An Unmarried Woman (1978)

An Unmarried Woman merited enough respect in 1978 to earn three Oscar nominations, including the Big Kahuna - Best Picture. Although on the surface it is a predictable chick-flick which chronicles one woman's odyssey from happy dependence to emerging independence, it managed to transcend that surface because of two major elements:

1. It managed to tell an interesting story about real people saying real things in real situations. That may not sound so impressive on the surface, but think about it. Very few films manage to stay completely anchored in reality. The writers are sorely tempted by the sirens of profitability, who serenade them with the songs of easy acceptance, tempting them to add zany dialogue, dramatic explosions, ludicrous plot twists, and cartoon characterizations. Name one film where everything that happens is believable. Not easy is it? Now name one film which is both credible and interesting. Virtually impossible. So many people who write about the movies, including me, profess to long for a film completely grounded in reality, only to whine about how boring it is when somebody hands it to us. An Unmarried Woman manages to stay within the known universe without losing our interest except for some short stretches. That alone is pretty impressive.

2. It managed to tap into the seventies "important issues" zeitgeist. The challenges faced by the female protagonist reflected the struggles and concerns of the feminists of that era. Unexpectedly dumped by her husband from what seems like an idyllic marriage, she experiences the horrors of dating, and the uncomfortable process of becoming intimate with strangers. She adapts her traditional thinking to the then-new philosophies about sex and romance. When she finally meets Mr. Right, she refuses to change her life to follow him, thus declaring that she simply doesn't need a man to complete her. As The New Yorker's Pauline Kael wrote in her 1978 review: "He (scriptwriter Paul Mazursky) touches so many women's-liberation bases that you begin to feel as if you'd been passing out leaflets for McGovern."

In addition to those two major positives, the film delivered (and still delivers) a few other minor pleasures along the way. It reminds us of how charming and charismatic Alan Bates was in the prime of his career. It also delivers some surprisingly funny dialogue. Because the story is told through the spurned woman's eyes, it follows her to her lunches with the girls, where the women - liberated from the stifling effect of male egos - raise their consciousness by carrying on raunchy, candid, and totally uninhibited discussions of their sex lives.

Of course, the film will never be as good again as it was in the seventies, because it required both of the elements numbered above to elevate it to the status of a Best Picture nominee. Looking at it today, the woman's journey still seems to be told truthfully, but that trip now produces a shrug of the shoulders instead of a clenched fist and a hearty "right on, sister." The ideas that seemed fresh in 1978 don't seem wrong today, but they do seem trite and obvious, and we just can't muster up all that much sympathy for a beautiful woman living in a gorgeous Manhattan apartment, given that virtually every other woman in the world would willingly exchange places with her, man or no man. Devoid of its emotional context, the film is now stripped of one of the two major elements which made it seem important in 1978. Oh, it still plays out all right. It is still interesting for us guys to eavesdrop on the luncheon conversations, and the overall story still works because it is true and honest, but An Unmarried Woman now leaves us wondering how this solid but unremarkable film could ever have been considered one of the five best in any year.

It's all in the context, lads. 1978 was its time.

Jill Clayburgh

The Green River Killer (2005)

In theory, it should be possible to create an interesting movie about the Green River Killer. This isn't it.

The Killer, Gary Ridgway, killed about four dozen women, mostly prostitutes and teenage runaways, in and around the Seattle-Tacoma area in the 1982-1984 period. The trail went cold, and Ridgway wasn't brought to justice until the police developed the advanced forensic applications of DNA, which led to his 2001 arrest and 2003 conviction.

Two elemenst make the case particularly interesting and unique:

1. It is extremely unlikely that a man would go on a violent killing streak in which he kills a woman every two weeks for two years, and would then just basically lay off and return to a quiet life for twenty years. That's an exaggeration because he did kill a few more victims after the initial outburst, but he had killed something like 48 women in 1982-84 and cut back to just a handful in the next two decades. Did his bloodlust diminish, did he fear being caught, or did he find a way to keep it in check?

2. The police stayed on the case doggedly, waiting for science to catch up with them, and finally cracked it twenty years later.

The movie doesn't really get into those interesting aspects of the case. It basically just pictures a couple of the 1982-84 murders in docudrama fashion and intercuts that with actual police footage of the real Gary Ridgway confessing his crimes twenty years later. Using the real Ridgway tapes does give the film a chilling aspect, because Ridgway is completely without remorse or regret, and describes the murders as casually as you or I might describe a PTA meeting to an absent partner. Unfortunately, those police tapes also introduce an element of confusion since the actor playing Ridgway in the flashbacks looks nothing like the real Ridgway in the cutaways.

Apart from the genuine Ridgway footage, the film is just sensationalist drive-in fare which probably bears no resemblance to real people or events. The connections to reality are tenuous. It pictures Ridgway having sex with and murdering two hot babes. He did have sex with women and then kill them, so there's your connection. Some critics harped on the film's amateur performers and cheap digital video appearance. I'll vouch for the bad acting and total lack of nuance in the characterizations, but I have to disagree on the film's visual aesthetics. Some scenes, it is true, look like home movies filmed in your dad's basement, but the two murder scenes look pretty damned good. They are sharply focused, the lighting is interesting, and the colors are vivid.

 Here's the director's rated filmography.

  1. (4.62) - Blank Generation (1980)
  2. (4.55) - The Boogeyman (1980)
  3. (4.46) - Strangers in Paradise (1984)
  4. (4.20) - BrainWaves (1983)
  5. (4.06) - Olivia (1983)
  6. (3.88) - The Devonsville Terror (1983)
  7. (3.50) - Cold Heat (1989)
  8. (3.35) - Cocaine Cowboys (1979)
  9. (3.00) - Green River Killer (2005) (V)
  10. (2.76) - The Big Sweat (1991)
  11. (2.69) - Zodiac Killer (2005)
  12. (2.55) - The Zodiac Killer (2005)
  13. (2.32) - Boogeyman II (1983)
  14. (2.21) - Daniel - Der Zauberer (2004) (26th worst of all time)

Should you give it a look? Well, let me put it this way. Overall, this film ranks below the career mean of Ulli Lommel, a director who could present a reasonable case as the worst of all time. So you make the call.

Jacquelyn Horrellr

Georgina Donovan

This is an old clip of Heather Locklear at some event or another. I've run across it many times, but I've never bothered with it because I've never been convinced that it reveals what it is supposed to. Anyway, this is supposed to be Heather going commando. Maybe. I guess.

Zipped .mpg



A Time to Dance (1992 TV UK)

Here's a bunch of captures from a rarely-seen TV show from Britworld. We have some of these captures in the encyclopedia, but this really expands our coverage, even though the quality is mediocre. (Not my stuff. Not DVD. Probably VHS, because no sign of a TV watermark.)

Dervla Kirwan


Other Crap:

Capote, the screen biography of writer Truman Capote, was named 2005's best film on Saturday by the National Society of Film Critics
  • Philip Seymour Hoffman won best actor in Capote's title role.
  • Best actress went to Reese Witherspoon in another real-life role as June Carter Cash, the wife of country singer Johnny Cash in "Walk the Line,"
  • Canadian David Cronenberg was named best director for the drama "A History of Violence."
  • A goose egg for Brokeback Mountain
  • This society includes pretty much every major print critic in America. Here's the roster

A new P2P / media player project could allow mobile music devices to transfer media files automatically from other players running the same software in the vicinity.

Daily Box Office - Friday, January 6, 2006

  • Holy Moley! I knew Hostel would do fine, but I never expected this. It took in more than Narnia and Kong added together! And it was only in two thousand theaters, compared to 3500 apiece for the big boys.
  • Kong, by the way, fell all the way to fourth. I can't wait to hear the positive spin they come up with to explain this week's failure!
  • Grandma's Boy couldn't crack the top 10, and BloodRayne was left in the dust.

Bank Robbers steal active GPS device.

  • With all the dumb crooks in the world, given Hollywood's thirst for movie ideas, Michael Rapaport will never be out of work.
  • I was robbed three times when I worked in 7-Eleven stores in my early career. Two of the incidents were scary, but the third robber was a role for Rapaport. The guy parked his car in the central spot by the door, with his license plate visible from the sales counter. His weapon was a potato peeler. He robbed me of a whopping $67, or which fifty of the dollars were in a banded and store-stamped pack of one dollar bills. He thanked me for being such a good player, as if he were a game show host. I told the police that he pulled out of my store going west on a main road. He never made a turn! The police caught him only 15 blocks from the store, still on the same road, still going west, with the roll of ones still banded and store-stamped.

"Waterborne" is the first film to debut on Google video.

  • This is a 13 minute preview of the 85 minute movie.
  • One of the stars is Uncle Rico, but I'm pretty sure it isn't a comedy. "Three sets of area residents band together after a terrorist attack against L.A.'s water supply."
  • Here is a review, if it interests you.

The trailer for Hard Candy

  • A smart, charming teenage girl, Hayley probably shouldn't be going to a local coffee shop to meet Jeff, a 30-something fashion photographer she met on the Internet. But Hayley's ready to have fun, and soon she's mixing screwdrivers at Jeff's place and stripping for an impromptu photo shoot. It's Jeff's lucky night – until his vision blurs and he passes out. Turns out Hayley isn't as innocent as she looks after all. In fact, she has a lot on her mind. Like getting Jeff to confess to his penchant for teenage girls – and to what he did to Donna Mauer, the girl who disappeared from Jeff's favorite coffee shop. When Jeff awakens, he's tied to a chair. If he doesn't cooperate, Hayley has something to help him along--a little surgical procedure she picked up on the Internet. All she needs is an ice pack. And a knife... An edge-of-your-seat psychotic thriller, "Hard Candy" exposes the visceral terror and violence that lie at the heart of the battle of the sexes.

"Britney Spears's Rack has gotten HUGE!"

  • He seems to be right but, upon further examination, I'd have to conclude that her other body parts have followed suit

Letterman celebrates the kitty who dialed 911: Top Ten Signs Your Kitty Is A Genius. One of the best of his recent lists:

  • Earned the 2005 Nobel Prize in yarn-related sciences
  • Keeps putting the dog on Ebay
  • Not only calls 911 for you, also calls Z-100 whenever you need your Aerosmith fix

Venezuelan President Chavez offers warm Christmas Eve message: "The descendants of the Christ-killers control the world"

  • Italian soldiers control the world? They couldn't even control Ethiopia!
  • Ah, anti-semitism: not only the true meaning of Christmas, but a very special way to say Happy Hanukkah.

"The popular Amish Adult Store chain today announced that it will sell franchises in an attempt to go nation-wide."

Liberals Defend Al Qaeda's Right to Privacy

  • You have to see the picture of Ted Kennedy in a bathing suit! He's on the Brando diet

The Sermonator strikes again

  • "And the Rev. Pat Robertson preacheth today that the Lord smote Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon for messing with His turf."

Dare to dream, Dr. Boll. Dare to Dream. It is possible that BloodRayne is not the worst movie of the week! Right now it is getting stiff competition from: Grandma's Boy - 11% positive reviews

BloodRayne blows the zero. There is one positive review.

  • I think it got screwed. Here is what that "positive" review says (I know it doesn't seem grammatical, but this is an exact quote): "If you enjoy campy, over the top, fantasy films that have little substance or your like to get your drink on before a movie, then you’re sure to enjoy this film. Others might want to stay away and learn that the name of Uwe Boll means 'director to be wary of.'"

Gotta love the headline: "Doherty angry after penis appears on website"

The Daily Show's tip to Abramoff: "When you're accused of multiple felony accounts, try not to go to court looking like a criminal."

The Daily Show: "The White House authorized wiretaps presumably during Fourth Amendmentless Fridays."

The Daily Show looks at illegal NSA wiretaps

George Packer, author of "The Assassin's Gate" talks to The Daily Show about the mishandling of the Iraq war.

Daily Show: "Unless God was force-feeding Sharon knishes, it was diet, age and stress that caused his stroke."

Daily Show: "It's a good old-fashioned Coot-Off between Senators Ted Stevens and Robert C. Byrd."

A preview of 'The L Word' - Season 3.

  • Two words: lesbian vampires
  • Three more words: I'm not kidding.

The trailer for The Keeper: The Legend of Omar Khayyam

  • Kamran (Adam Echahly) is a 12-year-old boy who discovers his ancestor is the 11th Century mathematician, astronomer and poet of Persia: Omar Khayyam. Although the story of his great ancestor has survived in his family's lore for generations, the tale is now at the risk of extinction. It is Kamran's job to keep it alive. As he hears the story, he visualizes an epic past. Meanwhile, we are introduced to significant historical figures such as the brilliant Omar Khayyam (Bruno Lastra), Hassan Sabbah (Christopher Simpson) and the powerful Sultan Malikshah (Moritz Bleibtreu). Through the story of Khayyam, Kamran learns about love, loss and loyalty. Vanessa Redgrave co-stars.

USA TODAY. The 10 most anticipated stories of 2006!

"A warning that consumers shouldn't use a heat gun that produces temperatures of 1,000 degrees as a hairdryer has won an anti-lawsuit group's award for the wackiest label of the year."

'FINDME' License Plate Helps Nab Suspect In Attempted Bank Robbery

Conan begs Apple for a video IPod

The trailer for The Secret

  • "Based on a Japanese novel by Keigo Higashino that was turned into a film, "Himitsu" in 1999, the thriller is about a man whose life changes suddenly after the bus carrying his wife and daughter goes off a cliff. The wife dies at the hospital, but the daughter lives. When she regains consciousness, she appears to be possessed by the dead wife."



Movie Reviews:

Yellow asterisk: funny (maybe). White asterisk: expanded format. Blue asterisk: not mine. No asterisk: it probably sucks.




"Broken Flowers"

Broken Flowers (2005) is an art house film staring a clinically depressed, and equally depressing, Bill Murray. I have some trouble understanding why someone would take a brilliant comedic actor and make him the straight man to a variety of zany characters. At any rate, he slinks through the entire film as if he is on a general anesthesia. He is a Don Juan. I am not sure why this is important, but the film maker has him watching Don Juan on TV, and his neighbor calls him a Don Juan twice. Clearly, we need to know he is a ladies man. Probably a good thing they did this, however, as I saw nothing in Murray's personality that would make him even minimally acceptable to anyone, male or female. We might assume that he has changed, and used to have a personality and a life, but we see no evidence of that, or get any clues what might have changed him.

As his current girl friend leaves him, he receives a letter in a pink envelope, and using red ink, warning him that he has a 20 year old son that he didn't know about that might be looking for him. It is unsigned. His neighbor, who fancies himself a mystery writer, jumps at the chance to investigate a mystery, and has him prepare a list of possible mothers. The neighbor researches all of the names on the Internet, then sets up an itinerary for him to visit all of the candidate women, taking each of them pink flowers, and trying to find out which is the mother. The women he visits are a serious collection of eccentric personalities.

On reading the above, you might conclude that this is a mystery story. However, they give no clues as to who wrote the letter, and never tell us at the end. Thus, it must be something else. Problem is, I can't figure out what. There is no sort of redemption, as Murray is the same depressed aging man from opening title screen to ending credits. He does make a statement about living in the present near the end, but, since he is nearly unconscious throughout the film, he certainly isn't following that advice. Possibly, it was intended as a comedy, as their were some humorous women along his road trip, but the mood was too somber to even consider laughing.

The highlight of the film has a naked Alexis Dziena, as a sexually precocious daughter of one of the women, subtilely named Lolita, calmly walking into the room Murray is in to answer a phone.

IMDb readers say 7.5. It won a grand prize at Cannes. Ebert accurately described the film I saw, but loved it at four stars. This is typical of the critical response. Berardinelli gave three stars, and offers that it is a road trip of self discovery for Murray's Don Juan, and that anyone suckered into thinking it will be a mystery will leave the film unsatisfied. If Murray's character did discover anything about himself on the road trip, he didn't communicate what it was to me, nor did he let it effect his life. I suppose the genre is pointless art house films, and this one is a favorite of genre fans, and therefor a C+.

Alexis Dziena


Libertarias (1996), or Freedomfighters, takes place during the early days of the Spanish revolution, and stars Ariadna Gil as a naive young nun who becomes a freedom fighter. The revolution started very well, with Madrid and Barcelona taken quickly. Both men and women, embolden by the thought of freedom, became a gang of self-styled freedom fighters. Government authority and church authority were equal as enemies, and both institutions were attacked. For this reason, Gil and the other nuns were given a small amount of money, and told to return home, as mother superior knew the convent would be destroyed.

Gil didn't make it very far, when she ran into some rather drunken and very irreverent revolutionaries, and sought refuge in a house. It did save her, but ended up being a whore house. A group of female soldiers show up and disband the whorehouse. Gil is taken under the wing of the leader. With the first battles decisively won with the help of the women, the army started forming, and trying to relegate women to important jobs like laundry.

The group Gil was part of would have none of it, and set off for Sargasso for the next battle. Arriving at the front, the now rather revolutionary but still pure Gil meets a priest who, for some reason, was spared. They both have obviously non-pious feelings for the other, but never do anything about it. As we all know, the revolution failed, and clearly things did not go well for our band of freedom fighters.

Gil shows full frontal in the whore house, when they strip her for bed. We also see her buns in a rape scene at the end. Loles León shows her right breast to a fellow freedomfighter.

IMDb readers have this at this at 7.1. It received a number of Goya nominations, but only one for acting (Loles León). While the acting was less than stellar despite a very strong cast, the story was fascinating. You are left wondering if the revolution failed because the "Peoples Army" stopped being a grass roots uprising, and became nearly as Fascist as Franco's troops. This is a C+. Not everyone will enjoy an historical drama with subtitles, but if reading subtitles doesn't put you off, it is an interesting watch.

Ariadna Gil

Loles León


Today from the Ghost...Late night favorite Amy Lindsay bares breasts and bum in scenes from an episode of "Best Sex Ever".

Today we feature yet another 'Really Bad Movie'. But again, it's one with plentiful nudity.

Adult mega-babe Tera Patrick kicks off our coverage of "College Girl Seeking..." by giving up all 3 B's (including close ups from the gyno-gam).

Tera Patrick

Renee Rea starts off with just some cute stuff, but then watch out later as we play the 'Spot the Tool' game.

Renee Rea

'Caps and comments by Dann:

"Broken Flowers"
Highly acclaimed 2005 comedy/drama was loved by critics and viewers alike. Oh, yeah, and I thought it sucked.

Don Johnston (played by Bill Murray without even a slight hint of emotion or a change of expression) receives a letter from an ex-lover, but it is unsigned. Johnston is well known as a Don Juan type, having just lost another in a long line of girlfriends.

The letter informs him that he has a son, and that the son is on a quest to find his father. The letter avoids any hint that might tell him who wrote it.

His best friend bullies Johnston into launching a search for the woman by visiting ex-flames most likely to be the writer. Naturally, these visits don't go smoothly.

Everyone loved this movie (other than myself). I thought it was extremely boring; indeed Murray looked bored himself. He was so low-key and uninvolved that they might as well have used a store dummy for his part. The women were much more interesting, and of course, Alexis Dziena provided the highlight (in fact, the only light) of the film with her full-frontal display as Lolita, the daughter of one of the women. You'll probably enjoy this movie. If not, you'll join a very small crowd.

Alexis Dziena

'Caps and comments by Spaz:

"Dead Like Me"
From Episode: "Rest in Peace"
The last episode of season one ended with a bang. Laura Harris showed alot of bare cleavage, Sonya Salomaa looked sexy in leotards, Jewel Staite showed cleavage as anymphomaniac goth girl, and Ali Lieber looked sexy in a tight t-shirt.

Laura Harris Sonya Salomaa Jewel Staite Ali Lieber

"Falcon Beach"
The first episode of the Canadian tv series on Global which is a cross between Paradise Falls and Beverly Hills 902310. Both Jennifer Kydd and Melissa Elias look sexy in bikinis.

Jennifer Kydd Melissa Elias

"The Sleep Room" (1999)
Canadian miniseries based on the true events of the CIA funding mind control research using LSD at a Montreal psychiatric hospital during the 1950s (back then there were no hippies to use as guinea pigs). Macha Grenon shows alot of cleavage as a whacko woman.

Macha Grenon

"On Hostile Ground" (2001)
Very dumb action movie even by MST3K standards. Some scientists have to save New Orleans from being swallowed by sinkholes during Mardi Gras. In reality all those bone dry tunnels below the ground would be flooded because New Orleans is just below sea level and you can't even did a grave without hitting water. Another glaring error is young women get beads at Mardi Gras without having to flash their boobs. Jessica Steen shows some cleavage in bed and Brittany Daniel is in a tight t-shirt dancing for beads.

Jessica Steen Brittany Daniel

"External Affairs" (1999)
A dumb political drama about an ambassador getting recalled because he's gay. But Kate Greenhouse looks great in a tight sweater.

Kate Greenhouse

"Bizarre" update
In the Best of Bizarre DVD collections, Roberta Weiss is the babe in the tight t-shirt in the Loonies sketch, a very perky Sherry Miller is bra-less dancing with Mimi Kuzyk in the Wild and Crazy Guys sketch while admiring John Byner's bulge, and Candace Frazee is the one who stripped in the Airport Metal Detector sketch (shown 21 years before 9/11). Candace also played a sex doll in another sketch although that was probably part of her job description.

Roberta Weiss Sherry Miller Candace Frazee

'Caps and comments by Oz:

"Dracula A. D. 1972"
There's plenty of cleavage by Stephanie Beacham in the Hammer horror Dracula A. D. 1972 (1972), and what is the briefest of nipple visible in the third collage.

Stephanie Beacham

"Against the Ropes"
More cleavage but this time by Meg Ryan in Against the Ropes (2004).

Meg Ryan

"My Life Without Me"
There are brief pokies by Sarah Polley in My Life Without Me (2003).


"Tarzan and His Mate"
Tarzan and His Mate (1934) is a fairly risque movie for the 1930s. There's plenty of leg by Maureen O'Sullivan but the nudity comes from her body double who was Josephine McKim. Not the clearest but it is interesting.

Maureen O'Sullivan (with Josephine McKim as her body double)

"Shall We Dance"
No nudity in Shall We Dance (2004), but pokies by Jennifer Lopez and Susan Sarandon.

Jennifer Lopez Susan Sarandon

"Dead End"
Some rear nudity by Amber Smith in the horror film Dead End (2003).

Amber Smith

"I Went Down"
Over to Ireland for I Went Down (1997). Some brief breast exposure by Rachel Brady.

Rachel Brady

No visible nudity in Spartan (2004) with Kristen Bell facing the wrong way and Margot Farley stopping too soon.

Kristen Bell Margot Farley

Amanda Peet in one of the most memorable topless moments of 2000. Here she is in "The Whole Nine Yards".

She'll always be Ferris Bueller's girlfriend to is Mia Sara topless in a scene from 1996's "Undertow".

The Skin-man takes a look at the 1992 Keanu Klassic, "Dracula". Bellucci and Frost both show off some very nice breast views.

Monica Bellucci

Sadie Frost