Month: July 2012

Bogdanovich’s 5 revelations in ‘The Searchers’.

Peter Bogdanovich’s audio commentary on ‘The Searchers’ Blu-Ray is an enlightening insight by a man who became good friends with director John Ford, and who wrote his biography.

Here are 5 revelations in ‘The Searchers’ as seen through the eyes, mind and heart of Peter Bogdanovich.

‘Wayne picks up Lana Wood playing the young Debbie (at the start of the film).  This is something that is echoed at the end of the picture in one of the great moments (when Wayne finds the grown up Debbie).


‘Ward Bond sees Wayne’s brother’s wife stroking the coat, and pretends he didn’t see it. She comes out. Now he is thinking. It’s a typical Ford moment. One man standing, thinking about what he has just seen.  It’s just pure Ford at his best, not a word said. ‘

‘The final resolution is done in Ford’s brilliant way, starting with a night scene and building to sun.’

‘It’s unusual for Ford to move the camera, people say.  But if you watch carefully he moves it quite often, but it usually when someone is moving, so you don’t notice it.

‘You have to remember this is a film by an American artist who began in the silent era when the image was everything, there was no dialogue.  When directors didn’t want to go to a title if they didn’t have to.   As a silent film director you see it in the work of a man like Ford. How much he tells you silently.’
‘While Wayne was talking you notice he cut to Hank Warden who pointed to his eyes. Again a silent movie moment to explain dialogue.  It’s exciting to notice how much a director gives you in silent moments.’


Terms of Endearment : A Love Letter

DialMForMovie contributor Jenny Frankfurt’s love letter to the Oscar winning film Terms of Endearment. 

”A few days ago on Twitter, two friends and I were discussing the wonderful 1983 film Terms of Endearment.  Apparently it was on television in the UK and I’ve seen it so many times I could just chime in though they were watching it in real time.  It got me thinking about the ever-lasting brilliance of this film and it’s place above so many others in the entire world of movie-making. What follows is a review and some Hollywood history about the making of the movie, which was not always a pleasant experience. Luckily, sometimes the hardest things to do turn out to be the most wonderful.”

Read the rest of this wonderful piece here






Kubrick’s iconic images.

Stanley Kubrick and his cinematographers have provided cinema with some of the most striking and jarring images ever captured.

DialMForMovies contributor Clayton Bolger has a look back at Kubrick’s 10 most iconic film images.

1. Alex De Large’s ‘Kubrick Stare’ from A Clockwork Orange (1971)

2. “Here’s Johnny!” Jack Torrance breaks through the door in The Shining (1980)

3. Ape discovers how to use bones as a weapon in 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

4. Major ‘King’ Kong rides the nuclear bomb in Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learnt to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)

5. Private Leonard ‘Gomer Pyle’ Lawrence’s ‘Kubrick Stare’ from Full Metal Jacket (1987)

6. “I’m Spartacus!” from Spartacus (1960)

7. Dolores ‘Lolita’ Haze sunning herself in Lolita (1962)



8. Alex undergoes the Ludovico treatment in A Clockwork Orange (1971)


9. The English march into battle in Barry Lyndon (1975)

10. Bill Harford dons a mask to enter an exclusive ‘gathering’ in Eyes Wide Shut (1999)

Susanne Lothar, ‘Funny Games’ actress, has died.

Susanne Lothar, who portrayed the terrorised wife in Michael Haneke’s 1997 film Funny Games, has died aged 51.
Her death was announced by her family lawyer in Berlin on Wednesday.  No cause of death has been released.

Susanne received a German Film acting award nomination in every decade from the 1980s to present.

ImageFilm audiences would recognise her as Anna, the wealthy mother of a family whose life is inexplicably changed forever when they are taken hostage in Haneke’s Palme D’or nominated film.

In 2007 she appeared in Haneke’s The Piano Teacher as Mrs Schober, the mother the young girl Anna, whose musical aspirations are destroyed by an act of sabotage.

Viewers of David Suchet’s Hercule Poirot productions would recognise her as Hildegarde Schmidt, the Armstrong’s family cook, and one of the 13 passengers on the infamous Orient Express.

Once more she teamed with Haneke for his Palme d’Or winning film The White Ribbon where she portrayed the humiliated local midwife.


With her passing the two main characters of Funny Games have now died.  Her screen husband was played by her real life husband Ulrich Muhe. He passed away in 2007.

– by Rhett Bartlett

Screenshots:  Funny Games, The White Ribbon.







The Amazing Spiderman review.

For the fourth time in a decade, a Spiderman film hits the cinema screen.  In the process, The Amazing Spiderman completely dilutes any remaining interest and excitement in the franchise.

A reboot of one of the most recognisable superheroes, in such a short period of time, is an insult to film goers and clearly indicates that money and only money was the main driver.   This film wasn’t made to entertain, it wasn’t made for a new audience, it was made simply to cash in on the continual saturation of superhero movies.

The only redeeming feature of The Amazing Spiderman is Andrew Garfield’s portrayal as Peter Parker (not as Spiderman).  Because Garfield is a stronger actor than his predecessor Tobey McGuire, he delivers deeper meaning to the character.  There were some really interesting insights, nuances, movements that Garfield did that gave something extra to the character and reinvigorated him for me.

However, like some of the previous Spiderman films,  the animation of the villain continues to be a disappointment.  The CGI looks corny, childish and completely out of place (even in a superhero film).  In direct contrast the aerial movement of Spiderman through the city is smooth and visually splendid.  For the fourth time, the franchise just can’t get the look and feel of the film right.

It’s time to leave this franchise alone.   Garfield single handedly saved it from complete embarrassment.  Move onto another character, Marvel Entertainment.  Don’t look back.

Rating: 2 stars / 5.

Rhett Bartlett