Entries Tagged as 'Foreign'

‘District 9′ (2009)

district_9 All the reports that I’ve read have said that director Neill Blomkamp and Wingnut Films elected to do ‘District 9′ while they were in a holding pattern while they were waiting on a green light from Microsoft to do a live-action adaptation of the Halo video-game.

Imagine a couple million dollars of filmmaking equipment, and empty studio and several tens of state-of-the-art technicians waiting on some Seattle lawyers, and you get the idea. though the film is a little more substantive than  that. [Read more →]

‘Shutter’ (2004/8)

Shutter ‘(2008) is touted as a product of ‘the Executive Producers of ‘The Ring’ and ‘The Grudge’, but is the American audience’s memory so brief as to forget that only one of these American remakes was any good?

‘Shutter’ plays like ‘Ring 2′ ought to have. Back in 2005, I had hoped that the production team at DreamWorks would have done the smart thing and either followed the Japanese sequel or done the metatextual thing and paid homage to their source material by sending Rachel Keller East for a close-encounter with kwaidon — Japanese ghost stories. Unfortunately that didn’t happen. [Read more →]

‘Summer Palace’ (2006)

I was disappointed with Summer Palace .

That’s not to say that there aren’t impressive things going on in it — it just seems that my expectations became distorted after what seemed to me an elaborate and meticulous emphasis on direction and production design to refer to European nouvelle vague films that goes entirely nowhere.

In the disk’s promotional blurb, the film is described as a first-hand account of Tianamen Square in Beijung, c. 1989. [Read more →]

‘Traffik’(1989) vs. ‘Traffic’(2000)

‘Traffik’(1989) ‘Traffic’(2000)

After watching the British version of ‘ Traffik ‘ alongside a broadcast of 2000′s Steven Soderbergh remake , both courtesy of the Sundance Channel, I think I like the original more, even though Benicio Del Toro and Don Cheadle aren’t in it. The Brits are less black-and-white about the subject – the criminals aren’t all resident aliens, and fewer prominent characters live in the suburbs. Many are ‘respectable’ natural-born citizens, and international monetary policy (read IMF) is as culpable in the propagation of the drug trade as the well-to-do professionals of Southern California. Interesting, isn’t it, how Soderbergh moved the incidence of drug use and propagation out of the ‘Heartland’ of America into those ‘blue’ Gore margins. But we all know who’ s catalyzing crystal-meth in Iowa – and his name don’t end with ‘Rodriguez’… [Read more →]