Resident Evil: Afterlife

Resident Evil: Afterlife

Film review by: Witney Seibold

How is it that I’ve seen all four of these? (more…)

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Published in: on September 16, 2010 at 1:35 pm  Comments (2)  

Rockula

Rockula

Film review by: Witney Seibold

Luca Bercovici’s “Rockula.” Oh my effing lord. (more…)

Repo Men

Repo Men

Film review by: Witney Seibold

No relation of Alex Cox’ 1984 masterpiece “Repo Man,” or to 2008’s “Repo! The Genetic Opera.” (more…)

Published in: on March 22, 2010 at 2:29 pm  Comments (2)  
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The Rules of the Game

Dangerous Poets

Film essay by: Witney Seibold

I once compared Jean Renoir’s 1939 masterpiece “The Rules of the Game” to the works of Anton Chekhov. I was led to this comparison by the film’s use of a naturalistic acting style (which stood in juxtaposition to mainstream American films like “Gone with the Wind”), and tantalized by the phrase “neo-realism.” A comparison to Chekhov is, however, not entirely accurate. If I would compare Renoir’s film to the work of any playwright, it would be Molière. The film may be “naturalistic” and “realistic,” but, let’s face it, “The Rules of the Game” is a full-blown farce. Just look at the comic chase around the kitchen table. (more…)

Published in: on January 14, 2010 at 1:33 pm  Comments (2)  

The Road

The Road

Film review by: Witney Seibold

I made the mistake of reading Cormac McCarthy’s The Road before seeing John Hillcoat’s film version of it. McCarthy is a master of prose, managing to including great details and emotions in brief, almost scattershot passages of half grunted thoughts. What a film does is make explicit things that were more powerful when implicit. So I was focusing on how literal the film was, rather than adaptive. I had the same problem with “Watchmen” earlier this year. (more…)

Published in: on December 16, 2009 at 1:34 pm  Leave a Comment  

Retribution (1987)

Retribution (1987)

Film review by: Witney Seibold

Retribution

Here’s one you probably haven’t seen: “Retribution.” A horror film from 1987, “Retribution,” directed by Guy Magar (“Stepfather III,” Children of the Corn VII”), and starring the Henry-Gibson-esque Dennis Lipscomb, is about a suicidal nebbish who discovers his body is being used against his will by a vengeful spirit. Despite having a complicated setup, wonderfully preposterous animated special effects, pointedly dated fashions, and buckets of gore (more than usual for 1987), “Retribution” is too polished to be cheesy fun. Indeed, I might go so far as to call it… pretty good. Can I call a film like this charming? (more…)

Published in: on September 28, 2009 at 2:22 pm  Leave a Comment  

Red Trousers: The Life of the Hong Kong Stuntmen

Red Trousers: The Life of the Hong Kong Stuntmen
Film review by: Witney Seibold

Red Trousers

“Red trousers” as is iterated endlessly throughout the film, are the pantaloons donned by the indentured servants of the Beijing Opera, the source, many believe, of what we perceive today to be action choreography.

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Published in: on August 28, 2009 at 4:22 am  Leave a Comment  

Runaway Jury

Great Grisham’s Ghost!
Film review by: Witney Seibold

Runaway Jury 2
There was a time in this country, I think around 1995, when one could not go outdoors without being struck in the head by a John Grisham novel. (more…)

Published in: on August 13, 2009 at 1:20 pm  Leave a Comment  

Roger Dodger

…Can’t Kill ‘Em
Film review by: Witney Seibold

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            Roger is a smart man. Erudite, educated, articulate. He has a firm belief system, and a profound self-understanding. He’s charming and handsome. He’s also the biggest creep you’ll ever meet. (more…)

Published in: on May 4, 2009 at 9:23 pm  Leave a Comment  

Royal Kill

Royal Kill

Film review by: Witney Seibold

 

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            It’s an odd habit of mine that I sometimes actively seek out a certain kind of bad film. Not a film that is offensive, or merely mediocre, but something that is jaw-droppingly awful. (more…)

Published in: on May 1, 2009 at 11:19 pm  Comments (2)