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Red-Headed Woman (1932)
Give me Una anytime.
Jean Harlow was, as so many are, one-of-a-kind. A good kind. A fun kind. The kind of actress who was fairly one-note but oh, what a note! This movie, all in all, was not one of her better ones. Her characters, while generally entertaining - see her being marvelous in the marvelous "Dinner at Eight," especially the scene at the end of the movie with another one-of-a-kind, Marie Dressler - was also always sympathetic. But not in this 5 or maybe 6-starrer. She undermined her good girl quality in spite of herself and portrayed a manipulative sex for money character who was, ultimately, unappealing and in fact off-putting because the good hearted gal that she seemed to be so naturally was tossed into the back seat with the rest of her rich daddies. This, and she, were less funny because she didn't win you over as she did in China Seas, Red Dust, et al. In fact, I got fed up with her and wished her no good end. Instead, she got Charles Boyer, too good a catch for the selfish, cunning, tramp she played. More power to the tramps, but I like 'em when their hearts have at least a hint of gold. Cheater Morris wooden before he hit his Boston Blackie stride, Lewis Stone priming for his Judge Hardy character. Una Merkel comes off the best and most likable and no surprise there.
London Kills (2019)
Better than most.
Taking issue with the 2 bad reviews, I'm going to offer a considerably more accepting view. Good acting, good team work (all the actors have each others back while registering some discomforts with one or the other), good story lines with the chief detective's missing wife the thread that connects all the off-shoot stories. Plus, nice shots of the London streets and sky lines. Look forward to the remaining 5 episodes that show up on IMDB, but with no date a to when they will appear on screen. Thumbs up.
A mess in (slow) motion
What looked as if it might be promising in the first several minutes, fell into disrepair in no time at all. And kept on falling apart. The only one who demonstrated a hint of amusement was Binnie Barnes as the viperish wife of an imbecile. Ray Milland was actually a mean sort of man; certain scenes seemed to be a rehearsal for his character in "Dial M for Murder". Brian Aherne, usually much more interesting, played a dud of a guy. And the elegant Colbert played it as if she had just rolled out of bed and hadn't even brushed her teeth yet. Had once been a novel, apparently, and then a Broadway play, and now a movie. All 3 of which would have been better off left on the shelf.
The Constant Nymph (1943)
So So Soap Opera - Lolita brought to life
What a disappointment! A great cast miscast. Shades of Lolita! Better the title should be "The Cloying Nymphet". Ordinarily I like Joan Fontaine, but at 26 she was too manufactured as a 14 year old. Certain poses she would strike were appropriate and in keeping with the age of the character but only certain and only a few at that. I don't know the novel so I can't compare. But in the movie, all she needed was a piece of straw dangling from her mouth and she could have been a consumptive flat-chested Jane Russell beckoning Boyer - an easy 20 years older - in the person of a dense lech to come away from his piano and jump in the hay with her. He, too, is a favorite, but there was something repelling about the 2 of them in action with one another. Alexis Smith, as her older (although she was 4 years younger) cousin who is married to Boyer's lech, stole whatever scenes she was in, dupe that she was. Peter Lorre, a floating in and out presence who had nothing to add and added plenty of it. I kept waiting for - and hoping that - Eduardo Ciannelli as a butler (!!!) no less, to pull out a gun and say stick 'em up. Charles Coburn, again another masterful actor, got lost in the scenery. Dame May Witty was the most fun in her great Dame manner. And finally, the Tyrolean background was obviously the Warner Bros. backlot on a bad day. Out of circulation for 70 years, I'd always been curious about it, especially for the assemblage of actors. Curiosity killed this cat.
La città delle donne (1980)
Even a genius can lose his way...
I doubt there is anyone alive who adores Fellini more than I; the same goes for those who are dead. "8 and a 1/2" influenced me so much so that as a young guy just coming of age, I got on a freighter to Genoa, hitched to Florence for a few months and then finally to Rome: I had to see all of this in person. And did I ever! You get the point. Now, as a man of more mature years, and having seen this film way after its release I can only cry with disappointment. Vincent Canby in the NYT apparently loved it, and Roger Ebert registered enthusiasm, and many of the reviewers on IMDb do as well...but: no body else - I cannot imagine - has ever seen so many of his movies more than once and some of them many times more than once and has always delighted in them. This one just had my jaw dropping at the NON-beauty of it, the clumsiness even, the total lack of story-line. Whereas, as an example, "8 and a 1/2" left one with hope and a sense of grandeur and completion, a sense of beauty, this one left me, at least, sad and dismayed that the genius screwed up. Oh, well - one rotten apple need not - and does not - ruin the whole bunch. I still love him and always will. He must have woken from a nightmare and had to spit it out before it got the better of him. Give me Juliet any day and La Strada and La Dolce Vita and Satyricon and Amarcord et al and let me be transported to heaven rather than the unfortunate hell of this unfortunate movie.
Woman's World (1954)
Good all around cast, but...but
Big June Allyson fan when I was a kid, crush and all. The girl next door, after all...but not next door to me. And now, years later, I can see why the crush: she was a doll! That wonderful voice and sweetness of heart. But now, of course - Lauren Bacall has a voice of a different octave, touched with her unique wry delivery. She's a grown-ups dream. So - you all know the story line - 3 men (and their wives as representatives) are up for a position of significance with Clifton Webb the decision maker. Cornel Wilde (Allyson), Fred MacMurray (Bacall) and Van Heflin (Arlene Dahl) are the contenders. Blatant technicolor and wonderful scenes of New York City - where I happen to be from - gloriously displayed and minus the chronic scaffoldings that adorn every street these current days. With their very different personalities, they vie. If you like just a few of these actors, you'll be happy enough. If you like a good story line and are not especially discriminating, you'll be happy enough. A few good scenes - the dress shopping spree with Bacall and Allyson, the last couple of moments of the show down, etc. - are all there is, basically. Clifton Webb, thankfully, toned down the typical superiority that he constantly indulged in. It was 1954 after all and it shows all over the place.
I know I'm committing sacrilege, but...
For some reason, over the years, I've seen only bits and pieces of this movie and never in its entirety. Finally, tonight, I did. And this is all I have to say: Shadow of a Doubt, Strangers on a Train, Notorious, North by Northwest, The 39 Steps, The Lady Vanishes, Rebecca, Young and Innocent, Psycho, Saboteur, Sabotage, and a few others warrant more acclaim than this over-long, over-rated, over-done and over-wrought production. It can be rated a seven-starrer and on a night when I'm feeling giddy with generosity, 8. But all in all a sour disappointment. How it managed to grow in acclaim, I am at a loss. The acting was superlative, with Stewart growing from a barely bearable personality (dull and duller) to a thoroughly dislikable fellow who'd been done wrong. Kim Novak was a delightful surprise. I've always liked her and found her to be very sympathetic whenever I've seen her - Middle of the Night, Picnic, - and a much better actress than was generally granted. In this she excelled. Barbara Bel Geddes should have been elevated to greater stardom and Tom Helmore was perfect as the heel. The photography was good, colorful, with interesting collage-like minutes of sailing/falling through air. The music was non-stop (unusual in movies) - there was never a moment when some notes were not being heard and they heightened the intensity. But...But: 2 hours and 8 minutes! No movie should be 2 hours and 8 minutes. It's like reading a fat book that can't help but repeat itself. I did like it though and would REALLY have liked it had it shaved off at least 20 minutes in the middle. But Shadow of a Doubt? Now, THAT'S movie magic. And that's my 2 cents!
Easy Living (1937)
Jean Arthur and all is right with the world.
She's a little bit of heaven right here on this crazy territory called earth. She sails and soars and delights - her glances, her shyness, her awkwardness in love, the voice of a skylark. Perhaps you can tell: I'm a little bit in love with Jean Arthur (and Ingrid Bergman - but she's not here at the moment). For me, in the realm of screwball comedy, no one compares. Loy and Colbert and Russell (when she's not hamming it up) and Lombard (when she doe not over use her importuning screech) are all fine and wonderful and Jim Dandy - but I'm not in love with them. All that romance aside - this is a delightful film of absurdity. Or screwballism, I guess you might say if you wanted to coin a word. From mink coats dropping from rooftops onto the head of a passerby in a double-decker bus (and I remember them from when I was a kid in the very city it takes place) and automat pies (I remember them, too) and luxury hotel rooms for your dreamy pleasure and Edward Arnold bellowing and blustering as only he can (never even nominated for an Academy Award! Him and Ed. G Robinson and Myrna Loy for that matter. Now that's really absurd!) Mitchell Liesen was an under-rated director. And Franklin Pangborn and Mary Nash (not evil for a change) and Ray Milland just beginning his foray into light-weight comedy and good at it, too. These movies don't have to make sense; there is too much of that going on in a world that is totally nonsensical. Laugh out loud and bring out the popcorn and give your favorite squeeze a squeeze. Amen!
Let's Face It (1943)
Ah! Finally! A good night's sleep!!
4 snoozes. If that many. Somehow or other, this was on Broadway in the early 40's and ran for a year and a half. Score - not in this movie - by Cole Porter, of all wonderful composers. Danny Kaye in the Hope role and Eve Arden reprising the role she had on the stage. There is no one better in droll delivery than Eve Arden. No one better in anything than Eve Arden. But she can't pull this mediocre nonsense together. Bob Hope tries and goes no further than his usual shtick. And, of course, Betty Hutton is Betty Hutton is Betty Hutton and if you like Betty Hutton, you are home free. For those of us, like myself, who feels as if you might as well be pulling a two ton truck, uphill, and you want to save yourself some energy - let this one rest in the land of best forgotten entertainments from an era that mostly knew better. Outrageously unfunny and, in fact, unkind - the 3 females out on the make to spite their straying husbands - are made fun of and called all sorts of names that would have feminists up in arms today. As well they should be. Anyway, if you like Eve Arden, you'll be happy. AS for the rest -- I think I'd rather go to the dentist.
The Meanest Man in the World (1943)
Love Jack Benny, love Priscilla Lane. BUT...
As I stated, I love Jack Benny. One of those comedians who warms my heart just upon sight. Eve Arden (who would have been good in the Anne Revere part) is another example of that kind of persona whose mere presence makes me happy. Unlike the character he portrays in some movies and certainly on his TV shows, he was a very generous man with friends and strangers. No surprise there. He exudes that which makes his stinginess even more funny. This picture, with a lot of false starts and ending up nowhere, went off on the wrong track. Priscilla Lane was actually a nifty actress in so many of her films, almost surprisingly so. In addition, she is about as adorable as they come. (Benny often has some of the most appealing actresses to accompany him on his sprees.) Rochester, too, is a delight. Could have done without the black-face routine, but it was 1943 and awareness of this sort outrage was not yet in our craws. It did not go as far or as interestingly as it might have but what could have remedied it, I wouldn't know where to begin. "The Horn Blows at Midnight" is often claimed by Benny to be a failure and brought down his movie career. My impression is that it is more delightful than most of his forays into filmdom. Then of course he is in the utter classic "To Be or Not To Be". Nothing wrong with that one. And with him. And with Lane. It's just the film which isn't especially good. But so what? It has Jack Benny,
There's always one in every crowd
I didn't read more than a few other reviews and they were all 10 stars. I'm going to be the fly in the ointment and give it a 7, which still ain't bad. And it ain't - I mean isn't - bad at all, by any means. Nor, in my book, is it anywhere near great. Not by a long shot. It may be due, largely, although not sure yet, to Joe Pesci's one note characterization (way too typical of him). A little "f" word here and there never hurt nobody but goes just so far. It becomes not so much an aspect of his psychopathology but, with its over emphasis, weakens it, parodying what might be very legitimate. He was insane, and not a joke, but the character becomes jokey. How Ray Liotta did not get acknowledged for a much more realistic portrayal, and get at least a nomination for a part he brought dimensionality to, is a mystery. But, of course, the whole concept of an Academy Award is a mystery in and of itself. I mean, after all - Charlton Heston (in anything)?; Shirley Jones when you have Janet Leigh?; Rita Moreno opposite Judy Garland as well as Fay Bainter and Lotte Lenya?; not to mention the even more outrageous selection of Chakiris vs Clift and Geo. C. Scott?; Grace Kelly vs. Judy Garland????? Now, really! That one is going too far. And so on and forth. Give me Pesci in My Cousin Vinny anytime (not even a nomination). Aside from that - there were moments in the film that were clearly wonderful. Bracco and all the other molls getting their faces and nails done, scanning and re-scanning each of their thoughtless faces; the stop motion a dozen or more times capturing the characters silent, still; De Niro smiling at you with one of his 2 faces barely showing the 2nd face that will soon emerge and become the easy victor; the sense of confusion and then addiction that Liotta captures; the latter part where he describes in repetitive detail, in his drug-addled way, the order of the evening and transporting the pounds of cocaine to another city; dinner table with Mom and the 3 boys while the body in the trunk is writhing. Etc. A story told well enough in all of its pathetic realism. Scorcese is usually very good. It's this film that wasn't.
I Walked with a Zombie (1943)
That's what I said. What in the world, or rather, other world was that all about? Beautifully atmospheric and photographed and as James Agee said about Frances Dee "one of the most beautiful faces in Hollywood", and well enough acted. But - what was going on? One absurdity after another. No real need to make any sense out of it. After all, what sense could be made? None. Too many loose ends and unfinished thoughts and jumpings ahead and poorly scripted without anything holding it up. And, finally, who cares and if you do, why? However - it was exquisite to look at which is all that you need to do for this film. Just look at it and breathe it in. And, in the end, in this film - that is all that really mattered. 6 stars for "stuff" and 11 stars for beauty.
The Dark Mirror (1946)
Will the real Olivia please stand up?
I love 1940's melodramas in general, let alone pseudo psychological studies. Speaking of breaking confidentialities! And simplistic diagnostic evaluations. Oh, well - nevertheless it was fun seeing Olivia torment herself at every turn. Probably wishing it were Joan playing opposite her. The questioning of the witnesses in the beginning had some nice characters playing their parts with an air of rightness. Olivia is a bit cloying at times in any of her movies when she is emphasizing the sweet side of her nature rather than just trusting her innate nice self. And when she goes evil, she can pull that off as well, letting that side come out. Thomas Mitchell as often as not can walk away with a movie and he went in that direction here. A little too claustrophobic even with their being many different settings. I like Robert Siodmak's directorial decisions in all of his movies and Nunnally Johnson writes good scripts as a rule. This one was of its time and sounds pretty naive now. But it is fun and nice way of showing both of them, the 2 Olivia's in the same shot vying for screen time. Get some popcorn, stretch out and enjoy yourself.
Stranger on the Third Floor (1940)
Both not good and good at the same time.
First the good: No one is better than Peter Lorre playing a maniac. Nor is anyone better than Elisha Cook, Jr. playing whatever he always plays. That covers the acting. The photography by Nicholas Musuraca was beautiful moment by moment. He photographed Cat People, The Spiral Staircase, Out of the Past and The Jack Benny Show! The dream sequences were vivid and entertaining. The direction by a director I've never heard of, Boris Ingster, directed only 2 other films - was good often times - although he couldn't get a tumble out of the very handsome and awkwardly stiff male lead, John McGuire, either because of his particular dialogue or his delivery which bordered on absurdity and as often as not delved right into it. Margaret Tallichet, however, had a beguiling look and style. Some other good qualities as well, but...But - the dialogue while amusing at times - except maybe in McGuire's dream horror at what he might have done - went nowhere; the ending was ludicrous - an MGM kind of sappy ending, all but the rainbow - the taxi driver unscathed by his almost death sentence, and the too convenient solutions. All and all - great to look at and absurd to make sense of. Not that you have to. But it is definitely film noir.
5 Flights Up (2014)
What a bore!
And, of course, a disappointment. With both Keaton and Freeman in it, you'd at least hope for if not expect a winner. They usually come across, but this time out they could have been twiddling their thumbs for the scene to finish and the entire film to come to an end. Hackneyed, stereotypical older couple who've lived on love all their life and haven't seemed to benefit from it. And even worse were the apartment seekers, one duller and more idiotic than the next. The secondary theme with a kind of terrorist was just noisy and in the way, although pretty much everything was in the way. The actors playing the stars as younger selves (Claire van der Boom as a young Keaton was spot on) were better at it and both Cynthia Nixon and Carrie Preston played well. But all in all, something that was meant to obviously be a feel good movie succeeded in making me feel worse.
In a word: Bad
What a disappointment! Had never heard of this film before and apparently for good reason. Got the DVD from the library, along with Deadline at Dawn, a very good film noir, on the same disc. Had an interesting enough cast, I thought, especially Edmund O'Brien. The director, Vincent Sherman, is known for some good melodramas. But the directing in this was not perceptive. What was majorly disappointing were both O'Brien and VIrginia Mayo. They'd done very well in just the past couple of years: Mayo was surprisingly good in both The Best Years of Our Lives and White Heat as a not nice dame. But in this, it was as if she'd never made a film before, was amateurish if not downright silly. MacRae learned to belt out songs opposite Mayo and Day and was good at that but as a noir character, he was a fish out of water and even appeared to be swimming in his suit and hat. Dane Clark has done better; in this he was as lost as the rest of the mob. Viveca Lindfors always struck me as misguided; had she come to Hollywood before Bergman, she might have been an original but instead she got stuck in wannabe roles. Support was fine - Ida Moore, the hotel clerk whose name I don't know and had never seen before, and was particularly noirish, Ed Begley, Monte Blue, Sheila MacRae but the major players needed acting lessons and the story line got lost in flashback. All in all, I couldn't take my eyes off of it, it was that bad.
The Cat and the Canary (1939)
In this case, the canary swallowed the cat
What a silly, silly, silly film. If not downright, for want of a better word, stupid. Not that it has to make sense - no need for that, given the nature of the beast - but it ought to have had some semblance of sensibility. Stilted and forced, nothing flowing easily. A petulant and cranky John Beal, unusual for him; a good-looking but vacuous Douglass Montgomery who has been better; Elizabeth Patterson as Elizabeth Patterson only a shade meaner; Nydia Westman perfectly cast as the jittery screamer; George Zucco, gone too soon; malevolent Gale Sondergaard who never fails; Paulette Goddard as Paulette Goddard and lovely at that; and Bob Hope in one of his worst efforts from that time period. His films from the late 30's through the late 40's were usually fun and he was usually fun, but if he gets to say something like "shut up", and mean it, to Patterson, something is not right. It's not in character for him. I've wanted to see this for years and have never found it and now that I have, I can rest easily. I'll never have to see it again. (All in all - it was silly silly silly, but wonderful because, well, just because.)
Give the guy an Academy Award, finally.
Pretty much as good as it gets. I was at once compelled to look at and be repelled by Jake Gyllenhaal's character - a sociopath - and Los Angeles' representation of a city crawling with pathologies. The photography seemed to demonstrate the city L.A. itself as simply an onlooker, just a witness of crazed traffic and social indifference. Gyllenhaal is certainly one of the best of the young contemporary actors - Edward Norton, Johnny Depp, Mark Ruffalo, Robert Downey, Jr., the late Phillip Seymour Hoffman, a few others. Never disappointed in what they do, even if the film is of less significance. From the start you have, at least in a few scenes, a sense of where this is going, perhaps a bit more than necessary - I'm not keen on figuring out in advance what might be happening next. But the sheer audacity and sociopathy of his character is riveting. I've rarely seen him - but Brokeback Mountain was enough in and of itself to warrant him acclaim. Rene Russo is always interesting to see and she has moved into her older years beautifully. As his hapless "associate", Riz Ahmed may very likely find his way to the slim list of excellent actors. Too, Kevin Rahm, who appeared as a gay neighbor in Desperate Housewives and as Russo's cohort here, one of the conscientious few, showed in the few scenes he was in, a talent to disarm. When I left the theater - a very respectful, large audience - I wanted to go right home and take a shower, as if I could wash out of my mind the wantonness of the cast of characters we don't only witness but we play.
Honeymoon in Bali (1939)
They ought to have left the film out of the camera.
Pretty much of a wreck of a film. Which is a shame, considering the talents of the beautiful Madeleine Carroll, the whimsical and as good as the best of movie comedians Fred MacMurray, the virtually unused Akim Tamiroff (save for the 2 scenes where he is cleaning the windows in heavy rain and again in heavy snow which I guess were supposed to be funny), the acerbic Helen Broderick. Too much of a back and forth kind of thing with the little moppet intruding her being into almost all the scenes, screeching and whining her lines giving child actors through out the world a bad name. Was it the director or just the forced energy of the child's own natural (or lack thereof) talents that insisted she display herself so annoyingly and endlessly into any potentially good moment of the movie. Give me Margaret O'Brien or Baby Leroy or Jackie "Butch" Jenkins or Dickie Moore or, of course, the multi-talented Temple any time and that would turn any movie around for the better. Maybe. But aside from that, not really much of a script, Carroll and MacMurray could not salvage any of it.
Gone Girl (2014)
Way too long!
In a few words, too many words were an over-kill for this endless, endless movie. Way too long. The acting was very good, but then after awhile, given the misguided length of it, the acting became just good, without any superlatives. Could have eliminated about 45 minutes and I would have given it a 7 or maybe 8 - even the 6 that I did give it was probably 1 or 2 too many. That was more for the acting than anything else. Rosamund Pike, whom I'd never seen before, is a beauty (in the beginning) and quite good. The detective and the twin sister of Affleck were very good as well and Affleck also pulled it off. No fan in particular of Neil Patrick Harris, his performance seemed to be pushed into the film and then gorily pushed out of it without having the opportunity (or ability?) to do more. Tyler Perry was a bit too jovial and flip in his role, which he customarily is (in interviews) but I find him a pleasant character. The 2 trailer trash characters could have had their scenes eliminated (although they were good) and had her money taken in some other, briefer way. Too much time spent on her psychopathology without any indication of its possible root. All in all, I was itching to get up and go out much sooner than I actually did. Really disappointed. Had been looking forward to a film noir in color and it turned out to be non-mystery in blood.
2nd of the series with Dudgeon I've seen, the other one just last night. Library. Best way to get them. Other one - Echoes of the Dead - not as good as this one and this one is not very good either. Sped forward a few times 2, 3 minutes here and there - looking for the murders; only 2 seem to have happened, an unusually low number for MM. Don't care for Dudgeon's characterization - too pompous without any of the geniality of Nettles. I miss him and Jane Wymark, even though they never, ever gave her enough to do. I like Hughes but I don't remember him playing it so doltish. The ending was good, however; but they could do without the expositions. Don't care much to have it all explained in summary - it's something that should evolve, the facts get to be known or intimated as the story goes along, not have it all wrapped up by way of explanation. Hope Samantha Bond gets to do some other kind of character sometime - she's wrung this one out to dry too many times. Nettles is nicely retired now and perhaps Midsomer should retire as well.
Echoes of the Dead reverberate: AWFUL AWFUL AWFUL
3 stars is way too generous. I've not watched any of the episodes since Dudgeon took over, wanting to rest with John Nettles portrayals. I'll still give him another chance or two, but after that, if it still doesn't catch my interest, I'm off to discover some other murder stories. As other people have wondered, why in the world didn't Barnaby guard the poor girl so she needn't have been pestered by the maniac? The suspects were of no interest and barely suspected and poor Pam Ferris, whom I always like, had nothing to do but screech and look loathsome. Dudgeon may be okay but his character's personality is not anywhere near as inviting as John Nettles' Barnaby. And give something to Hughes to do as his cohort; have their interplay more playful and not so mean-spirited (on the part of Barnaby). All in all, towards the end, it was more of a speed forward affair. Disappointed greatly. Was hoping for the continuation of some class.
The Judge (2014)
Intense performances and poignant production
A much better film than the newspaper reviews would have you believe. I've yet to see Robert Downey, Jr. give a bad/uninteresting performance and in this film he pulls out all stops. He's a whiz of an actor. Robert Duvall, acting his age, gives a horrifyingly beautiful performance in the last stages of his very ethical character of the Judge and in his role as the father who was more lenient with the defendants than with his family. The story poignant and beautifully photographed with all of the characterizations better than good - everybody is in sync with the other. I wonder why most of the critics, or certainly many of them, were not waxing more rhapsodic about the performances (I think they gave them credit, at least) and the direction. It seems to me they must have been in a theater that had freezing temperatures and poor lighting and scratchy sound.
Secret Beyond the Door... (1947)
What were they thinking?
I love Joan Bennett. I love Sir Michael Redgrave. I love Fritz Lang. Whatever inspired them to produce this unhappily weak-kneed event as collaborators is the real mystery. Bennett can do no wrong for me, generally - just looking at her porcelain beauty is awesome in and of itself - and Redgrave, with The Lady Vanishes and Dead of Night and The Importance of Being Earnest - equals the best of the English actors easily; Lang's productions are usually beguiling. The supporting characters - Anne Revere and Barbara O'Neill and Natalie Schaeffer - do their shtick and if you like them - and I do - then you'll be happy. But as an all-around feature it lacks significantly in the realm of acting, writing and production. What was intended to be some representation of a Mexican some place or other was clearly put together with a moment's forethought and left hanging out to dry. All in all, a sorry piece of business.