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Batman (1966) Review


Good
If you're old enough, you remember when Batman first became a cultural phenomenon. No, not when Tim Burton tagged then-comedian Michael Keaton and Oscar-winning warhorse Jack Nicholson to play the Caped Crusader and his joking nemesis, respectively. Forty years ago, every kid in America was glued to their living room TV set, awaiting the moment when the familiar Neal Hefti theme music would announce another amazing adventure with the crime fighter and the boy wonder Robin. So successful was the '60s version that at the height of its popularity it actually aired twice a week. Naturally, ABC wanted to maximize its prime time hit's potential, so in between seasons one and two, a full length motion picture was produced.

The storyline of 1966's Batman offers up the four main villains from the series -- The Joker (Cesar Romero), The Penguin (Burgess Meredith), The Riddler (Frank Gorshin), and Catwoman (Lee Meriwether, subbing for a previously committed Julie Newmar) -- uniting to bring down Batman (Adam West) and Robin (Burt Ward) once and for all. Using a device known as a dehydrator, they kidnap the United World Security Council, determined to use their crime to dismantle the organization and take over the world. With the leaders now turned to dust, our bad-guy-busting duo must save the day, hopefully restoring the assembly before the planet devolves into chaos.

Continue reading: Batman (1966) Review

Manna From Heaven Review


Bad
The five precocious Burton sisters of Buffalo, NY have given us a precocious film about a group of people so hateful we are forced to try our best to simply ignore them. How's that for skipping the first day of Filmmaking 101?

Manna From Heaven is the story of a Buffalo family who one day discover $20,000 "raining from heaven," wisely decide to split it up, and then go on their merry ways. A decade or so later, every last one of them has grown up to be a loser, having squandered his or her (mostly her) share of the loot. The lone exception is Theresa (Ursula Burton... well of course the good one is going to be played by a Burton sister!) who has become an ash-on-the-forehead nun. In fact, Theresa becomes convinced that the 20 grand of so long ago was not a gift but a loan, and that they must now "pay it back."

Continue reading: Manna From Heaven Review

Luck Of The Draw Review


Bad
The biggest thugs in cinema get a workout in Luck of the Draw, a direct-to-video gangster flick that has Dennis Hopper, Eric Roberts, Michael Madsen, William Forsythe, and Ice-T all chasing down a pair of ultra-valuable counterfeit $100 printing plates.

The story is pretty straightforward, as Twin Peaks' James Marshall finds the plates in his possession and discovers has warring factions of thugs as well as cops immediately on his ass. Frankly, that rather pedestrian story occupies the entire film, and it doesn't merit much additional detail.

Continue reading: Luck Of The Draw Review

Man Of The Century Review


Good
Cute movie. Johnny Twennies (Gibson Frazier) lives in the '90s but behaves like it's his last name -- talking about moxie, flappers, and dames. And no one else is in on the joke. His encounters with modern-day women and situations are priceless but it's of course a one-note movie -- and why no one calls Johnny on his peccadilloes is never explained. Like I said, cute but hardly a comic masterpiece.

Man Of The Century Review


Good

Everything's jake to Johnny Twenties. Johnny is a newspaper man, see. He's got moxie and nobody's gonna play him for a sucker -- even if he is blissfully unaware of the world he lives in.

You see, Johnny Twenties is about 70 years behind the times. He's a fast-talkin', wise-crackin' upright joe straight out of a Howard Hawks comedy -- but he's resides in Manhattan, circa 1999.

The fedora-sporting hero of the neo-B-grade, screwball comedy "Man of the Century," Johnny is the invention of screenwriters Adam Abraham (who directed the film) and Gibson Frazier (who plays Johnny), who have created an ingenious homage to the kind of flicks that came and went in a week the 1920s and 1930s -- the kind of dime-a-dozen comedies that delighted the masses during the Depression, but will probably never be seen on American Movie Classics now.

Continue reading: Man Of The Century Review

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Steve McQueen Becomes Youngest Recipient Of BFI Fellowship

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Green Man 2016 - Live Review

Green Man 2016 - Live Review

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Frank Gorshin Movies

Manna From Heaven Movie Review

Manna From Heaven Movie Review

The five precocious Burton sisters of Buffalo, NY have given us a precocious film about...

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Man Of The Century Movie Review

Man Of The Century Movie Review

Everything's jake to Johnny Twenties. Johnny is a newspaper man, see. He's got moxie and...

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