempted to mask his emptiness by assembling his “perfect” apartment. In order to relieve his insomnia he’s taken to visiting support groups for patients with terminal diseases. His path changes radically when, on a business flight, he meets Tyler Durden, a charming soap salesman. Tyler doesn’t value a world driven by consumerism and he believes that men can learn through pain, misfortune and chaos. Tyler cheerfully challenges his new friend to a fight. The Narrator finds that bare-knuckle fighting makes him feel alive and soon the two become friends and roommates, meeting to fight once a week. As more men join in, the “fight club” becomes a sinister underground movement that spreads across the country, even though it’s meant to be a closely guarded secret among the participants. As the Narrator and Tyler continue to bond, a strange situation becomes further complicated when Tyler becomes involved with Marla, whom the Narrator became infatuated with when they were both gate-crashing the support-group circuit. As the “fight club” movement progressively darkens where will it all end?

Lots of violence, plenty of shocks, plot twists and a great ending what more could you want?

Reason to Watch

Any film that has a leading British film critic describing it as “an inadmissible assault on personal decency” has got to go straight onto the “must watch” list I reckon. Oh and Brad Pitt with his shirt off, if thats the sort of thing that floats your boat.

Context

Some people apparently saw the film as dangerous and a promotion Nazism, which seems rather overly-dramatic and suggests that these people need to get out more.

Most Memorable Quotes

“The things you own end up owning you.”

“The first rule of Fight Club is: you do not talk about Fight Club….”

“With a long enough timeline, the probability of survival is zero.”

What You Need To Get Through This Movie

Just in case the urge to re-enact fight scenes takes hold ensure that you only invite round your weediest and most feeble of friends. Smelling salts, first aid kit and route to nearest Emergency Room should all be kept close at hand. Plenty of booze should be made available for Dutch courage before and to mask the pain after the fighting.

Trivia

The home-made recipe for Napalm provided by Tyler was incorrect, for obvious safety reasons. Some sources state that the recipe was accurate in the book upon which the film was based but, in fact, that too was false (at the insistence of the books publishers). If I had known this sooner I would not have wasted a great deal of tasty orange juice in attempting a reenactment of scenes from Apocalypse Now last summer.

Educational Content
  1. You can make soap from the fat of humans.
  2. Misuse of steroids can land you with a nasty pair of breasts.
  3. Messing around with lye is a bad idea, that shit burns!
  4. Exercise helps you get healthy, natural sleep.
  5. Ikea do some nice furniture.
Justification for Rating

The film is challenging and controversial but is hugely watchable, quotable and enjoyable.

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Comedy

Review of The Big Lebowski

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The Big LebowskiRating: ★★★★★★★★★☆

Review

Set in 1991 this Coen Brothers comedy crime caper begins with a simple case of mistaken identity and a peed on rug. The principle character Jeff “The Dude” Lebowski, a laid-back, unemployed, bowling loving, slacker, seeks recompense for his rug from the “Big” Lebowski, his wealthy namesake. The Dude acquires his rug but also stumbles into a hilarious web of extortion, kidnapping, deception and sex.

His bowling buddies, the slightly unhinged Vietnam vet Walter and the mild-mannered Donnie, become embroiled in the constantly thickening plot. When the Dude is called upon to deliver a million dollar ransom for the return of the Big Lebowskis kidnapped wife things begin to go wrong. As the story proceeds, the Dude gets caught up in the schemes of Lebowski’s daughter, encounters an evil porn mogul, a bad cop, an Eagles loving cab driver and a group of European Nihilists.

The film is wonderfully crafted and acted. Jeff Bridges appears to have been born for this role and turns in a stellar comedic performance.

Initially largely under-appreciated by critics, which just proves that they generally know fuck all, but has become a “must watch” cult classic.

Reason to Watch

When a film has inspired the creation of a religion – The Church of the Latter-Day Dude – then not watching would be positively sacrilegious.

Context

Released in 1998 but set in 1991, the era of the first Gulf War. Only the Dude can steal a quote from George Bush Senior and still remain cool – “this aggression will not stand, man”.  Comedy gold.

Most Memorable Quotes

“Nobody calls me Lebowski. You got the wrong guy. I’m the Dude, man.”

“No, Donny, these men are nihilists. There’s nothing to be afraid of.”

“The Dude abides”

What You Need To Get Through This Movie

To truly immerse yourself in the movie White Russians (Vodka/Kahlua/Cream over ice) and some organic Glaucoma medication are a must.

Trivia

Donnie’s bowling shirts say names like C.K., Roy and Austin, never Donnie.

Educational Content
  1. Shomer Shabbos is the Jewish day of rest.
  2. If you are laid-back and lazy enough things will work out. If not, what the hey pour yourself a White Russian and smoke a J.
  3. Nihilists believe in nothing.
  4. Always check wind direction prior to scattering ashes.
Justification for Rating

This is a very clever and funny, funny film. If you don’t agree then all I can say is “Come on, you’re being very un-Dude”.

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Horror

Review of The Last Man on Earth

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The Last Man on EarthRating: ★★★★★★★☆☆☆

Review

Robert Morgan is a scientist who is fighting desperately to develop a cure for a virus that has plagued the entire world! Sound familiar? Well, it should. This is actually an adaptation of Richard Matheson’s I am Legend. Morgan finds himself alone battling zombies by day and taking refuge in his reenforced home at night. It seems like the rest of his life will be lived in solitude. Then, one day, he thinks he may have seen somebody else?

Reason to Watch

Although the sound effect may be cheesy and the dubbing maybe a bit off, it is appreciable because Vincent Price does a great job being the center of attention through out the bulk of the film. This film will help you to appreciate the modern take on I am Legend without moving too far away from the original novel.

Context

This movie was produced during the 60’s when movies were still being made in black and white, and the act of being subtle may actually be more effective in moving an audience than big budget special effects.

Most Memorable Quote(s)

“And I thought you were alone. I was going to cure you! Does that amuse you?”

What You Need to Get Through This Movie

Most movies made from this era may be lacking in many areas by our generations standards. I think that in this case all you will need is the right mood to really enjoy this flick. Find someone who enjoys older and more classic films, make some popcorn, turn down the lights and enjoy.

Trivia

This film was originally going to be produced by Hammer Films of Great Britain. They decided not to make it and passed the script over to their U.S. associate, Robert L. Lippert, who produced the film in Italy.
The script was written in part by Richard Matheson, but he was dissatisfied with the result and was therefore credited as Logan Swanson.

Educational Content

At some point you almost feel like this could be mistaken for a vampire flick. Living a normal life during the day, staking a few zombies, and boarding yourself in to protect yourself from the hordes that come at night! It seems a stake can kill just about anything.

Justification for Rating

For me this movie deserves a 7/10. It is one of those films that just seems to show us where a lot of ideas have come from in many of our modern films. Hordes of zombies attack a lone person(s) in the dead of night, dozens of blood/flesh thirsty zombies surrounding a car are locked inside… sound familiar? Most of us can relate this to a lot of modern zombie and horror flicks. If you are in the mood to just sick back and enjoy a movie without too much thought on the plot and possible holes, you will enjoy this movie.

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