It speaks to the strength of The Burning’s reputation among cult-film fans that what’s most memorable about the 1981 slasher is not
that it was written by the Weinstein brothers, nor that it represents
early appearances of the likes of Jason Alexander, Holly Hunter and
Fisher Stevens. It’s that its Cropsy is just a damned good villain.
As Simon Lam gets older, he gets better. The veteran actor has appeared in such in seminal HK action films of the 1990s as Once Upon a Time in China (opposite Jet Li) and Bullet in the Head (directed by John Woo); in the aughts, he graced audience and critical favorites Election and Ip Man.
Lee Van Cleef enjoyed a secondary career in Italy cranking out spaghetti
Westerns, with little regard to quality. However, 1972’s Grand Duel — aka The Big Showdown — is deserving of its Grand label. No wonder Quentin Tarantino borrowed its sweeping theme song by Luis Bacalov for Kill Bill; you'll recognize it in two notes.
Early in The Last Stand,
the small-town sheriff played by Arnold Schwarzenegger says, "It's my
day off. Should be a quiet weekend." That's the new way of saying, "I've
got one week to retirement," because it signals — with flashing neon
and everything — that life is going to royally upend those plans.
With the smell of shamrock shakes in the air, St. Patrick’s Day is near. That makes it the ideal time for all things Irish, movies included.
On Thursday, lil’ ol’ Norman plays host to the 2012 Puterbaugh Festival of International Literature & Culture’s Irish Film Festival. From 12:45 to 4 p.m., one Oscar-winning movie and two 15-minute shorts will unspool in Meacham Auditorium on the University of Oklahoma campus.
Kicking it off is 2006’s Once, a musical love story that remains one of the 10 best movies I saw last decade, and whose soundtrack forever is imprinted on my brain. Seriously, this film gives me goose bumps each time I see it. Once won the Best Original Song Academy Award for “Falling Slowly” — a victory that had me cheering from my living room.
Also showing are The Crush (not to be confused with 1993’s wretched Alicia Silverstone jailbait thriller; this one was up for an Oscar) and The Other Life, which are about, respectively, a 8-year-old fawning over his teacher and a wealthy woman realizing money ain’t all that.