Tag Archives: Oliver Stone

Scarface


This upcoming Tuesday (September 6, 2011) Brian DePalma’s 1983 ultra-violent classic Scarface comes out on Blu-Ray for the very first time. Maybe it’s because there’s a glut of Scarface representations in the media lately; maybe it’s because The Blood Bros’ second mix Heaven 2 Hell begins with Paul Engemann’s Push it to the Limit and I’ve been listening to that mix regularly for the last few weeks; maybe it’s because I seem to watch Scarface every decade – I’m not entirely sure. I just know that I’ve been itching to watch Scarface for the last few weeks and last night I achieved just that.

Ten years ago, the last time I watched Scarface, I didn’t really like it. All the hype surrounding the film didn’t equal the presentation. I still feel this way but watching this viewing yielded a different response: I loved Scarface and thought it was hysterical. I know DePalma, Pacino, and author Oliver Stone weren’t looking for camp but that’s exactly what they delivered. Scarface, even with all its social commentary and explorations in humanity, is a gaudy film akin to other unintentional comedies like Showgirls (which is far superior). The characters, for the most part, are ridiculous and the Cuban accents portrayed by American actors are laughable. I’ll admit Pacino did capture the mannerisms of Cuban-Americans with panache but that about all; everything else is overblown and draws laughter instead of awe.
Continue reading

Navy Seals


“You’re dealing with extremists.”

“You’re dealing with the Navy Seals.”

Navy Seals is Top Gun but less homoerotic and more cocaine fueled. After all, it stars Charlie Sheen (post Wall Street) as a self-absorbed, sociopathic Navy Seal who is amusingly racist (he calls the Japanese “Japs,” Muslims “rags,” and just about any other racial slur you can imaging). The film focuses heavily on mindless action and vaguely defined character traits – using the terms “good guys” and “bad guys” often and, like any good American propaganda made after the Cold War, its primary antagonists are Middle Eastern (Navy Seals’ main action takes place in Beirut, Lebanon). It’s the type of film which brings to mind Sel from Alejandro Jodorowsky’s The Holy Mountain, who makes war toys and begins propaganda campaigns against future enemies years before any actual conflict; it’s also a film undoubtedly fueled by massive amount of cocaine and excess.
Continue reading

My September 11th Post: Films Featuring 9/11 Allusions

Last week I was watching a copy of Terminator 2: Judgment Day I picked up on Blu-Ray (it looks great) and noticed this:

About a month or so ago when I watched Independence Day (a mistake I’ll never make again) I noticed the countdown clock on Jeff Goldblum’s computer also said 9:11. Now I’m not a conspiracy theory nut but I’ve noticed a great deal of September 11th imagery in films released prior to the attacks. Naturally, the numbers “9-1-1” have connotations in American society extending beyond these events from almost a decade ago (it’s the number we call in an emergency, which I’m assuming everybody knows) but I can’t help feeling those looking for surreptitious government plots are interesting, even if I don’t believe them. I’m sorry but I don’t believe in secret societies the same way some of these people online do and just because the internet is a free forum (for now) doesn’t mean your ideas hold any water. However, being the sick bastard I am sometimes, here are some of my favorite images from pre-9/11 films featuring allusions to September 11th.
Continue reading

Film festivities

Driving home from picking up a vintage Texas Chainsaw Massacre II t-shirt I heard an interesting article on NPR’s Talk of the Nation. The article was about great movie parties, with Neal Conan and a movie expert talking to callers and analyzing some of the greatest party scenes in film history. Of course the standards were discussed: Blake Edwards’ The Party, the Francis Ford Coppola penned version of The Great Gatsby, It’s a Wonderful Life, An American in Paris, Weird Science, and so forth. Some of the callers’ suggestions were excellent, some were maudlin, and others were just stupid. Being the pessimist I am I started thinking about film parties I wouldn’t enjoy. Here’s a list. Continue reading