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Frank's Movie Log

My life at the movies.

  1. The Key 1934

    D+: 2 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Michael Curtiz. Starring William Powell, Edna Best, Colin Clive, and Hobart Cavanaugh.

    In 1920 Dublin, during the Irish War of Independence, Colin Clive plays a British Army Intelligence Officer whose outwardly happy marriage is crumbling. Edna Best plays his wife, who still carries a torch for a man she had a brief affair with in England before marrying Clive a few years earlier. These unresolved feelings stand poised to drive the couple apart.

    Enter William Powell as a Canadian expat serving in the British Army. He arrives in Dublin with a history of womanizing scandals smoothed over by battlefield heroics. His assigned apartment sits one floor below Clive and Best’s. Clive recognizes Powell and invites him upstairs, where he meets Best. Clive proves oblivious to the tension between the two and when he leaves, we learn Powell is the man Best has yearned for all these years. To Powell’s surprise, he realizes he still loves her too. Continue reading...

    Watched on
    03 Jun 2023
  2. The Great Silence 1968

    B: 4 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Sergio Corbucci. Starring Jean-Louis Trintignant, Klaus Kinski, Frank Wolff, and Vonetta McGee.

    In turn of the century Utah, a mute gunfighter aids the desperate residents of a snow-bound mining town in their struggle with a corrupt businessman and his gang of bounty killers led by Klaus Kinski. Spoilers follow. Continue reading...

    Watched on
    30 May 2023
  3. Gosford Park 2001

    B-: 3.5 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Robert Altman. Starring Maggie Smith, Ryan Phillippe, Michael Gambon, and Kristin Scott Thomas.

    In 1932 England, Sir William McCordle hosts a hunting party at his palatial country estate, the titular Gosford Park. Assorted secrets and betrayals emerge among the upstairs gentry and downstairs help. When someone falls victim to an unseen killer, almost everyone has a motive. Continue reading...

    Watched on
    25 May 2023
  4. Deathtrap 1982

    B-: 3.5 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Sidney Lumet. Starring Michael Caine, Christopher Reeve, Dyan Cannon, and Irene Worth.

    In this adaptation of Ira Levin’s long-running Broadway hit, Michael Caine plays a once prominent playwright staring down his fourth straight flop. Needing a hit, he hatches a plot to steal a dazzling manuscript from a former student played by Christopher Reeve. Complications ensue and spoilers follow. Continue reading...

    Watched on
    25 May 2023
  5. Labyrinth 1986

    C+: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Jim Henson. Starring David Bowie, Jennifer Connelly, Toby Froud, and Shelley Thompson.

    Jennifer Connelly plays a teenage girl who must traverse a large maze in a magical world to rescue her infant brother after wishing him away to the Goblin King, played by David Bowie. Continue reading...

    Watched on
    21 May 2023
  6. Private Detective 62 1933

    C-: 2.5 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Michael Curtiz. Starring William Powell, Margaret Lindsay, Ruth Donnelly, Gordon Westcott, and Arthur Hohl.

    William Powell plays an American agent operating in Paris. An exfiltration mission goes awry, resulting in his apprehension and deportation. But just as his ship reaches New York harbor, the captain receives word to return Powell to France. Powell jumps ship and swims ashore. Disavowed by the government and unable to find work, he finagles his way into a private investigator job, only to fall for a gambler played by Margaret Lindsay, who’s targeted for a frame up job by a crooked casino operator. Continue reading...

    Watched on
    20 May 2023
  7. Lawyer Man 1932

    D: 2 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by William Dieterle. Starring William Powell, Joan Blondell, David Landau, and Helen Vinson.

    William Powell plays a womanizing Lower East Side lawyer who joins a prestigious uptown firm. His rising star attracts the attention of local political boss John Gilmurry. Powell rebuffs Gilmurry’s advances but loses the moral high ground when he accepts a breach of promise case from a seductive actress. Ignoring advice to drop the suit, Powell becomes entangled in a manufactured scandal, leading to his ruin. Vowing to fight back, Powell promises to “fight dirty” to take down those who wronged him. Continue reading...

    Watched on
    19 May 2023
  8. Cure 1997

    C+: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Kiyoshi Kurosawa. Starring Masato Hagiwara, Kôji Yakusho, Tsuyoshi Ujiki, and Anna Nakagawa.

    Detective Takabe investigates a growing series of murders where the perpetrators carve a large “X” into their victim’s throats. Though they admit guilt, the perpetrators cannot explain their motives, just that the urge to kill felt as matter-of-fact as turning on the lights in a dark room. The trail leads Takabe to a mysterious young man named Mamiya who claims amnesia and displays an inability to form fresh memories, but harbors a dark secret. Spoilers follow. Continue reading...

    Watched on
    16 May 2023
  9. Batman 1989

    A-: 4.5 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Tim Burton. Starring Michael Keaton, Jack Nicholson, Kim Basinger, and Robert Wuhl.

    Jack Nicholson plays a mobster who falls into a chemical vat and emerges with white skin, green hair, and a rictus grin. Renaming himself Joker, he sets out to remake Gotham City in his image, but encounters resistance from Batman, played by Michael Keaton. Continue reading...

    Watched on
    12 May 2023
  10. Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut 1980

    C+: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Directed by Richard Donner and Richard Lester. Starring Gene Hackman, Christopher Reeve, Marlon Brando, and Ned Beatty.

    Christopher Reeve returns as Superman, who forsakes his powers for a human life with Lois, played again by Margot Kidder, only to face a threat from three Kryptonian criminals led by Terrance Stamp as the menacing General Zod. Continue reading...

    Watched on
    12 May 2023


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