George Dzundza

George Dzundza

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Crimson Tide Review


Very Good
The Cold War may be over, but it lives on through films like Crimson Tide.

Crimson Tide is a new action/psychodrama about a mutiny aboard a U.S. nuclear submarine. When World War III is about to erupt thanks to Russian coup-artists, the USS Alabama, helmed by Captain Frank Ramsey (Gene Hackman) is sent to prepare for the worst. When the order to launch comes in, Ramsey's executive officer, Lt. Commander Ron Hunter (Denzel Washington), clashes with the Captain over a last-minute, incomplete order which could recall the missile launch. The result is mutiny, with half the ship siding with the Captain's single-minded, stubborn decision to fire, half standing with Hunter, who wants a confirmation before blowing up the world.

Continue reading: Crimson Tide Review

White Hunter, Black Heart Review


Excellent
Tragically underrated, the character of John Wilson remains one of Clint Eastwood's greatest roles, standing next to Dirty Harry in memorability. A (very) thinly-veiled biography of director John Huston, during the preproduction of arguably his greatest film, The African Queen, Eastwood burns as the angry, embittered director who sees everything as a challenge to overcome, from killing an elephant to surviving a plane crash. His clashes with his writer (Fahey - his best role ever) and producer (Dzundza - ditto, I'd say) are epic and awesomely staged. While the film pulls its punches by masking the identities of its players behind aliases (the faux Katherine Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart stick out ridiculously), this is a film that is not to be missed, especially by movie buffs.

Crimson Tide Review


Very Good
The Cold War may be over, but it lives on through films like Crimson Tide.

Crimson Tide is a new action/psychodrama about a mutiny aboard a U.S. nuclear submarine. When World War III is about to erupt thanks to Russian coup-artists, the USS Alabama, helmed by Captain Frank Ramsey (Gene Hackman) is sent to prepare for the worst. When the order to launch comes in, Ramsey's executive officer, Lt. Commander Ron Hunter (Denzel Washington), clashes with the Captain over a last-minute, incomplete order which could recall the missile launch. The result is mutiny, with half the ship siding with the Captain's single-minded, stubborn decision to fire, half standing with Hunter, who wants a confirmation before blowing up the world.

Continue reading: Crimson Tide Review

That Darn Cat Review


Weak
Barely amusing, this remake of the Disney kiddie flick features an (inadvertent) crime-fighting cat, Christina Ricci, and the near-instant cinematic meltdown of Doug E. Doug. The story and the performances are universally appropriate for The Disney Channel fare -- which is to say, they are far from good. I suppose this would be fine to plop a kid in front of for an hour and a half, but is that saying much? Try something with animated animals instead.

Basic Instinct Review


Very Good
Utterly stupid yet completely memorable, Sharon Stone owes her career -- if not her entire life -- to Paul Verhoeven and Basic Instinct. Famed for its sneak-peek at Stone's wig-covered crotch, her "arrest me for smoking" line, Tripplehorn's cinematic break, and a cop-falls-for-the-killer plot ripped out of Sudden Impact, Basic Instinct is part of modern Americana. Too bad writer Joe Eszterhas started taking himself seriously after this movie, becoming the highest paid hack on the planet. At least he's been put in his place... though note that Stone has signed on to do a sequel (now mired in a lawsuit). Yikes!
George Dzundza

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