News Archive - September 2005

24 September

DK's Review: Aliens of the Deep (2005)
When it comes to action movies, James Cameron is one of my favorite directors. In particular, The Abyss and Terminator 2 are two of my all-time favorite movies. Like others, I'm disappointed to see that since Titanic Cameron is only making documentaries and I'm looking forward to see his Battle Angel (currently scheduled for a 2007 release), which will be his first feature in 10(!) years.

Aliens of the Deep (2005) I didn't really like Expedition: Bismarck and Ghosts of the Abyss, so my expectations from Aliens of the Deep weren't that high. Still, I got disappointed. I watched the 95-min DVD version and felt like I was watching a "behind the scenes" featurette of the real movie.

The movie promises to show us "aliens" from the bottom of the sea. It surprised me that during the entire duration, you don't get to see more than 10 minutes of that - most of them are the same creatures. TV shows like the excellent The Blue Planet (2001) by the BBC already gave us all these creatures (and many others not shown here) in a MUCH clearer view and better photography.

Instead, this movie focuses on showing all the people and equipment involved in making the dives. It was interesting in the first 10 minutes and it would have been alright if I wanted to know more about the making of the movie. But it's not interesting to see Cameron and crew for 95 minutes discussing how things should be made.

Except for the few short computer animations in the movie, I got a feeling that I was watching an unedited material. Cameron puts himself and lots of people with Ph.D. in front of the camera, but he is more interested in showing us them playing, making faces, modeling to the cameras and having really shallow discussions instead of giving some in-depth analysis of the subject.

Most of the underwater dialog consists of "Wow" and "That is amazing". The narration is horrible right from the beginning and the lowest point - for me - was during the explanation how these creatures were first discovered, which actually used the phrase: "These scientists went like 'Wow!'". James Cameron

Most of the underwater material shows the submarines and the people instead of the creatures. Is it because they didn't find what they wanted and didn't have enough material to shows us? When you finally get to see some creatures, you have absolutely no explanations about them. So many educated scientists around and you don't even get to know the names of the creatures! You just watch it like you would if you dived yourself. Cameron himself sums it pretty well in one scene, when a beautiful jelly-like creature passes and he says "I have no idea what that is". I don't blame you - you're not a scientist, but what are all the people around for?

Summing it all up - this movie was a big disappointment and boring enough for me to fast-forward parts of it. If you want to see the creatures promised here, see another documentary; if you want to see a good Cameron project - go and watch any of his brilliant action movies. But save yourself from watching this.

DK's rating: 4/10 - Avoid.

20 September

Nazi Hunter Wiesenthal Dead at 96
Simon Wiesenthal
(credit: Simon Wiesenthal Center) Simon Wiesenthal, the Holocaust survivor who helped track down Nazi war criminals following World War II and spent the later decades of his life fighting anti-Semitism and prejudice, has died aged 96.

In a campaign aimed at ensuring the world did not forget the terrors of the Third Reich, Wiesenthal brought 1100 Nazi fugitives to trial. Among them was Adolf Eichmann, the man entrusted by Adolf Hitler with carrying out the Nazi genocide program against the Jews.

He maintained that his motivation was not anger, but justice.

More info: CNN, ABC, BBC.

Visit the Simon Wisenthal Center

18 September

Haifa 21st International Film Festival
The 21st International Film Festival in Haifa, Israel, will open on October 18 and end Willem Dafoe on October 25. Here are some of the guests that will attend the event:

Actor Willem Dafoe will be there with his wife, Giada Colagrande to show Before it had a Name, directed by Colagrande. Both of them play in the movie, which they also wrote together.

Stanley Kubrick's wife, Christiane Kubrick and her brother, Jan Harlan (who collaborated with Stanely on 5 of his movies) will show his documentary, Stanley Kubrick Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures and will attend an open meeting (lead by director Avi Nesher) in which they will talk about the life and work of Stanley. Several of Stanley's movies will be shown during the festival.

Polish composer Zbigniew Preisner will attend a class for musicians and film makers as well as a concert of the Haifa Symphonic Orchestra, which will play Requiem for my Friend, composed by Preisner as a farewell to director Krzysztof Kieslowski.

Greek director Theo Angelopoulos will conduct a class on October 19 and four of his movies will be shown during the festival.

Directors/writers Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Dardenne will show their latest movie, The Child.

The festival's Official site is still presenting only last year's program.

Another Review of the SE DVD of The Fly
The Fly - Collector's Edition Michael Osadciw from the Home Theater Forum wrote an extensive review about the new Collector's Edition DVD of The Fly, which will be released to the public next week.

(Thanks to Greg Kirkman and Chris Foster for pointing this out)

15 September

Director Robert Wise Dead at 91
Robert Wise Legendary director Robert Wise died of heart failure yesterday, 4 days after his 91 birthday.

During his half-century career he was nominated for 7 Academy Awards. He directed 40 movies, among them: The Day the Earth Stood Still, West Side Story, The Sound of Music, The Haunting, The Andromeda Strain, I Want to Live!, Run Silent Run Deep, Tribute to a Bad Man, Somebody Up There Likes Me, The Sand Pebbles and Rooftops. He was also nominated for an Oscar for editing Citizen Kane.

His wife, Millicent, learned of her husband's death while in Spain for the inauguration ceremony of the San Sebastian Film Festival, which was featuring a retrospective of his work.

More info on Yahoo.

9 September

First Review of the SE DVD of The Fly
The Fly - Collector's Edition Jacob from the Home Theater Forum draws our attention to one of the first reviews of the new Special Edition DVD of The Fly, which will be released to the public at the end of this month.

The review, by Fusion3600 confirms that there's a lot to be waiting for (thanks to the work of this DVD's producer, David Prior).

Fusion3600 also reviews the sequel and seems like the bonus material is going to be very intersting as well.

Cronenberg Interview on Toro Magazine
David Cronenberg Interview on Toro Magazine Toro Magazine published an interesting interview with David Cronenberg, titled Killer Instincts, in which he talks a little about A History of Violence, but mainly about his experience and challenge in making movies.

(Credit goes to Matthew and Cronendrome)

4 September

On the Road: Red Cars Projects
ashbrg refers us to lots of exciting news regarding David Cronenberg's Red Cars.

David Cronenberg's Red Cars Cronenberg attended the Venice Film Festival in Italy on Friday to promote his latest project, REDCARS. There is already an official site (in both English and Italian) with info by the man himself, as well as photos from the book. More info also appears at Cut-up.

In addition, reports that "Cronenberg plans to begin shooting a film next winter about Ferrari's Formula One teams from the 1960s".

For those of you who don't know, Red Cars has been an unrealized Cronenberg project for years. You can read more about it at the Cronendrome.

The Fly Film Archive
Chris Foster's The Fly Film Archive has a new home. It also has some info about the upcoming SE DVD relaese of The Fly. Check it out.

Cronenberg vs. Egoyan
A tipper who wishes to remain anonymous refers us to an article published yesterday at The Globe and Mail, which analyses and compares the works of Canadian directors David Cronenberg and Atom Egoyan.

DK's Recommendation

The Big Picture (1989)

DK's rating: 7.5/10

DK's Recommendation

Eulogy (2004)

DK's rating: 7/10

Older news:
2005: August
2004: December
2003: March
2002: December