Los Años bárbaros (1998)

The story is set in Franco-era Spain, circa 1948, beginning with the arrests of two philosophy students for writing anti-fascist graffiti on the walls of their university in Madrid. For this ostensibly minor offense, they are sentenced to the extreme punishment of eight years in a hard labor camp.

They are soon sprung by a resistance group aided by two North American women posing as tourists. The American girls and the two fugitives set off in a red windowless convertible on a long journey to the French border, encountering various soldiers along the way, some of them brutal and threatening, others comically inept, but all of them representing the threat of capture and a return to the labor camp for the student fugitives. Along the way, the heroic foursome also encounters some colorful local characters and makes room for some interesting cultural and romantic exchanges. According to the film, the story is true and the words painted by the two students can still be seen on the university walls today.

I seem to find myself charmed by every Spanish film, and this one is no exception. I am especially impressed by how deftly and transparently it manages to weave suspense, politics, romance, and humor without allowing any of those elements to step on the others.

Here is the entire scene in a zipped .wmv file.

Hedy Burress
Allison Smith, who is probably best known as Mallory O'Brien on The West Wing



Other Crap:


Trailer, featurette, and teaser from Stay Alive

  • The usual teen horror film plot, Variation C: While playing an online horror game, a group of teens notice that once their characters die ... they die.

The trailer from Isolation, a new Irish horror film. (At least I assume it's Irish, based upon the fact that everyone in it is named Sean O'Brien, even the women.)

The trailer (bande annonce) and two clips (extrait) from The Promise (basse=low, haute=high)

  • A new epic fantasy set in China's mythical past, "The Promise" is a visually stunning tale of passion that unfolds against a backdrop of war as a beautiful and mysterious princess becomes the object of affection for three very different men - a powerful Duke, a brave general and a lowly slave. As passions spark and egos clash, lives will be ruined and lovers spurned and no one will ever be the same.

Six new clips from Inside Man (click on navigation, then media)

  • Directed by Spike Lee, written by Russell Gewirtz and produced by Academy Award® winner Brian Grazer, "Inside Man" is the story of a tough cop, Detective Frazier (Denzel Washington), who matches wits with a clever bank robber, Dalton (Clive Owen), in a tense hostage drama. As the dangerous cat-and-mouse game unfolds, a wild card emerges: Madaline (Jodie Foster), a power broker with a hidden agenda, who injects even more instability into an already volatile situation.

Four new clips from Slither (and the R-rated trailer as well)

Here's a completely new trailer from The Da Vinci Code

Coming Soon has a new featurette on the stunts in MI3

"BAGHDAD BOB NAMED PENTAGON SPOKESMAN" ... Stunning Comeback for Former Iraqi Information Minister

You think your cell phone is "state of the art"? You're not even close.

The Wolverine movie wil be a prequel

"NBC said that it will make 10 web-only episodes of popular comedy 'The Office' during the summer, when the show is not on the air."

Real men use pink hockey sticks

"Matt Groening and David X. Cohen's FUTURAMA will be returning to television in the form of 26 new episodes."

This Is Pinky Violence! - nudity and violence in a teaser for the classic Japanese exploitation movies considered to have inspired Kill Bill.

Mr Tomato Head - from the OFFICAL Killer Tomatoes Web Site! Accept no substitutes.

This week's edition of Bill Maher's New Rules

JoBlo's recap of the SXSW film festival

Film Jerk's Early Report for March 20

A virtual tour of the Eiffel Tower (Requires Quick Time)



Coming Soon now has a featurette to go with the trailer for Americano, a film which takes place during the running of the bulls at Pamplona. (Warning: American backpacker in Europe alert.)

IRAQIS ANGRY THAT U.S. FORGOT ANNIVERSARY OF WAR" ... Shiites, Sunnis Enraged Over Absence of Flowers

Charlize Theron gets tastefully naked for a Dior ad

  • Here is a brightened screen capture which reveals a clear look at her slim booty.

Courageous, patriotic Colbert defends himself against freedom-hating assaults from the dastardly Commander Coconut.

Colbert looks at Ambien and sleep-eating

Character actor Frank Vincent of The Sopranos teaches Colbert how to be more manly

Colbert looks at the Virgin Islands

MovieJuice! reviews V for Vendetta

  • "Overall, I liked V for Vendetta very much, but the harder you think about it, the dumber it gets."

The Daily Show looks at the Katherine Harris senate campaign, 2006

Jon Stewart talks to Vin Diesel

The Daily Show looks at the new assault on Iraq

Colin's naked ballet dance for Salma Hayek

  • "Salma was scared of Colin's reputation and hid before shooting for Ask the Dust, says the Mirror."

And then there were 16: Men's NCAA Tournament Bracket

  • The worst-seeded team left in the hunt is the 13th seeded Bradley Braves from Peoria. This is their first trip to the sweet sixteen in 51 years. They have a tough row to hoe. Next stop: Memphis.
  • One underdog will make the elite eight, either 7th seeded Wichita State or 11th seeded George Mason. They play each other next.
  • By the way, George Mason's team name is the Patriots. I didn't know that before the tourney, just as I didn't know the Albany "Great Danes"

RapidShare video: Nudity from the unknowns in Stoned

Careful what you put online ... "Being Googled can jeopardize your job search"

Parental advice company sues Google over lowered page ranking.


Movie Reviews:

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




Mad Dog (1977)

Mad Dog, aka Mad Dog Killer, Beast With a Gun and many other aliases, is an Italian crime thriller. Creepy Helmut Berger stars as Nano Vitali, who breaks out of prison with his gang at the start of the film. His first act is to beat up the man who testified on him, then cover him with quicklime and bury him alive. Afterwards, he rapes and kidnaps his girlfriend, Marisa Mell, and coerces her to help him in a robbery at the factory her father works for as a security guard. She goes to the policeman in charge of the case, Richard Harrison, who sets up a sting, with nothing but policemen replacing the usual workers. That is, all except a bunch of female employees, whom Berger takes hostage when the police manage to flub the arrest. For his next trick, Berger kidnaps Harrison's father, and his virginal sister (Marina Giordana), and demands ransom money, all of which leads to the inevitable final showdown.

What is not to like? This is Eurosleaze at its best. Rape, murder, gun fights, fist fights, torture, and a really evil bad guy. This is a C.

IMDb readers say 5.9.


Marisa Mell shows breasts and bush. Although the bush exposure looks as if it could have been a double, I am fairly certain it was a matter of a very inept pan and scan transfer, as other scenes are also framed very badly. Comments at IMDb reinforce my opinion.
Marina Giordana shows breasts as she is being decorated on the chest with a straight razor by the ever playful Helmut Berger.






It's time for a "Babe in Bondage" day. Former Heffer Barbi Benton is all chained up in a sheer nightgown in "Deathstalker" and has those marvelous mounds bared for our pleasure. (She gets rescued.)

Also the late Lana Clarkson shows off her Robos.







Anna Falchi in an amusing zombie comedy, Cemetery Man. This was probably the funniest zombie movie before Shaun of the Dead came along.
Diane Lane in Unfaithful.
Jennifer Aniston in Derailed
Lauren Lee Smith in Lie With Me
Susan George in Straw Dogs
Polly Shannon in Lie With Me
Noted intellectual Tara Reid in a see-through top