Dust (2001) is not easy to pin down, but I will give it a go. The main story is one of a black street hood, who burgles an apartment, only to be accosted by an old woman living there. She breaks his nose, and starts telling him a story at gunpoint. When she has a heart attack, he gets away, but returns and calls for an ambulance, possibly because he now has reason to belive she has gold hidden somewhere. We find he is in debt to some very unsavory characters, who turn out to be cops.
He continues to visit her at the hospital and listening to her tale, even after he finds the gold, and finds redemption through her. As the film ends, he is taking her ashes back home to Macadonia. But that is only a small part of this ambitious film. The author/director was struck by the similarities between paintings of the Macedonian war with the Ottomans and the Mexican civil war, and concocted her tale to show the two together. Two cowboy brothers, one a mean outlaw type, the other a mean God monger, fall in love with the same whore. The young God monger marries her. The older brother leaves town, and ends up in Macadonia, however, the wore has committed suicide, and the God monger brother has followed him.
Eventually, we learn who the old woman was, and how she was related to these stories. One of the themes of the film is about the nature of storytelling. The old woman admittedly makes up or exaggerates parts of her tale as she goes, and, at the end of the film, our hero finishes and embellishes it, making the story his own.
We have lots of graphic violence. We have breasts from Rosemary Murphy as the old woman, Nikolina Kojaca as a Macadonian woman, and both breasts and buns from an unknown hooker and Anne Brochet as the hooker both brothers love. IMDb readers have this at 5.6 of 10. Scoopy very much admired the film, as much for its ambitions as for its execution. I was not as entertained. I frankly found scene after scene of gunfights tedious. This is a C.
Dragonstorm (2004) is a made for TV sci-fi directed by Flounder from "Animal House". A group of alien dragons invade ancient Carpathia. Meanwhile, an evil kings plots to overthrow a neighboring good one. Angel Boris, as the daughter of the good king, is sort of a tomboy, and a crack shot with a crossbow. The dragon hunting team is more or less led by a poacher, called the huntsman. Naturally, the huntsman and Boris get together.
In one scene, he walks in on Boris while she is undressing for a bath. The film is PG, and her hair was supposed to be taped to prevent exposing a nipple, but one nipple escaped fro at least one frame (see image one). The dragons were very well done, the dragon fighting so so, the political plots were poor, and everything else was terrible. That being said, it is acceptable genre fare, hence a C-.
|Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy)
Normal Life (1996):
This provides a perfect illustration of the
subjectivity inherent in writing film reviews. I don't know if this
is a good film or a bad one. I do know that I found it very painful
to watch because it concerns me directly. It illustrates how significantly a man might change
his life if he is in love with a women who is mentally and
Is that what the movie is really
about? I'm not sure. The point is that I couldn't focus on anything
else, because I have been there and done that. I didn't end up
robbing any banks or shooting any cops like the guy in this film,
but I have spent a lot of time doing things that were totally out of
my character in a desperate attempt to bring happiness, normality, and/or
contentment to a woman whose head is broken and doesn't even really
notice the extent of my efforts (in fact, usually finds fault with them!)
I don't know why we do these sorts of
things. Perhaps we remember the best times we had with the person,
and we think those times can come back. Perhaps we have children,
and we are fulfilling our obligation to them by tending to their
mother. Perhaps we hold out the hope
that mental illnesses have at least partial cures, and that our
loved one will return to us. Perhaps we feel obligated to someone
with whom we shared a life. Perhaps we feel guilty and responsible
for their problems. Perhaps it is the highest form of love we human
beings can exhibit, if we support, nurture, and care for those we
once loved, who once loved and appreciated us, but who now seem to
be beyond caring that we do those things. Or maybe we just don't
feel that we have a choice, that if we don't take care of them,
nobody else will. I mean, what are you supposed to do when somebody
you love loses their mind? Should you let them join the ranks of the
homeless? You probably do what I have done. You end up trying to pay
off their foolish debts and legal problems, and trying to talk their
way out of conflicts with family and neighbors, and you ultimately
end up swallowing your pride and accepting the fact that they don't
even seem to appreciate your sacrifices. Let's face it, we get
That's what happens to the kid in this
film. He's a bookish rookie cop who can't relate to some of the
brutal thuggery of his fellow officers, and just doesn't fit in to
police work. He dreams of owning a book store. One day he runs into
a beautiful woman who is reading A Brief History of Time, and seems
even more bookish than he is. They hit it off, and he "falls in
love," but there is a great problem. She is a serious sociopath with
just about every possible form of mental illness. She's emotionally
unstable, suicidal, a pathological liar, has no regard for other
people's feelings, spends recklessly without regarding the
consequences, ignores or insults his family, will not do any
housework, can't sit still, is easily bored, takes a bunch of drugs,
and is sexually frigid. Oh, yeah, and she mutilates herself with
knives every so often, when she's not playing Russian Roulette.
Our straight arrow police officer
finds out that he's been dismissed from the police force, and that
he can't pay back his debts without something like eight years of frugal
living. But eight years of sensible, boring life will cause him to lose his high octane babe, so he
finds another profession that is extremely lucrative - robbing
He's a brilliant guy in possession of a police radio, fortified with
an intimate knowledge of the personalities and procedures of the
local gendarmerie, and an expert with firearms. He is equipped to be
brilliant at his new profession. He assembles enough of a nest egg
to get out of debt, buy a house, open up his bookstore and resume a
normal life. Again, the boring life that he wants to live puts him
on the verge of losing his beloved psychopath, so he reluctantly
re-enters the world of crime, and even takes her on as an accomplice
- anything to please her, to keep her.
I guess you know how that will turn
out. Lots of criminals can get away with crimes if they know when to
stop, but very few know when to stop, and nobody can get away
forever. Eventually the police figure out some patterns, make some
correct deductions, set a trap, and ...
That was not a spoiler. The film begins
with his capture and is told in flashbacks.
Is it a good film? I don't really
know. It brought me into its world and held me there, but I have a
personal connection to the story. Your mileage may vary. Maybe you
better consult Tuna's review and check out the scores. A lot of
other people also say that it's pretty darned powerful.
By the way, Normal Life started on cable, then had a brief
James Berardinelli explains why the
film had such an unusual distribution path.
For some reason which even now is unclear, Fine Line Features,
Normal Life's distributor, elected not to release the film in
theaters, opting instead for a run on HBO. This infuriated director
John McNaughton (Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer), who claimed
that he never would have directed the movie had he been aware of
Fine Line's intentions. So, to placate him, the company gave the
film a very limited theatrical release. Without publicity or
advertising, it was dead-on-arrival, and was pulled after one week.
An Aussie man faces extradition to the United States on internet
piracy charges after an appeal was rejected in the Federal Court
- Remember this is a guy who is accused of pirating millions
of dollars, and here's my favorite line in the story.
"Griffiths, who is unemployed and lives with his parents, was
ordered to pay the costs of the extradition." Some fokkin'
pirate. Sumbitch couldn't even afford a decent eyepatch.
- I suppose the U.S. government will spend a few million
dollars of the taxpayers' money to bring this hardened criminal
- Frivolous or not, the case could set an important legal
precedent, because he is an Australian citizen who stayed on
Australian soli, and yet is being extradited for having broken
U.S. laws. "If there is apparent novelty in this appeal it lies
in the nature of the extradition offences the appellant is
alleged to have committed and for which his surrender is sought
by the United States of America when, at all relevant times, he
was residing in Australia."
Judge Gives Apple a Win in Trade Secrets Legal Dispute.
"There are no legal protections for those who publish a company's
You think Catwoman was bad with Halle Berry? What about Margaret
Cho as Catwoman
The Vegas mayor is making no apologies for telling a class of
fourth-graders that drinking booze is one of his hobbies,
along with "lighting up a Lucky" and "getting some ring-a-ding,"
or as you youngsters like to call it, "poon."
Director Alexander Payne and wife Sandra Oh have gone from
'Sideways' to parting ways
- Whatever happened to ...
Lindsay Wagner (The Bionic Woman)
Finding Neverland, as reviewed by the greatest of all critics,
Iditarod - Photo Gallery. I think the Iditerod is cool,
and I admire what they do. But I sure don't want to join them.
This is another very cool pic. Pretty good job on their
website. Lots of interesting stuff and complete current results.
The Straight Dope: Could you jump off the Golden Gate Bridge and
survive the fall? What is the highest altitude anyone
has ever survived a fall from?
Man takes out his penis at Willy Wash. Well, you have
to admit the name was misleading.
An un-gagged Jay Leno spit out an all-Jackson, all-the-time
monologue on Friday night's Tonight Show.
You Call That Art? ABC News showed people famous
paintings, valuable moderns, and childrens works to groups of
people. In general, people preferred the kids' stuff. Even artists
rated some of the kids' works higher than the others.
US pays out for looting Nazi gold
50 Jacko fans have suspended their normal lives -- and in some
instances traveled from as far away as Spain -- to settle
temporarily in Santa Maria, California
A new featurette and five clips from The Ring 2
Kelsey Grammer Brings Sketch Show to Fox
Flash parody of the new, extreme Bugs Bunny
Other Crap archives. May also include newer material than the
since it's sorta in real time.
to submit a URL for Other Crap
are the latest movie reviews available at scoopy.com.
- The yellow asterisks indicate that I wrote the
review, and am deluded into thinking it includes humor.
- If there is a white asterisk, it means that
there isn't any significant humor, but I inexplicably determined
there might be something else of interest.
- A blue asterisk indicates the review is written
by Tuna (or Junior or Brainscan, or somebody else besides me)
- If there is no asterisk, I wrote it, but am too
ashamed to admit it.
Comments and zipped .wmv vids by Striplight:
The most recent poll for Best Oscar Winning Nude Performance wasn't even close.
To put it simply...Halle Berry kicked some ass. Look for the official poll results and comments in tomorrow's update.
Here are the results of our most recent other polls...
The Top 20 Nude Scenes of 2004
The Best Nude Film Debuts of the 80s
The Best Nude Film Debuts of the 90s
Which actress has been the most convincing playing a stripper.
Who has the best bum in Hollywood?
Best All Time Television Comedy
Email Scoopy Jr. with nominees, comments or suggestions.
'Caps and comments by Spaz:
"Wishmaster 3: Beyond the Gates of Hell" (2001)
Third installment of the horror series.
"Ripper: Letter from Hell" (2001)
First installment of the horror series. The sequel sans
A.J. Cook is being released DTV in the US at the end of March.
Low-budget Big Chill sort of movie.
"Crime Spree" (2003)
The only reason to see this movie is to see a rare post-Fish
appearance by perennial dead pool candidate Abe Vigoda.
"American Gothic" (1988)
A bunch of campers get stranded on an island inhabited by a very strange
"Terminal Choice" (1985)
Hospital where the staff takes bets on when patients die.
Much like how many HMOs operate.
Slings and Arrows: episode Mirror Up To Nature
Bliss season 3: episode Tango
"Comedy Presents special..."
Finally a Canadian comedian more sexy than Carla Collins.
'Caps and comments by Dann:
Set in a strange future, this 1997 Sci-Fi tells of a hapless computer game designer who realizes at the last minute that his creation is not what he intended.
Three days before release of his game by a huge Japanese company, Jimi, already distraught because his girlfriend has disappeared without a trace, discovers that his game has become infected with a virus which has given a consciousness to the main character of the game, who begs Jimi to end his useless existence, so he is not being killed over and over again.
Nagged by all these problems, Jimi sets out to find people who can help him discover what happened to his girlfriend, and also to delete the game from the company's mainframe before it is released.
Like many Sci-Fi offerings (think The Matrix), this one can be a little hard to follow, but it's definitely well done and most Sci-Fi lovers will enjoy it. It was an Italian/French co-production, but the DVD has an English sound track.
|The exotic beauty showing some skin on "The L Word". In #1 she looks very sexy in undies, in #2 she bares a bit of breast.
||The former "Full House" star in a bikini top during a recent episode "Summerland".
||No skin, but she is looking kinda skanky-hot in these 'caps from "Alias".
||An awesome pic of the "Alias" star almost falling out of her dress while signing some paperwork in front of the cameras.
||LC 'caps of Young going full frontal in scenes from the direct-to-vid flick "A Killer Within" (2004), starring the Soul Man, C. Thomas Howell.
|Mr. Nude Celeb 'caps of Ricci wearing panties and tight shirts with serious pokies in scenes from the Woody Allen movie "Anything Else".
||DeadRed 'caps of the Italian mega-star topless and showing lower frontal nudity in scenes from "L'Ultimo capodanno" aka "Humanity's Last New Year's Eve" (1998).
|Here are a couple of high quality images by Gman featuring Simpson behind the scenes on the set of "The Dukes of Hazzard". In #1 shes wearing a pair of 'Daisy Dukes', in #2 she's sporting a pink bikini and high heels. This should be coming to theaters in June, and stars Stifler, Johnny Knoxville, Burt Reynolds and Willie Nelson.
|Parker gets it on in a pretty spirited sex scene from last week's episode of the HBO series "Deadwood". She also bares breasts and bum after the lovin'. 'Caps by the Skin-man.