August 29, 2009

My Month in Movies- July/August

My Month in Movies is a monthly feature I do to share one of my other entertainment loves! Descriptions of the movies come from Netflix (I heart Netflix) and my star ratings follow. Be sure to check and see what I am planning on watching next, too!

In this unrepentant look at the life of junkies, a quartet of addicts robs pharmacies to fuel their habits. Ringleader Bob Hughes (Matt Dillon), along with his wife (Kelly Lynch) and underlings Rick (James Le Gros) and Nadine (Heather Graham), takes the show on the road after things get too hot at home. When Nadine goes toes up from an overdose, Bob swears off drugs and tries to rebuild his life -- minus his wife, who's determined to stay hooked. ***

William Shakespeare's incendiary drama about passion and justice amid an anti-Semitic atmosphere hits the screen again in this lush production starring Al Pacino. Lacking money to woo an heiress (Lynn Collins), smitten Bassanio (Joseph Fiennes) turns to his merchant friend, Antonio (Jeremy Irons), whose cash is tied up. But he secures a loan from Shylock (Pacino) on condition that if Antonio defaults, he'll pay with a pound of flesh -- literally. **

SIXTEEN CANDLES (1984) (watched for Alea's I Dare You Challenge)
Samantha Baker's (Molly Ringwald) 16th birthday should be perfect and memorable, but her whole family seems preoccupied with her sister's impending wedding and completely forgets Samantha's big day. To add insult to injury, the school geek (Anthony Michael Hall) won't stop hitting on her, and she's convinced the boy of her dreams (Michael Schoeffling) doesn't know she exists. A 1980s teen-angst classic from the master of the genre, John Hughes. *****

KOLYA (1996)
A renowned cellist in the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, middle-aged bachelor Frantisek Louka (Zdenek Sverak) is reduced to playing funerals at the city crematorium. Strapped for cash, Louka indulges himself by having sex with other men's wives. On the eve of the 1989 "Velvet Revolution," Louka has no idea that more than political turmoil is imminent; the personal revolution he's about to experience is just as unpredictable. … ***

SLEEPLESS IN SEATTLE (1993)(re-watch)
Fate and a tenacious 8-year-old boy conspire to unite lovelorn widower Sam Baldwin (Tom Hanks) and unhappily engaged Annie Reed (Meg Ryan) in Nora Ephron's Oscar-nominated romantic comedy, inspired by the 1957 classic An Affair to Remember. When Annie hears Sam and his young son, Jonah (Ross Malinger), on a call-in radio show, she thinks she's found her soul mate. Jonah knows Annie is the one, but convincing his dad could take a little work. *****

Wide-eyed Princess Giselle (Amy Adams) sees her perfect life in the cartoon kingdom of Andalasia come to an abrupt end when evil Queen Narissa (Susan Sarandon) exiles Giselle to the cruel, real world of New York City, a place ruled by street smarts instead of royals. A native Prince Charming (Patrick Dempsey) reluctantly takes her in, but will his day job as a harried divorce lawyer -- and his cynical view of love -- stop their budding romance? **** (Actually not as hokey as you'd think.)

After a plague of blindness overtakes the residents of a city, all sense of order breaks loose in the hospital where the victims are being quarantined. It's up to a woman (Julianne Moore) who's keeping her sight a secret to lead a group safely to the streets. Gael García Bernal, Mark Ruffalo, Sandra Oh and Danny Glover also star in this psychological thriller, an adaptation of José Saramago's gripping masterpiece. *** (Would have been more stars if the reason for the blindness had been explained. But still a riveting movie that brings up all kinds of ethical and moral questions.)

An amalgam of the plot lines from When Harry Met Sally and Sleepless in Seattle, Serendipity has John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale meeting cute during a Christmas shopping spree but parting company soon thereafter. Ten years (and a few failed relationships) later, they yearn to put true love to the test by reuniting. But first, they have to find each other. ****

THE MALTESE FALCON (1941) (I'd read the book but not seen the movie.)
Play Preview Humphrey Bogart stars as private eye Sam Spade in this Oscar-nominated noir classic that finds the sultry Miss Wonderly (Mary Astor) seeking out protection from a man named Thursby. Spade's partner (Jerome Cowan) takes the case -- but he winds up dead, along with Thursby. Spade's subsequent hunt for the killer leads him into a world of deception and double-crossing, as a trio of criminals searches for a priceless statue known as the Maltese Falcon. *****

Coming Up Next in My Netflix Queue:
~The Road Home (2000 Foreign Romantic Drama from China)
~Bride and Prejudice (2004 Bollywood Romantic Comedy)
~Monsoon Wedding (2001 Romantic Drama set in India)
~1408 (2007 Supernatural Horror with John Cusack)
~Clifford (cheesy 1984 movie for Alea's I Dare You Challenge)

What have you been watching this month? Have you ever watched any of these movies? What did you rate them?


  1. Looks like you liked it! Yay! Oh Clifford is a HOOT!

  2. I have watched. Merchant in Venice, Sixteen Candles and Enchanted. I liked them all. I have watched a lot of movies but I did not write them all down. I might start doing that for next month.

  3. How cool! I wish we could get netflix, but we don't see the point since we can't figure out how to make all the different machines and remotes work! :--) Where is an 8 yr old child when you need one?!!!

  4. Love 16 Candles! I may have to do the Netflix thing but am too impatient to wait for them in the mail. I want them now!!!

  5. I recorded Enchanted on my DVR you've made me want to watch it now. Kilya sounds great. Loved 16 Candles, one of my favorite Hughes films of all time.

  6. Alea- Yes, I did like it. Thanks! 1 down, 9 to go!

    Shannan- It helps that I use Netflix and I can go back and look at my recently watched movies. :)

    rhapsody- You crack me up!

    Diane- oh, you know they have instant watching online, too! Not as many choices, but it helps the time pass as you wait the one day for your movie to come. :D

    Staci- Let me know what you think of Enchanted. I don't watch those type of movies but the hotness of Patrick Dempsey made me change my mind and I actually enjoyed the entire movie- even the parts w/o McDreamy. :)

  7. I have very fond memories of Sleepless in Seattle since I saw it in France. You had a great month of movies.

  8. Sixteen Candles is fantastic. And Sleepless in Seattle, too! AND the Maltese Falcon. Great taste!

  9. Enchanted! That was the movie I was trying to tell my friend about, but couldn't remember the title for. I can kick myself for not remembering. I was surprised at how much I liked that film.

    Sleepless in Seattle is one of my favorite movies. :-)

    I hope you enjoy Bride and Prejudice. It's one of those movies you really can't take too seriously.

  10. Great selection of movies - some I have seen an loved: Sixteen Candles, Enchanted, and some I really want to see (Blindness, Serendipity).

    I like this feature. I'm a movie addict. I just got a Netflix account and my queue is growing huger every day!

  11. Ooh ... I am a movie buff too. I am really intrigued by Kolya.

  12. I watched Coraline the other night. It was beautiful visually, but the first half dragged for me. The second half was pretty intense and scary, though.


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