Erwin Leder

Erwin Leder

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Das Boot Review


Extraordinary
It's always weird to see the enemy as the good guy, and Das Boot leaps out as probably the greatest example of this up until Schindler's List. This time the Nazis are at sea, faced with the claustrophobia and filth of a German U-Boat, trying to figure out what the hell Hitler is doing back home while they sink English ships in the Atlantic. Its story fraught with peril and its characters full of doubt, this is a far cry from the unbridled patriotism of aw-shucks flicks like U-571. Every sub movie owes a debt to Das Boot (at nearly 3 1/2 hours long, it was originally intended as a TV miniseries) for mastering the genre and setting the bar for its contemporaries.

Underworld Review


Terrible

"Underworld" might have been one bad-ass B-movie, if only its plot about a war between vampires and werewolves had been seen by co-writer/director Len Wiseman as anything more than a token gimmick on which to hang "Matrix"-mimicking action and antiquated genre clichés.

Thick with mold-breaking potential that goes completely unexplored, the picture is populated by cardboard cutouts of aristocratic, clownishly Goth-fashioned bloodsuckers and sunken-eyed, greasy-haired, heavy-metal headbanger-styled lycans (a fancy word for werewolves). The two races exhaust every trite and tired facet of their respective horror folklore in a story that has obviously, and rather clumsily, had elements edited out -- including a romance between warrior vampiress Selene (Kate Beckinsale) and Michael (Scott Speedman), a human with werewolf ancestry.

When Kraven (ravenous scenery glutton Shane Brolly) -- the conniving, devious, temporary leader of the vampires while their sovereign is entombed in hibernation -- orders the human killed because his DNA could change the course of the centuries-old war, Selene risks her life to save the guy for reasons that aren't entirely clear in this final version of the film.

Continue reading: Underworld Review

Erwin Leder

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Underworld Movie Review

Underworld Movie Review

"Underworld" might have been one bad-ass B-movie, if only its plot about a war between...

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