Posts Tagged ‘movie’

Noir city X Crimezine Eddie Muller

Crimezine chum Eddie Muller

Czar of Noir Eddie Muller, organizer of  Noir City X, can be seen above working out the final details to his latest novel inside Dashiell Hammett’s  San Francisco appartment. Six films, either written by Hammett, or based on his writings will be shown at the festival including the Famous Maltese Falcon, starring Humphrey  Bogart.

The 10th San Francisco Film Noir Festival is happening Jan. 20-29. at the Castro Theatre, 429 Castro St., San Francisco. Opening night double feature, Jan. 20 is Dark Passage, and The House on Telegraph Hill.

The festival hosts an  evening with Angie Dickinson, who will appear in person, Jan. 21.  Movies screened will be: The Killers and Point Blank. The closing day Jan. 29. features six Dashiell Hammett films. Noir City Passports, are good for all the festivals Castro Theatre events, they cost a very reasonable $120. Individual double features are $10, except for Angie Dickinson night, which is $15. For complete programming at the Castro Theatre, call (415) 621-6120,

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Tinker -Tailor-Soldier-Spy

Gary Oldman: moribund & geriatric little Tinker

There was a time back in the seventies and early eighties when it looked like the world might be destroyed by Cold War intrigue. This was the era when John le Carré, author of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy was at the height of his powers. To many readers, le Carré was the man with the inside dope on how and when the apocalypse would come. And his books were consumed with according voracity.

Times change and to many the world of Cold War spying is as puzzling as the expression Cold War itself. Le Carré master of the deeply plotted mystery created several books featuring spymaster George Smiley. Of which Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy is the most famous, due in part to the award winning seventies TV series starring Alec Obi-Wan-Kenobi Guinness.

The plot to this story is deeply baffling. The performances dour and intense, which makes a welcome change, in these days of throw away violence and faux Hollywood super thrillers. Le Carré’s spies are real, in the sense that intrigue, not car-chase histronics provide the major part of the story— a convoluted tale concerning the uncovering of a traitor at the very top of British Intelligence.

As a veteran of the le Carré oeuvre, Crimezine was tasked with the lengthy and complex duty of explaining the byzantine plot to neighbor Jennifer Aniston, whom we somewhat foolishly invited to this movie. This is no date-night fun flick you can trust us on that, in fact several members of the audience gave up in frustration, preferring instead to bunk into a showing of helium voiced funsters Alvin & the Chipmunks—Chip wrecked, at a neighboring screen.

Other members of the audience gasped, moaned, even laughed out loud, at the unfolding drama on screen: Witchcraft? Circus? What the hell are they going on about, hissed Ms Anniston in bewilderment. In the end Crimezine had to give her twenty bucks to spend at the Popcorn stand. When she returned the questions continued apace. One of the pulchritudinous Ms A’s chief concerns was the casting of rom-com heart-throb Colin Firth as a double-dealing whoopsie of international proportions. One hopes that Renée Zellweger and Hugh Grant appear in the sequel, or Crimezine will never hear the end of it.

Still, Gary Oldman is marvelous in the movie, that much has been universally acknowledged by critics—even if the moribund Mr Oldman wanders around geriatically for the first half an hour of the movie, uttering barely a word. Critics have interpreted this as the sign of a tortured genius at work, and have raved accordingly. To interpret otherwise might lead them to be considered intellectual lightweights with a penchant for popcorn, heaven forfend.

Crime-Crimezine-Crime-zine Noir city

Noir City X

Behold Crimeziners Bill Selby’s crimetastic new poster for Noir city X conceptualized by Crimezine favorite and Czar of Noir the awesome Eddie Muller. The shoot was photographed by David Allen and features the pulchritudinous Queen of the stocking top Helena Bianca. The location: Dashiell Hammett’s apartment—yes that Dashiell Hammett, and it doesn’t get much cooler than that Crimeziners.

The tenth Noir City film festival takes place at the Castro Theatre San Francisco January 20-29 2012

Bruce Willis-Catch.44-Crimezine


Catch .44: Guntastic girlies go diner heist crazy! The girlies in question are working for sleazeball drug lord Mel, played by Bruce Willis, who seems to be working this gig strictly for laughs. Fantastic!

Willis plays a bathrobe wearing, bourbon guzzling, douche. A Low budget crimelord Ying to Forest Whitaker’s Cop-killing, cup full of crazy, Yang.

This movie is written & directed by Aaron Harvey, the man behind such classics, (cof) as Blood Island and Evil Woods, a man who was 14 years old when Willis starred in the Tarantino classic Pulp Fiction. Unsurprising then that the Quentin cues come thick and fast. But so what, give the kid a chance already!

Crimezine likes the cut of young Aaron’s Jib, almost as much as we like pulp crime sleaze. It goes with out saying if you want Oscar winning characterization you should check out the latest Meryl Streep movie. But if you enjoy classic b-movie crime at it’s dirtiest low rent best, then Catch .44 is the flick for you.

Rampart-Woody Harrelson-Crimezine


There is nothing Hollyweird loves better than bastardising historical events. Take Rampart for example. But first the historical context.

Rampart is a street, it is a neighborhood, it is a police district, It was also a scandal  in the 1990’s when widespread corruption was discovered in Los Angeles Police Department’s Community Resources Against Street Hoodlums team.(CRASH).

Officers from Rampart Division CRASH were implicated in widespread corruption, which included unprovoked shootings, beatings, drug dealing, and a wide raft of other crimes, including perjury and the covering up of evidence. More than 70 officers were implicated and three of those were found to be in the direct employ of Hip-Hop mogul “Suge” Knight of Death Row Records a convicted felon with ties to the infamous Bloods street gang.

The implications of the scandal were widespread. The cost to the City of Los Angeles $125 million in settlements.

Fast forward to the present day, and the Hollywood take on Rampart written by crime writing legend and Crimezine Favorite James “Devil Dog” Ellroy and Oren Moverman. The movie focuses on the Harrelson Character, an LAPD officer nicknamed ‘date rape’  who is investigated by Internal Affairs for the extra judicial killing of a serial rapist. The movie examines the officers disintegrating family life, including his ex’s played by Cynthia Nixon &  Anne Heche, and his children, particularly his elder daughter played by Brie Larson.

So rather than a blow by blow break down of the actual Rampart scandal, we get a movie that focuses on the family and the emotional vacuity of a damaged individual. Nothing wrong with that, in fact it is commendable that Moverman had the creative vision to tackle  emotive subject matter in such an original way.

Witness Moverman’s previous film with Harrelson 2009’s The Messanger to realise emotive is what he does best.

But please, give Crimeziners some credit Mr M. if we buy a steak dinner, we expect Meat Potatoes and Gravy. We do not expect it to contain 90% vegetables. In a similar way if we buy a film called Rampart, that purports to contain Devil Dog in the ingredients, we expect Verismilitude  and bad cops doing bad things like only bad cops can do, you dig?

Tom Cruise-Mission Impossible-Ghost protocol-Crimezine

Window cleaner impossible

In the absence of Bond and Bourne this holiday season, there is only game in town and your mission should you choose to accept it, is another installment of the Mission Impossible franchise. Cool. Crimezine loves big explosions, full-auto firefights and Lilliputian Luvvie Tom Cruise, dangling on bits of string.

Imagine the Hollywood focus group now, regarding the exact size of the explosions, the number of  fire-fights, and the length of string needed to swing the fetchingly coiffed Mr Cruise around the screen for another ninety minutes of high-camp super-spook buffoonery.

The boys in the boardroom thought long and hard you can tell. We are talking a million dollars in Starbucks and Donuts alone to figure this puppy out, and here is what they came up with: Big explosion—The Kremlin, Tom gets dangled off the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, so lots of string needed, and as for the firefights? Virtually every scene, except when Tom is being dangled, or the gunplay might detract from the size of the explosions.

Ghost Protocol is the fourth Mission Impossible film—great name for a video game incidentally. Coincidence? We leave that to the conscience of the individual Crimeziner.

The plot concerns a US Black Ops attempt, known as the Ghost Protocol, to find out who blew up the Kremlin. Ethan Hunt and his team are charged with finding the answers, outside of their agencies command structure. Essentially disavowed, Hunt an his pals are on their own!

Consider the ante well and truly-upped.

Mission Impossible is Hollywood at it’s silliest and most formulaeic. That formula is pretty darn good however, and you would have to have a hard heart not to enjoy this film in the spirit in which it is intended, entertainment in it’s purest form.

And the Star Trek Connection? Leonard Nimoy (Mr Spock) starred as Paris in the original 1970’s Mission Impossible series. And for you noir fiends out there Nimoy also appeared in two 1954 episodes of Dragnet. So there!

Human Zoo- Rie-Rassmussen, Crimezine

Human Zoo

European cinema. For many a visceral experience of  non linear plotlines,  subtitle mired cinematography and nonsensical outcomes. Enough to make you want to supersize the popcorn and head for the Tower Heist in screen Nine? Choose Human Zoo, By  Rie Rasmussen instead, here’s why…

Rie Rasmussen has a lot of pals… male pals and this is no surprise as the Danish Actress, Writer, Director, photographer and super model is not only prodigiously talented she is also stunningly beautiful. She made her acting debut in Brian De Plama’s erotic thriller Femme Fatale. She also starred in Luc Besson’s Angel A. She wrote and directed and starred in the  short films Il Vestino and Thinning the Herd, which was selected for the prestigious Quentin Tarantino Film Festival in Austin Texas and the Palm d’Or du court métrage, In Cannes France. Not a bad track record for a 33 year old director.

Human Zoo first appeared at the Berlin Film Festival in 2009 as Romance the Dark. Described by Tarantino as shocking and violent the movie stars Rassmussen as a Serbian woman Adria who is caught up in the chaos and ethnic violence of the Kosovo War. Escaping Belgrade with the help of her gun runner boyfriend, she enters France illegally, attempting to make a new life in Marseille. But no matter how far Adria runs the past is never far behind her.

Crimezine is not easily impressed by shock tactics and the pulchritudinous Ms Rasmussen is not shy in obliging in the sex and violence department. As a model she has done titilating photoshoots for Donna Karen, Yves Saint Laurent, Dolce & Gabbana and Gucci. She also worked for kinky pants brand Victoria’s Secret, when asked why, she responded: Because I wanted to F**k a supermodel like everyone else, and I did! (sigh) Modern girls.

Shock tactics aside, Rasmussen is a multitalented lady and we love the fact that she published a book of her art and photography under the pseudonym Lilly Dillon, a character in noir crime writer Jim Thompson’s novel The Grifters.

Rasmussen pal Luc Besson is promoting the LA release of this movie, billed as Warfare or Crimespree?  The cool deal with this is that you can see Besson’s Movie Angela-A showing along side Human Zoo every night. Cool.

Rie Rasmussen will be making personal appearances at the New Beverly Cinema for Q&A sessions from Nov 11-17 2011. Expect the line to be long and the dirty macs to be very shabby indeed.

See Human Zoo and join in Q&A session with Rie Rasmussen at the New Beverly Cinema. 71655 Beverly Boulevard, Los Angeles California.

Mark Wahlberg-Crimezine-Contrabrand

Mark Wahlberg and Kat Beckinsale: Contrabrand

Here comes Mark Wahlberg, a man who only shows expression with the top part of his face. The darkly furrowed stare, the ironically contemptuous twist of an eyebrow and Kaboom! Wahlberg vanquishes all before him: drug lords, hit men, corrupt officials, the whole gamut of human flotsam, washed away in one big torrent of full-auto fire power and explosive mayhem.

Contrabrand is what you would expect, a white knuckle action thriller, that sees Wahlberg, a smuggler gone straight, setting out on one last job, to save the bacon of his lame-brain brother-in-law from crime-lord handlers. All our hero has to do is head out to Panama  and collect millions of counterfeit dollar bills. What could possibly go wrong?

Just about everything frankly, and when Wahlberg’s screen wife, the gorgeous Kate Beckinsale and his sons become a target of the mobsters, the shitola kicks off big time.

In lesser hands this would be a episode of Miami Vice on steroids, but Wahlberg is the man when it comes to making this kind of movie, and very few people do it better. Contrabrand. Crimezine recommends—wholeheartedly.

The last rights of Joe May, Dennis Farina

Farina: a Crimezine favorite

Dennis Farina has played more gangsters than Crimezine Neighbor Jennifer Anniston has scarfed pizzas, and trust us, the high pitched rom-commer has the Domino’s crew on her doorstep three times a day at least. Dennis however is not playing it for laughs.

The last rights of Joe may is about an aging short money hustler (Farina) who after a long illness is released from hospital to find he has lost pretty much everything he owned, His home , his car his livelihood, even his friends.

But Joe strikes up a friendship with Jenny, and her eight year old daughter who are living in his old apartment. Jenny’s boyfriend is a crooked detective with a penchant for domestic violence.

The last rights of Joe May is a dark brooding Crimezine classic and Dennis Farina is a legend, check it out today.

Crimezine Affleck to direct tell no one remake

Tell No One 2006 Film Poster

Crimezine is a big fan of Ben Affleck. We liked his work on 201o crime hit The Town. The word on the Hollyweird Boulevard is that he will direct the US remake of Harlan Coben’s sensational mystery Tell No One. The book was first adapted for the 2006 French film directed  by Guillaume Canet and starred the marvelous Francois Cluzet and Kristin Scott Thomas (The super posh chick from Four Weddings and a Funeral)

The film was a big success in Europe, but was shot in French. Presumably Warner Brothers & Universal who have optioned the movie, are hoping that the Affleck treatment will make  the story a US smash too. Affleck is currently directing a political thriller Argo about the 1979 Iran Hostage crisis. Crimezine understands that Chris Terrio who penned Argo will also write the screenplay for Tell No One.

Crimeziners who cannot wait or the new Affleck film should check out the Harlan Coben book as a primer, It is one of the best stand alone Mysteries that The Edgar award winning writer has penned to date. Crimezine also recommends the 2006 French movie, which is fantastic. But Posh-Totty Kristin Scott Thomas is quintessentially British,we hear you cry— quite right— but she lives in Paris, has done for many moons and the result is très bien!