I've only read a couple of Mickey Spillane's novels at this point, but the appeal of the Mike Hammer character seems to be that he's a brutal thug who just so happens to carry a private dick's license; the reader enjoys seeing him unleashed on the bad guys because, often, he's just as bad. I like Armand Assante well enough as an actor, but in "I, the Jury," he's perhaps a bit too smooth (and small) to portray Spillane's iconic…
The Landlord 1970
The early moments had me concerned this was going to be the first Hal Ashby film that I couldn't really tune into the frequency of, but once we meet protagonist Elger Enders' (Beau Bridges) immediate family and realize what environment he spawned from, everything fell into place for me...and I found myself laughing—a lot. "The Landlord" is a terrific, truly subversive comedy that mines a great deal of humor from upper crust white society being forced to reckon with the…
Broken Arrow 1996
I've been on a mini-Christian Slater kick lately, which means all roads lead back here. I've severely underrated "Broken Arrow" in the past and it might be for the simple/dumb reason that there's never really a scene where Christian Slater gets to dive through the air while firing dual pistols at an entire warehouse's worth of henchmen, meaning this is a different kind of John Woo film than "Hard Target" or "Face/Off"—the script from "Speed" scribe Graham Yost lends itself…
Cat People 1942
"But I love silence. I love loneliness. And they—they are in me. Their strength, warmth. They're soft, they're soft." A Jungian fever dream of life in the urban jungle. Pop psychology, sexual repression, and marital regrets stir in the film that kicked off Val Lewton's string of RKO greats. Might be the most effective use of light, shadow, and fog in the history of its genre. The Criterion Blu-ray looks incredible.