Deliverance (1972)

Director: John Boorman

Writer: James Dickey (Screenplay) James Dickey (Novel)

Starring: Jon Voight, Burt Reynolds, Ned Beatty, Ronny Cox, Ed Ramey, Billy Redden

 

Plot: Intent on seeing the Cahulawassee River before it’s turned into one huge lake, outdoor fanatic Lewis Medlock takes his friends on a river-rafting trip they’ll never forget into the dangerous American back-country.


Tagline –  Four men ride a wild river. A weekend turns into a nightmare.

Runtime: 1 Hour 49 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Intense Thriller

 

Story: Deliverance starts when four city man Ed (Voight), Lewis (Reynolds), Bobby (Beatty) and Drew (Cox) head to the Cahulawassee river for a river-rafting trip down the river before the river is turned into a lake, Lewis leads the group being an outdoors man.

What seems like a pleasant enough trip takes a brutal turn when the locals force themselves on Bobby before Lewis kills one of them. The friends now face a race against time to make it out of the wilderness before the rest come for revenge in the deadliest chase of their lives.

 

Thoughts on Deliverance

 

Characters – Lewis is the outdoors man of the group, he is close friends with Ed and you feel like they have been on many an adventure together. He has the plans for the trip believing he doesn’t need to ask for help and when their backs are against the wall he must step up. Ed is the linchpin between the friends, the one they turn to when things are not going their way for advice and almost comfort, he does witness the attack on Bobby, left helpless to only watch. Bobby is an insurance salesman that joins the trip, he clearly isn’t used to being in the outdoors and goes through the worst ordeal of them all. Drew is the final member of the group or tries to play the morale and legal compass when things get out of hand.

PerformancesThe performances here give us four of the best actors of a generation at different stages of their careers, they are all fantastic in what they do too. Jon Voight stands above them all, but you can’t deny they shine in the moments they need too.

StoryThe story keeps things very simple, four friends go on an adventure rafting trip only for a peaceful trip to turn into a nightmare as they are attacked and hunted down by the local hillbillies. We have a moral discussion about what to do when you murder to protect yourself, seeing how difficult it can be for one man to get pushed to the limits of needing to take a life and an environmental discussion around the ideas of what would happen when rivers are being turned into lakes. This is one of those movies where the story never needs to get complicated, you truly believe the peril the characters are in too.

Adventure/ThrillerThe adventure the friends go on, takes out characters on a rafting trip, one that was meant for pure happiness and endurance, they got the endurance, but a race against time too. We are kept on the edge of our seats from the moment the attack happened, because we don’t know how many people are going to be looking to hunt them down.

SettingsThe film takes place in the wilderness of the American countryside, this is used for the beauty of the settings and the peril of the situation with the nature and the locals being the threat.


Scene of the Movie –
The clifftop.

That Moment That Annoyed Me I feel like there would be bigger scars after what happened to Bobby.

Final ThoughtsThis is one of the greatest thriller to ever be made, it has four excellent performances and shows that we can have horror in moments that should be calm.

 

Overall: Brilliant from start to finish.

Rating

 

 

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1941 (1979)

Director: Steven Spielberg

Writer: Robert Zemeckis, Bob Gale (Screenplay) Robert Zemeckis, Bob Gale, John Milius (Story)

Starring: Dan Aykroyd, Ned Beatty, John Belushi, Lorraine Gary, Murray Hamilton, Christopher Lee, Tim Matheson

 

Plot: Hysterical Californians prepare for a Japanese invasion in the days after Pearl Harbor.


Tagline – As They Roared Into Battle, Only One Thing Was Missing…The Enemy!

Runtime: 1 Hour 58 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Simply Not Good Enough

 

Story: 1941 starts in the aftermath of Pearl Harbour, The Japanese are searching for Hollywood for their latest attack, while the army are planning to create a defence on the Californian coastline, Sgt Frank Tree (Aykroyd) leads his men in preparations while pilot Captain Wild Bill Kelso (Belushi) travels the country to support his troops.

The preparations bring us comical happenings which lead to what is going on between the Americans and the impending Japanese.

 

Thoughts on 1941

 

Characters – We have so many characters in this film it is hard to pick out the main ones, we will though, Sgt Frank Tree tries to keep peace between his soldiers and not letting them fight with the locals. Ward Douglas is the man that sees it has an honour to host the army for prime location for defence. Captain Wild Bill Kelso is a pilot that enjoys a drink, he heads across country to join the battle. Where we have too many characters it is hard to see which one we are meant to be follow the most.

PerformancesThe performances are affected by the mass cast because no one gets to show their best skills, we have the comical actors that want to joke, only for them to miss, then the serious actors not hitting their moments either.

StoryThe story follows the Americans as they plan for a potential next attack on America from the Japanese in the aftermath of the Pearl Harbour attack. The problem I see with this story, it showing us how we make light of a devastating moment in history with the Pearl Harbour attack and shows how America did panic but didn’t seem to take the events serious, well that is what the film gives us.

Action/Comedy/WarThe action plays into the comedy which gets basic laughs but most of the laughs seem to have dated badly and even just give us toilet humour, all with the backdrop of World War II.

SettingsThe film puts us in LA for the events of the film which shows how Hollywoodland would react to the impending war.


Scene of the Movie –
Plane sex.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Too many characters.

Final ThoughtsThis is one of the biggest misses of Spielberg’s career, it has too many characters and doesn’t manage to balance out the comedy and action well enough.

 

Overall: Disappointing throughout.

Rating

 

 

Network (1976)

rob challengeThis week Rob pick this classic Oscar winning film, let’s see what I think

network 

Director: Sidney Lumet

Writer: Paddy Chayefsky (Screenplay)

Starring: Faye Dunaway, William Holden, Peter Finch, Robert Duvall, Wesley Addy, Ned Beatty

 

Plot: A television network cynically exploits a deranged former anchor’s ravings and revelations about the news media for its own profit.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Ranting Classic

 

Story: Network starts when Howard Beale (Finch) a news anchor is being let go because of poor ratings, he announces a two week before his ‘retirement’ that he is going to kill himself live on air. The network decides to fire him before this happening but when Diana Christensen (Dunaway) sees the ratings she suggest bring him back along with his head of new Max Schumacher (Holden) as ruthless new owner Frank Hackett (Duvall) wants to see ratings rise.

The rating continues to grow leading to Howard becoming a hit but just how much do the network really care about what he is saying and will he follow through with what he says.

Network really is a film that I can understand why it is rated so highly but I didn’t enjoy, nearly every character gives epic rants about life which end up coming off very repetitive once we heard them all once. We do get to see the cut throat world of entertainment world but by then it all ends up making the lives of the characters feel like a television show. The social commentary does work well about how the general public can be blinded by bigger stories.

 

Actor Review

 

Faye Dunaway: Diana Christensen is the ruthless lady in the network who wants to make Howard Beale the biggest name on the station with the highest ratings, she will take chance other wouldn’t but she really is just compensation for something else. Faye gives a great performance as a very independent woman in a world way before its time.

 diana

William Holden: Max Schumacher is the former new head who gets fired once Howard is getting too big for him to bad able to handle or take serious. He gets involved in a relationship with Diana which puts his own marriage in danger. William gives a good performance in this role.

 

Peter Finch: Howard Beale is the news anchor who is threatening to kill himself after the network decides to force him into retire, but when people start tuning into his news reports he becomes an overnight success as a ranting man the nation starts to follow him. Peter gives the most memorable performance as he goes through the most rants.

 hoard

Robert Duvall: Frank Hackett is the new network President that is desperate to become the next big thing and he see Howard as a way to make himself the biggest name in the network. Robert continued to show how much a consistent performer.

 duvall

Support Cast: Network has typical network performance from the supporting cast that all work well for the roles being played.

 

Director Review: Sidney LumetSidney gives us a great idea behind the film but sadly it has started to feel dated now.

 

Drama: Network brings us lots of character ranting and screaming in a cut throat world.

Settings: Network keeps most of the action inside the network studio showing how things are closely knit to make sure we see how fast things come in and out of popularity.

Suggestion: Network is one to watch once to see how well the films used to be made. (Watch)

 

Best Part: Peter Finch

Worst Part: Too much ranting.

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: Won 4 Oscars and 5 Nomination

Budget: $3,8 Million

Runtime: 2 Hour 1 Minute

Tagline: Television will never be the same!

 

Overall: Brilliant cinema but too much ranting for my liking.

Ratingcad